My Bright Abyss, by Christian Wiman

My+Bright+AbyssI’ve filed this one under “memoir” but I’m not sure that’s really where it belongs. Poet Christian Wiman writes about his own return to faith in the face of terminal cancer, but he doesn’t tell it as a traditional story. Wiman is a poet and writes like a poet rather than a storyteller, so it’s not really a  narrative. Rather, it’s a collection of reflections by someone who grew up Christian, left his faith and returned to it, though not necessarily to the same conservative form of Christianity in which he was raised. The book is really, I think, about how we make meaning out of our lives — through faith, through art, and in the face of death. While there’s no overarching sense of story here, there are some really beautiful and insightful thoughts. I had the experience, unusual for me, of reading it as a e-book but wishing I owned it in paper, so that I could mark pages and underline thought-provoking passages to return to later. So maybe I’ll buy it when it comes out in paperback.

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Filed under Nonfiction -- memoir

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