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Two Weeks of Life: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Politics Paperback – Bargain Price, February 23, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
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.
"As someone who has cared for a dying spouse, I found Eleanor Clift's story of her last days with her beloved Tom moving and enriching--and her account of poor Terri Schiavo's demise, perfectly horrifying. This book will enlighten all who read it--hopefully including our national leaders--about the difference between 'good death' and 'bad death.'"
Top Customer Reviews
At the same time she is recording in precise and difficult detail the last two weeks of Tom's life lived peacefully in the living room of their home with the help of hospice, she tells of another story of life and death taking place in Florida--that of Terri Schiavo. Terri Schiavo's story dominated the news as her husband and parents debated the decision of continuing to sustain Terri's life. The governor and courts of Florida became involved, and then the dispute was taken to congress and the president. While Clift was caring for Tom every night, she was involved as a journalist and commentator covering the Schiavo controversy. Her husband, also a journalist, had insisted early on that Clift continue her professional commitments. She did.
Now she has taken these two simultaneous events and combined them into an account that is both an intense personal memoir and a clear analysis of the hard decisions that face families when a loved one's life is ending. She gives her story clearly while she weaves in the Schiavo story in even-handed reporting. "I'm a journalist by training and instinct.Read more ›
She details the difficult but compassionate decision many people have to make.
At the very least, anyone reading this book will surely react by wanting to have living wills and medical powers of attorney in proper legal order.
Clift charts broad waters as she seeks and succeeds to give an overview of the times and how her own emotions were caught up with Tom. She tells of how hospice was looked upon in such craven ways as measured by the religious right's stepping over almost every conceivable boundary to "save Terri". Her accounts of Mary Labyak and the endurance tests she had to face as administrative head of Florida Suncoast hospice are chilling. Clift begins with an assertion that "this is not a political book, or at least it shouldn't have been", but knowing enough about the author one can only imagine it doesn't take her long to roll up her sleeves and opine...and she does so with gusto. On the Schiavo side we revisit the Congressional "call to action" with Governor Jeb Bush and President George Bush lamely trying to intervene...certainly a stain on the reputations of the entire Republican leadership. But she notes the Democrats were almost universally nowhere to be found, ending up with the whole operation as a bungled mess, at least politically. But Clift really shines as she relates her visits to Art Buchwald in hospice and the support she received from friends and colleagues on the McLaughlin program.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Mixed emotions. Not the Tom Brazaitis I knew so very well in college, decades before the author knew him. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Billie-Boy
I found Eleanor's book to be a very emotional and poignant story. She points out the struggles we have as a society and individually of dealing with end-of-life issues and... Read morePublished on March 20, 2014 by PDM
This book was horrendous on many levels. Most shocking was the heartless and callous manner in which the author treated a dying husband. Read morePublished on January 29, 2011 by havana
Her husband was ill and dying around the same time as the Terry Schiavo media circus. As a grieving wife, she has an interesting perspecitive on the political and social... Read morePublished on November 22, 2008 by A. Murphy
Eleanor Clift weaves personal revelations, interesting sidebars and her keen political insight from beginning to end in this engrossing memoir--it is a valuable tool for anyone... Read morePublished on May 10, 2008 by Bobbie Brinegar
Eleanor Clift has written a very thought-provoking book about her husband's death from cancer and its contrast with the very public controversy about Terri Schiavo's life and death... Read morePublished on May 10, 2008 by Suzanne H. Rodgers
I wanted very much to like this book, and I did--but only somewhat.
The Terri Schiavo material began to seem like filler to me and made me lose interest in the rest of... Read more