UNSPEAKABLE AND OTHER SUBJECTS OF DISCUSSION by Meghan Daum is getting a lot of positive attention. I know why. For anyone who likes essays, her’s are crisp displays of the writer’s personality and beliefs. Daum writes in a strong and consistent voice. The book is a memoir with unflinching looks at Daum’s life. Don’t expect conventional opinions. When her mother is dying, she reveals the ambivalence that engulfs her. There is more ambivalence when she gets pregnant. She refuses to join the foodie crowd, telling about her lack of interest in cooking and her less than healthy diet. Her dating history, including hanging out in the lesbian scene, is brutally honest. Later, when very sick, (in fact near death,) Daum recreates her worst days from her (patient’s) point of view.
A good read, bracing and affirming, for fans of essays and memoirs. For those not already fans, this may be the place to start.