Customer Review

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There are no words., 9 Dec 2013
This review is from: The Language of Dying (Hardcover)
So I was lucky enough to attend the launch for "The Language of Dying" the other evening (where I purchased my copy of the book) I met a lot of lovely people, including Sarah herself, who is just as wonderfully lovely and funny in real life as she is on social media. After a highly entertaining evening, I started reading the novella on the train home - then read on into the early hours, now I find myself with a Mission Impossible..HOW do I put into words the sheer emotion and heart that is in every part of this story - or how it made me feel. Don't worry - this post will not self destruct, however I have had to take the weekend to try and make some sense of what I want to say.

There are probably two parts to this review. The personal and the professional if you like. Lets start with the personal because really, thats how I read. Every book gives me something - whether it be fantasy or crime or science fiction. Whether its a bit of time in another world, or a heart stopping rollercoaster thrill ride, every book I read adds a piece to book left behind. Then occasionally,VERY occasionally, one comes along that touches my heart and soul in a way that is almost indescribable. Those books are few and far between and "The Language of Dying" is one of them.

At the launch, Sarah told us some of the background to her story - I knew at that point that this book was probably going to open up some old wounds, my experiences being strangely similar except, of course, very different in the way that loss is different for everyone. Still, as I read I was transported back to a time in my life that still often haunts me in those darker hours.

When I was a teenager I lost my Father - who at the time was the one person in my life who I felt really understood me. It wasnt quick - he suffered a second stroke and over the course of many weeks he just faded away. I can't say much more about it, it is still not something I talk about often - but so much of what Sarah has put into this novella mirrors my own senses and emotions from that time. She has captured here those things that at the time I was unable to clarify - how all your senses open up while you are waiting for the inevitable, how the sounds and smells of the room can overwhelm you at the time and also take you back to that moment months, years, even decades later. The Language of Dying is not just made up of words, it is a language of sense and feeling. This was cathartic for me - yes I cried a million tears again but they were good tears. And the memories that came back to me were not just of those final weeks but of all the weeks, months and years that came before that, the precious memories, the ones you hold in your heart. Flashes of time spent with someone you loved who also loved you. See, now I'm crying again writing this review...So enough of that lets move on, but before I do. Thank you Sarah.

From a professional point of view there is not an awful lot I can say. If you have read any of her previous novels you will already know that Sarah Pinborough is a terrific weaver of words and magic on the page and this is no different in that respect. She has put her own twist on the tale as usual, there is a dark and magical side to the story that I will let you discover for yourselves - because of course you are all going to read this now right? The sheer power of the descriptive prose that brings the entire family and their relationships into focus is superbly done, clever and evocative writing that takes you right to the heart of the matter and keeps you there until you are through. I am absolutely in love with this one - it will stay with me forever.

I really cannot recommend this highly enough. If you have ever suffered loss this will speak to you in ways I can't describe even though I have made my best effort above. Even if you have not, this is fantastic storytelling - one of those you wish you could just make everyone read. Just because. Short but bittersweet, it is a timeless tale...age will not diminish its power.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in

Review Details


4.6 out of 5 stars (19 customer reviews)
5 star:
4 star:
3 star:
2 star:
1 star:    (0)
12.99 9.09
Add to basket Add to wishlist

Location: England

Top Reviewer Ranking: 237