Sick (Harper Perennial)

In the tradition of Brain on Fire, an honest, beautifully rendered memoir of chronic illness, misdiagnosis, addiction, and the myth of full recovery that details author Porochista Khakpour’s struggles with late-stage Lyme disease.

For as long as writer Porochista Khakpour can remember, she has been sick. For most of that time, she didn’t know why. All of her trips to the ER and her daily anguish, pain, and lethargy only ever resulted in one question: How could any one person be this sick? Several drug addictions, three major hospitalizations, and over $100,000 later, she finally had a diagnosis: late-stage Lyme disease.

Sick is Khakpour’s arduous, emotional journey—as a woman, a writer, and a lifelong sufferer of undiagnosed health problems—through the chronic illness that perpetually left her a victim of anxiety, living a life stymied by an unknown condition. Divided by settings, Khakpour guides the reader through her illness by way of the locations that changed her course—New York, LA, New Mexico, and Germany—as she meditates on both the physical and psychological impacts of uncertainty, and the eventual challenge of accepting the diagnosis she had searched for over the course of her adult life. With candor and grace, she examines her subsequent struggles with mental illness, her addiction to the benzodiazepines prescribed by her psychiatrists, and her ever-deteriorating physical health. A story about survival, pain, and transformation, Sick is a candid, illuminating narrative of hope and uncertainty, boldly examining the deep impact of illness on one woman’s life.

Porochista Khakpour’s debut, Sons and Other Flammable Objects, was named a New York Times Editor’s Choice, one of the Chicago Tribune’s Fall’s Best, and the 2007 California Book Award winner in the “First Fiction” category. Her second novel The Last Illusion was a 2014 "Best Book of the Year" according to NPR, Kirkus Reviews, Buzzfeed, Popmatters, Electric Literature, and many more.  Among her fellowships is a National Endowment for the Arts award and her nonfiction has appeared in many sections of The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Elle, Slate, Salo, and Bookforum, among many others. Currently, she is guest faculty at VCFA and Stonecoast's MFA programs as well as Contributing Editor at The Evergreen Review and The Offing. Born in Tehran and raised in the Los Angeles area, she lives in New York City’s Harlem.

Photo by Sylvie Rosokoff

Mira Gonzalez [b. 1992] is a writer and illustrator from Los Angeles California. She is the author of two books and the owner of two dogs. She

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Sick: A Memoir Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062428738
Availability: Not in stock. Available To Order.
Published: Harper Perennial - June 5th, 2018

Sons and Other Flammable Objects Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802143860
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - September 1st, 2008