A Story of Courage and Hope


Read by: Mark Kelly
Read by Mark Kelly with a final chapter read by Gabrielle Giffords.

As individuals, congresswoman, Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, showed Americans how optimism, an adventurous spirit, and a call to service can help change the world. As a couple, they became a national example of the healing power to be found in deeply shared love and courage. Their arrival in the world spotlight came under the worst of circumstances. On January 8, 2011, while meeting with her constituents in Tucson, Arizona, Gabby was the victim of an assassination attempt that left six people dead and thirteen wounded. Gabby was shot in the head; doctors called her survival “miraculous.”
     As the nation grieved and sought to understand the attack, Gabby remained in private, focused on her against-all-odds recovery. Mark spent every possible moment by her side, as he also prepared for his final mission as commander of space shuttle Endeavour.
     Now, as Gabby’s health continues to improve, the couple is sharing their remarkable untold story. Intimate, inspiring, and unforgettably moving, Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope provides an unflinching look at the overwhelming challenges of brain injury and the responsibilities that fall to a loving spouse who wants the best possible treatment for his wife. Told in Mark’s voice and from Gabby’s heart, the book also chronicles the lives that brought these two extraordinary people together—their humor, their ambitions, their sense of duty, their long-distance marriage, and their desire for family.
  • Simon & Schuster Audio | 
  • 10 disks | 
  • ISBN 9781442348622 | 
  • November 2011

Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Gabby: A Story of Courage, Love, and Resilience includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and astronaut Mark Kelly found in each other a steadfast commitment to public service, a deep curiosity about the world around them, and a shared passion for adventure. At their wedding in 2007, Robert Reich toasted “to a bride who moves at a velocity that exceeds that of anyone else in Washington, and to a groom who moves at a velocity that exceeds seventeen thousand miles per hour.” On January 8, 2011, Gabby survived a horrific shooting that left six people dead and thirteen wounded at a Congress on Your Corner event in Tucson, Arizona. Her life and Mark’s were changed forever.

Gabby: A Story of Courage, Love, and Resilience takes readers into the lives of this extraordinary couple—the influences that molded their passions in childhood, their professional triumphs, their family and friendships, and their marriage. Anchoring the book is the profoundly inspiring story of Gabby’s recovery, a testament to enduring love, courage, and hope.

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About the Authors

Gabrielle Giffords

Gabrielle Giffords is known across the country for her resilience in the face of violence, and for her consensus-building leadership in Congress. The youngest woman ever elected to the Arizona State Senate, Giffords served in the Arizona Legislature from 2000-2005 and in Congress from 2006-2012.


Mark Kelly

Mark Kelly is a retired astronaut and US Navy Captain. He flew his first of four missions in 2001 aboard Space Shuttle Endeavour, the same space shuttle that he commanded on its final flight in May 2011.


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