Loretta Smith

Loretta Smith’s journey—from a child with fragile bones to a woman who defies expectations.

Despite spending much of her life in hospitals, Loretta’s spirit knows no bounds. She travels, works tirelessly, and emerges as a successful author.

Loretta Smith, celebrated as the bestselling author of A Spanner in the Works, the gripping biography of Alice Anderson, the ‘garage girl,’ now invites us into her extraordinary life in Corpus in Extremis. A life shaped by pain, resilience, and the relentless pursuit of creativity despite the constraints of Osteogenesis Imperfecta—a condition known colloquially as brittle bone disease.

In this memoir, Loretta defies the boundaries of her fragile body. She survives, yes, but more than that—she thrives. Her mind, agile and imaginative, outpaces her physical limitations. As you delve into her story, prepare to be charmed, challenged, and moved to laughter. Loretta embarks on journeys—literal and metaphorical—travelling across continents, engaging in work, navigating family dynamics, and embracing creative pursuits, all while enduring the ceaseless rhythm of medical treatments.

Alice Anderson, the ‘garage girl,

“In the quiet of the hospital ward, I lie there—a mere observer, a sleeping patient in recovery. Rows of beds stretch out, each occupied by someone like me, their bodies healing, their spirits navigating unseen realms. But what miracles unfold within these sterile walls? How do we mend not only our physical forms but also the intangible—our psyche, our soul, our very essence? The delicate dance of healing demands protection, lest we emerge with fault lines etched into our being.”

Corpus in Extremis explores the human experience pushed to its limits. What does it mean to inhabit a body that defies convention? To be fractured yet whole? To heal while acknowledging the scars that shape us? Loretta’s lucid prose argues that disability, disenfranchisement, and otherness touch us all, weaving threads of vulnerability into the fabric of existence.

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