Double Take: A Memoir (Hardcover)

A Memoir

By Kevin Michael Connolly

Harper, 9780061791536, 240pp.

Publication Date: October 1, 2009

December 2009 Indie Next List

“Kevin Connolly was born without legs, but raised to believe he is no different from anyone else. He graduated with a degree in photography and now travels all over the world on a skateboard taking pictures of peoples' reactions to him. Connolly is a great writer, and Double Take is entertaining, funny, and enthusiastic. I can't stress enough how entertaining it is.”
— Mary Jane DiSanti, Country Bookshelf, Bozeman, MT
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From Kevin Connolly:

"I was bitten nearly in half by a shark while swimming in New Zealand. I was a victim of a Serbian mortar round in Sarajevo during the Balkan wars. I have been the victim of a dozen car accidents - head on collisions, vehicle rolls, and pedestrian injuries. I have been the purveyor of magic tricks for children - a routine often involving mirrors and a trapdoor. I have been a beggar and vagabond - panhandling across countries with varying degrees of success. I have also been a holy man - bringing moments of inspiration and light to those who chose to look for it.

I am none these things - and I am all of them. My name is Kevin Michael Connolly and I was born in Helena, Montana on August 18th, 1985. I was also born without legs.

All my life I ve been an object of curiosity, the subject of a stare. But, while I have shouldered the stares and stories of others, the story of how I ve managed to travel the world is uniquely my own. DOUBLE TAKE is my story, and it begins in many ways the day I was placed on prosthetic stilts at the age of eight.

In an attempt to capture the moments of intense curiosity I experience on a daily basis, I traveled to 17 countries and took over 32,728 photographs of people staring at me. In Zurich, I raced down the Limmat River against a group of twenty Vikings. In Bosnia, I scrambled to collect my groceries after being side swiped by a car. In Malaysia, I got caught in torrential rainstorms and had to skate and paddle with one hand, while keeping my camera above the rising tide with the other."

Praise For Double Take: A Memoir

“[Double Take] reminds the reader that perspective is everything. It’s an inspiring read about a human being who doesn’t concern himself with what he has lost or never had. [Kevin Connolly] is a lucky man, sharing his bounty with us.”
-Sacramento Book Review

“Life’s most successful survivors meet adversity head on, with an unflinching eye, candor and with humor. Kevin Connolly has such an eye and weaves a rich memoir from the gut about his amazing journey through life.”
-Lee Woodruff, author of In an Instant

“Beautiful, revealing, and stimulating...[Connolly] is a good storyteller...whether describing his first high school wrestling match, the path from novice to champion skier or what it’s like to travel around the world on a skateboard.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A courageous, immensely rewarding chronicle expressed in arresting words and pictures.”
-Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Kevin Connolly has used an unusual physical circumstance to create a gripping work of art. This deeply affecting memoir will place him in the company of Jeanette Walls and Augusten Burroughs.”
-Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants

“Touching and comedic, inspiring and telling...[Double Take] is a remarkable portrait of the human spirit.”
-The Free Lance-Star Publishing Co

“[A] charming memoir… Connolly recounts growing up a scrappy Montana kid—one who happened to be born without legs...[Double Take] makes for an empowering read.”