I thought it was a wonderful book, as much about relationship,death and intimacy as books
Join Date: 03/22/12
Join Date: 10/12/11
At first it was difficult for me to discuss THE END OF YOUR LIFE BOOK CLUB, for this book has a special meaning for me because my son and I have been exchanging books and discussing them for a long time. The irony lies in the fact that we are the same ages as Will and Mary Anne when they started their repertoire. What a wonderful experience it is to share the love of literature with someone you love be it a son, a spouse, a friend. Emily Dickinson once said "there is no frigate like a book.'' And as a cancer survivor, I marvel at the wonderful journeys to every corner of the earth one can share with another lover of literature. What a wonderful opportunity Will and Mary Anne had as their time together grew short--and what memories... . What a powerful love between a mother and a son!
Join Date: 04/20/11
I like the concept of a mother and son enjoying and discussing books together, esp. at such a stressful time in their lives. I would have to believe that it brought them even closer to each other and that each learned something about the other that was new as the read and discussed each book.
As to their choices of books, they were most interesting. One could look for "deep reasons" for their choices and I believe some would qualify as such. Others were chosen, I believe, simply for the joy of reading them, for the distraction they provided from Mom's illness.
I very much enjoyed the book and it is now a "keeper;" a book to pull from the shelf on a regular basis to explore and to jog my memory re books to be read and why others I have already read.
Join Date: 10/10/12
I am amazed an inspired by the energy and passion of Mary Ann to share her love of books. In spite of her physical limitations she was driven to build a national library for the Afgan people. In all her life works she was open to serve others and yet find time to read! I am now trying to carve out a time in the day to read as well as to find a passion I can serve.
Join Date: 07/25/12
As I read "The End of Your Life Book Club", I kept thinking how brave the author was to have written such a book. One of the many strengths of the book is that the author is so candid and exposes his feelings so openly--a brave thing to do. For example, he admits how difficult it is to discuss death with his mother and how he relies, at times, on "The Etiquette of Illness" to help him through awkward moments. (That is a book I would like to get my hands on!) He also talks about their differing views on religion and I sensed that this subject may have been a point of conflict between the two in the past. I think this honesty throughout the book very much helps the reader connect to his story.
The book focuses on the time of his mother's cancer diagnosis to her death from a very a difficult disease. The process of writing the book would have forced him to reexamine some very painful moments as he relived his mother decline and death. Also a courageous thing to do.
Join Date: 10/20/12
Truly a 5-Star book!! I shared my reading love with my dear grandmother who lived to be 100! She read the classics to her three granddaughters' and finished with a bedtime poem during our youth. In her later years we talked daily and always discussed what we were reading. Although our choices were different, the pleasure we derived was the same.
Reading is a wonderful bond that so many people can share in. How fortunate for those of us that have discovered this!!
Join Date: 10/21/12
This is a book I will cherish and recommend. I was immediately struck by the facility with which Mr. Schwalbe was able to capture in a few sentences or a short paragraph the book he and his mother were currently reading, Then the way he was able to weave a particular book into his past and current life was remarkable and enjoyable. The book is all about love, isn't it? Love for the author's remarkable mother, love for reading and books, love for family and humanity. Ultimately it's also about coming to terms with death and loss but this is done with great love as well.
Join Date: 10/13/12
Like Mary Anne, I think I'm very lucky! The End of Your Life Book Club was not my first book club choice, but I love it. I don't think another book would have affected me so much. My father died of cancer many years ago. Yet, this book still brought me back to that time when he was in treatment. I wish Dad had been a reader so that we could have used books as a bridges to establish connection. His bridge to others during the last few months of his life was sports, especially basketball, but I am not a big sports fan. Discussing books allows you to talk about the bigger themes in life and to talk about your feelings, attributing them to characters in your book.
Mary Anne was widely traveled, and I found myself wondering... is just Americans or do people from other countries also cloak or hide their feelings from their loved ones, even from their dying loved ones?
Join Date: 02/29/12
I really liked the book. Now I will pass it on to my avid book reading friends. I have also written down all their recommended books they liked and hope to read many of them.
I like almost all the books you recommend. I just love reading.
Join Date: 10/21/10
I think this wonderful book should be required reading. I also think that even if you don't read like this book with a loved one, or to anyone reading a book to someone, is sometimes the easiest way to communicate about many things. I still remember listening to a book that a teacher read to my class 60-years-ago. Thanks, Will
Join Date: 07/18/11
I have mixed feelings about this book. That Will Schwable and
his mother had a very special relationship becomes obvious and I applaud it. However, that relationship and their ability to meet whenever his mother had treatments as well as the time each had to read was not an experience that most of us could have. Will's mother had money, a prestigious university position and was able to support causes by speaking and traveling to other countries. Her life and experiences make for fascinating reading but I simply could not connect to her and that kind of life. And Will's ability to start a new business yet take all the time to be with her struck me as unreal. I simply could not relate to their experience.
Having said that, I felt the love each had for the other. How wonderful it would be if all of us with a family member we care deeply about could bond without worrying about money or find the time to be together without being pulled by other obligations that have to be dealt with.
Join Date: 04/10/11
I can't help feeling that sandrah missed the point of this book. While it's true that not everybody has the luxury of time and financial freedom to indulge their interests or relationships, the fact is that Will and his mother had those, and were able to spend time reading and sharing books. The idea is, at least for me, that they cherished what they were able to do, and Will wanted to share it with his readers, for our enjoyment or edification and as a tribute to his mother. I am sorry if sandrah's inability to connect with Mary Ann caused her to miss out on the joy of reading and discovering new books.
Join Date: 07/18/11
I thought my second paragraph clearly indicated that I understood the wonderful relationship Will and his mother had. I don't resent their ability to share that love.
Join Date: 04/10/11
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