Happy: Book summary and reviews of Happy by Alex Lemon

Happy

A Memoir

by Alex Lemon

Happy by Alex Lemon X
Happy by Alex Lemon
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  • Published in USA  Dec 2009
    304 pages
    Genre: Biography/Memoir

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Book Summary

His freshman year of college, Alex Lemon was supposed to be the star catcher on the Macalester College baseball team. He was the boy getting every girl, the hard-partying kid who everyone called Happy, often without even knowing his real name. In the spring of 1997, he had his first stroke.

For two years Lemon coped with his deteriorating health by sinking deeper into alcohol and drug abuse. His charming and carefree exterior masked his self-destructive and sometimes cruel behavior as he endured two more brain bleeds and a crippling depression. After undergoing brain surgery, he is nursed back to health by his free-spirited artist mother, who once again teaches him to stand on his own.

Alive with unexpected humor and sensuality, Happy is a hypnotic self-portrait of a young man confronting the wreckage of his own body; it is also the deeply moving story of a mother's redemptive and healing powers. Alex Lemon's Technicolor sentences pop and sing as he writes about survival -- of the body and of the human spirit.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"[A] voltaic narrative that is alternately horrifying and touching." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Lemon turns out strange and beautiful metaphors, and his dialog perfectly conjures the hip-hop inflected speech of white suburban kids on their liberal arts idyll. For anyone who loves a great story, period." - Library Journal

"Empathetic, vividly rendered and impossible to put down." - Kirkus Reviews

"Alex Lemon takes his reader inside the terror and strangeness of illness -- and gives us, along the way, a loving portrait of a devoted, wonderfully nutty mother. Lemon is a brave, headlong writer, and he captures the life of the body with vivid and memorable intensity." - Mark Doty, author of Dog Years and Fire to Fire

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Reader Reviews

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P.A.Hayes

HAPPY
Waste of time....during the time this was happening to Lemon, he was a big jerk...it was all about him...very selfish person....he does not get any better thru-out this book....His mother is delightful...he is not...way too much swearing...drug...alcohol....immaturity...found it irritating...Was mad I wasted my time and money.

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Author Information

Alex Lemon

Alex Lemon was born in Iowa, and lives in Ft. Worth, Texas. He is the author of two collections of poetry, Mosquito and Hallelujah Blackout, and is the recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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