One paragraph reviews on art, movies, books, and pop culture by a know-nothing who knows it all

Friday, February 10, 2006

Cool Customer

The rave reviews have rolled in, the awards are stacking up, and all for good reason. Joan Didion's book, "The Year of Magical Thinking," is about the year after her husband, John Gregory Dunne, died. No matter how grounded she appeared (a medic described her as a "cool customer"), she still spent the year waiting for her dead husband to come walking through the door. (That's why she didn't throw out his shoes, of course.) In this study of grief by a preeminent journalist, Didion researches and studies her "cognitive deficits" (when you go goofy after a loved one dies) and "the vortex" (long-lost memories that suck you into the past). This is not a self-help book or a kaddish; it's a well-researched document on what happens psychologically to the ones left behind.