Rated of 5
by Karen Didion Down Under
A deeply moving insightful representation of self in a mutilated world.
Review (not rated)
by Janis Gale The absence of Magic
Didion read Caitlin Thomas's book "Leftover life to kill" at the age of twenty two and found it whining and self pitying. I had a similar reaction to Didion's book, I am fifty seven.
Didion has a beautiful way with words. The positive reviews of this book must then be a result of her reputation, rather than of this particular work. I found the absence of humour, the repetition and attention to tiny details self indulgent and cloying.
Grief doesn't discriminate and we have empathy, but even when personal experiences are penned in prose, the reading is still extremely heavy going.
Rated of 5
by Shirlee B A Second Reading
My husband gave me this book last summer. I read it but found it somewhat depressing. In September, my husband of 40 years died suddenly of a heart attack. Six months later I thought of Ms Didion' book. I searched my book shelves until I found it. The second time I read it it immediately hit home. I was going through everything she described in her book, all of the confusion, pain, loneliness and feelings of helplessness. I began highlighting passages and have reread them many times. This book gives permission to others to grieve in their own way without feeling they have to fit into a mold. This book would be an excellent gift to someone who has lost a spouse.
Rated of 5
by Cathy Weakland Gibbons
Any death diminishes all of us, John Donne implies. The death of Ms.Didion's husband is something to grieve for; yet we give thanks for the memoir it produced. This story is not a tale of grief alone, but of an intense love that resonates in any one who has ever truly loved.
Her allusions to other works, including C.S.Lewis and even "etiquette" books about grieving, allow the reader to see how Didion began to cope with her tragedy. She admits that she, as many of us, read to discover answers to the vicissitudes of life.
Her self-stated goal of finishing the book before a complete year elapsed further reflects her connection to her husband and ailing daughter. If a year passed,the circle of the process could not be complete. Circles are a trope in the memoir that allows the reader to experience the confusion that Didion endured as she tried to make sense of the insensible.
Having heard her read from the book this past November, concretized the reality of this gifted woman's grief. I highly recommend this book.
Judge rules unused Borders gift cards to be worthless(May 23 2013) Borders owes nothing to holders of roughly $210.5 million of gift cards that had not been used by the time the bookstore chain shut down, a Manhattan federal...