Cover Image: The World I Fell Out Of

The World I Fell Out Of

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Member Reviews

I’ve long been a fan of Melanie Reid’s work and this book absolutely blew me away. It made me sob, made me want to live life as fully as possible and it’s truly inspirational. You’ll never take life for granted again after reading this.
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As a regular reader of Melanie Reid's weekly Spinal Column article, i was looking forward to reading this memoir.  It's a powerful story of how one event can change the life that we know forever.  As well as telling Melanie's personal experience of way her life changed in such a significant way, this book is also a life affirming reminder that we should treasure every day and never take things for granted.
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I love Melanie Reid's Spinal Column in the Times and remember vividly reading about her accident when it happened in her column. 

This book is just wonderful. You might think reading about someone who is paralysed from a horse-riding fall and and has to adjust to living life as a tetraplegic would be horribly depressing, Such is the true grit and sheer wit of the author's personality, and her skill as a writer, that it is anything but. 

Written very matter-of-factly, with her typical gallows humour this memoir is both inspirational and thought-provoking. Reading this as an able-bodied person, I lost count of how often I thought how lucky I am. How we take it all for granted. How some silly accident can change things forever. The author herself talks about how she used to take that easy getting of bed in a morning for granted, the swinging the legs over the bed, and yet in the same breath makes you smile with her description of now feeling a medieval knight in their armour. 

I would highly recommend this book to anyone, of any age. Thank you to net galley. I hope this marvellous book receives the praise it truly deserves. The words of Ms Reid have stayed with me long after I finished the last page. For that, that says a lot.
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I have long been an admirer of Melanie Reid for her ‘Spinal Column’ in The Times newspaper, so was excited to read this book - to say I was not disappointed would be a huge understatement! She writes with honesty, humour, passion and immense empathy for fellow spinal injury sufferers, and all with a deft literary touch that left me bereft when the book was finished. She pulls no punches when conveying the grimmest details of her treatments and occasional disasters, but does so in a way that could only arouse sympathy and a fervent wish to make things better for her. Her passion for horses and riding, and for her adored and adoring husband and son shines like a bright light throughout the book and gives what could could so easily be yet another misery memoir an enormous warmth and positivity.
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A beautiful, humbling book with a strong vein of humour running through it that does not shy away from the realities of disability and actually answers the question of 'what to do with your life?' better than some books that purport to, albeit indirectly. I have no reservations recommending this to anyone and will be spreading the news about it.
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In April 2010, at the age of 52, journalist Melanie Reid broke her neck and fractured her back after falling from a horse, spending nearly a year in a high-dependency spinal unit. She is now a tetraplegic, permanently paralysed from the top of her chest downwards and will spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair. She has documented her experience of adult-acquired disability in her ‘Spinal Column’ in the Times for several years now. Her memoir ‘The World I Fell Out Of’ draws on those articles but also provides a fuller account of how her life changed following the accident.

I try not to describe memoirs as “honest” in my reviews, but it really has to be said that Reid’s candour about the aftermath of her accident is unflinching, particularly the aspects of care, rehabilitation and mental outlook that are rarely discussed, from the intimate indignities of being doubly incontinent, to coming to terms psychologically with the randomness and suddenness of what happened, to being permanently relegated to seat-level in a wheelchair - Reid is 6 feet tall and her height had always played a big part in her self-confidence. She had a second fall from a horse less than two years later, breaking her hip during a supervised Riding for the Disabled session, an episode she didn’t discuss in detail in her columns at the time. And yet, despite the life-changing setbacks and challenges of Reid’s situation, ‘The World I Fell Out Of’ is a darkly funny book, particularly when she describes the other patients and NHS staff in hospital. Many thanks to 4th Estate for sending me a review copy of ‘The World I Fell Out Of’ via NetGalley.
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I knew it would be a powerful account of Melanie's injury but it's so much more than that. Loved how it dealt with the new worlds and social circles she was thrust into by the accident (as opposed to just the things she was shut out from) and how unflinching it was about how those with disabilities are treated. I was left feeling both an immense connection to Melanie's own story and a larger shift in my thinking/awareness about disability as a whole. A stunning book.
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I’ve followed Melanie Reid’s column for many years. I was saddened to hear if her riding accident and the consequences and was keen to read The World I Fell Out Of. My problem now is how to best to review a book which brought me to tears more than once, made me laugh out loud a few times and took me down memory lane with references to some of my favourite authors.  In a nutshell, Melanie’s account is genuinely astonishing but most of all, it’s truly humbling. 

