I don't recall reading any of Trillin's New Yorker pieces before though i'm sure i must ha...more
I've only saved two editions of The New Yorker since I started reading it over 20 years ago. The first was the first post 9/11 edition with the black-on-black Art Spiegelman cover, and the other...more
This is a charming book that I just heard in audio form--read by the author. That is a special treat, I think, for this tribute. Trillin is so funny and loving about his late wife, who I certanily did not know. But I wish I had.
This is a tiny book, around seventy pages or so, talking about Alice, her diagnosis of lung cancer in the seventies and her heart failure in the nineties from the radiation she had received to kill her cancer. It sounds like a downer I guess, and it is...more
(When I heard he had once been repeatedly reprimanded and finally fired from a columnist job for relegating Christian historical events to the hypothetical - "the alleged Crucifixion" for example - I realized I had found a writer to whom I could consistently turn.)
This brief examination o...more
To me, this is a love story -- but not in the usual sense of that term. It's true that the romantic, love-at-first-sight, heart-stopping first meeing is described here, but the story goes far beyond that.
Alice and Calvin had a lifetime of love, and although I think we all long for such a thing, we don't often get to read ab...more
It is a compact tome, with chapters representing themes that repeated throughout some 36 years of marriage. There is not one wasted word. As has been my experience with other books by Trillin, his humor made me smile, sometimes through tears. In this entry, it extends to their friends, including Trillin's account of Nora Ephro...more
After reading this, you'll want to read more from Alice herself. If you have access to a good library, check out her New England Journal of Medicine article entitled "Of Dragons and Garden Peas: A Cancer Patient Talks to Doctors" in the March 19, 1981 issue. And if you own the Complete...more
I didn't think it lived up to the acclaim.
The book is a postscript to the author's other writings about his beloved wife, Alice, who passed away last year. Calvin had written about Alice for years; indeed, the vast majority of his work apparently centered around his deep-felt love for this woman.
Only I've never read any of his other writings.
So while this little book was a sweet tribute...more
It's filled with funny and touching anecdotes about their life together. My favorite moment is when Alice was convinced she lost her looks because she couldn't get out of a speeding ticket. Trillin tries to convince her that it's really because there's been an influx of gay police officers. "Of course we're all in favor of that," Trillin said, "but it's bound to change the equation."
My first exposure to Calvin Trillin was pretty late in the game. It was at the Herbst Theater in 2007 when he was part of a Q&A trio that included Ruth Reichl and Alice Waters. Not having any previous knowledge of who Calvin was or what he had done, I was blown away by his captivating personality. He stole the show that night, and I suspect every time he speaks. Calvin always had something interesting to say, had everyone in the audience in stitches throught the evening, and most importantly...more
This is a book of romance and storytelling.
I can't quite put into words how much I loved this precious little 75-pager.
Calvin Trillin is a long-time contributer to the New York Times and Magazine. He is a great wordsmith who loved his wife and has managed to communicate this in words, which so often fall short.
Pick this up, pick this up now.
About Alice is a short and sad and ultimately heart-warming read.
*Her identity included engagement and optimism and enthusiasm. One of the most negative words she could use in describing someone was "passive".
*Because she survived, they were e...more
The humor that Calvin Trillin exhibits so brilliantly in his travel and food pieces is strongly evident in his loving tribute to his wife, even when he writes about Alice's battle with cancer or the eulogies delivered at her memorial service. The combination of lighthearted wit and deeply emotional topics appealed to reviewers universally, and several even suggested that readers have tissues handy for the more emotional passages. Trillin maintains a delicate veil over any aspects of his marriage...more
My most favorite part of the book is while they are volunteering at the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. They meet a little girl who is severely disabled with two genetic diseases: one stunts her growth, the other prevents her from digesting her food. She has to be fed every night by a feeding tube. But this little girl is always happy.
While playing Duck Duck Goose, the little girl was "it", and ran off dropping a letter from h...more
Trillin attended public schools in Kansas City and went on to Yale University, where he served as chairman of the Yale Daily News and became a member of Scroll an...more