The Chair and the Valley: A Memoir of Trauma, Healing, and the Outdoors
The Chair and the Valley: A Memoir of Trauma, Healing, and the Outdoors

The Chair and the Valley: A Memoir of Trauma, Healing, and the Outdoors

By Banning Lyon

$29.00 $26.10

Publication Date: June 4, 2024

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Join us on Wednesday, September 18 at 7:30pm for the next meeting of our Adult Book Club, where we'll be discussing The Chair and the Valley. Led by booksellers Andi and Sierra, we'll have snacks and drinks to share during our discussion. Get 10% off the book between now and September 18.


An incredible memoir about one man’s journey to heal from trauma through chosen family, friendship, and nature.


Banning Lyon was an average 15-year-old, living in Dallas, TX. He enjoyed skateboarding, listening to punk rock, and even had a part-time job. But in January 1987 his life quickly changed after a school guidance counselor falsely believed he was suicidal after giving away his skateboard. Days later he was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, and what he was told would be a two-week stay turned into 353 days that would change his life forever.


Banning takes readers through his fraught relationship with his family, the mistreatment he suffered at the hospital, the lawsuit against the owners of the facility, and his desire to make sense of what happened to him. We witness Banning navigate the difficult landscape of trauma and his daily battle to live a normal life. After years of highs and lows that include being adopted by his attorney and mentor, falling in love and grieving the death of his fiancée, and being sued by the same doctors who mistreated him, Banning decides to take control of his life and finds hope in the backcountry of Yosemite National Park, where he discovers new purpose in being a backpacking guide. Through friendship, nature, and eventually giving therapy another chance, Banning summons the courage to keep moving forward.


The Chair and The Valley is a raw, gut-wrenching, and amazing story about healing from trauma and starting over. It is a exploration of the importance of chosen family, the restorative power of nature, and the strength it takes to build a new life in the face of fear and doubt.


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