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Preview — The Language of Dying by Sarah Pinborough
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The Language of Dying
From the Number One bestselling author of BEHIND HER EYES comes a beautiful, harrowing, heartbreaking story, filled with exquisite truths.
'A beautiful story, honestly told' Neil Gaiman
Tonight is a special terrible night.
A woman sits at her father's bedside, watching the clock tick away the last hours of his life. Her brothers and sisters - all broken, their bo...more
For its beautiful prose, unflinching honesty, and ability to carry us straight to the unnerving perimeters of death to witness the unraveling—I believe this book deserves no less than 5 stars.
The Language of Dying is a quick read, but there is so much conveyed in so few words, and not a speck of it is written in vain. It candidly explores the depths of mortality, narrowing in on a sick man’s final days of life as his dignity deteriorates even more quickly than his body.
This glimpse is ...more
Spoilers, maybe? ...more
however, the magic in this is not central to the story - it is an occasional grace note in an otherwise unflinchingly realistic depiction of a woman’s experience caring for her beloved father as cance ...more
A woman's father is in the last few days of his life, as he is dying from cancer. She has cared for him through his illness, watching his body and his mind deteriorate. She wants his suffering to end, but fears what the end of that suffering will mean for her life.
Her si ...more
I wasn't uplifted - it wasn't enjoyable - Yet... I read the whole damn thing!
I did appreciate and respect Sarah Pinborough's opening .......
"There is a language to dying. It creeps like a shadow alongside the passing years and the taste of it hides in the corners of our mou ...more
This one totally knocked my socks off. What a secret gem and one of my favorites this year! This is the story of a daughter tending to her dying father, told in first person. The voice pulled me right in to the secret chamber of wise thoughts and heavy emotions, and it never let me out. There is a subtleness to the emotion, a quietness, and it made its way into my soul. I wanted to bottle up the language and set it on my shelf as a tonic when I’m feeling down.
Wow, this book is making ...more
A wonderfully wri ...more
Death is the Great Equalizer.
Death fails to note if it has arrived far before one's first breath was ever taken. It never keeps track of the breaths unnoticed until the last one comes too soon.
A house is in near darkness and there sits The One. The One is The Watcher who keeps vigilance with her back poised against Good Intenti ...more
This meaningful story centers around five siblings returning home to face the haunting memories of their childhood and one another; in the midst of their father’s death. He’s slowly withering away and it’s incredibly sad and humbling to watch. Naturally, it made me contemplate how precious ...more
This is not an easy book to read; how could it be. But it is, in its own way, somehow satisfying emotionally. Definitely recommended.
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley i ...more
Death, its impact on the lives of the siblings, how it changes the way each person views the words and actions of their siblings. It impacts and changes relationships of the caregiver and the dying, as well as the relationships of the caregiver and the remaining family. Death’s imminence changes e ...more
A wonderful but difficult read for anyone who's suffered through a similar situation.
“ 'Your father is moving into the next stage. His breathing will slow. The pauses between each breath will get longer and longer. It’s called Cheyne-Stoking. He’s not there yet, but I think in the next day or so.’
She doesn’t need to point out the rest. The rest I understand. ‘Chain-smoking leads to Cheyne-Stoking.’ The little rhyme forms a rhythm in my empty thinking space. The rhythm is like hooves on tar ...more
There is a language to dying. It creeps like a shadow alongside the passing years and the taste of it hides in the corners of our mouths. It finds us whether we are sick or healthy. It is a secret hushed thing that lives in the whisper of the nurses’ skirts as they rustle up and down our stairs. They’ve taught me to face the language one syllable at a time, slowly creating an unwilli...more
. . . I stroke your hair and kiss your dry, rotten mouth. “I can see you in there, Dad,” I whisper. “Don’t worry. I can always see you.” (17)Maybe this statement expresses the essence of the experience of being a solo witness to the slow, agonizing death of somebody you love. It’s something you know in your heart and cannot share with anybody but the person who is dying. Not siblings. Not doctors and other caretakers. When you have been the primary friend (and that can be in many different roles ...more
This is a very moving novella concerning a daughter caring for her dying father. The book is written almost as a letter, addressed to the father. I love the title. The language of dying speaks to the fear of people to hear or learn about dying. “They don't like the little bit of language they already know; they don't want to add to it”.
I read this while my 91 year old father was recovering from a broken hip. It's been a long, slow, painful recovery. Given the almost daily interaction, I've seen ...more
"There is a language to dying. It creeps like a shadow alongside the passing years and the taste of it hides in the corners of our mouths. It finds us whether we are sick or healthy."
What a powerful and heartbreaking book this is!
Even as I'm writing this review, I feel this lump in my throat coming up again and I'm having trouble keeping it down.
This novella shows us a woman taking care of her father in the final stage of his battle against cancer. During this period of coping with his immin ...more
"There is a language to dying. It creeps like a shadow alongside the passing years and the taste of it hides in the corners of our mouths. It finds us whether we are sick or healthy. It is a secret hushed thing that lives in the whisper of the nurses’ skirts as they rustle up and down our stairs. They’ve taught me to face the language one syllable at a time, slowly creating an unwilling meaning."
So begins The Language of Dying by Sarah Pinborough, a novella narrated by the main character, a woma ...more
It wasn't that long ago that I sat by my father's bedside as he lay dying. Death isn't always "with dignity", people don't always "go quietly in the night", and not every family bands together ...more
This book is about--as the title says--dying, but it's also about family and depression and loss. The writing and characterization are both excellent. However, what I really loved was the touch of magical realism (or was it?). For me, that put this book beyond just "good."
I'm not going to say much, to avoid spoilers, but this won't be my last Pinsborough book.
This story was all too real for me. It is about how a dysfunctional family tried to come together when someone they love was ill. Even as I write this, I still have tears in my eyes. Way too many memories surfaced while reading this. I remember watching, and being by my mother’s side while she had suffered from melanoma cancer. I understood, ...more
I mean, in this book are so much inside, it's almost unbelievable and written really beautiful, dense, atmospheric, and full of magic ( like a gothic novel ).....
The story of a young woman damaged trough diverse cruel hammerings in her life!!!!
Betrayal from people which she never expected it, helpless in the face of a marriage turning out to be hell....
gradually the cracks in her soul shows up, as a result of th ...more
The Language of Dying is one of those novels I feel a little bad about not liking more. It’s a novel ...more
This woman is watching her father die. She is the middle child ,,, she has 2 older siblings and 2 younger. They have all gathered to be with her and to pay last respects this week. They are not a close knit family. They are all playing the game of being family, but nothing really rings t ...more
Instead, it just dragged on, and this is not a thick book, only 144 pages long, but it felt like it took forever to get to the end ...more
Sarah Pinborough is the author of a couple of my favorite historical horror novels, Mayhem and Murder in the Dr. Thomas Bond duology about the Jack the Ripper, so when I was offered a chance to review The Language of Dying, I didn’t hesitate. This novella couldn’t have been more different than her other work though, and yet I loved it no less. A beautiful soul-rending song straight from the heart, this tiny little book pac ...more
To anybody that has sat at a loved one's bedside and watch them slip from cognition to comatose, because they are dying of cancer this book viscerally twists you inside and out. The narrator remains nameless but is at the family home (she already bought it from her father and distributed the money to her siblings) with her dying father. This authenticates the grief, guilt, just wanting one more moment with your loved one and the myriad scale of emotions t ...more