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In Every Moment We Are Still Alive

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  2,111 ratings  ·  297 reviews
A prize-winning, bestselling debut of love, loss, and family—based on a true story—that’s winning readers around the world.

When Tom’s heavily pregnant girlfriend Karin is rushed to the hospital, doctors are able to save the baby. But they are helpless to save Karin from what turns out to be acute Leukemia. And in a cruel, fleeting moment Tom gains a daughter but loses his
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published February 6th 2018 by Melville House (first published August 2015)
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3.47  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,111 ratings  ·  297 reviews

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Angela M
Oct 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars.

The intensity begins on the first page and continues with the fear and uncertainty over what was happening in this critical emergency situation. Tom's pregnant partner, Karin is extremely ill and is shortly diagnosed with acute leukemia. Anyone who’s ever been through such a time in the emergency setting knows the difficulty of handling their visceral reactions while trying to understand and absorb the details of what the doctor are telling you. Tom Malmquist depicts this perfectly be
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 Stars

”THE CONSULTANT STAMPS down the wheel lock of Karin’s hospital bed. In a loud voice he addresses the intensive care nurses, who are cutting open her tank top and sports bra: Pregnant woman, week thirty-three, child reportedly in good health, started feeling ill about five days ago with flu-like symptoms, fever, cough, slight shortness of breath yesterday which was put down to her pregnancy, condition severely deteriorating today, acute respiratory difficulties, arrived at the maternity
(4.5) In this highly autobiographical novel from a Swedish poet, Tom has to face the sudden loss of his partner and his father in quick succession while also adjusting to single parenthood. Originally published in 2015, this is Malmquist’s first work of prose. While it’s being marketed as a novel, it reads more like a stylized memoir. Similar to Karl Ove Knausgaard’s books, it features the author as the central character and narrator. With its frank look at medical crises, this is a book I fully ...more
Nov 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018, best-of-2018
Sometimes I imagine my wife dies. Not because I want her to, but because it would be so awful. I like her so much, and also it would be inconvenient in a lot of ways. But it's fun to be maudlin! I would be a widower. It would be romantic. I imagine how wrenching my eulogy would be. "Webster defines sadness as...," I would say.

Anyway so this book shows up on the NY Times Notable of 2018 list and it's autofiction about this guy whose wife dies in childbirth and I basically dropped everything to re
Lindsay - Traveling Sister
2 stars. I simply couldn't connect with this book.

I have much respect for the author, Tom Malmquist, for writing this fictionalized autobiography. I feel that writing his story would have been therapeutic and life changing for him to have documented everything he went through and experienced.

Unfortunately, as a reader, I couldn't immerse myself within the story. The writing lacked emotion for me - it was more "tell" than "feel". The story was 'matter of factly' told in an almost clinical way. I
In Every Moment We Are Still Alive is a sad, grief-filled novel.

This novel is based on real-life events, which makes my review a bit more difficult to write.
I don't know if it's the writing style and/or the translation, but I felt unusually detached, even though the subject matter should have made sob uncontrollably. The writing is very matter-of-fact, in fact, too matter of fact - the hospital scenes were way too descriptive even for me (for a while, I wanted to become a doctor).

For me, this
Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
*** GIVEAWAY*** on Insta. Entries open till 11:59pm 2/11/18. Open to U.S. residents. You can read this and all of my reviews at Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine.

“On the middle shelf in the bathroom cabinet lies Karin’s hairbrush. Her hairs are still snagged in its plastic teeth. She didn’t have time to prise them out and throw them away as she usually did. The brush is thick with hair, I smell it, I press it to my mouth.”

In Every Moment We Are Still Alive is full of beautiful, poignant passages. Tom Malmquist’
Lee Klein
Mar 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
A gripping, riveting, vivid, absolutely real, wrenching opening 61 pages, approximately a quarter of the book -- it doesn't quite feel right to call it a novel. (We need a new term for autofictional books. "Books" works, I guess.) Anyway, fiction that feels unlike fiction for the most part because it's most likely not fictional at all remains my favorite sort of fiction, or my favorite sort of writing in general. What's remarkable about this is its pace despite its heft, its speed as it relays t ...more
Tanja Berg
I receved this book as an ARC from Gyldendal. It's not exactly something I would normally read, but I don't have any regrets. I wasn't aware that it was non-ficiton until I started reading it.

