Friday, July 17, 2015

Losing Mum and Pup

Cover image for Losing Mum and Pup: A Memoir by Christopher Buckley, 251 pages

In twelve months, Christopher Buckley (author of Thank You for Smoking and Boomsday) lost first  his mother Patricia Buckley (famed socialite and member of the International Best-Dressed Hall of Fame) and then his father, William F Buckley, Jr (founder and editor of National Review, host of Firing Line for 33 years, author of over 50 books).  Both died after long illnesses, with William's condition deteriorating rapidly after his wife's death.  As their only child, much of the burden of care fell upon Christopher.  Losing Mum and Pup is the story of that year, and, seen through it, all the years before, three remarkable lives entangled together, not always happily.

Author Buckley is well aware that losing parents is not a unique event, and that a successful author from a wealthy, distinguished family is not generally a suitable object of pity (pity and sympathy are, of course, different things).  Some of the passages, taken by themselves, would seem horribly egocentric - if it was possible to make such a judgement of a man as he told you of his last words to his dying mother.  Buckley is primarily a satirist, and he is deftly able to defuse the pathos with humor before it becomes overwhelming.

A touching book about life, love, and loss that also happens to be really funny.

No comments:

Post a Comment