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A Season in Hell: A Memoir by Marilyn French
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A Season in Hell: A Memoir

by Marilyn French

Other authors: Anneke Bok

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» See also 2 mentions

Autobiografisch relaas van de Amerikaanse schrijfster (1929-...) over haar strijd met ogenschijnlijk terminale kanker in der periode 1992-1997 ( )
  huizenga | Aug 6, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Marilyn Frenchprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bok, Annekesecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345412680, Paperback)

Marilyn French, author of My Summer with George, The Women's Room, and Her Mother's Daughter, learns at the beginning of this memoir that she has esophageal cancer. (A smoker for 46 years, she had ignored friends and doctors who implored her to quit.) She is told that one survives metastasized esophageal cancer. A Season in Hell is French's personal story of her journey through the nightmares of aggressive cancer treatment, seizures, a two-week coma, kindhearted nurses, and uncompassionate doctors. One told her not to get her hopes up when her tumor disappeared, and a neurologist said (prophetically?), "Doctors hate writers; they always say horrible things about us." It is also French's story of triumph--because she succeeds in conquering the cancer, though she emerges from the struggle far from well, with "just about every system in my body [damaged] by chemotherapy or radiation." Readers share the worst and the best with French, and by the end of the book get to know this woman, feel a part of her humanity, respect her courage, and cherish her circle of close friends (including Gloria Steinem) and relatives who gave her so much when she needed it most. --Joan Price

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:54 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Marilyn French takes us into the private hell that became her life when, in 1992, after a series of false diagnoses, it was determined that she had esophageal cancer - from the grueling regimen of radiation and chemotherapy to the subsequent coma from which it was thought she had no chance of recovering, to the even more serious post-coma illnesses, to her miraculous return to life. With the insight, intelligence, and emotional honesty with which she has examined so many other women's lives in her fiction, Marilyn French now considers her own, as she battles with doctors and the medical establishment; as her family and friends surround her, giving her mysterious strength; and as she defies all diagnoses and prognostications and emerges whole and more than ever open to life. While this book is a consideration of what it feels like to be dying, and as such it is a musing on death, it is also centered on life: death has cast a mark on life which gives us a new vision of meaning and purpose. As French examines death's role in her life, she shares a sense of what pain and suffering can mean to a person who utterly denies transcendent thought, of how an experience of closeness to death affects the life we are living now.… (more)

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