I can’t begin to imagine how I would deal with a life that’s transformed after a riding accident. In a split second, her fall took her from a full and active life to that of living as a tetraplegic. Her account is honest, raw and sometimes brutal. There are moments of anger and frustration but she’s never bitter. Her bravery in the face of countless adversities and indignities is overwhelming. But over and above all this is the fact that her writing is engaging, filled with insight and just a delight to read. It’s a privilege to have gained some understanding of the daily and ongoing challenges and it’s put my grumbles about pain and problems from an an autoimmune condition into perspective. An amazing lady with a remarkable story and I’m urging everyone to read it.

My thanks to the publisher for a review copy via Netgalley.
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Thank you very much for the opportunity to read Melanie Reid's new book.  I have followed her journey through her weekly newspaper column but this book gives so much more insight into the repercussions of her spinal injury and is a fascinating read.  What a brave, determined and incredible woman she is and such a wonderful writer.  I think Melanie has done a great service to society by allowing us all to follow her journey - the highs, the lows and continuing frustration she experiences.  I continue to hope that science will one day allow her to walk again.
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As a regular reader of the author’s column in the Times I know the details of her accident and her life since then however her book is enlightening and heartbreaking.
She is a wonderful writer, her descriptions of what it is like to be dependent on others is heartfelt and real.
From the start to the end of the book she keeps the reader interested and  amazed at the bravery of spinal injury patients..
Her journey from the accident through ED, ICU to rehab is full of the good and bad., the funny and the sad.
Her description of some of the staff and patients made me laugh in places and having worked  as a radiographer seemed very realistic.
I would recommend this book for Melanie’s excellent writing and the description of her journey since her devastating injury.
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Melanie's memoir is inspirational and in places heartbreaking. She has overcome so much with determination and the will to keep trying. I have read her column in the Times on numerous occasions and her humour and her ability to be uplifting is incredible. This memoir is brave and raw and I will definitely remember it.

Thank you to Netgalley for my copy.
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It is heartbreaking journalism telling us of her devastating riding accident which left her paralysed, tetraplegic.  It is told with humour and the grit that Melanie finds to try and regain control of her life. A very different life for both her and those around her.

I can barely understand why she got on horse again only to be thrown and break her hip. But then, I am not a horse rider, nor understand the attraction. 

What else to do but to fight and hold onto the independence she has with fortitude and I am sure, despair. 

If only we could go back to the day before. Read this book and appreciate every day.
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Whenever I am feeling down or sorry for myself I open up Melanie Reid's incredible Spinal Column in The Times.

In 2010 she suffered catastrophic injuries falling off her horse, broke her neck and is now a tetraplegic.
This book is her record of what happened on that terrible day and how she has coped with the vicissitudes if life and just a importantly how life has coped with her.

In places the book is terribly matter of fact when describing terrible things that happened to her and many others with whom she spent time in a Glasgow spinal clinic, at others it is understandably bitter and angry.

It is always humbling and inspirational to read how she has carried on with her family with the loving help and support of her family and how she copes with everyday situations that able bodied people take for granted but which are almost insurmountable for her.

At times I laughed out look particularly when a stranger she and her husband had helped told her that "good things" would happen to her just the week before her accident. At others I cried but at all times I felt humbled and honoured to read her brilliantly honed words.

It was a privilege to read this book which is a must read.
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Incredible story, skillfully told. I loved the author's no holds barred description of the reality of her accident and appreciated the way she looked at the 'bigger picture' of disability alongside her own experience. I have to admit incredible frustration with what happened to her towards the end of the book - but my own reaction points to her skill in telling the story! A very important book.
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Here is a memoir of a woman called Melanie who has become paralysed due to a riding accident. Yet her outlook on like is both positive and humorous. I have to say that reading this you cannot help but laugh. 
A fun, enjoyable read. 
Thank you to both NetGalley and Harper Collins for my eARC of this book in exchange for my honest unbiased review
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A memoir by a woman who fell off her horse and broke her neck resulting in paralysis. She delves into her experience of being on the spinal ward and eventually her return home.
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Before I read this beautiful book  I was unsure - wouldn’t a memoir about spinal injury be sad and reductive? But the reality was anything but. I loved the dark humour and found myself laughing out loud while recoiling in horror. Reid is so unflinching and candid and I felt I got to know her. I felt almost bereft when it ended. It had the bonus of being beautifully written by a journalist. I loved it.
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Melanie Reid a happily married woman a newspaper columnist a mother. Melanie also loved horseback riding a regular day a day off from work a day to ride to jump to enjoy her horse thevpower of riding.On this day this seemingly normal day Melanie fell off her horse she didn’t brace herself correctly and as she hit the ground she felt her body shatter knew she would never ride again from that day on back fractured she entered a new life a life as a paralyzed woman.Alife she would have to come to grips with a life her husband would cry over& her son would be in shock.
Melanie’s determination strength sense of humor will give  her the strength to persevere to still be herself to write a column for her paper she titled The Spinal Column to continue have a life a story a woman you will not forget .#netgalley  #the world I fell off #HarperCollins 4th estate uk
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