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Lucky Man: A Memoir

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  19,928 ratings  ·  1,276 reviews
A funny, highly personal, gorgeously written account of what it's like to be a 30-year-old man who is told he has an 80-year-old's disease. "Life is great. Sometimes, though, you just have to put up with a little more crap." --Michael J. Fox In September 1998, Michael J. Fox stunned the world by announcing he had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease--a degenerative neur ...more
Hardcover, 260 pages
Published 2002 by Hyperion
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4.07  · 
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 ·  19,928 ratings  ·  1,276 reviews

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East Bay J
Mar 30, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bios-and-memoirs
I saw a copy of Lucky Man in a thrift store for a buck. I think I would have passed up this kind of book if it were by nearly any other author, but I grew up with Fox, in a way. I watched Family Ties pretty religiously as a kid and Back To The Future made Fox my boyhood hero.

Having read Lucky Man, I find Fox has become a hero to me as an adult as well. It’s not just the story of how gracefully (he might not agree with me there) and effectively he battled Parkinson’s and overcame so many challeng
Book Concierge
Audiobook narrated by the author.

Michael J Fox was barely thirty years old when he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. At the height of his career, and with a young family, he kept that diagnosis a very closely guarded secret. But in 1998, seven years after his diagnosis, he publicly revealed that he had Parkinson’s, retired from his hit television show, Spin City, and began a new career as a spokesperson for research into Parkinson’s and other neurological disorders.

This is his memoir in w
Sarah Sammis
Jun 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: released
Another theme (besides medicine) that is popping up in my recent reading is Canada. I've read more books about Canada, Canadians and stories taking place in Canada. Michael J. Fox's memoir, Lucky Man, falls under both categories: medicine (for his thoughts on living with Parkinson's Disease) and Canada (born in Edmonton, Alberta). Lucky Man also qualifies as one of the best books I've read this year.

Fox begins his memoir with his diagnosis of young-onset Parkinson's Disease but the book isn't j
Peter Koevari
Aug 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography, inspiring
As a child, I was a huge fan of Michael J Fox... and let's face it, anyone who was a child of the 80's would remember his biggest hits. Back to the future, Family Ties...

In all of this, I had absolutely no idea of the struggles and pain that he went through.

But this book is not a depressing read, even if your heart will tug at the words written within its pages. No, this is inspirational. In the words of Fox, if he was approached by someone that said the could take him back to before he got Par
Michael J. Fox is an iconic actor from my childhood, and this book totally blew my mind!

At first, I could not believe that he had written this himself, but the comedic timing and self deprecation left me in no doubt and turned that thought right on its head.

Once I'd gotten over that skepticism I was overwhelmed by the heart-warming, honest and no-bullshit telling of his struggle. He was open about personal tragedy, his relationships, his battle with PD and alcohol in a way that no memoir or au
Jul 03, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, medical
I don't generally read celebrity memoirs, but when I became curious about Parkinson's Disease, Michael J. Fox's Lucky Man was the first book that popped into my head. I picked it up in the hopes that it would give me a better idea what to expect when I visit a dear friend with the disease this summer.

