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The Long Goodbye: A memoir by Meghan…

The Long Goodbye: A memoir (edition 2011)

by Meghan O'Rourke

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2082956,261 (3.89)3
Title:The Long Goodbye: A memoir
Authors:Meghan O'Rourke
Info:Riverhead Hardcover (2011), Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Long Goodbye: A memoir by Meghan O'Rourke

  1. 10
    The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion (whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: Although these books certainly have differences, both are beautifully written, and both are about a year of grieving, each in their own way.

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I enjoyed the latter half of the book than the former. In fact, I skipped through to just past the start of part two and read it voraciously from there. Having recently lost a parent, it was the experience and breakdown of her grief that I was most interested in and found most helpful. ( )
  bathshaeba | Oct 5, 2014 |
O'Rourke here limns the few months before her mother's death and the year or so following it in searing, heartbroken prose. This is a grief acutely, almost claustrophobically, observed. There were a few times I grew impatient with her inability to process her grief but then I remembered trying, just the other day, to tell someone about my uncle, dead lo these 20-odd years, and being ambushed by a fresh wave of mourning.

The prose is crystalline and jagged and sometimes transcendent. It's a sad and beautiful book that's at times almost too intimate. Well worth reading, but not one I think I will ever read again. ( )
  satyridae | Apr 5, 2013 |
I really liked the parts of this book where O'Rourke actually wrote about her life and what was happening. And I guess I'm the only one but I'll go ahead and say it. I had to take it down a star or two because it felt like two different books. Half was wonderful. The other half was not. Too many quotes, and while I like a good quote, it doesn't do it for me as half a book. Also the endless explaining of every little detail - as in I'm taking a bath which is when you fill up a bathtub with water and soap and get in to get clean. But the other half was excellent. ( )
  E.J | Apr 3, 2013 |
I loved the beautifully written haunting and honest first section, which was the memoir part. She gained distance in the second half, which is good for her, I guess, but which made for less compelling reading - more like a magazine article. Too many sources, too much journalistic reporting. ( )
  bobbieharv | Nov 10, 2011 |
I just read this memoir straight through to the end. Focusing on the grief, mourning, and memories surrounding her mother's death from cancer, O'Rourke's words will resonate with all, not just those who have experienced such a loss themselves. But for those of us who have lost a parent (my father passed of cancer as well) it hits especially close to home. Everyone deals with death of loved ones in different ways, but Meghan O'Rourke in her beautiful prose brings our grief together and is a balm to our wounds.
  celiafrances | Oct 15, 2011 |
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“O Gilgamesh, where are you wandering?
You cannot find the life you seek:
When the gods created mankind,
For mankind they established death,
Life they kept for themselves.
You, Gilgamesh, let you belly be full,
Keep enjoying yourself, day and night!
Every day make merry,
Dance and play day and night!”
Th bereaved cannot communicate with the unbereaved.

for my brothers and father,


in memory of Barbara Kelly O'Rouke
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My mother died of metastatic colorectal cancer shortly before three p.m. on Christmas Day of 2008.
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In this eloquent, somber memoir about the death of her mother and grieving aftermath, poet and journalist O'Rourke (Halflife) ponders the eternal human question: how do we live with the knowledge that we will one day die?

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