The Art of Death: Book summary and reviews of The Art of Death by Edwidge Danticat

The Art of Death

Writing the Final Story

by Edwidge Danticat

The Art of Death by Edwidge Danticat X
The Art of Death by Edwidge Danticat
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  • Published in USA  Jul 2017
    160 pages
    Genre: Biography/Memoir

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Book Summary

A moving reflection on a subject that touches us all, by the bestselling author of Claire of the Sea Light.

Edwidge Danticat's The Art of Death: Writing the Final Story is at once a personal account of her mother dying from cancer and a deeply considered reckoning with the ways that other writers have approached death in their own work. "Writing has been the primary way I have tried to make sense of my losses," Danticat notes in her introduction. "I have been writing about death for as long as I have been writing."

The book moves outward from the shock of her mother's diagnosis and sifts through Danticat's writing life and personal history, all the while shifting fluidly from examples that range from Gabriel García Márquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude to Toni Morrison's Sula. The narrative, which continually circles the many incarnations of death from individual to large-scale catastrophes, culminates in a beautiful, heartrending prayer in the voice of Danticat's mother. A moving tribute and a work of astute criticism, The Art of Death is a book that will profoundly alter all who encounter it.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. From "The Art of" series, this emotional, brave work interrogates and bears witness to the ultimate unknown. Will appeal to readers looking for warmth and insight - whatever their personal circumstance." - Library Journal

"Starred Review. This work is more about how death is described in literature, and the author asks if we really can describe it adequately at all. Danticat takes on an unpleasant topic with sensitivity and passion." - Kirkus

"This slim volume wraps literary criticism, philosophy, and memoir into a gracefully circling whole, echoing the nature of grief as 'circles and circles of sorrow.'" - Publishers Weekly

"There is, after all, no more universal experience for humans, other than birth, and that is, in some ways, what this beautiful book feels like; it is an offering, almost, a renewal about the ways in which we think about the unthinkable, force ourselves to confront the dark in order to live with light in our lives. It is elegant and thoughtful, and a fascinating meditation on the thing that brings us together."- Nylon

"Consider [The Art of Death] a master class in literature and a guidebook for the most universal human experience." - BUST Magazine

The information about The Art of Death shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Edwidge Danticat Author Biography

Since the publication of her debut work Breath, Eyes, Memory in 1994, Edwidge Danticat has won praise as one of America's brightest, most graceful and vibrant young writers. In this novel, and in her National Book Award-nominated collection of stories, Krik? Krak!, Danticat evokes the powerful imagination and rich narrative tradition of her native Haiti, and in the process records the suffering, triumphs, and wisdom of its people. Author Paule Marshall has said of Danticat, "A silenced Haiti has once again found its literary voice."

Born in Haiti in 1969, Danticat, like the protagonist of her novel Breath, Eyes, Memory, at the age of twelve left her birthplace for New York to reunite with her parents. She earned a degree in French Literature from Barnard College, where she ...

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Name Pronunciation
Edwidge Danticat: Edweedje Danticah

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