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Most Of Me: Surviving My Medical Meltdown Paperback – Sep 16 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Greystone Books; Reprint edition (Sept. 9 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1553656326
  • ISBN-13: 978-1553656326
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 1.8 x 21.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #376,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


One nipple up! A must-read for all breast cancer survivors. —Ms. Mastectomy


It was such a privilege to read Robyn Levy's story. Her integrity and honesty simultaneously broke and healed my heart, fresh from my own journey through breast cancer. Riveting and endearingly funny, her story impacted me profoundly, covering me in a blanket of feelings and thoughts that will stay with me forever, like a friend. —Bif Naked


An astonishing debut from a writer adept at handling the delicate balance between laughter and tears. —Cori Howard


A deliciously poetic, humor-laced narrative by a courageous and wickedly honest woman who has been handed a mountain of medical lemons in the prime of her life. Robyn Levy's spirit will stick with you long after you finish the book. —Rhona Raskin


Robyn Levy, never one to do things by half, was diagnosed with two life-altering illnesses. Most of Me is her funny/sad and delightfully bawdy account of a dangerous and memorable journey. Long may she travel, and more may she write. —Bill Richardson


. . . Levy's writing style is so accessible and compelling that reading her memoir feels like sitting down with a good friend over coffee to hear the latest. Every page is loaded with emotion so heart-wrenching it's almost unbearable, yet her tone is so engaging, her humour so dark, that you can't help but keep reading. —Georgia Straight


Despite the subject matter, Most of Me is filled with irreverent humour and themes of family life that are relevant to almost everyone who's ever lived with a teenager (or been one.) —Vancouver Sun


It is a brave story, not because of the private emotional reality [Levy] bares—all memoirs require that. It's her determined levity in the face of so much suffering that's heartbreaking and raw. —Globe & Mail


As she says, if she doesn’t joke about it, she'll cry. You'll probably do a bit of both if you pick up a copy of Levy’s book. —Adrienne Brown,


In her debut memoir, Levy provides a dark-humored account of being afflicted with both Parkinson's disease and breast cancer . . . What initially seemed like a dual death sentence provided Levy with a new lease on life, reuniting her with friends and family, all of whom reminded her of the many blessings that remained. A traumatic tale surprisingly liberated by laughter. —Kirkus Reviews


Some memoirs are heartbreaking and some are hilarious, but very few manage to balance absurdity and honesty as does this title . . . This memoir is proof of the power of the human spirit. By finding joy in the face of the worst circumstances, Levy shows that what doesn't kill you makes you stranger and stronger. Enthusiastically recommended. —Library Journal


I liked this book for one very big reason: readers watch on as Levy progresses from What's-wrong-with-me? to I-can-do-this and the transformation is simply tremendous. The powerful woman we know at the end of this book is not the emotional person we met at the beginning and that could be a beacon of hope for anyone facing a long-term illness. —Terri Schlichenmeyer, My Kawartha


About the Author

Robyn Michele Levy is a visual artist, radio broadcaster, and writer. Her paintings can be found in private and public collections around the world. Her radio work includes documentaries, commentaries, poetry, and sketch comedy for CBC Radio. Her writing has been published in the Vancouver Sun, the Georgia Straight, and the Vancouver Courier, among other publications, and she has also dabbled in stand-up comedy and slam poetry. She lives with her family and her remaining body parts in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Sometimes, laughter is the only way to deflect despair. Robyn Michelle Levy knows it from personal experience. Her memoir Most of Me is simultaneously amusing and poignant. From the first word, the story pulled me in and never let go, and the pages practically turned themselves. But it was a harrowing read, too, because of the subject matter: a serious, life-altering illness. Or rather two of them at once.

With poise, candor, and self-deprecating humor, Levy writes about her medical plight. At the age of 43, she was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson's. Eight months later, while still reconciling her debilitating affliction, she added breast cancer to her list of maladies. So far, she has won both battles.

Her memoir covers several years before and after her diagnoses. The book starts with 'before,' when the author struggled with her deteriorating health and bouts of depression without knowing why. Her immediate family'husband and teenage daughter'were often on the receiving end of her black moods, and afterwards, she was swamped by remorse. Then the bomb of Parkinson's exploded in her face.

Throughout the book, Levy is relentlessly honest, as she chronicles her seething cauldron of emotions: anger and guilt, shame and acceptance, terror of impending diapers and determination to survive. She also details the support and affection she received from her friends and family during her arduous medical journey. In a way, the book is a tribute to her loved ones, although the writing never slides towards melodrama. Funny asides and droll observations keep the narrative balanced on a tasteful line between mushy and tragic.

One of the grimmest problems the author faced after each of her two diagnoses was how to tell her thirteen-year-old daughter.
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Format: Paperback
Robyn writes with frank honesty concerning her medical problems but always with a sense of humor. She takes the reader through her illnesses and shares with us her journey as she learns to cope with the reality of her condition. This book reflects Robyn's bravery and the closeness of her family. This book is highly readable and a must for anyone facing difficult life issues. We have recommended it to many friends and relatives.
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I first heard of Robyn Levy in a CBC radio interview with herself and her father discussing the trials and tribulations of living with Parkinson's Disease. Both Robyn and her father have Parkinson's and in addition Robyn has had to deal with breast cancer. Despite a medical history that would cripple most of us Robyn's enthusiastic, and above all humorous, approach to dealing with medical uncertainly has led to her writing this book. I ordered it right away.

It's unusual that a book affects me in such a profound manner however Robyn writes with fierce honesty and a seriously deranged but delicious wit. The prose alternates between the realities of having serious medical problems and her very funny reactions to dealing with the enormity of the situation. I found the book a page turner and read the book in virtually one sitting.

I could go on and on describing a very readable and enormously satisfying book that will appeal to a wide range of readers but don't want to give away any of the juicy bits.

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I am unfortunately familiar with the author's brother who physically and sexually assaulted me and another woman I know. After we both complained and statements were made to the authorities, he and his family slandered our names within the community. Additionally, the Levy family had more money than both of us at the time and they made sure that we kept our mouths shut about his sexual assault. Although my heart aches for anyone who is afflicted with cancer and degenerative diseases, the Levy family is an entitled and elitist clan who look down on others who they feel are socially and economically beneath them. The Levy family only cares about themselves and will destroy anyone who gets in their way. I read parts of this book when I came upon it but I will never purchase it or in any way support any of the Levy family. The Levy family supported, excused and condoned the actions of a multiple sex offender (the author's brother) while having actively tried to destroy his victims. And they continue to do so. Shame on ALL of them.
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All page- turners have something that pulls you along. The thread that tugs throughout Robyn Michele Levy''s book ' Most of Me -- is its engaging authenticity. Robyn''s stories occupy that universal zone of mixed emotions where you can''t help laughing and crying at the same time. This book does not leave you with the detached wonder of how someone could ever cope with these two diseases; ' instead, it transports you to a place where you experience the real possibility of creating an unconventional response to otherwise daunting obstacles. While the supporting roles of the Canadian medical system, family and an expansive web of friendships are evident throughout, it is Robyn''s artful mix of honesty and imagination that gives you the feeling you are accompanying her on a playful, painful journey.
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