Head Case by Sarah Aronson

head case “Once I was a boy who became a man. Then I was a man who became a head.” Frank Marder had one too many, and still tried to drive his date home. Riding high on five beers and his girlfriend’s laughter, he hit a tree. His girlfriend Meredith was killed. A pedestrian unlucky enough to be between Frank’s car and the tree was killed. But Frank was not. Instead, Frank, broke his neck in the crash and will live the rest of his life as a quadriplegic, or as Frank likes to say, “a head.” Without the use of his arms and legs, Frank faces endless days full of his mother’s worrying, his father’s blustering and his own gnawing guilt. He tortures himself by reading an internet site set up just to debate whether or not he should have gone to prison for his crime, and constantly wonders, is life worth living if you’re just a head? “If you can’t have, can you still want?” The answer is yes, and Frank learns that life as a head still has meaning–especially when the last person he ever expected offers him the forgiveness he needs to move on. First time novelist Sarah Aronson’s take on a situation that most people would consider nightmarish manages to not only be hopeful, but also full of humor and the strength of the human spirit. Pair this one with Cynthia Voigt’s Izzy, Willy-Nilly for an interesting “he said, she said” look at dealing with a catastrophic disability.

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