Picks and Pans Review: The Body Broken

UPDATED 04/20/2009 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 04/20/2009 at 01:00 AM EDT

by Lynne Greenberg |

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In 2006 Greenberg felt a burning pain in her skull. "It has never gone away since," she writes. The mother of two—who severed a vertebra in a teenage car accident—still had a broken neck. Over the next year, she endured a series of brutal medical procedures, abused painkillers and even considered suicide. Broken can feel solipsistic, but when Greenberg re-engages with the world beyond pain, the results are stirring: At a rare dinner out, she writes, "guffawing, I felt my head ache; guffawing louder, I chose to ignore it."

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