BEYOND THE BEAR tells the story of Dan Bigley and the day that changed his life forever. A 25-year-old who loved exploring the Alaskan outdoors and who was newly in love, Dan had spent a glorious midsummer's day in July 2003 doing what he enjoyed most, salmon fishing with friends, when a grizzly bear charged around a bend and mauled him, leaving him blind and near death.
In this richly detailed, emotional memoir, Bigley retraces his harrowing journey of recovery, including the six surgeries it took to reconstruct his face. With the help of dedicated doctors, nurses, friends and family--including future wife Amber Takavitz, whom he'd met just before his accident--Bigley returned to health. His story inspires and sticks with you long beyond the final page.Here's the review in People's books section:
Publicity is ongoing for BEYOND THE BEAR, particularly in Alaska, where the book has taken newspapers and magazines by storm. The Anchorage Daily News featured an excerpt of the book in its newspaper just this week, and you can read that excerpt here.
Authors Bigley and McKinney also recently hosted an online book launch party, which streamed live (if you're interested in watching it, the live feed is viewable here). And there was a non-online launch party as well! Festivities took place at a bar in Anchorage. The night included signings and a reading. Check out a photo of Bigley and McKinney signing copies of the book below:
Bigley has been previously featured in an animal attack survivor series on The Discovery Channel, which continues to air on TV. For a glimpse of what's to come in the book, watch it below:
In addition to the People review, BEYOND THE BEAR has received a wealth of other wonderful praise. Here's a summation of what's come in so far:
“Inspiring...Unflinchingly recounts the horrific details of the mauling and its aftermath...Perhaps the most moving part of his story, however, is his relationship with Amber, the woman he fell for the night before the attack, who has remained steadfast despite his early attempts to let her go. A well-written and touching tribute to human resilience.” --Booklist
“This moving memoir of his experiences is more about Bigley's emotional recovery and beyond-impressive triumph over adversity...Readers will appreciate Bigley's inspirational and well-written story.” --Publishers Weekly
“Combine a man shaped by an extraordinary experience with a writer adept at weaving the threads of his story and the result is a stunningly powerful book. BEYOND THE BEAR may compel you to worry less about all the bad things that could happen in life and focus instead on embracing its possibilities. You might as well buy extra copies for you will soon want to give others the gift of this insightful and riveting read.” --Jill Fredston, bestselling author of ROWING TO LATITUDE and SNOWSTRUCK
"BEYOND THE BEAR delivers in gut-wrenching detail the harrowing account of one of the most horrific bear attacks in recent Alaskan memory, but the book is so much more than a bear mauling. BEYOND THE BEAR is a powerful love story, an unforgettable tale of hope and resilience, a triumph of the human spirit in the darkest of hours. A life destroyed in a blinding flash of blood and fur. A bright and beautiful Alaskan landscape seemingly darkened forever, the midnight sun all but extinguished, yet Dan Bigley's courage and heart take us all beyond the bear and along the way we all learn to see the world in a new and beautiful light." --Don Rearden, award-winning author of THE RAVEN'S GIFT
"This book is surprising in so many ways--heartfelt, funny, buoyant, tragic and triumphant--that after awhile I wanted to do nothing else but read it and be inspired and enthralled. And so I was." --Kim Heacox, bestselling author of THE ONLY KAYAK and VISIONS OF A WILD AMERICA
For more information about the authors, visit the website here, and follow them on Facebook here!
Lyons Press, April 2013