The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly
Written By: Jean-Dominique Bauby
Published By: Harper Perennial, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2008, First Edition by Harper Perennial, 144 pages, paperback
“The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly grants you access into a lonely, locked-in world; this poignant memoir is a stark reminder of how infinitely precious life is.”
Product Description – From Amazon.com
“In December 1995, Jean-Dominique Bauby, the 43-year-old editor of French Elle, suffered a massive stroke that left him permanently paralyzed, a victim of “locked in syndrome.” Once known for his gregariousness and wit, Bauby now finds himself imprisoned in an inert body, able to communicate only by blinking his left eye. The miracle is that in doing so he was able to compose this stunningly eloquent memoir.
In a voice that is by turns wistful and mischievous, angry and sardonic, Bauby gives us a celebration of the liberating power of consciousness: what it is like to spend a day with his children, to imagine lying in bed beside his wife, to conjure up the flavor of delectable meals even as he is fed through at tube. Most of all, this triumphant book lets us witness an indomitable spirit and share in the pure joy of its own survival.”
The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly is such an insightful and inspirational book. This is one mans story; his triumph of spirit and his courage despite all odds. That a man in his prime, powerful and respected, could be brought so low by a rare condition known as locked-in syndrome; it is almost to horrible to contemplate. This story is a quick read and has a distinct, flowing plot. I was really fascinated by Jean’s indomitable spirit and his sardonic wit. There were many times when I smiled at Jean’s comments and thoughts, delighting in his zest for life while in a near vegetative state. The beautiful writing was so vivid and detailed that I could almost see through his one, good eye. His absolute determination, to share his story with the world leaves us forever in his debt. Though I was saddened by his condition and ultimately his death, I really enjoyed his story.
I highly recommend this book.
♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦ (9 out of 10 Diamonds) – Loved it!
A special thanks to HarperCollins for sending me a copy to review.
Copyright © Book Reviews By Bobbie — Bobbie Crawford-McCoy