22 February 2012

Immortal Bird; Doron Weber

Immortal Bird: A Family MemoirImmortal Bird: A Family Memoir by Doron Weber
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I just couldn't finish this: what I'd hoped would be about this family's incredible loss has turned into being more about this father's anger (and eidetic memory for anything and everything about his son). This isn't to diminish the pain of losing one's son, or the life he led (and might have led had he lived) but, well, the son didn't come through as the hero of this as much as the father does. Here's an example: there's about four pages of a conversation, remembered verbatim, the author has with the doctor who did Damon's Fonton surgery, which is equal to the number of pages spent describing Damon's bar mitzvah. And another: the discussion of where the heart transplant should take place is more detailed than Damon's directing the school play.

When I was a pre-teen/early teen, I read books like Sunshine and Death Be Not Proud and The Bird's Christmas Carol and The Other Side of the Mountain (and watched all the tv movies), as did many of my friends. So that's the level of pathos I expected in Immortal Bird, just as I expected that the book (or the part of it I got through) to be filled with Damon's life. And while Damon seems to have been a very nice, talented teenage boy he wasn't that different from other equally nice, talented teenage boys I've known - heart problems excepted, of course.

ARC provided by publisher.

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