Monday, October 8, 2012

The End of Your Life Book Club

5 out of 5

 It was a pleasure to meet Mary Ann Schwalbe even if was for a very short time at the end of her life.    I would have loved to have known her during the rest of her life.   She had a beautiful spirit and outlook on humanity.   There are a lot of lessons to take away from this wonderful memoir, The End of Your Life Book Club.   Will Schwalbe has bared his heart and love for his mother, and her life.     He has also shared with us the love of books that she instilled in her children and others around her.  

Maybe I loved this book because the values that she carried and passed on to her children were much the same as ones that we learned as kids from my parents.   Or maybe it was her simple unadorned love of books and the need she had to share her opinion, or passion of the topic with others.   Whatever the pull was, I completely fell into this story, the discussion of some books that I have loved as well, and a recommendation of some that I will now have to read as a result of her enthusiasm for the story.

 Will’s love for his Mom comes out over and over again.   He admired not only how she had lived her life and the service she gave to refugees, students, women and children around the world, but he was a witness to how she was choosing to live the end of her life and loved her even more for that.

 Mary Ann gives out a lot of advice for anyone who will come in contact with a loved one or friend who is dealing with a terminal illness.      I am so glad that I was given the opportunity to read this book early, and that I will be able to share it with my friends.   Some may want to compare this book with other memoirs about death and the loss of an immediate family member; however, I believe this memoir is about life.

 Thank you, Will Schwalbe for giving us this extraordinarily personal gift.

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