Brenda's Reviews > The Year of Magical Thinking

The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
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's review
Oct 28, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction
Read in October, 2008

"Grief is the price we pay for love," someone recently told me. The words were meant to comfort me, but what I have realized is that grief actually made me believe in love. Watching a husband struggle to exist after losing his wife of 40 years demonstrated the power of love to me.

I don't know what it would be like to read this book as someone for whom grief is an abstract emotion they have felt or know they will someday feel. I only know what it's like to read this book while knee-deep in grief and recognizing the mental twists and emotional turns too well.

This book is about Didion's grief over the death of her husband (the author John Gregory Dunne), which happens in the midst of her daughter's life threatening hospitalizations. The year is the year after her husband's death and the magical refers to her belief that he's going to somehow, magically, come back. It's raw and it's real and I think it's a classic already.


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