Between Two KingdomsSuleika Jaouad

Between Two Kingdoms

4.5 star

Total 766 Ratings

Between Two Kingdoms by Suleika Jaouad Book Summary

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A searing, deeply moving memoir of illness and recovery that traces one young woman’s journey from diagnosis to remission to re-entry into “normal” life—from the author of the Life, Interrupted column in The New York Times

ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: The New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, Bloomberg, The Rumpus, She Reads, Library Journal, Booklist • “I was immersed for the whole ride and would follow Jaouad anywhere. . . . Her writing restores the moon, lights the way as we learn to endure the unknown.”—Chanel Miller, The New York Times Book Review
“Beautifully crafted . . . affecting . . . a transformative read . . . Jaouad’s insights about the self, connectedness, uncertainty and time speak to all of us.”—The Washington Post

In the summer after graduating from college, Suleika Jaouad was preparing, as they say in commencement speeches, to enter “the real world.” She had fallen in love and moved to Paris to pursue her dream of becoming a war correspondent. The real world she found, however, would take her into a very different kind of conflict zone.

It started with an itch—first on her feet, then up her legs, like a thousand invisible mosquito bites. Next came the exhaustion, and the six-hour naps that only deepened her fatigue. Then a trip to the doctor and, a few weeks shy of her twenty-third birthday, a diagnosis: leukemia, with a 35 percent chance of survival. Just like that, the life she had imagined for herself had gone up in flames. By the time Jaouad flew home to New York, she had lost her job, her apartment, and her independence. She would spend much of the next four years in a hospital bed, fighting for her life and chronicling the saga in a column for The New York Times.

When Jaouad finally walked out of the cancer ward—after countless rounds of chemo, a clinical trial, and a bone marrow transplant—she was, according to the doctors, cured. But as she would soon learn, a cure is not where the work of healing ends; it’s where it begins. She had spent the past 1,500 days in desperate pursuit of one goal—to survive. And now that she’d done so, she realized that she had no idea how to live.

How would she reenter the world and live again? How could she reclaim what had been lost? Jaouad embarked—with her new best friend, Oscar, a scruffy terrier mutt—on a 100-day, 15,000-mile road trip across the country. She set out to meet some of the strangers who had written to her during her years in the hospital: a teenage girl in Florida also recovering from cancer; a teacher in California grieving the death of her son; a death-row inmate in Texas who’d spent his own years confined to a room. What she learned on this trip is that the divide between sick and well is porous, that the vast majority of us will travel back and forth between these realms throughout our lives. Between Two Kingdoms is a profound chronicle of survivorship and a fierce, tender, and inspiring exploration of what it means to begin again.

Between Two Kingdoms (Suleika Jaouad) Book Reviews

Excellent ( and emotional) autobiographical storyA fascinating read. Definitely recommend this one..Score: 5/5

MasterpieceBeautiful and captivating. A must read for all!.Score: 5/5

I loved this so very muchAbsolutely wonderful description of that place in between..Score: 5/5

A really good bookI read this book in a single weekend and this is a book easy to read and you won’t waste any time going through one end to the other. There is a lot of suffering in that book but as well so a lot of optimism and it feels really good.Score: 5/5

Team Susu forever!So good, I didn’t want it to end. As a fellow lymphomie, I don’t think I could ever have worded my experiences and feelings even a small fraction as well as Susu did. I am grateful for her words, they gave me a sense of validation and reassurance that the feelings we feel when we go from ill to well (and buoy back and forth in between) are real and not just fever dreams..Score: 5/5

Humbled by the beauty of this bookA must read..Score: 5/5

A hard book to readThis is a difficult book, yet it’s hard to put down. It’s painful because it’s “but for the grace of God” story reiterates that her story could just as easily be my story or my child’s story. The seeming randomness of getting a life altering or life ending illness is just that, random. In its simplicity, it’s a reminder to live every day to its fullest, because you never know what’s going to happen next..Score: 4/5