Best known for being the star of Family Ties and the Back to the Future movies, Fox was living a life that most people can only dream of when he was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson's Disease at
Rob Caroti
Sep 11, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anybody interested in Michael J Fox or the experience of living with Parkinson's
I had some trouble getting into this book. I don't particularly like his writing style (Fox wrote it himself), however once I got into the meat of the story I enjoyed the book. He talks about his early life (did you know he was Canadian?), his experience in California as a struggling actor and then all the success that Family Ties and Back to the Future brought. It was pretty moving to hear how much of a mess his personal life had become due to all his professional success and the complete turna ...more
Holly Booms Walsh
Aug 15, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone that has a struggle to overcome
While this memoir is indeed the life story of Michael J. Fox, his rise to fame as an actor, and his struggle to accept and deal with Parkinson's Disease, his incredible writing takes it a step further. He elucidates on his relationships and motivations in such a way that I found many parallels to the demons that I battle in my life - which are nothing like Parkinson's Disease. His writing is thoughtful, funny, wry, and humble... all the things I'd have expected of him from his public persona. I ...more
Jan 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I looked forward to fellow Canadian, Michael J. Fox’s memoir. His demeanour in interviews is always astutely off-the-cuff and hilarious, while clearly conveying intelligence. After all, public speaking and body emoting are his job. Old reviews stunned me by declaring low expectation of “a celebrity’s memoir”. If they said “they expected low quality writing from a bus-driver”, it would be a slur. A superb writer publishing his first book, can’t catch a break because of his profession. Many remark ...more
Feb 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Honestly, who doesn't like Michael J. Fox? Growing up in the 80's, I'll admit to having had a Hollywood crush on him as Alex P. Keaton in Family Ties, and then being further infatuated watching him as Marty McFly in the Back to the Future trilogy. I know I wasn't alone, and I'm fairly certain I had a few magazine posters taped up on my wall as well. My infatuation faded as I grew older and I never did watch Spin City when he returned to television, but I know I shared America's sadness when he r ...more
Sep 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fox’s memoir incorporates both his Hollywood fame and experience with the disease that struck him as a young twentysomething: Parkinson’s. He writes gracefully of the denial and turmoil that rocked his world upon receiving the diagnosis, and how ultimately acceptance (“I was still me just me plus Parkinson’s”) has set new, healthier parameters for his life, hence his self-designation as a lucky man. Fox now uses his fame to raise awareness and funding for a Parkinson’s cure, one that many scient ...more
Holly Kenyon
Mar 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography, film-tv
What a fantastic book. A very intimate and personal memoir of a brilliant actor and an inspiring man. Michael J. Fox does not hold back, he is brutally honest about himself; from a youthful ego to the ravages of the Parkinson's disease.
It is brilliantly written. He is an intelligent and witty writer who takes good care of your emotions as he steers you through the roller-coaster of his life and his own emotions.
As well as providing endless laughs, regaling the reader with marvelous anecdotes,
I wasn't sure what to expect when I first picked up this book, but I was pleasantly surprised to find his writing style is much like his acting style: real, personable, and humorous.

I've never been interested in the lives of celebrities (for instance, I was unaware of his partying days), and the few celebrity memoirs/books I've read have always left me dissatisfied and usually with a more negative picture of the person behind the characters I like. But Lucky Man had quite the opposite effect on
Lynne Stringer
This book was fantastic, inspirational, engaging, you name it. I don't know if Michael had a shadow writer or not. If not, then he could certainly have a future as a writer. He knows how to communicate with words.
This story, which covers his career both before and after he was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease, was gripping and I would recommend it to anyone, not just those suffering in a similar way to him. The attitude he has developed (I say 'developed' because it's clear he wasn't able to
Apr 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I listened to the audio book read by Michael J. Fox himself. I've always been a fan and have admired his public advocacy work for Parkinson's, and it was really great to learn the back story of his rise to fame, his diagnosis, and his family life. He understandably wasn't ready to make his disease public right away, and listening to him go through the transformation from hiding it to finally testifying before Congress while off his medication only built my admiration for him. He also benefited f ...more
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Funny, honest, engaging, real....if, for some reason, you need yet another reason to love Michael j. Fox listen to this audiobook. He reads it and you really feel like you're just sitting around having a beer with him. Love love love!
May 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Growing up, Michael J. Fox was sort of like my big brother, being a couple of years older than me. If I was a character on FAMILY TIES, I would have been a classmate of Mallory’s. Such was the impact of that show (squeezed in between Cosby and Cheers) that I suspect everyone in my generation felt like part of the family. He was such a nice guy that everyone cheered for him. I think we all hoped for success like his, but speaking for my generation, there is one thought that I know we all share, t ...more
Mar 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Revealing, honest, and informative. Funny too.
Jul 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biographical
I know I'm a solid decade out of date on reading this, but figured it was about time to check it off the shelf. It's always hard to put a rating on a memoir, as it's someone putting their own experiences into words. It's especially hard with someone of huge celebrity status, as I always find myself taking their words with a grain of salt (assuming they've written any of the words on their own anyway).

