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Publisher's Summary

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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Even in the end Christopher didn't dissapont!!!

Where does Mortality rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

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.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Mortality?

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.

What does Simon Prebble bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

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.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

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.

Any additional comments?

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.

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  • Patrick
  • Denver, CO, United States
  • 12-18-12

Hitch goes out with a bang.

Any additional comments?

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.

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  • Mambie
  • San Fernando, CA, United States
  • 12-18-12

Hitchens lives on.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

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.

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  • Gerald
  • Allegany, NY, United States
  • 12-17-12

Hitchins is a great thinker and writer

Would you try another book from Christopher Hitchens and/or Simon Prebble?

Yes

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

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.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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If you are a fan of Hitch's speech, don't buy this

Would you listen to Mortality again? Why?

god no! The narrator is painful to hear. He has a British accent, but that is where the similarities between Hitch and Prebble end. I assume that the narrator is familiar with Hitch's awesome spoken eloquence; I certainly am. It is because of my familiarity with Christopher's cadence and feeling. That feeling is present in the text, and in my head when I read his text to myself, I had fully expected this narrator to make an attempt towards recreating it. Sadly, he did not. The narrator raced through the text until the text eventually lost all meaning and feeling. Rarely has there been such a poignant written work been so egregiously reduced by the act of being read out load.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Mortality?

When Prebble stopped speaking.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

He robbed the work of its emotion and eloquence by reading so quickly that the word ran ceaselessly in one ear and out the other.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes. It made me sad that this work was so badly performed. I Wish I had just read the hard copy version of the book.

Any additional comments?

No.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Joe
  • DENVER, CO, United States
  • 09-12-12

Don't let this be your first Hitchens book

Would you try another book from Christopher Hitchens and/or Simon Prebble?

I suppose I would listen to a different Hitchens book, but this was my first. I don't know anything about him, and I don't think this was the place to start

What do you think your next listen will be?

I'm going back to Thomas Sowell books

What does Simon Prebble bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Simon is good, I like the way he narrated the book.

What else would you have wanted to know about Christopher Hitchens’s life?

I would have prefered to know of his political beliefs, stories of his life, not death, and I don't care that he was an athiest. When I say I don't care that he was an athiest, I mean I literally don't care or want to hear about it.

Any additional comments?

I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone unless they were a serious Hitchens fan.

6 of 23 people found this review helpful