Aishan's Reviews > Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace

Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story by D.T. Max
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Sep 09, 12

Read from September 06 to 09, 2012

I was shaking at the end. The biography was brilliant, and D.T. Max takes his readers on an incredibly journey through DFW's life such that we celebrate with both authors through the success of not only Infinite Jest, but each and every one of Wallace's publications. Yet, we all know what is at the conclusion of the biography and Wallace's life, but as a reader, I wanted more. How could 300 pages of success and finally, happiness -- an overcoming and comprehending of addiction -- conclude with a mere reference to Wallace's suicide? The moments of the biography, the moments of Wallace's life suddenly felt undermined by a 2.5-page recounting of the events leading up to the suicide. Of course, in life, that's how suicide functions. But in a biography, I expected more of an acknowledgement of this fact rather than a statement of it. The biography itself serves as a memorial to Wallace, but what about the tributes held to him immediately in the aftermath of his suicide? And what about process of publishing the unfinished novel The Pale King? There were too many questions left unanswered at the end, and though such an end to the biography may parallel Wallace's fiction in which he deliberately allows his readers to project the ending, real life -- nonfiction -- doesn't quite happen that way. Things happen, and it is a biographer's duty to his readers to elucidate these happenings.
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