Wednesday, July 06, 2016

The Language Of The Dying - Sarah Pinborough

Book Details

Book Title: The Language Of The Dying

Author: Sarah Pinborough

: Jo Fletcher Books 2013

Source: Library

Page Count: 131

Format: Hardback

Genre: ??? 

Audience: Those preparing for a loss or those who take a lot for granted!

Laugh or Cry: Cry...quite a bit...

Buy? Read? Avoid?: Read

Summed up in one word: Finality 

First Impression: Sarah Pinborough is a bit of a mainstay on Always Trust In Books. SP's work ranges from cruel to heartfelt and I have a lot of time for her. I have read Death House and 2 of the 3 Dog Faced God books and I enjoy the writing style, approach and variety that SP brings to every page. This is a book not to be toyed with, as a person who hasn't lost anyone close to them in his life, this scared the hell out of me. I feel for all those who went through the circumstances shared in this book and I certainly do not know how you feel.

Summary Of The Book:

A woman is losing her father. The man who raised her and her siblings. Kept her on the straight and narrow even as his own life was falling apart. The man who loved her and protected her when her mother left suddenly one night. He was not perfect but he means the world to her.

Her father is dying and she has to say a proper goodbye. She surrounds herself with family and tries to put on a brave face. Underneath there is darkness, pain and all the other emotions people try and hide for others while the life they knew ends and a new one begins. 

She learns that there is a language of the dying. It is cruel, clinical and doesn't represent what is really happening. Come and share her story, her pain, grief and her final goodbye and her eventual release.

My Review:

First off I need to say something. I have not lost anyone really close to me. I am 25 and I still have all my family, so I don't know what it like to go through anything that is shared within these pages. Though it is classed as fiction, millions go through this every year and Sarah Pinborough treats the scenario with all the respect it deserves.

This is a story about the end of life. It is a truly emotional account from the daughter of a dying man. The woman shares this tale in the format of updates to her father at his bedside, along with personal thoughts and experiences. There is not much wrong with this book, it is a story that needs to be told. The Language Of The Dying is a swift, haunting and emotional insight to the death of a loved one and the fragility of relationships between family members.

We are taken on a journey by an unknown woman. She lives with her dying father and is sharing in every breath, cough, sickness and painful moment that he goes through. This situation brings her long split up family to her doorstep and reignited their once appreciated bond as family. What the reader gets in this scenario is moments of happiness, moments of sadness. moments of pain, moments of anger and moments of disbelief.

There are many themes present in these insightful pages. Some relevant to those who have lost and definitely some to those who lose in the future. The main theme is that of dying (shown in the form of the father). SP uses this theme to the best of her ability and crafts a story that will make you think about how you act around your family and what you take for granted. The other main theme is family (shown in the form of the daughter). SP takes us through the journey of this girl/lady and all her experiences, of family, of death and of overall loss.

I did have a few issues with this book. I don't like it when authors kill children off to engineer extra depth of emotion to a character. It is only a personal qualm as I am a father. I also know that authors write about these things out of personal experience, so it is really an issue of my experience over actual inclusion of this subject matter. I also thought the animal in the night portion of this book was not explored enough. I know the theory is less is more, but when it is intriguing....more is better! 

At the basis of this book, SP is trying to get us to think...What is it really like to lose everything? No more reading, no more eating, no more breathing, no more existence. We only really know when it happens, but Sarah Pinborough tries her best to at least convey any number of the complicated elements that come with the end. SP does a hauntingly, beautiful and effective job of telling this tale.


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