The Glen Rock Book of the Dead

The Glen Rock Book of the Dead

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by Marion Winik
     
 

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In her author’s note, Marion Winik writes that in Mexico on the Day of the Dead, “people build altars to their loved ones . . . they go to the cemetery and stay all night, praying, singing, drinking, wailing. They tell the sad stories and the noble ones; they eat cookies shaped like skeletons. They celebrate and mourn at once.” Striking that

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Overview

In her author’s note, Marion Winik writes that in Mexico on the Day of the Dead, “people build altars to their loved ones . . . they go to the cemetery and stay all night, praying, singing, drinking, wailing. They tell the sad stories and the noble ones; they eat cookies shaped like skeletons. They celebrate and mourn at once.” Striking that balance, The Glen Rock Book of the Dead presents snapshot portraits of The Jeweler, The Driving Instructor, The Bad Influence, The Queen of New Jersey—and roughly fifty others who have touched Winik’s life, from her son’s second grade teacher to Keith Haring. Tied together by the inimitable, poignant voice of Winik, these losses form not only an autobiography but a story of our time, delivering a lyrical journey that ultimately raises the spirits.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Taking a cue from the Mexican Day of the Dead, on which they build altars to deceased loved ones, "tell the sad stories and the noble ones... celebrate and mourn at once," author and NPR personality Winik (Rules for the Unruly) chronicles her life through glimpses of the late members of her adopted Pennsylvania home, Glen Rock, who have influenced her over the years. Most are friends of friends and the like; a few others are artists and authors. An eye doctor who passed away when she was a child, for example, had been a friend of the family, a former classmate of her father, and among the first deaths that touched Winik personally. She talks of neighbors who committed suicide, men who died of drug overdoses and women who battled cancer; she writes also of "The Art Star," Keith Haring, whose "adorable symbology-the crawling baby, the barking dog, the blowjobs and dolphins... made perfect sense to me the moment I saw it." ("I must have taken the same acid he did at a Grateful Dead concert when we were fifteen.") Winik treats her subjects with grace, sensitivity and a great deal of her own personality, bringing to brief life the known and unknown, giving each a fitting tribute and the town itself a winning pageant.
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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781582434315
Publisher:
Counterpoint Press
Publication date:
11/01/2008
Pages:
96
Sales rank:
1,405,109
Product dimensions:
4.70(w) x 7.40(h) x 0.60(d)

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