Extraordinary

Extraordinary

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
7
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From a Governor General's Award-winning authorcomes a heart-rending novel about end-of-life, family and children.

Over the course of one Saturday night, a man and his half-sister meet at her request to spend the evening preparing for herassisted death. They drink and reminisce fondly, sadly, amusingly abouttheir lives and especially her children, both of whom have led dramaticand profoundly different lives. Extraordinary is a gentle consideration of assisted suicide, but it is also a story about siblings--about how brothers and sisters turn out so differently; about how little, in fact, turns out the way we expect. In the end, this is a novel about the extraordinary business of being alive, and it may well be David Gilmour's very best workof fiction to date.
Publisher: Toronto : Patrick Crean Editions/HarperCollins Canada, [2013]
Copyright Date: ©2013
ISBN: 9781443423700
Branch Call Number: GILMO
Characteristics: 185 pages ; 23 cm

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I will think about this night with Sally and her brother whenever someone talks about MAID. Two courageous siblings talk through the night about decisions, failures, as they wait for the hour when Sally will choose to die with dignity.

n
Nutty
Jun 21, 2017

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Extraordinary. It's short (novella length), but it still succeeds at telling a compelling story and getting the read invested in the characters.

w
wyenotgo
Aug 21, 2015

This book is best read at one sitting; fortunately, it's short enough for that. It's essentially a single conversation, taking place at a critical moment in the lives of a brother and sister. It's a celebration of life at the moment of leaving it, an ode to love, forgiveness, regrets, understanding, acceptance.
Comparisons with Mitch Albom immediately come to mind, along with echoes of Alice Munroe at her best.
Given the subject matter, perhaps the highest praise I can bestow is that, to my surprise, Gilmour succeeds in making me envy Sally just a little bit for the richness of her life and the serenity she has achieved.

e
empbee
Dec 09, 2014

I loved this book. Smooth, captivating style keeps you interested in the life (and death) of the characters.

j
jtkretzschmar
Dec 08, 2013

I'll keep this brief in the spirit of the novel. This was an amazing book, but does it still count as a book if it only takes a few hours to read? Between the amount of pages and the size of the pages itself... it felt like a long short story. (An amazing one, but a short story nevertheless.) That being said, I enjoyed every page of it, and will make sure to read more of his works.

o
okbookgirl
Oct 04, 2013

This is a short but moving novel. Gilmour draws you quickly into the siblings' conversation and reflections on their lives, as they spend this last strange evening together.

b
becker
Sep 27, 2013

A very quick book - readable in 1 day. This author does great dialogue but aside from that the plot was pretty uneventful.

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