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An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination: A Memoir (Roughcut) Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 10, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. McCracken tells her own story in this touching and often unexpectedly funny memoir about her life before and after losing her first child in the ninth month of pregnancy. As difficult as it must have been to read aloud, McCrackens delivery is courageous and never self-pitying. McCracken is forthright about the tragedy, telling the listener early on that a baby dies in this book, but that another one is born. McCrackens reading is enthralling and deeply moving, as if she is relating this intimate journey directly to each listener individually from a dark, candle-lit room, in an unforgettable performance. A Little, Brown hardcover (reviewed online). (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Bookmarks Magazine
In Elizabeth McCracken’s heartrending memoir—a love letter to the child she lost and the devoted husband who suffered alongside her—McCracken displays her many talents. Her warmth, candor, crystalline prose, lovely imagery, and attention to detail bring her painful story to life. McCracken’s dark sense of humor ensnares unwitting readers, belying the sadness with which she writes, and she shows very little patience for self-pity and sentimentality. Critics praised her clear-eyed account in a genre replete with syrupy, self-aggrandizing books, though some expressed doubts that its subject matter would have wide appeal. “I’m not ready for my first child to fade into history,” explains McCracken. With this heartbreaking account of his life, there’s little chance of that.
Copyright 2008 Bookmarks Publishing LLC
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"I would have done the whole thing over again even knowing how it would end." - Elizabeth McCracken
Seeing someone else admit the guilt of loss, the search for someone to blame, the dreams lost, the fear when life dwells within once again was both traumatic and comforting. I wept as I remembered my own experiences. And when she offered a comforting perspective, it felt like a warm hug and a gentle reassurance that life does, in fact, go on.
Perhaps my own history got in the way of my appreciation of the prose. In the first few years, I'd toss this book aside, hurt by the memories it stirred up and disgusted that the prose wasn't inviting enough to keep me engaged. But each time I picked it up, the pain was less intense and my appreciation for her story, and the fragmented way in which she tells it grew.
Maybe I'll read it again, cover to cover, in another year, with a better reflection. But for now. Just finishing it seems enough.