Shot in the Head Book

A Sister’s Memoir, A Brother’s Struggle

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A bittersweet memoir about life and loss. When her mentally ill brother developed lung cancer, author Katherine Flannery Dering had to overcome her reluctance to deal with the troubled man and step up to help in his care. While maneuvering through the maze of our mental health system, she (and her eight siblings) got to know social workers and the employees of nursing homes on a first name basis, saw friends and family less often, missed work, and ate fewer meals at home and more fast food.  Along the way, she changed in unforeseen ways, and her perception of her ill brother, Paul, changed as well.

Elizabeth Eslami, author of Bone Worship and Hibernate and the 2013 winner of the Ohio State University Prize in Short Fiction

“Dering unspools her story with urgent compassion and grace.”

– Ann Cloonan, Director, Bedford Free Library, Bedford, NY

“So powerful and emotional”

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