At the age of two, Ollie lost the ability to speak, when autism turned his life into a baffling challenge. Ollie had extraordinary courage. Time after time he bounced back, determined to enjoy life. He had astonishing endurance. This book explores Ollie's journey and tells his story. His courage was real.
"Like the swallows, Ollie came in the spring and left in the autumn. Dancing, singing, swooping - there was something birdlike about his energy, joy and laughter - but also the fleeting, transitory, enigmatic quality of his life. At the age of two he lost the ability to speak, when autism turned his life - and ours - into a baffling challenge. Then at four, he almost died from Leukaemia. Chemotherapy worked its magic, but at six he had a relapse in the Central Nervous System. He fought hard and made a full recovery. Then, just six months from the Official All Clear, a brain tumour was discovered. The surgeons warned that residual tentacles of cancer would almost certainly soon resume their insidious worming through his brain. After a brave struggle, he died very suddenly. His body had gone into meltdown. He was twelve." This is not a story of passive suffering or failure. Ollie had extraordinary courage. Time after time he bounced back, determined to enjoy life. He had astonishing endurance. He was obstinate, mischievous, playful, flirtatious, quixotic, funny. He generated - and continues to generate - huge amounts of laughter. And he was very beautiful. He was the sort of person who would always dominate a room and affect everyone around him. We always felt that if autism had not unravelled the wiring of his neural pathways, he would have achieved extraordinary things. "I would like to explore the journey we made with Ollie and to tell his story. Unlike a mountaineer, pursuing extreme experiences for self-gratification, he had difficulty thrust upon him - his courage was real. For me, too, although I did not have to do all the physical pain and suffering, the journey was far more compelling than any expedition."
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Stephen Venables was born in 1954 and began climbing while at Oxford. He has climbed extensively throughout the world and has created many new routes and first ascents. A former winner of the Boardman Tasker Prize and the Grand Award at Banff, the International Mountain Literature Festival, he lives in Bath with his wife Rosie and Ollie's brother, Edmond.
Ollie by Stephen Venables
Used - Very Good
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.