Tina Jordan
February 09, 2011 AT 05:00 AM EST

A Widow's Story

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Joyce Carol Oates
publisher
Ecco Press
genre
Memoir, Nonfiction

We gave it an A

In a narrative as searing as the best of her fiction, Oates describes the aftermath of her husband Ray’s unexpected death from pneumonia. Scattershot moments stand out — the day she cancels their 30-year subscription to The New York Times, unable to bear the sight of his favorite paper; her fury at the tulips, harbingers of spring, pushing through the snow (“Too soon! This is too soon!”); the night she weans herself from Lorazepam. A Widow’s Story is the painful, scorchingly angry journey of a woman struggling to live in a house “from which meaning has departed, like air leaking from a balloon.” A

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