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Afflictions and Departures

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  13 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Literary Nonfiction. AFFLICTIONS AND DEPARTURES is a collection of first-person experiential essays. However, this is not the realm of traditional memoir--in addition to incidents and feelings recaptured from memory, Sonik seeks out connections between the microcosm of the daily events of her childhood and adolescence, and the social, historical, and scientific trends of t ...more
Paperback, 182 pages
Published May 14th 2011 by Anvil Press
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Cheryl
Oct 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
When we look back on our lives, or that of others, it is always in the context of other things, both personal ("I remember such and such happened just after graduation night") and societal ("We didn't have to do any school lessons on the day that Canada won that hockey game against Russia in 1972; for the first time we got to watch tv in school, and celebrate that goal together"). We share those communal events; they are markers in our lives. Our own unique life events are juxtaposed with those ...more
Kerry Clare
Feb 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
In her essay collection Afflictions and Departures, which has been shortlisted for the 2012 Charles Taylor Prize for Non-Fiction, Madeline Sonik stitches her personal stories to the fabric of her time. Her narrative voice is blessed with startling omniscience, with the benefit of hindsight, and with an acute awareness of both how the extraordinary can be illuminated by ordinary detail, and also of how the ordinary and extraordinary are so often intricately connected. Sonik’s prose reveals her po ...more
Tricia Dower
Jun 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book deserves a classier cover and a higher profile. I found it on the bottom shelf of the essays section in a dark corner of the store I visited to buy it. The same store prominently displayed the other short-listed nominees for the 2012 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Nonfiction on a table at the front of the store. Sonik’s book didn’t win first prize but it’s wonderful, nonetheless. It’s a collection of autobiographical essays about her life from conception to age fourteen. I understan ...more
Clara
Oct 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved this collection of personal essays so much I subconsciously hid my library copy on my bookshelf, hoping it could stay with me forever. Sonik tells her own history as she experienced it, along with her parents' (her own pre-history) and the history that was happening around her. The result is a recollection that's rooted in both emotion and fact, laced with beautiful words.
H Selles
Apr 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Superbly written little essays. I love the back and forth between private reminiscences and public accounting of journalist facts. Superman and The Truth about Fairies made me cry like a teenager on PMS. Is there such a thing as Canadian Personal Fiction? So I hope.
Elaine
Jun 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Stunningly original.
Colleen
Nov 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Very unusual tho enjoyable. Loved the references to all the happenings of the 50's and 60's. Ms Sonik has brought up so many long forgotten memories.
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