The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying [ebook free] by Nina Riggs (epub/mobi)

An Amazon Best Book of June 2017: The poet Nina Riggs was 38 years old and living with her young family in Greensboro, North Carolina when doctors discovered a small spot of cancer in her breast. What at first seemed easily treatable turned out not to be, and she found herself in what Montaigne – the writer she turns to for wisdom — called “suspicious country”: a place where death might be just around the corner. In The Bright Hour, the book Riggs wrote during her ultimately terminal illness, she maps that country, determined to see what is lovely in the landscape: her sweet, expressive little boys, her husband, who is honest and funny whenever possible, and her circle of family and friends, some of whom are also going through treatment for cancer. Riggs’s great-great-great grandfather was the poet-philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson (referred to here as RWE for short) and Riggs herself displays a formidable gift for language and a light but honest touch with the often — but not always — dark emotions evoked by her situation. To call a book so lovely and sad this year’s When Breath Becomes Air, would not be inaccurate, but would not do it justice. –Sarah Harrison Smith, The Amazon Book Review

“Poet Nina Riggs was only 37, the mother of two young sons, when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Within a year she had lost her mother to multiple myeloma—and learned her own cancer was terminal as well. Riggs died last February, leaving behind this deeply affecting memoir, a simultaneously heartbreaking and funny account of living with loss and the specter of death. As she lyrically, unflinchingly details her reality, she finds beauty and truth that comfort even amid the crushing sadness.”
People (Book of the Week)

“Profound and poignant…superb…I put down The Bright Hour a slightly different, and better, person – unbearably sad and also feeling, as Riggs did, ‘the hug of the world.'”
—Kelly Corrigan, O Magazine

“You can read a multitude books about how to die, but Riggs, a dying woman, will show you how to live.”
New York Times Book Review (Editor’s Choice)

“A vivid, immediate dispatch from the front lines of mortality and a record of a life by someone who wasn’t done living yet. But there is nothing maudlin about it…her warm portraits of each of [the members of her closest circle] are a large part of the book’s emotional power. So is something we don’t notice fully until it’s gone: the strength and clarity of Riggs’s voice, which never faded on the page, and which we won’t get to hear again.”
—Boston Globe

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