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Suddenly Sixty And Other Shocks Of Later Life Hardcover – October 4, 2000


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st edition (October 4, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 068486763X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684867632
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 6.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,936 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Judith Viorst was born and brought up in New Jersey, graduated from Rutgers University, moved to Greenwich Village, and has lived in Washington, DC, since 1960, when she married Milton Viorst, a political writer. They have three sons and seven grandchildren. Viorst writes in many different areas: science books, children’s picture books, adult fiction and nonfiction, poetry for children and adults, and musicals, which are still performed on stages around the country. She is best known for her beloved picture book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

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More About the Author

Judith Viorst has written many books for children, including the classics Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and its sequels, and If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Stories. She is also the author of Just in Case, illustrated by Diana Cain Bluthenthal. She lives with her husband, Milton, in Washington D.C.

Customer Reviews

I think every child should read, or be read, the first Alexander book.
Karen Dyer
Judith Viorst writes wonderful short happenings for a person having a milestone birthday.
Janis Sheftel
I enjoyed it as a gift and am giving it to other friends for birthday gifts.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

104 of 107 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Ms. Viorst has become more outspoken in these poems than in her earlier "decade" works. I think you'll like the change. "It still will be impossible to persuade my husband when lost to stop the goddamn car, and ask for directions." Concerning her husband's retirement, "And guess who's the hobby he chose?" In talking about her children and grandchildren, she exults that her grandchild prefers her for cuddling to her son. You'll never quite think about life the same way after you read "1963 -- Niagara, 1999 -- Viagra."
On the other hand, she's hanging in there as a woman. "I've painted blue nail polish on my toes . . . ." "I will still buy bikini underwear." "I don't intend to stop showing a little cleavage." Yet, ". . . it's hard to be frisky over sixty." "L's for libido -- what's happened to sex?"
There are also the inevitable losses. "How am I going to walk in this world without talking to my friend about eyeliner and the meaning of the universe?" She has some very strong feelings about the bad things that should happen to the man who leaves his wife of 42 years for a younger woman.
One of the best sequences comes in a series of poems on the subject of "A Brief History of Marriage" that begins with "a life lived -- at least for a while -- in paradise." In "To Be Continued" we learn that ". . . sometimes we still get a glimpse of paradise."
My favorite poem on aging was "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep." The poem is a long list of all the things that can and usually do disturb slumber. If none of these occur, she says, "I might -- I just actually might -- do a little sleeping.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By happy reader VINE VOICE on September 25, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you're 60 or over.....you'll be able to relate to practically every poem in this book. A great birthday present for your friends celebrating any of the "60" birthdays.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Jacqueline Brice-Finch on July 18, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Judith Viorst deals with aging gracefully in her truth-giving poems about Suddenly Sixty and Other Shocks of Later Life. Being of a certain age in American society brings a certain angst tempered by the wisdom of experience-if we are lucky and thoughtful. Almost every poem elicits laughter as she ruminates on a variety of topics, including men's inability to ask for directions, the difficulty in apologizing, the family vacation, retirement, or the revenge for the woman dumped.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By J. Carroll on August 25, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
She's done it again! Anyone 60+ will recognize herself in Judith's spectacular verses. To get the full flavor of these poems, you have to read them out loud with all the proper inflections. I never laughed so hard or cried so much over a book as I did with this one. She hits the nail on the head when she describes life after 60!!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Anje on November 29, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I just ordered this book and am sorry I did. Where is the Judith Viorst of the 70's, when my children were young and loved her work? I expected this to be a light-hearted and original look at being "the age we are now," but instead, I found a woman sour -- especially with marriage -- and to a degree with life and grown children. I would not recommend it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mom of Sons VINE VOICE on December 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This slim volume of prosaic poems (they are barely poems, more like very graceful essays) on encroaching senior-hood is really enjoyable. And comfortable, and comforting to read, much in the same way the classic "Golden Girls" TV show is, in a "you're not alone in this aging business, all us women are going through the same things!" way. I especially loved the "New Alphabet," which includes things like "O is for osteo, P's for porosis," and the poem about the two lovers who can't take their eyes off each other -- and it turns out the "man" is her four-year-old grandson. Thanks to Judith for reaching through the LA-nip/tuck-gym hardbody BS in this world, and telling it like it is.
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Format: Hardcover
I have not yet hit the landmark sixtieth birthday, but I am closing on it rather fast. It is clear to me that the best way to approach that fateful day is to laugh about it and one of the best ways to accomplish that is to read this book. In general, it pokes good clean fun at aging, although there is an occasional bitter tone when describing some of the more unpleasant aspects of life. Independent of your age, life is what we make of it and Viorst makes fun of what we all will hopefully face someday, the arrival of the sixtieth birthday. After all, the alternative really isn't a great deal of fun to contemplate
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Donna M. Prentiss on October 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Was a birthday gift for a friend turning sixty. Judith Viorst came through again as she always has with all the children's books I've read to my class. She has a great sense of humor! This gift will, hopefully, be reread and enjoyed over and over.
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