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Oliver Sacks and an Essay Worth Reading

It’s hard for me to express how much I have loved Oliver Sacks and his work. Like many people I know, I first heard of him because of the movie Awakenings. I forgot about the movie fairly quickly, but immediately went on to devour every book he had written.

A couple of years ago when I got a gift card for Barnes and Noble at Christmas, I immediately used it to get his latest book Hallucinations, and to replace my worn copy of The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Hat. 

When I was looking for blurbs for The World’s Strongest Librarian, my editor, agent and I thought my story might be of interest to a man with such an immoderate fascination in brains gone wrong. We received a very gracious denial, stating that Mr. Sacks’ eyesight was already so poor that he was no longer able to read as he wished.

He is now 81 and has written an op-ed about a sobering development in his health. It is worth the time to read it.

Mr. Sacks, thank you for everything. You are loved and always will be.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Marjorie February 20, 2015, 8:25 am

    I read his essay yesterday and had similar reflections on what a remarkable man Oliver Sacks is. I was recovering from drastic brain surgery 22 years ago and at a loss to understand all my body was doing as it recovered when I came across one of Sacks’ books. I too sought out and read all of his other published books and have been an admirer ever since. He gave me language for what my body was doing, such weird, indescribable sensations, activities–even his ability to explain how the body’s sense of balance is in your brain, not in your hips–He gave me tools to cope with such bewildering experiences. I will be forever grateful. The world will be a poorer place without him.

  • Daisy February 20, 2015, 4:50 pm

    I first learned of Oliver Sacks through his “Anthropologist on Mars” collection. His insights were, and continue to be, amazing.

  • Lance April 3, 2015, 2:14 pm

    My teenage daughter and I have enjoyed listening to Mr. Sack’s books — such as “Musicophilia.”