The year of magical thinking by Joan Didion

PUBLISHED: 10:26 30 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:17 06 May 2010

THIS is an incredibly brave and unique book. In January, 2004, Didion s partner of 40 years, her husband John Dunne, died suddenly of a heart attack. At the same time, their only daughter Quintana was laying desperately ill in hospital. The Year of Magic

THIS is an incredibly brave and unique book.

In January, 2004, Didion's partner of 40 years, her husband John Dunne, died suddenly of a heart attack.

At the same time, their only daughter Quintana was laying desperately ill in hospital.

The Year of Magical Thinking is, as Didion herself says, her "attempt to make sense" of the period following John's death.

As such it is part memoir, part scientific analysis of John's death and Quintana's illness, part poetic working through of the most profound grief.

Sometimes it is almost painstakingly detailed and analytic, at others it is literary and passionate.

At all times it is frank and poignant, absorbing and worth reading. 4/5

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