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Saturday, August 10, 2013

Book Review: After the Crash by Martin Spinelli; Mainstream Publishing

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A deeply moving true story of how a father and son used tragedy to transform their relationship

A young couple, Martin and Sasha, fall in love in a remote corner of the Italian Alps. They marry, have glittering careers and a charming, precocious son named Lio. Then, one beautifully clear Thursday morning as Sasha was driving to work with Lio on his way to nursery school in the back seat, a truck driver who had been on the road for sixteen hours without a break fell asleep at the wheel and hit them from behind. Sasha was killed instantly and Lio suffered multiple skull fractures and a shattered and mutilated left leg. After the Crash follows Lio’s recovery from brain damage so severe he wasn’t expected to walk, talk or even breathe unaided ever again. It tells how this incredibly strong and tenacious four-year-old pulled himself back from the edge of death and the loss of his mother to create for himself not just a “normal” childhood but an exceptional one. With remarkable power and honesty, the book puts us in the room with them as they battle dire prognoses, negative expectations, monstrous insurance companies, and profound grief all in an effort to heal his little boy—a boy that only Martin seemed to know had not lost his boundless potential.

Here is the story of four-year-old Lio's incredible recovery, and how his father Martin and he rebuilt their lives. Much more than a moving personal story, the book is a guide for not just surviving disaster, but mastering it and using it to transform one's life for the better.

My Review*

This is a very down to earth, heart-wrenching story of a man who lost his wife and just about lost his son in the same day. He shows us his life before and during his wife. He shows us who they are, their life, and the amazing journeys they took together.

Once you get to know the people inside the book, it’s hard not to feel so much empathy for him and his son. Losing a wife and mother and trying to rebuild their lives after a fatal car accident takes her too soon.

It shows us how confident thinking and taking OUR lives into our own hands can change our future. All the head doctors weren’t seeing much improvement for Lio (the son) after he was fatally wounded in the car accident with his mother. They thought the BEST that he might be able to accomplish was a mentally handicap school.

His faith in his son’s ability, his love, and his ability to “DO” right by his son. Sometimes professionals may think they know the diagnosis and what is “best” for the patient, but they may not know HOW to best go about that.

Martin, seeing that the loud music as stimulation wasn’t helping his son wake from the coma. At that point he realized that he had to take a stand to show the professionals that quiet time, holding his son was what was right!

I really enjoyed this book. I could never imagine going through the emotional pain that Martin has to face. A world without his wife, a broken shell of his former son, and doing it all by himself. It’s a tragic story that turns into a marvelous outcome. It’s one of praise, self will, and lets you know that the little things in life ARE what mean the most!

About the Author

Martin Spinelli is a media, film, and music professor. In his twenties, as a reporter, anchor, and producer in Buffalo, New York, he produced award-winning news features for NPR as well as the acclaimed literary series LINEbreak. Both his benchmark radio art series Radio Radio and LINEbreak are included in the permanent collection of the Museum of Television and Radio in New York while all of his radio work and writing are archived in the Martin Spinelli Collection at the University at Buffalo Library. He was the founder of the Academic Radio Program at the City University of New York at Brooklyn College where he produced the AIDS-informational soap Welcome to America broadcast on Radio Africa International. His many essays about media art and history have been published in anthologies as well as journals, such as Postmodern Culture, Convergence, and Object.

Get the Book: After the Crash by Martin Spinelli paperback $7.99

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Jessica Renee


This post was written by:

Jess is the creator of Stylish Southern Mama + Southern Rambles. She is a freelance writer + designer, Social Media Marketer, and Journalist. She has 2 amazing kids, Aidan and Adisyn, and has been with their dad Adam for 12 years, and has 2 amazingly adorable dogs; Harley + Cheyanne! :)

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