by on February 26th, 2015
Trapped Cover Image

Here are four new memoirs that will make the able-bodied glad we’re only trapped by crappy winter weather.

Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius

A bizarre illness rendered Martin Pistorius immobile and incommunicado for 12 years. His family was told the teenager was going to die, but he survived in a vegetative state with no way to communicate. His family didn’t know he was cognizant for more than a decade. How do you cope when you are trapped inside your body? What do you do when the staff at the care center leave Barney reruns on for hours? This memoir shares his intense story. eBook available on Overdrive


Alexander memoir
Now I See YouWhat It’s Like to Lose Your Eyesight

Nicole Kear (Now I See You) and Rebecca Alexander (Not Fade Away) were each stricken by illnesses that threaten blindness. Alexander’s Type 3 Usher syndrome led to a loss of hearing as well. Spoiler alert: neither woman gave in to their disease; each faced their new challenges head-on. Kear approached telling her story through sassy essays of the plights and pitfalls of faking full-sightedness. Alexander’s persistence in overcoming the burdens of her illness is worthy of envy: Going blind by age 12 and deaf by 19, she sets her internal sights on accomplishing feats like 5-mile swims, weeklong bike rides, and career success, as reported in the New York Times. These books provide great stories of persevering through your limits.


Girl in the DarkGirl in the Dark by Anna Lyndsey (out March 3)

Anna Lyndsey (a pseudonym) is trapped not by her senses but by her sensations. Diagnosed with photosensitive seborrhoeic dermatitis, a condition where light makes her skin feel like it’s burning, she has rarely left her house for the past nine years and spends her waking life in the dark. She can’t even use a laptop without hurting. The question posed in the T the New York Times Style Magazine is: “If your life ends, but you’re still alive, who are you?” (Martin Pistorius has his own answers to that question.) The T Magazine does a great job of introducing the rules Lyndsey must live by and the limits she faces. Unlike Kear and Alexander, she has an even more limited palette to persevere through the obstacles, being limited to what she can do in the dark inside her house. Lyndsey’s memoir will give readers a completely new perspective on managing a woeful existence.

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About Melody Dworak

Melody Dworak
Melody buys books for the second half of the nonfiction Dewey numbers on the 2nd floor. She has recently been bitten by the fiction bug, but loves those historical reference questions regardless. Visit the digital collections she manages at and