Download Golem Girl: A Memoir Audiobook

Golem Girl: A Memoir Audiobook, by Riva Lehrer Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Riva Lehrer Narrator: Cassandra Campbell, Riva Lehrer Publisher: Random House Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2020 ISBN: 9780593207758
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The vividly told, gloriously illustrated memoir of an artist born with disabilities who searches for freedom and connection in a society afraid of strange bodies Golem Girl is luminous; a profound portrait of the artist as a young—and mature—woman; an unflinching social history of disability over the last six decades; and a hymn to life, love, family, and spirit.”—David Mitchell, author of Cloud Atlas What do we sacrifice in the pursuit of normalcy? And what becomes possible when we embrace monstrosity? Can we envision a world that sees impossible creatures? In 1958, amongst the children born with spina bifida is Riva Lehrer. At the time, most such children are not expected to survive. Her parents and doctors are determined to "fix" her, sending the message over and over again that she is broken. That she will never have a job, a romantic relationship, or an independent life. Enduring countless medical interventions, Riva tries her best to be a good girl and a good patient in the quest to be cured. Everything changes when, as an adult, Riva is invited to join a group of artists, writers, and performers who are building Disability Culture. Their work is daring, edgy, funny, and dark—it rejects tropes that define disabled people as pathetic, frightening, or worthless. They insist that disability is an opportunity for creativity and resistance. Emboldened, Riva asks if she can paint their portraits—inventing an intimate and collaborative process that will transform the way she sees herself, others, and the world. Each portrait story begins to transform the myths she’s been told her whole life about her body, her sexuality, and other measures of normal. Written with the vivid, cinematic prose of a visual artist, and the love and playfulness that defines all of Riva's work, Golem Girl is an extraordinary story of tenacity and creativity. With the author's magnificent portraits featured throughout, this memoir invites us to stretch ourselves toward a world where bodies flow between all possible forms of what it is to be human. This audio production includes a PDF of illustrations and photographs from the book, which are also uniquely described aurally in the audiobook. Priase for Golem Girl “Lehrer’s story is a revelation of an inner subjective life—full of tragedy, love, and creativity—pushing against the external social stigmas, cultural narratives, and prejudices surrounding disability. She admits a felt kinship with other “monsters” because their bodies were also “built by human hands,” but unlike them, she is her own purpose, her own meaning, her own unstoppable golem.”—Stephen Asma, author of On Monsters: An Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • With deft painter's prose, Riva Lehrer helps us discover what it is to be human when others see us as broken. In Golem Girl, Lehrer gives us the gift, at long last, of our own crip beauty. Nicola Griffith, author of Hild
  • Like Patti Smith and Sally Mann, Lehrer opens a vein and spills wisdom and humor, lyricism, and conviction onto the page. She teaches us with images and words that all bodies are exquisite, just as they are. Lehrer’s life and art is an example of the deepest creativity and resistance. Ayelet Waldman, author of A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life
  • “Vivid and unforgettable . . . It is the story of how someone who is fundamentally different made not a life that transcends that difference, but a life that lionizes it. This book expands our notion of what constitutes the human experience, and it does so with generosity and open-heartedness. Andrew Solomon, author of Far From the Tree
  • “Oy, what a story: Job, eat your heart out! In Riva Lehrer’s life chronicle, an appalling fate (and I don’t just mean the circumstances of her birth) gets visited upon an invincible character, and the result is a wincing-wise tale, by turns harrowing and hilarious, cut clean through with flecks of grace and beauty. Lehrer is one wry mensch, and an extraordinary kinstler to boot. Lawrence Weschler, author of Seeing Is Forgetting the Name of the Thing One Sees

    “With deft painter’s prose, Riva Lehrer helps us discover what it is to be human when others see us as broken. In Golem Girl, Lehrer gives us the gift, at long last, of our own crip beauty.
  • “This searing personal history expands Lehrer’s project of looking at our bodies inside and out, in all their queerness, fragility, and strength, into a stunning new dimension. Alison Bechdel, author of Fun Home
  • Not your typical memoir about ‘what it’s like to be disabled in a non-disabled world’ . . . Lehrer tells her stories about becoming the monster she was always meant to be: glorious, defiant, unbound, and voracious. Read it! Alice Wong, founder and director, Disability Visibility Project
  • Golem Girl goes to the heart of what makes us human. Lehrer’s story is a revelation of an inner subjective life—full of tragedy, love, and creativity—pushing against the external social stigmas, cultural narratives, and prejudices surrounding disability. She admits a felt kinship with other ‘monsters’ because their bodies were also ‘built by human hands,’ but unlike them, she is her own purpose, her own meaning, her own unstoppable golem. Stephen Asma, author of On Monsters: An Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears
  • “Riva Lehrer is a great artist and a great storyteller. This is a brilliant book, full of strangeness, beauty, and wonder. Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler’s Wife

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About the Narrator

Cassandra Campbell has won multiple Audie Awards, Earphones Awards, and the prestigious Odyssey Award for narration. She was been named a “Best Voice” by AudioFile magazine and in 2018 was inducted in Audible’s inaugural Narrator Hall of Fame.