Blue Nights

Joan Didion
From one of our most powerful writers, a work of stunning frankness about losing a daughter. Richly textured with bits of her own childhood and married life with her husband, John Gregory Dunne, and daughter, Quintana Roo, this new book by Joan Didion examines her thoughts, fears, and doubts regarding having children, illness, and growing old.   Blue Nights opens on July 26, 2010, as Didion thinks back to Quintana’s wedding in New York seven years before. Today would be her wedding anniversary. This fact triggers vivid snapshots of Quintana’s childhood—in Malibu, in Brentwood, at school in Holmby Hills. Reflecting on her daughter but also on her role as a parent, Didion asks the candid questions any parent might about how she feels she failed either because cues were not taken or perhaps displaced. “How could I have missed what was clearly there to be seen?” Finally, perhaps we all remain unknown to each other. Seamlessly woven in are incidents Didion sees as underscoring her own age, something she finds hard to acknowledge, much less accept.   Blue Nights—the long, light evening hours that signal the summer solstice, “the opposite of the dying of the brightness, but also its warning”—like The Year of Magical Thinking before it, is an iconic book of incisive and electric honesty, haunting and profoundly moving.

Reviews

Reviewed: 2021-08-01
Alfred A. Knopf
Reviewed: 2019-11-07

All I can say is that Joan Didion has such a way with words that no matter the subject, her words cut right to my heart.
Her honesty is appreciated and refreshing. She writes with what I consider a "New Yorker attitude" - she gets right to what she is thinking. Sometimes she doesn't realize she is doing this. But it's done and that is what I love about her writing, and aspire my writing to become like.

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@ladyofletters completed #bluenights... on 2017-11-23
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