Excerpt from What Are You Going Through by Sigrid Nunez, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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What Are You Going Through

by Sigrid Nunez

What Are You Going Through by Sigrid Nunez X
What Are You Going Through by Sigrid Nunez
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  • Published:
    Sep 2020, 224 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Elisabeth Cook
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A person who only read the man's words, rather than hearing and watching him speak, would probably have imagined him quite different from the way he actually was that night. Given the words, the meaning, the horrific facts, a person would probably imagine some show of emotion. Not these calm, cadenced sentences. Not this dispassionate mask. Only once did I catch a flicker of feeling: when he was talking about the animals, a slight catch in his throat. For humans, there seemed to be no pity in him. From time to time as he spoke, he looked out over the lectern and raked the audience with his raptor's gaze. Later, I thought I understood why he hadn't wanted to take questions. Have you ever been at a Q&A where at least one person did not make some thoughtless remark or ask the kind of irrelevant question that suggested that they hadn't been listening to a thing the speaker just said? I could see how, for this speaker, after this talk, something like that would have been unendurable. Maybe he was afraid he'd lose his temper. Because of course it was there: Beneath the cool, the control, you could sense it. Deep and volcanic emotion. Which, were he to allow himself to express it, would spew out of the top of his head and burn us all to ash.

Excerpted from What Are You Going Through by Sigrid Nunez. Copyright © 2020 by Sigrid Nunez. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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