The book starts very abruptly with Karin, Tom's wife, being admitted to hospital. She is pregnant and they are worried about their unborn child. Karin's situaton deteriorates very quickly. A healthy baby girl is delivered by ceasarian. Within days Tom is left alone to care for a premature baby, Karin dies.
Feb 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction-sweden
“In Every Moment We are Still Alive” is a book that will put you through the emotional wringer. Part memoir, part fiction, it tells the story of Tom Malmquist who suffers more pain in a short period of time than any human being should have to endure. At the beginning of the story his pregnant partner is admitted to the hospital with what they believe is the flu, which they then think is pneumonia, until finally they realize is a rapidly advancing and fatal leukaemia.
The hours in the hos
Nov 29, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, november-2017
Swedish poet Tom Malmquist's memoir, In Every Moment We Are Still Alive, sounded incredibly touching. It deals with the death of his wife, Karin, after being diagnosed with acute leukaemia. His daughter, Livia, is delivered prematurely, and Malmquist has to deal with her birth at the same time as his wife's death.

I found In Every Moment We Are Still Alive rather difficult to read. It jumps around rather a bit, and it is difficult at times to work out who the secondary characters are; there is ra
I was interested in reviewing In Every Moment We Are Alive after reading the blurb and seeing all the accolades the book was getting. It's based on the real life and experiences of the author, Tom Malmquist when his long-time girlfriend Karin, is rushed to the hospital with breathing issues. What should be a happy time for the couple, Karin is pregnant with their daughter, soon becomes tragic as Karin's health rapidly deteriorates and she is diagnosed with acute leukemia. Doctors are able to sav ...more
The first page opens in an ER trauma room where Tom's pregnant partner Karin's clothes are being cut off and her vital stats are being called out. Anyone who's ever been in one of those rooms will instantly feel the claustrophobia, confusion and terror.

The crisis never ends. It gathers new crises to attach to itself, and in the midst of it all is a young man desperately trying to keep himself together and put one foot in front of the other. Karin had a rare and aggressive form of leukemia. Benea
Jan 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an intense fictionalized autobiographical novel that will pull you in from page 1. At times it reads like a hospital drama but with added feeling and humanity. The book provides a gamut of emotions - at times the main character is confused, grief stricken, selfish and full of love. It is written in a style that takes a bit of getting used to - the author is a poet and it is apparent in his use of language but he moves back and forth from past to present often and the reader needs to real ...more
Mar 14, 2018 rated it liked it
"Death is abstract. It can't be understood."

Tom has a mix of emotions as his partner Karin is rushed to the hospital. He's excited meet the child that they are about to be parents of, but he's not so certain he's ready. A struggling writer, Tom fears that his meager income won't be able to support a family. Still, he knows his love for Karin is unwavering, and Tom can't wait to meet their child.

What is supposed to be a joyous occasion soon takes a cruel turn. A healthy baby girl is born, but Ka
Miriam Smith
Won in Goodreads Giveaways - not read passed on.
Mar 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In several email groups in which I participate, the topic of "auto-fiction" has come up. It's memoir that has been loosely fictionalized or in which fictional structures are employed to tell a generally true story. Any good memoir does this, I think, although labeling a book "fiction" would give the author more freedom to invent than labeling it as "memoir."

I read the glowing review of In Every Moment We Are Still Alive by Tom Malmquist and immediately ordered it from my library. The first sect
Katy (Katyslibrary)
Feb 15, 2018 rated it liked it
*Giveaway for one copy of this book, US only, ends 2/20/18 on my Instagram: @Katyslibrary*

Thank you so much TLC Book Tours and Melville House for sending me a copy of this book for review and having me on this book tour!

Tom Malmquist writes a heartbreaking fictional story based on what he experienced in his own personal life. The grief he deals with is profound and what he has to go through in the wake of that grief is almost unbearable. A touching story with insights into the Swedish culture, t
Neelam Babul
Dec 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A deeply moving and touching story.

This is a part fiction part autobiographical novel from a Swedish poet, Tom Malmquist who experiences the sudden loss of his partner after she gives birth to their daughter and his father. The writer does a tremendously marvelous job portraying the deterioration of his fiancee's health until her death which touched my soul.

Tom now has to bear the burden of being a single parent, provide for his daughter and also adjust with this family and friends. It is told
Barbara Klein
Mar 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
I'm actually not sure why this book had such a profound effect on me. I don't think the writing style or plot development was particularly unusual. Once I began reading I couldn't stop although I knew there would be no big plot twists. The characters felt real to me. So much so, I could almost sense their presence and even smell them or feel the temperature of the rooms they were in. The pacing of the writing is fast. A little like stepping into a cold stream and being swept along by a swift cur ...more
Lolly K Dandeneau
Nov 29, 2017 rated it liked it
via my blog:
'Livia touches my mouth and nose with hands that remind me of Karin’s testing a piece of fruit for ripeness.'

