BOOKS

Mortality

Christopher Hitchens

RRP: £7.99

3 October 2013

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781848879232

RRP: £10.99

1 September 2012

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781848879218

RRP: £7.49

25 August 2012

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9780857897657

During the American book tour for his memoir, Hitch-22, Christopher Hitchens collapsed in his hotel room with excruciating pain in his chest. As he would later write in the first of a series of deeply moving Vanity Fair pieces, he was being deported ‘from the country of the well across the stark frontier that marks off the land of malady.’ Over the next year he experienced the full force of modern cancer treatment.

Mortality is at once an unsparingly honest account of the ravages of his disease, an examination of cancer etiquette, and the coda to a lifetime of fierce debate and peerless prose. In this moving personal account of illness, Hitchens confronts his own death – and he is combative and dignified, eloquent and witty to the very last.

REVIEWS

His unworldly fluency never deserted him, his commitment was passionate, and he never deserted his trade. He was the consummate writer, the brilliant friend. In Walter Pater's famous phrase, he burned 'with this hard gem-like flame.' Right to the end.Ian McEwan

Hitchens's voice remains civilised, searching and ready to vanquish all his enemiesColm Tóbín

A trenchant, learned, iconoclastic and splendidly witty commentator on public life and, as here, on his own private triumphs and travails... unremittingly elegant, a master of graceful proseJohn Banville

Mortality by Christopher Hitchens is an inspiring, astonishingly candid and ultimately heartbreaking account of one man's battle with cancer. And not just any man... a brilliant contrary mind, wonderful writer, world-class debater and extremely dangerous luncher. This book, featuring the articles he wrote for Vanity Fair while he was dying, will make you laugh, fume and cry in equal measure.Piers Morgan
Mail on Sunday Books of the Year

Characteristic of his elegant wit: philosophical, literary, ironic, sardonic, reflective and resentful
The Times

Hitchens's account of his climb to extinction is Larkinesque, and not only because his sentences stay in the mind as firmly as good poetry.
Literary Review

Hitchens's traditional strengths - his mastery of irony, his range of reference, his contempt for euphemism - are all in evidence here but there is a timeless, aphoristic quality to these essays that distinguishes them from his writings on politics and literature.
New Statesman

Apart from the obvious sense of denoument, what makes [Hitchens's] last seven essays so potent... is their struggle towards the shattering of illusion... The true struggle of his last writings is to remain himself, deep in the country of the ill, for as long as he can.
Observer

Witty, thoughtful and refreshingly irritable
Evening Standard

Shocking, intimate and astute, Mortality is a memoir like no other
Irish Independent