Just read this brief but moving book about the last 19 months of Christopher Hitchen’s life. And what an amazing writer he was!
Even faced with inoperable esophageal cancer at age 61, Christopher’s wit, unique sense of humor and phenomenal writing abilities show through! This is also a beautifully made little book, created by 12 Publishing, who take great pride in only publishing twelve singular books per year, “by authors who have a unique perspective and compelling authority.”
Most disturbing to Christopher was the point at which he could no longer speak, and then eventually write very much because of numbness from painkillers. I could really relate to his statement at this point in his cancer treatment:
“Without the ability to write, I feel sure in advance, my ‘will to live’ would be hugely attenuated. I often grandly say that writing is not just my living and my livelihood but my very life, and it’s true…I feel my personality and identity dissolving as I contemplate dead hands and the loss of the transmission belts that connect me to writing and thinking.” (pg. 71)
In the last chapter of this book, Christopher’s wife Carol Blue describes her own experience of watching her best friend succumb to cancer. She said he never believed he would die of this illness. To his last days he believed he would go on to write much more.
Rest in peace Christopher.