Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Format: Hardcover
I teach Memoir Writing to local seniors and I routinely use this book as an example of outstanding biography. It's one thing to write a 250 word bio but quite another, and much more demanding, to pen a few-hundred-word last goodbye to someone and do it with panache. The NY Times has three books of obituaries, this is the most recent. The quality of the writing is, in many cases, superior to anything in the rest of the newspaper(all the obits here were published in the Times). I especially like the reviews of Robert McG Thomas, who died within the past year at age 60. His obituaries deserved a Pulitzer. His obits are worth the price of the book. Everybody deserves a last word. These obits are not just about famous people but about average joes and janes who have been extraordinary human beings. I'd even recommend this book for spiritual reading because the lives here are inspirational. I teach writing and am always on the lookout for examples of prose that will knock my socks off. This is one helluva book.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
Rather than an ode to death, this book cherishes lives onced lived by all kinds of people. Whether brilliant or simple, rich or poor, actions great or discreet, each of the people written about contributed to society in a meaningful (and often surprising) way. Equally outstanding are the authors of these obituaries, whose writing talents manage to entertain, educate and move the reader deeply without being maudlin. Even more importantly, this book forces us to examine our own lives: what will people say about us when we've faced our Maker? For those of us who come up pitifully short, this book inspires even the common man to contribute to society, and strive for -- and hopefully, attain -- spiritual immortality.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon November 6, 2002
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
You wouldn't think a book of obituaries would be entertaining, but it is when the obits are well-written and celebrate the lives and characters of the 100+ people found in this collection. The subjects are most often unknown to the majority of us, but the various authors (including well-known NYT obituary author Robert McG. Thomas, Jr.) humanize each subject and inspire you to contemplate your own life. Most essays are a couple of pages long, and there is an introduction by Russell Baker.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 24, 1998
Format: Hardcover
A delightful collection of lives which I read cover to cover in one sitting. Offers a fascinating glimpse of la comedie humaine--often witty, sometimes sad, always remarkable.
I was turned onto this book when it was selected for the Book-of-the-Month Club--I cannot recommend it enough to anyone interested in the lives of others. A great gift.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on July 1, 1999
Format: Paperback
In our celebrity-obsessed culture, in which bland, no-talent know-nothing windbags like "Dharma and Greg's" Jenna Elfman are considered national treasures and given lengthy pseudo-important profiles in glossy magazines, it is refreshing to read about lives that actually have meaning; about people who commit their lives to doing interesting things for others and for themselves; people whose lives take amazing twists of fate, people who find themselves in extraordinary circumstances and react in ways that no one could predict. The genius of this book is that it covers not the obvious obits of international icons like, say, John Lennon or Richard Nixon, but people whom you may have never heard of, such as the inventor of kiddy litter or the great bluesman Willie Dixon. And they are written not as morbid reflections on death, but as the book's subtitle says "celebrations of life." The Last Word also holds the important distinction of being the greatest bathroom book I have ever read. Why not put it in your own john?
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on November 28, 2011
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I ordered this book, as something I could read at the pool, on a recent trip to Florida. I wasn't expecting much, but it sounded interesting. I have to say it was one of the most enjoyable books of the year for me, and I read alot. It was so life affirming. I just hope the Times puts out a sequel.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on May 1, 2013
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Very interesting stories on fascinating people. Some nights I keep saying to myself, "just one more," and before I know it I've read about several more people.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on October 1, 2014
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Very interesting. Great Bathroom book
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on December 9, 2014
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
THANK YOU!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on October 29, 2014
Format: Hardcover
on time
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.