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Famous Last Words, Fond Farewells, Deathbed Diatribes, and Exclamations Upon Expiration Hardcover – September 5, 2003

24 customer reviews

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Famous Last Words, Fond Farewells, Deathbed Diatribes, and Exclamations Upon Expiration + Last Words of Notable People: Final Words of More than 3500 Noteworthy People Throughout History + Last Words of Saints and Sinners
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ray Robinson is a former magazine editor, journalist, and author of many books, including Iron Horse: Lou Gehrig and His Times; and Yankee Stadium: 75 Years of Drama, Glamour, and Glory. He lives in New York City with his wife, Phyllis, and his Norwich Terrier, Penelope
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 and up
  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Workman Publishing Company; 1St Edition edition (September 5, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761126090
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761126096
  • Product Dimensions: 3.8 x 0.7 x 6.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #452,583 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Atomicwasteland VINE VOICE on January 9, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a great book; It is manufactured well, and is a fascinating read. I think it makes a great gift for those with an interest in History, because it is probably something that they don't have!

I leave the book on my bookshelf in my office (with the cover facing up) and people are always coming over and paging through it. It makes a great conversation piece.

It is bound nicely, with a faux leather end piece, and a solid and "weathered looking" cover piece. It would not look out of place in any nice library.

I opened it in a bookstore as a joke, but was quickly drawn in to the characters and quotes within.

Some examples of those listed:

Douglas Fairbanks

Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson

Thomas Edison

Sir Walter Raleigh

John Wilkes Booth

P.T. Barnum

Sigmund Freud

Karl Marx

Pablo Picasso

James Madison

Malcolm X

It does not just consist of quotes. Typically there is a quote and then a paragraph to a page description putting the quote in context. This makes it a lot more interesting.

One note: not all the quotes are "deathbed" quotes. Some examples, like that of Lou Gehrig, and Douglas McArthur are the last public speech they ever gave, often alluding to their impending exit on the world stage.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Julie Jordan Scott on December 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
When I first held this tiny book in my hand I thought, "Yeah, so?" and then I started to read. Author Ray Robinson has collected these "last words" and contents he can't be absolutely sure these were exactly the last words AND the words - all of them - have a lesson within them.

It is fair to say these last words could even prove to be life changing for readers. It made me think "What do I want to say in my final moments?"

Some of my favorites include Seattle Slew's last words, Yes, apparently the race horse spoke to his trainer, Mickey Taylor... saying "You get on with your life. I've got to go." I believe it. My dogs and cat speak to me... so who am I to wonder about Seattle Slew's words?

George Bernard Shaw spoke some very dramatic words as he met his demise, not surprising being the dramatist that he was in life. I was touched by the calming words spoken to loved ones, the profound like that from Thomas Alva Edison and the requests made such as the one by Edgar Degas.

I don't want to give their words away - you will find many more treasures if you hold this gem in your hand and thumb through it yourself.

The mini - biographies under the final words are enlightening and enjoyable as well.

This simple book.... Are the words all true? Perhaps. Are they intriguing? Yes. Are they life changing? Hopefully. Enjoy!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By lifemom on January 7, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A perfect little book to read cover to cover and then keep handy to pick up again. I thought it would be one to sit and read a page at a time slowly, for entertainment. It is so intriguing though that I found myself wanting to read the next and the next page until I was to the end. It's not a long philosophical book, rather a fun little book of quotes that induces thought/interest/smiles/curiosity. It was so interesting to contemplate the words famous and not so famous people used in their last moments, the irony, the uniqueness, the unlikely. A wonderful addition to any library and a sure to please gift.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By from maine on September 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not worth the $ - odd mix and the unneeded political commentary was annoying - e.g., with the Vincent Foster quote - "His death was ruled a suicide, although some right-wing groups charged that the Clintons had him killed and then covered up the murder." Or about Charlie Chaplin, "He had less control elsewhere; disgusted in the 1950s by right-wing attempts to paint him as a communist, he eventually settled in Switzerland." Or after a quote from George Gipp: "(Ronald Reagan, who also had a gift for the apocryphal...)" Or after Voltaire:"...was asked in he would finally recognize the divinity of Jesus Christ. Voltaire, who spent his life fighting ignorance and violence, ..." Give me a break from liberal interpretations of history, people. Just the facts, mam.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It's always interesting to read what a notable person may remark about a certain type of event - this time about death, and in this book deserve to be read. These comments are enlightening, poetic, and real and while they may not reveal anything more than we we know, at least, we know that everybody thinks about this perplexing, and sometimes deafening thought.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book is witty, and fun to read. I enjoy going to cemeteries, and reading stones, so this was right up my ally. It's a perfect book to leave out, and skim through if you're waiting to go out, or for company to glance at.
My favorite quote, (which I might "borrow" for my grave stone read "I should have drank more champagne."
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Daughter bought this book during a field trip to the Freedom Trail in Boston but she left it on the bus and another student stole it before she realized her mistake. She was so upset that I had to buy it for her again :-( Filled with lots of great quotes, she enjoyed reading it and quotes from it often.
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