Epilogue: Book summary and reviews of Epilogue by Will Boast

Epilogue

A Memoir

by Will Boast

Epilogue by Will Boast X
Epilogue by Will Boast
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2014
    288 pages
    Genre: Biography/Memoir

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Book Summary

Having already lost his mother and only brother, twenty-four-year-old Will Boast finds himself absolutely alone when his father dies of alcoholism. Numbly settling the matters of his father's estate, Boast is deep inside his grief when he stumbles upon documents revealing a secret his father had intended to keep: He'd had another family before Will's - a wife and two sons in England.

This revelation leads to a flood of new questions. Did his father abandon this first family, or was he pushed away? Still reeling from loss, Boast is forced to reconsider the fundamental truths of his childhood and to look for traces of the man his father might truly have been. Setting out in search of his half brothers, he attempts to reconcile their family history with his own, testing each childhood memory under the weight of his father's secret. Moving between the Midwest and England, from scenes of his youth to the tentative discovery of his new family, Boast writes with visceral beauty about grief, memory, and his slow and tender journey to a new kind of love.

With the piercing gaze of a novelist, Boast transforms the pain and confusion of his family history into an achingly poignant portrait of resilience, revising the stories he's inherited to refashion both his past and his present. Heartbreaking and luminous, Epilogue is the stunning account of a young man's struggle to understand all that he has lost and found, and to forge a new life for himself along the way.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review...a finely wrought, wrenching yet lyrical study of a family that lives on past its seeming end." - Publishers Weekly

"In this emotionally raw memoir, Boast reveals his hard struggle to redefine for himself the meaning of family. Intermittently engaging, but the author never deals with an essential question: What is an adult's - "including a parent's - right to privacy?" - Kirkus

"This remarkable memoir is written with extraordinary care, intelligence, and honesty. Though the material is powerful to begin with, what makes it work so well is its authorial voice: a rare combination of rawness and restraint, probing and delicacy, self-laceration and tenderness toward others. In short, it's fully alive." - Phillip Lopate, author of Portrait Inside My Head

"Don't let the title of Will Boast's magnificent memoir fool you - Epilogue is about beginnings as much as endings, discovering as much as losing family. It's honest, heartbreaking, gorgeously written, and hands down the most moving book I've read so far this year." - Anthony Marra, author of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena

"Will Boast's efforts to write his family's epilogue - to forge a space for his own life through understanding theirs - make for one of the most moving and transformative reading experiences I've had. I won't ever forget it." - Eleanor Henderson, author of Ten Thousand Saints

"Riveting, soulful, and courageously told, Will Boast's memoir is a gorgeous meditation on grief and family and also a deeply personal account of his coming of age under a relentless bombardment of tragedies and revelations. Never has a story of loss been so full of life." - Maggie Shipstead, author of the national bestseller Seating Arrangements

"The story of Epilogue would be compelling enough: a young man loses one family and discovers another. In Will Boast's expert hands, it becomes a plangent and penetrating meditation on grief, the weight of secrets, and the redemptive power of family." - Justin St Germain, author of Son of a Gun: A Memoir

"Elegiac and unsentimental, Epilogue is a moving meditation on the enduring mysteries of family, the surprising possibilities of loss, and the deep resilience of an individual. With piercing clarity and wisdom, Will Boast reveals the unexpected within the unthinkable." - Jennifer duBois, author of Cartwheel

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Author Information

Will Boast

Will Boast was born in England and grew up in Ireland and Wisconsin. He won the Iowa Short Fiction Award for his story collection, Power Ballads. A former Wallace Stegner Fellow, his writing has appeared in the New York Times, Virginia Quarterly Review, Best New American Voices, and elsewhere. He divides his time between Chicago and Brooklyn, New York.

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