Half A Life

Half A Life

Book - 2010
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"Half my life ago, I killed a girl."

So begins Darin Strauss' Half a Life , the true story of how one outing in his father's Oldsmobile resulted in the death of a classmate and the beginning of a different, darker life for the author. We follow Strauss as he explores his startling past--collision, funeral, the queasy drama of a high-stakes court case--and what starts as a personal tale of a tragic event opens into the story of how to live with a very hard fact: we can try our human best in the crucial moment, and it might not be good enough. Half a Life is a nakedly honest, ultimately hopeful examination of guilt, responsibility, and living with the past.
Publisher: San Francisco, Calif. : McSweeney's Books, 2010.
ISBN: 9781934781708
Characteristics: 205 p. ;,21 cm.


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multcolib_susannel Sep 26, 2017

Why did Celine ride her bike across two lanes of traffic into the path of Darin's car? Why did she die and he is still alive?

May 31, 2013

So well-written, and gives such insight into the overwhelming regret and remorse and guilt attendant on being the one to have killed someone - these emotions all being strong even though it was by an accident that simply could not have been avoided. Darin Strauss was completely exonerated of any wrong-doing, but, understandably, the accident coloured his life, and this memoir shows how. A real eye-opener.

Aug 10, 2011

This is a thoughtful and courageous memoir about how one quite random moment can haunt the rest of your life. Strauss' heart is wide-open here, and he also writes beautifully. Both sad and hopeful.

Jan 06, 2011

This wasn't the in-depth memoir that I expected from Darin Strauss. I wanted to know how the incident central to the book propelled his writing career and especially if there was a connection (no pun intended) to his choice of the subject matter of "Chang and Eng" which I really enjoyed.

debwalker Dec 09, 2010

Imagine yourself a few weeks from your high school graduation, cruising down the road with a carload of your friends. Now imagine the almost inconceivable: a fellow student riding her bicycle swerves into the path of your car and is killed instantly. Novelist Strauss was the driver of that car in May 1988 and this memoir is the intense, searching account of the path he traveled from that grim day to the present.

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