Customer Reviews for

Mortality

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

38 out of 45 people found this review helpful.

I was ecstatic when I went to the bookstore this morning and saw

I was ecstatic when I went to the bookstore this morning and saw that Barnes and Noble had Mortality all laid out for my arrival, even though the 'official' publication date is tomorrow. I bought it without a second thought and dove right in to the articles chronicling ...
I was ecstatic when I went to the bookstore this morning and saw that Barnes and Noble had Mortality all laid out for my arrival, even though the 'official' publication date is tomorrow. I bought it without a second thought and dove right in to the articles chronicling Hitchens's bout of esophageal cancer, which led to his death last December.

The book is, admittedly, short because of the untimely demise of its brilliant author, but that does not in any way detract from its own brilliance. Hitchens writes with his typical blend of clarity, charm, and, even in the face of death, dry humor. This is different from earlier works of his because of how intensely personal the work becomes as he discusses the ups and the downs of his "year of living dyingly".

As if that wasn't enough, the Foreword by Graydon Carter and the Afterword by Carol Blue (Hitchens's wife at the time of his passing) are both moving and heartwarming pieces of work in and of themselves that show Christopher as seen by those that knew -- and loved -- him best.

If you, like Carter and Blue, loved Hitchens or hated him, supported his stand against organized religion and tyranny the world over or were one of the many who despised him, you owe it to yourself to spend the $15-20 and read this final work. It is, to my mind, one of the greatest swan songs ever created -- even if the composer had to leave before the masterpiece could be completed.

That was always the beauty of Hitchens, though; no matter how much he gave in his writing, his speeches, or what have you, you were always left wanting a little more. It seems almost fitting that, even at the end, all you can do is want a little more.

posted by Austin_Zook on September 4, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

11 out of 65 people found this review helpful.

A life well led, an outlook courageous and admirable, intelligen

A life well led, an outlook courageous and admirable, intelligence of the highest order. Unless he got it wrong about God, in which case CH's life was worse than wasted, his outlook puerile, and his pride in his own intelligence unwarranted in the extreme. To me it's ...
A life well led, an outlook courageous and admirable, intelligence of the highest order. Unless he got it wrong about God, in which case CH's life was worse than wasted, his outlook puerile, and his pride in his own intelligence unwarranted in the extreme. To me it's looking more and more like his views on God were no more intelligent than his views on smoking and drinking.

posted by 11331850 on September 22, 2012

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  • Posted September 4, 2012

    I was ecstatic when I went to the bookstore this morning and saw

    I was ecstatic when I went to the bookstore this morning and saw that Barnes and Noble had Mortality all laid out for my arrival, even though the 'official' publication date is tomorrow. I bought it without a second thought and dove right in to the articles chronicling Hitchens's bout of esophageal cancer, which led to his death last December.

    The book is, admittedly, short because of the untimely demise of its brilliant author, but that does not in any way detract from its own brilliance. Hitchens writes with his typical blend of clarity, charm, and, even in the face of death, dry humor. This is different from earlier works of his because of how intensely personal the work becomes as he discusses the ups and the downs of his "year of living dyingly".

    As if that wasn't enough, the Foreword by Graydon Carter and the Afterword by Carol Blue (Hitchens's wife at the time of his passing) are both moving and heartwarming pieces of work in and of themselves that show Christopher as seen by those that knew -- and loved -- him best.

    If you, like Carter and Blue, loved Hitchens or hated him, supported his stand against organized religion and tyranny the world over or were one of the many who despised him, you owe it to yourself to spend the $15-20 and read this final work. It is, to my mind, one of the greatest swan songs ever created -- even if the composer had to leave before the masterpiece could be completed.

    That was always the beauty of Hitchens, though; no matter how much he gave in his writing, his speeches, or what have you, you were always left wanting a little more. It seems almost fitting that, even at the end, all you can do is want a little more.

    38 out of 45 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2012

    Mortality

    Christopher Hitchens Mortality is a terse text, but one with imense gravity. I have followed the Hitch's work for two years (discovered who he was on my eighteenth birthday) and each time I get done with one of his books, invariably one feels an irritating fuse of envy and admiration at the man's erudition and wit and ability to make a clever joke. Those who have read Hitch-22, God is Not Great, and his introduction to The Portable Athiest, will know precisely what I mean. Learning about Hitch's malady, I pathetically though how unfair--that the one person who could, and did, say to everyone, essentially, "athiests should not feel that they are a freakishly small minority, there are more like them than they think. We have a duty to combat the foes of science, reason, progess, liberalism and equality--foes who are all allied with religion."(My quote). His final work ,Mortality, expands on many of the latter topics with exemplary stoicism. Mortality is a book that should be a prerequisite for all mortally ill persons who want to die disillusioned and with a lucid mind and with dignity. In the few last pages of the book there many jottings that were left undone due to his illness--alas: I can't even begin to ponder what the following words may have been. Mortality is testament that even on his death bed Hitch could write unrivaled. A scribbler to be reckoned with. We will never hear his commanding throat clearing and following voice again; Never again will we see him wield his pen like a katana. But, we do have his written words and the internet which is replete with Hitchslaps. We'll have to make due with them--which are than enough. His admireers will have to continue his work in their own way. And a reminder about the book: it's available at fine bookstores every where.

    16 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2012

    A life well led, an outlook courageous and admirable, intelligen

    A life well led, an outlook courageous and admirable, intelligence of the highest order. Unless he got it wrong about God, in which case CH's life was worse than wasted, his outlook puerile, and his pride in his own intelligence unwarranted in the extreme. To me it's looking more and more like his views on God were no more intelligent than his views on smoking and drinking.

    11 out of 65 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2012

    That's it???