Knowing very little of any recent events in Mr. Fox's life, however, and only having a vague kno
Farnoosh Brock
Apr 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
A friend gave this book to me. It was such a good read. I had no idea Michael was so sick, and had such a difficult life. While I did not respect ways he wasted his body by alcohol, drugs, and stupid habits before he found out, at a still very young age of mid-20s, about his Parkinson's disease, his remarkable change to a new man was a very good story. The anectodes from this book will stay with me, and it has a great message for everyone.

I remember Michael J. Fox as one of the earliest actors I
May 23, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know why, but I expected this book to be funnier and less introspective than it turned out to be. Now that I think about it, a book about one's discovery that they have Parkinson's disease isn't a laughing matter and is most definitely cause for deep reflection. I guess the fact that Michael J. Fox has always played witty, somewhat cynical characters led me to expect that from this book which I know is silly considering he's an ACTOR! At any rate, it was a refreshing look into how a publ ...more
Jan 01, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Listened to this on my drive across state. Read by the author (yay) and abridged (boo). A rambling memoir between career and disease and coping with both. I enjoyed parts of this book despite the writing style. Wouldn't seek out the unabridged version. Learned a lot about Parkinson's Disease. Now have a strong desire to rewatch Family Ties. Overall rating - liked it but didn't love it.
Michael J. Fox was definitely one of my childhood crushes followed his TV shows and movies all growing up . I was heart felt sympathy for his battle of Parkinson's Disease at such a young age. I was fascinated to read more about his career and his battle with PD. He did an excellent job fleshing out the story with candor and openness. I loved listening to his stories about how bad he thought he had done in Back to the Future because he was so utterly working at the time... working all day at Fam ...more
Jan 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
I fell in love with Michael J. Fox after reading his later book, Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist, which is about his Parkinson's Disease and his advocacy for stem cell research. I've been wanting to read this one ever since. Lucky Man is older, and thus takes us through the 1980s (his rise to fame) and the 1990s (the years he knew he had PD but hid it). He is insanely likable and even when describing his young n' wild partying years he comes off as sweet and charmi ...more
Aug 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I grew up with Fox and have followed with amazement and awe how he embraced the potentially devastating diagnosis of Parkinson's and turned it into a passion and cause. This isn't the most well-written book and I admit that I liked it because Fox was always a favorite and because my father has PD and I'm intrigued by the different avenues people take when receiving a diagnosis of a degenerative neurological disease. Fox's optimism is impressive as is his realization that he can use his celebrity ...more
Jul 21, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is exactly like the title. Michael J Fox is indeed a lucky man. He have everything in his life. Money and a supportive wife. So perfect! Even though he has Parkinson disease, nothing have stopped him from moving forward. A pleasure to read.
Ross-Barry Finlayson.
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone.
I have always been a fan of Michael J Fox's acting skills, but now he has shown me that he is also an accomplished writer.
Christine Damain
Fox's writing is intelligent, funny and warm.
Mar 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good book for recovering alcoholics to read.
Jordan Grieve
Mar 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good biography, interesting and well written.
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Canadian/American film and television actor.

His roles include Marty McFly from the Back to the Future trilogy (1985–1990); Alex P. Keaton from Family Ties (1982–1989), for which he won three Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award; and Mike Flaherty from Spin City (1996–2000), for which he won an Emmy, three Golden Globes, and two Screen Actors Guild Awards. He also starred in Doc Hollywood and Secr
“After all that I'd been through, after all that I'd learned and all that I'd been given, I was going to do what I had been doing every day for the last few years now: just show up and do the best that I could do with whatever lay in front of me.” 31 likes
“If you were to rush into this room right now and announce that you had struck a deal - with God, Allah, Buddha, Christ, Krishna, Bill Gates, whomever - in which the ten years since my diagnosis could be magically taken away, traded in for ten more years as the person I was before - I would, without a moment's hesitation, tell you to take a hike.” 26 likes
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