Life Is Not An Accident: A Memior of Reinvention

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First word that comes to my mind after reading this book.


Former Duke mens basketball player & #2 overall pick of the 2002 NBA draft invites us to explore his highs and lows. Williams reflects on his life and how the decisions that he has made created the life he lives today. I was aware of his life threatening motorcycle accident in 2003 but the events that took place after totally caught me off guard.

While reading this book, I could not help but stop on multiple occasions and say, “man, this guy can’t catch a break”. Between the numerous surgeries and plenty hours rehabbing only to have another setback come forth is very exhausting. Every time Jay Williams started to build momentum he’d be struck a haymaker that would hinder him physically and mentally.

Besides the obvious physical obstacles Williams had to deal with, I gravitated more to the mental barriers he spoke on having to overcome after his accident. After a couple failed suicidal attempts, he’d have to face these demons head on. He had to fight off depression, fear, self-doubt, and many other pent up emotions.

He fought to keep his hoop dream alive. Although he was not able to make the comeback he desired, he kept at it until he was able to come to grips with the fact that a generous NBA career was no longer a viable option.

This book grabbed me instantly and only took me about a week to finish. I was drawn to how he was able to keep getting back up and putting up a fight. I couldn’t help but to read his story and reflect on moments when I’ve dealt with hardships. When he was consumed with self-doubt, I thought about all the times I doubted myself. “Life Is Not An Accident” is not about basketball but more self discovery and making the best decisions.

Williams journey was a heavy one and he has since kept himself connected to the game of basketball by becoming a college basketball analyst.

All in all, Jay Williams made himself transparent and vulnerable for his audience and it is greatly appreciated. I learned a lot about this man. “Life Is Not An Accident” was a great read and I definitely recommend it.

Do you want to be a king among men or a king among kings? – David Williams (father of Jay Williams)





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