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Liz Smith

Lance Armstrong peddling new book

October 13, 2003|Liz Smith

NEW YORK — "Doctors knew how serious my situation had been, and how severe my four cycles of chemotherapy had been, and they knew that a) I survived it and b) the treatment didn't ruin my body. That gave the doctors hope, and it occurred to me that doctors needed hope as much as patients did."

This is Lance Armstrong, five-time winner of the Tour de France, talking in his new book about rejuvenation. "Every Second Counts" is Armstrong's latest work with the gifted Sally Jenkins -- an arrow leading direct to the bestseller list, where his mega-bestseller "It's Not About the Bike" still lingers in paperback heaven. I marked excellent philosophical quotes on almost every page. What could a new Armstrong book cover that the original didn't? The first one had the drama and intensity of his illness and the "I think I can" philosophies of a true athlete and star. In the sequel, he ruminates on marriage, the dissolution of same, three kids and prospects for the tour again in 2004.

"I think I have one more big race in me!" he says.

The fine line Armstrong treads in this book about the breakup of his five-year marriage to his wife, Kristen, is an object lesson for memoir writers. He handles it with sensitivity.

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