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Progressive politics, ideas & culture

May-June 2017

REVIEW: Powerful memoir explores the challenges of living with multiple sclerosis

Inside Jen Powley's Just Jen

Jemicah Colleen Marasigan

9781552669235_300_463_90Just Jen: Thriving Through Multiple Sclerosis
By Jen Powley
Fernwood Publishing, $21.00

Just Jen: Thriving Through Multiple Sclerosis, written by advocate-cum-urban planner-slash-writer Jen Powley, is a powerful memoir chronicling her journey with multiple sclerosis (MS). From travel milestones, to date nights, to a litter box incident, each chapter of Just Jen is evocative, candid, and straightforward. The title itself is a metaphor for Powley’s message: prior to her diagnosis she was just Jen, and with MS she still is just Jen. She is human, and through her writing, readers feel Powley’s strength, embarrassment, weaknesses, fears, and desire for love. Just Jen will make you laugh, cry, and really see the vulnerability and truth of one courageous woman.

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