Unique perspectiveSuch a wonderful unique perspective of a young woman trying desperately to find her way back from cancer and sickness to living her life with meaning . It encourages everyone to take inventory of their own life and go appreciate all those that have made positive contributions along the way . Very enjoyable book !.Score: 5/5

Salamatiye pedar madaramun dustaye babرفیقای با مرام ، افتاده در کنار دیگ پلو... درد های پژمرده در کنار آب نور دو دیگانش... وقت نماز شب است چندین کودک بازی میکنن کنار آب میخنددند از عمق دل بدونه ریا ،گویا که همبازی‌شان خود خدا هست... خدایا اجازه هست؟کفش ندارم مراهم بازی میدهید؟ خدایا مرحمتی بیشتر بفرما بر این بنده حقیر....Score: 5/5

Beautiful soulful realThis book is so beautifully written and puts in eloquent and real worlds what it’s like to deal with a cancer diagnosis. One of the best books I’ve read this year!.Score: 5/5

LovelyRiveting book about a girl with cancer who takes a journey and makes a new life for herself. Loved it..Score: 5/5

SuperbOnce I started her story I could’t stop reading. It’s a beautifully written book full of wisdom. I know It will stay with me for a long long time..Score: 5/5

Incredible storyTotally compelling, beautifully written. I didn’t want this book to end. One of the best memoirs I’ve read..Score: 5/5

Best book in awhileI love memoirs but this book left me with unexpected learning. I feel like the author was really able to bring the reader into the world of battling cancer. Heartbreaking and painful yet full of hope and love. Excellent book..Score: 5/5

MovingA book to be read and re-read and cherished. Thank you, Suleika for sharing this journey..Score: 5/5

I didn’t think I would be interested.This book is so beautifully honest and compelling. I am reading it in the middle of the night. One of the best books I have read in a long time…amongst the best ever..Score: 5/5

PowerfulThis is a beautiful story that would touch anyone who has been close to someone experiencing illness. I would highly recommend it and hope to read future novels..Score: 5/5

ExcellentAn outstanding journey that covers a broad array of vistas internally and externally. Highly recommend the book..Score: 5/5

Great readGreat book and loved tagging along for her journey and wisdom..Score: 5/5

A+Excellent. Could not put it down..Score: 5/5

RemarkableBrilliant, brave, wondrous, heartbreaking, tender, funny, kind and brutally honest. A memoir to be underscored, highlighted, talked about, recommended, devoured and read again. Bravo!.Score: 5/5

ExcellentThis book touched me profoundly. Thank you..Score: 5/5

ExcellentI was diagnosed with HDGC (CDH1 positive) in 2020 and had a gastrectomy. I’m finishing up adjuvant chemo now in early 2021 and am in that world she describes in her book between being a patient and in remission. It was more than a coincidence that I saw her on TV last weekend and immediately bought her book, and she is helping me through this time more than she knows. An excellent read for cancer patients and friends alike..Score: 5/5

AmazingIncredibly inspirational! Will remember this book for the rest of my life..Score: 5/5

Brilliant, inspiring, beautiful. Thank you!Suleika masterfully puts into words the indescribable; and through her craft gives those of us who cannot yet wrap our minds around our own journeys, an outlet through which to feel seen.Score: 5/5

Inspirational StoryAbsolutely excellent. Elegant writing with true emotional punch. Who knew so many young people are facing death from cancer? I’m humbled by Suleika’s courage. I, myself, have struggled with a painful, degenerative disease for 44 years, but my life seems like a cakewalk compared to hers. How she brings beauty and hope into an extraordinarily dark struggle inspires me..Score: 5/5

A remarkable story!Since seeing her story on CBS Sunday morning, I have not been able to put this book down. Suleika’s experience with cancer in her young life touched me deeply. Her words are so intensely personal and personable, I felt like I knew her. The road trip to meet a variety of people was one I would like to experience..Score: 5/5

Great ReadTruthful. Thoughtful. Complete..Score: 5/5

So good.All of it..Score: 5/5

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