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The Year of Magical Thinking
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The Year of Magical Thinking

by

From one of America's iconic writers, this is a portrait of a marriage and a life - in good times and bad - that will speak to anyone who has ever loved a husband or wife or child. This is a stunning book of electric honesty and passion. Several days before Christmas 2003, John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion saw their only daughter, Quintana, fall ill.

At first they thought it was flu, then pneumonia, then complete septic shock. She was put into an induced coma and placed on life support. Days later - the night before New Year's Eve - the Dunnes were just sitting down to dinner after visiting the hospital when John suffered a massive and fatal coronary.

In a second, this close, symbiotic partnership of 40 years was over. Four weeks later, their daughter pulled through. Two months after that, arriving at LA airport, she collapsed and underwent six hours of brain surgery at UCLA Medical Centre to relieve a massive hematoma.

This powerful book is Didion's 'attempt to make sense of the weeks and then months that cut loose any fixed idea I ever had about death, about illness, about marriage and children and memory, about the shallowness of sanity, about life itself'. The result is an exploration of an intensely personal yet universal experience: a portrait of a marriage, and a life, in good times and bad.

Title:The Year of Magical Thinking
Edition Language:English
ISBN:1400078431
Format Type:Paperback
Number of Pages:227 pages
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    The Year of Magical Thinking Reviews

  • Kim
    Oct 24, 2007

    You might think of me as a cynic. If you’re being kind, that is. I’m the one that says ’Seriously?’ when being told of some tragic event--like someone would actually make up the horrific thing...

  • Books Ring Mah Bell
    Nov 29, 2010

    Disclaimer: Being fresh into the grieving process myself, you may want to skip this review and head onto others. Undoubtedly I'll purge my grief in a review about a book on grief. You've been warned.R...

  • noisy penguin
    May 21, 2007

    I hated this book. It is the reason I instituted my "100 pages" policy (if it's not promising 100 pages in, I will no longer waste my time on it). So within the 100 pages I did read, all I got from Di...

  • Debbie
    Nov 28, 2014

    This is a hard book for me to review, as I know my own personal experience will be foremost. A big thank you to a wonderful friend who sent this to me after the loss of my own partner three weeks ago....

  • Dawn
    May 30, 2007

    Hated it, hated it, hated it- but kept reading with the hope that all my pain and suffering would somehow be worth it in the end. It wasn't. The same self-pitying, whiney, depressing, self-important s...

  • Darwin8u
    Jan 15, 2014

    “It occurs to me that we allow ourselves to imagine only such messages as we need to survive.” ― Joan Didion, The Year of Magical ThinkingIn four days it will be one year since my father-in-law ...

  • Greg
    Aug 05, 2008

    Like Johnny Rotten said during their last (in the universe where they never would re-form again in the mid-90's) show, "Do you ever feel like you've been cheated?" I do Johnny, I do. I feel cheated by...

  • Jason Koivu
    Sep 30, 2012

    To call Joan Didion cold or even heartless - true as it may be in the light of The Year of Magical Thinking, this monument to the analytical dissection of grief - is itself a cold and heartless condem...

  • Sara
    Jul 20, 2007

    "you sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends. the question of self-pity."i picked up this book and read it knowing nothing more than those two short lines. those two lines which become the ref...

  • Kate
    Dec 18, 2007

    Joan Didion's daughter Quintana fell gravely ill and was hospitalized with a serious infection. She was placed in a medical coma and put on life support. Only weeks later, Joan's husband, John Dunne, ...