    The free sample is the first 11 pages of the book starting with the title page and is over at the end of the Foreward. Really would have perfered to read some of the first chapter.

    10 out of 38 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2012

    Brilliant mind

    Inspiring and sad. An honest look into the hitch's fin season of pain and fear. He had so much more to give, damn it

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 5, 2012

    Highly Recommended... Made me cry at the loss of a great man

    What a great loss to Humanity, when Christopher Hitchens died last year. He wrote this book from his hospital bed, knowing the end was near. As usual when reading his books, I felt as though he was talking directly to me. 'MORTALITY' was the very first book that I bought on my new NOOK..... In fact it was the driving force behind the purchase of my NOOK. As always, and as with all of Christopher's books.... Mortality leaves a lasting impression

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    Highly recommend!

    This book, written for the most part by Christopher Hitchens while he was dying from cancer is a very recommended book. He holds nothing back, so this book is not for the faint of heart. Whether you were a fan of his or not, you can find something to admire in the way he describes his struggles, and you'll find yourself rooting for him to recover, get well, and give us all hell again.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2012

    Amazing points delivered right to the end

    A quick and insightful glimpse into the final days of a great journalist and debater. His voice and his pen will be missed, I am just glad he left behind a wonderful collection of his thoughts and his stories behind for us to enjoy till we reach our ends.

    It is everything you would expect from Hitch; a no holds barred account of slowly dying from cancer. Very poignant insight into life during cancer treatment and all the raw painful experiences to be found in "Tumorville".

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    Worthwhile!

    Hitchens at his best and last. True to his self right up until the bitter end. I thought his courage and insight into his terminal condition was admirable. He remained steadfast in his beliefs and while he did write the book when he was dying, it wasn't a sad book. I enjoyed it very much and would recommend the book to anyone who is a fan of "Hitch".

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    So So

    I think the author spent alot of time coming up with words to show off his skills instead of trying to communicate.

    3 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 12, 2012

    Yes -But

    What was written was insightful and meaningful but it really wasn't a true book. It was brief and I wish his wife or those close to him elaborated more...esp. info about his relationship with his children.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 12, 2012

    VERY INTERESTING!

    A great review of Hitchens fight with cancer and with pending death. Very good insight into how he spent his last days, knowing in his mind, that they actually were his last days.
    He had quite a responsibility to bravely face death while knowing it was the end.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 20, 2013

    I have to admit that I had never heard of Christopher Hitchens b

    I have to admit that I had never heard of Christopher Hitchens before, but the title of the book and some of the views made me want to read it. I have to say I have read it three times and the third time I was able to fully appreciate it. He wanted to live up to the end and was extraordinarily brave to let the world know of the pain and indignity of the "Big C". He kept his wonderful sense of humor and intelligence right up to the end. I loved the poetry that he mixed in with his prose. What a wonderful time his family must have had at those all night parties with all those intellectual thinkers. My sympathy goes out to his wife and children as his presence would be irreplaceable. This book is a "keeper" and I will probably be reading it for the fourth time again soon.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2013

    You Hear His Voice And You Want More...

    The shortness of the "book" is of course because of his death. At times this was difficult emotionally to read since my wife has succesfully gone through "battling" early stage breast cancer twice over past four years and presently her septuagenarian mother is "battling" an unusual form of esophageal cancer so the writing hits close to home. At one point shortly into it I was not sure I wanted to read any more. I'm glad that I did and if you are an admirer of Hitchens you should read it, but like me you may likely find yourself wistfully wanting more.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2013

    Hey

    guys in books are better;)

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  • Posted November 25, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    In a scene from my all time favourite film, Woody Allen¿s Manhat

    In a scene from my all time favourite film, Woody Allen’s Manhattan, Woody starts to recount those things that make life worth living. I have played this game with friends many times over the years. My list of things that make life worth living is; (family and friends are a given), Woody Allen of course, the film Manhattan, Virginia Woolf’s ‘Mrs Dalloway, Salvador Dali’s ‘Christ of St John on the Cross’, Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex, Monty Python’s ‘Life of Brian’, Morecambe and Wise, Peacock Butterflies, David Hockney’s ‘A Bigger Splash’, Hitchcock’s ‘Rear Window’, The Edinburgh Book Festival, David Sylvian, Philip Glass etc. Over the years there have been a few additions. Christopher Hitchens became one of those additions. 
    I have been putting off the reading of Mortality for sometime knowing full well the subject matter contained within its pages; not only the last words of a superlative orator and writer but details of his horrendous illness, oesophageal cancer. My cowardice probably also stems from the knowledge that I am less than ten years away from the age that Christopher Hitchens died, 62. 
    As to be expected the writing is not self-piteous, there is no element of self-aggrandizement in any of its 106 pages. Mr Hitchens style of writing makes one want to go around pulping every pencil, drain every pen and smash ones keyboard knowing that you will probably never write as well as he did. However, I am sure Christopher Hitchens would want you to buy new pencils, refill those pens and repair that keyboard and attempt to equal or better his writing. 
    In ‘Mortality’, as to be expected, religion rears its ugly head in the form of monotheists letting Mr Hitchens know that he deserves to die, that God has struck him down in vengeance. Christopher Hitchens in his usual pithy and direct manner surmised that God was rather mundane and routine in his vengeance to give him oesophageal cancer which was highly likely to occur anyway due to his heavy smoking.
    My honorific review can never fully convey the extent of how wonderful the book is without falling into the quicksand of cliché. So, I will simply end this review with a direct and succinct command: READ THIS BOOK!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2013

    Excellent

    ?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2013

    Not one off my favorites

    I did not find this book interesting. Found myself wanting to skip over pages. I would not recommend this book to anyone.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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