On June 8, 2010, while on a book tour for his best-selling memoir, Hitch-22, Christopher Hitchens was stricken in his New York hotel room with excruciating pain in his chest and thorax. As he would later write in the first of a series of award-winning columns for Vanity Fair, he suddenly found himself being deported "from the country of the well across the stark frontier that marks off the land of malady." Over the next 18 months, until his death in Houston on December 15, 2011, he wrote constantly and brilliantly on politics and culture, astonishing readers with his capacity for superior work even in extremis.
Throughout the course of his ordeal battling esophageal cancer, Hitchens adamantly and bravely refused the solace of religion, preferring to confront death with both eyes open. In this riveting account of his affliction, Hitchens poignantly describes the torments of illness, discusses its taboos, and explores how disease transforms experience and changes our relationship to the world around us. By turns personal and philosophical, Hitchens embraces the full panoply of human emotions as cancer invades his body and compels him to grapple with the enigma of death.
Mortality is the exemplary story of one man's refusal to cower in the face of the unknown, as well as a searching look at the human predicament. Crisp and vivid, veined throughout with penetrating intelligence, Hitchens's testament is a courageous and lucid work of literature, an affirmation of the dignity and worth of man.
©2012 Christopher Hitchens (P)2012 Hachette Audio
These short essays left me with a strong sense of the despair, misery and hope for survival that (I suppose) all humans go through when they know their life is threatened. To me, this was a naked reminder that ideas, philosophies, brains, money, everything, stops in their tracks when the animal called human is facing death.
Be prepared to get depressed - at least i was, a lot. Maybe religion does have a serious purpose - to allow us to hope that this miserable end has a purpose, and that it's not the end.
Thank God for a mother who read to me all the time. If it were not for her I would not leave the house without an iPod.
Even though this book is not read by Hitch you can still here his voice in every word. His stories are/were always entertaining, very funny, educational and filled with his amazement of his life. As he said in his interview with Charlie Rose "I am leaving the party earlier than I though I would, much earlier. I also highly recommend Hitch 22. It is read by Hitch and you will listen over and over.
Just a small town boy, trying to make it in the big city.
No, this is my first.
:-))) Don't think that applies to this one.
Good, not great.
I love anything that Christopher Hitchens writes so this was a special book for me because I knew that it was his last. And in true Hitch fashion he was honest and candid right to the end.
I love when he talks about how there needs to be a cancer school to teach people what to say to those that have cancer... And I loved what his wife Carol Blue had to say at the end of the book about him.
I can't say that he brings anything one way or another... nothing against him but when you are used to hearing/listening to Christopher for so many years you just expect to hear his voice.
Yes, on one hand I didn't want to put it down and on the other I didn't want it to end because I knew it was the last he would write.
If you are a Christopher Hitchens fan then you will appreciate this book. It shows a side of him that most of us never got to see. RIP Christopher... You are missed.
If you've enjoyed anything written by Christopher Hitchens, you must listen to this last hurrah. He faces death with reality, and anger, and fights to the end, but and leaves the reader with a sense of loss. This is as it should be. Hitch was a great contributor to our society, and we should have a sense of loss at the end.
This collections of essays is a must for anyone interested in Hitchens. His humanity is on full display as he shares his thoughts, wishes, and fears during his last days.
I was intrigued by what Hitch might have to say on Mortality specifically, but this was more of a collection of essays on his struggles with treatment rather than a cohesive thesis on mortality itself.
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