Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The World's Strongest Librarian

The World's Strongest Librarian: a Memoir of Tourette's, Faith, Strength, and the Power of Family, by Josh Hanagarne

I've been looking forward to getting this book!  I had to wait my turn at the library, but once I got it (yesterday), I gulped it down.

Josh is a librarian at the main Salt Lake City library (I've been there, it's really nice.  After all, when you're visiting a new place you have to see what the library is like, right?).  He's got lots of good library stories, which is of course my favorite part.  This is a guy who understands the librarian soul:
I also work here because I love books, because I'm inveterately curious, and because, like most librarians, I'm not well suited to anything else.  As a breed, we're the ultimate generalists.  I'll never know everything about anything, but I'll know something about almost everything and that's how I like to live.

Josh's story is about how he wound up where he is now, with a family and a library career.  He has had a bit of a difficult time.  He talks about his early childhood as very happy, especially with his family, despite the tics that started to assail him.  But adolescence was something of a nightmare.  His tics got much worse, and hardly anything seemed to help.  His Tourette's is quite extreme, and got in the way of everything, to the point of severe self-injury.  School, work, or anything like a normal life became extremely difficult to maintain.  How Josh managed--with the help of his family and a really interesting coach--to figure out what worked for him and to build a happy life makes for a book I couldn't put down.  And he's a very funny guy, too.

Good memoir.  I liked it.


Monika said...

Glad you liked this one! :) I did, too.

Jean said...

I think it might have been on your blog that I saw it. Thanks for the tip!