Such a simple line and so painfully brutal knowing the future Tom and Karin envisioned is gone, that Tom is left to raise their infant daughter, Livia in the wake of his beloved’s death. The love of his life taken by leukemia (though taken sounds so mild compared to dead), and the begining of a beautiful love with his child. It’s a tug of
Jan 12, 2018 rated it did not like it

Unfortunately I didn’t finish the book. I got to about 24% in and I couldn’t continue. I don’t give bad reviews lightly and I did want to continue reading to give the author credit for their work.

The format of the book was very off putting- no paragraphs, no chapters, no speech marks. I could overlook this however for the story. Yet the story didn’t grasp me.

The writing was very disjointed to me. Very to the point and 2D. For example a conversation with a nurse...

“Hi,come in, I should tell
May 10, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

In Every Moment we are still Alive by Tom Malmquist was a good reads win

I liked the cover of the book. At first glance it was plain white, but when tilted the title of the book was visible in shiny white. The spine had a pattern of pink flowers. I thought it put over the idea of transience, things being there but not there.

Tom is having to face the unexpected death of his partner as well as the decline and death of his father. He has to cope with being sole carer of his premature new born daught
Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The review on the back of the book says that “there is so much humanity in this book” and I can give no truer description. I don’t want to talk about the plot, but just how the book was written (and thus, I must give props to the translator - good job!). There is so much feeling, all this emotion in relatively few pages. It’s a very visual and evocative book, one that will stay with me for a long time, that I think captures humanity and emotion in a way that I’ve not read before. It’s raw and ho ...more
Daria Mielcarz
I get that this book is based on a person's very sad life experience but the title belies the content. There is nothing life affirming or uplifting in this book. It is dreary and depressing from cover to cover.
Aug 08, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting story, but poorly written prose. There is hardly punctuation, so it's hard to follow who is saying what.
Mar 18, 2018 rated it liked it
In Every Moment We Are Still Alive by Tom Malmquist is a heartbreaking memoir of love, loss, and grief.

I enjoyed reading this memoir. It is an intimate portrait of Tom’s life as he deals with the loss of his partner in life, Karin, days after the birth of their daughter, Livia. Parts of it were hard to read. It’s always difficult to read the passing of someone so young, especially when it happens so suddenly and dramatically. And to have a newborn infant on top of it is utterly heartbreaking. Li
Peter Landau
People have been dying in my life, people close to me in numbers that I haven’t experienced since my 20s. Each day for the last two or so years, I’ve drawn a picture from the obituary pages of the newspaper. I’m not scared of death like I was as a child, but I’ll admit it’s a bit of an obsession. Why not? It might not be the climax or even denouement but it’s the end, and with an ending the previous events line up into a narrative, neat or not. Plus, there’re a lot of fascinating people who are ...more
Feb 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2018, arcs
Thanks to Melville House for providing me with a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

I’d heard a lot of rave reviews before diving into this book, so I was both nervous and excited. Nervous because sometimes the hype can be too much and I end up underwhelmed by the book, but excited because I was really intrigued by the synopsis. It turned out to be a gem, albeit a heartbreaking gem.

The book starts in the hospital. It jumps right into the chaos and confusion of not knowing wh
Apr 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Moving story, well written. I understand the criticisms that have resulted in the low overall rating for this book. I can agree with the fact that the writing style takes some getting use to, and the story can jump around a bit and leave the reader a little confused. But, none of those things takes away from the power of this story, or the author’s talent and creativity in telling it.
As has been noted by many, this is a work of fiction based on the real-life experience of the author. I had to r
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Tom Malmquist (born 1978) is a Swedish poet and writer, and formerly an ice hockey player.
Malmquist released his first book of poetry, Sudden Death, in 2007. The book was praised by critics as the first sports-oriented book of poetry in Sweden. The book reflects on Malmquist's youth as a hockey player.
His second book of poetry, Fadersmjölken, was released in 2009, and was described by critics as "
“Obviously you don’t have to answer this, but did you doubt your faith when it happened? I ask. The way I usually put it is, prayer is doubt, why else would anyone pray?” 0 likes
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