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Julie fully expected to be breathing at the end of the trip - but driving into Death Valley felt like giving up, surrendering. She'd spent years battling a mysterious illness so extreme that she often couldn't turn over in her bed. The top specialists in the world were powerless to help, and research on her disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, was at a near standstill.
Having exhausted the plausible ideas, Julie turned to an implausible one. Going against both her instincts and her training as a science journalist and mathematician, she followed the advice of strangers she'd met on the Internet. Their theory - that mold in her home and possessions was making her sick - struck her as wacky pseudoscience. But they had recovered from chronic fatigue syndrome as severe as hers.
To test the theory that toxic mold was making her sick, Julie drove into the desert alone, leaving behind everything she owned. She wasn't even certain she was well enough to take care of herself once she was there. She felt stripped not only of the life she'd known, but any future she could imagine.
With only her scientific savvy, investigative journalism skills, and dog, Frances, to rely on, Julie carved out her own path to wellness - and uncovered how shocking scientific neglect and misconduct had forced her and millions of others to go it alone. In stunning prose, she describes how her illness transformed her understanding of science, medicine, and spirituality. Through the Shadowlands brings scientific authority to a misunderstood disease and spins an incredible and compelling story of tenacity, resourcefulness, acceptance, and love.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By John C. on 11-19-17
Informative and engaging!
I like how the author intertwined personal experience with her own research into her condition, and self experimentation. It made the book easy to listen to, and engaging both at a personal level and an intellectual level.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Andy Kokuu McLellan on 11-26-17
One of the best books I have read on ME/CFS
As a fellow ME/CFS patient I was aware of Julie's work online before reading this, especially her part in the PACE trial controversy. However, I did not know most of her story and this is compellingly told in Through the Shadowlands, which she reads herself, interspersing autobiographical detail with a wider perspective on the illness, attitudes towards it, ME/CFS doctors and the colourful patient community.
Her voice took a little getting used to but I grew to love its intimacy and was really rooting for her by the end. Her dog, Frances, is a constant companion and the other star of the book.
If you have ME/CFS or know someone who does, or just like an inspiring story of a woman's struggle to heal herself and find answers, Through the Shadowlands is a wonderful and informative read.
Thank you, Julie, for writing it, and for your continuing work on behalf of the ME/CFS community.
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