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“I had more or less resolved not to write a book about my
parents. But I’m a writer, and when the universe hands you
material like this, not writing about it amounts either to
waste or a conscious act of evasion.”
So begins award-winning satirist Christopher Buckley in the
most personal and transcendent work of his life, the
tragicomic true story of the year in which both of his
In twelve months between 2007 and 2008, Buckley coped with
the passing of his father, William F. Buckley, the father
of the modern conservative movement, and his mother,
Patricia Taylor Buckley, one of New York’s most glamorous
and colorful socialites. He was their only child and their
relationship was close and complicated. Writes
Buckley: “They were not — with respect to every other set
of loving, wonderful parents in the world — your typical
mom and dad.”
As Buckley tells the story of their final year together, he
takes readers on a surprisingly entertaining tour through
hospitals, funeral homes, and memorial services, capturing
the heartbreaking and disorienting feeling of becoming a
fifty-five-year-old orphan. Buckley maintains his sense of
humor by recalling the words of Oscar Wilde: “To lose one
parent may be regarded as a misfortune. To lose both looks
Christopher Buckley offers consolation, wit, and warmth to
those coping with the death of a parent, while telling a
unique personal story of life with legends.
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