The Man Who Couldn't Eat

The Man Who Couldn't Eat

A personal journey with Crohn’s disease: months of excruciating treatment and the enduring effect it has on the author’s emotional state and relationship with food—as well as on his wife, children, and friends.

In this beautifully written memoir, both gut-wrenching and inspiring, award-winning writer Jon Reiner tells the story of his agonizing battle with Crohn’s disease—and the extraordinary places his hunger and obsession with food took him. I’m a glutton in a greyhound’s body, a walking contradiction, in the grip of the one thing I can’t have—food, writes Reiner, who details what happens when that which keeps you alive, that bonds us together and marks life’s special occasions, becomes a toxic substance, an inflammatory invader.

His unvarnished account depicts an explosive medical emergency, a marriage in crisis, children faced with grown-up fears, a man at a life-and-death crossroads sifting through his past and his present. And it captures a tough, courageous climb out of hopelessness as Reiner began a process of healing in body and mind, discovering a renewed appetite, any way he could manage it, for the things that truly matter most.
  • Gallery Books | 
  • 320 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781439192474 | 
  • June 2012
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The Man Who Couldn't Eat

Within minutes, Jon Reiner's life drastically changed. His memoir reflects not only on the challenges he overcame, but those faced by his family as well.

About the Author

Jon Reiner
Photograph by Ellen Dubin Photography

Jon Reiner

JON REINER won the 2010 James Beard Foundation Award for Magazine Feature Writing with Recipes for the collaborative Esquire article “How Men Eat.” His memoir, The Man Who Couldn’t Eat, is based on an acclaimed article of the same name that he wrote for Esquire in 2009. He lives in New York City with his wife and two children.