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From Anne Roiphe, the critically acclaimed author of Fruitful, comes the New York Times bestselling Epilogue, a beautiful memoir about death, life, and widowhood. Roiphe explores what happened when, at age 70, she lost her husband of 40 years. Moving between heartbreaking memories of her marriage and the pressing needs of a new day-to-day routine, Epilogue takes readers on From Anne Roiphe, the critically acclaimed author of Fruitful, comes the New York Times bestselling Epilogue, a beautiful memoir about death, life, and widowhood. Roiphe explores what happened when, at age 70, she lost her husband of 40 years. Moving between heartbreaking memories of her marriage and the pressing needs of a new day-to-day routine, Epilogue takes readers on her journey into the unknown world of life after love.


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From Anne Roiphe, the critically acclaimed author of Fruitful, comes the New York Times bestselling Epilogue, a beautiful memoir about death, life, and widowhood. Roiphe explores what happened when, at age 70, she lost her husband of 40 years. Moving between heartbreaking memories of her marriage and the pressing needs of a new day-to-day routine, Epilogue takes readers on From Anne Roiphe, the critically acclaimed author of Fruitful, comes the New York Times bestselling Epilogue, a beautiful memoir about death, life, and widowhood. Roiphe explores what happened when, at age 70, she lost her husband of 40 years. Moving between heartbreaking memories of her marriage and the pressing needs of a new day-to-day routine, Epilogue takes readers on her journey into the unknown world of life after love.

30 review for Epilogue: A Memoir

  1. 5 out of 5

    Chrissie

    A wonderful book about a difficult subject! How do you feel when your husband dies after a long happy marriage? The author is almost 70 and she had been married for almost 40 years. The book isn't about the death itself, but afterwards - how you cope with living without the other oerson. This deals with a subject that usually never appeals to me. I do not like books that deal out pat answers on how to solve problems. They couldn't possibly succeed - everyone is different. So I rarely want any ad A wonderful book about a difficult subject! How do you feel when your husband dies after a long happy marriage? The author is almost 70 and she had been married for almost 40 years. The book isn't about the death itself, but afterwards - how you cope with living without the other oerson. This deals with a subject that usually never appeals to me. I do not like books that deal out pat answers on how to solve problems. They couldn't possibly succeed - everyone is different. So I rarely want any advice. It is not that I have the answers, far from it, but I have to figure out myself how to deal with a "problem". So why did I pick up the book? Well, because I was drawn to the writing style. I am not even faced with this problem, being happily married and about 10 years younger than the author. Nevertheless this is something I might have to deal with some day, unless I pop off first which I probably will. BUT when my father died I watched my Mom and wondered how I could help. That was before I read the book. Honestly I don't think the book advises - not at all. What it does do is let you consider what that would be like. Rather than giving advice it poses hundreds and hundred of questions that you, the reader can ponder. So you can easily understand why I appreciated this book. When the author finaaly reaches an answer, she flips it in her head and asks - is that all total bullshit?! If you are looking for answers - don't read this book. If you want to try and understand how it may feel and want to be egged on by questions that you yourself can ponder then I highly recommend it. There is humor on every dam page. She laughs at herself and her crazy thoughts. This lets the readers laugh at themselves too. When it gets sad, she immediately counters with humor. There is so much in this book. I think I read it too quickly. Perhaps it would have been even better had I juggled it with another book so that I could go on thinking about the questions, let them sink in so that maybe I would find my own solutions. The author's descriptions are spot-on! She describes family and reading and eating and computer friendships and emotions and memories..... Are you filled with violent emotions or do you go numb? I think I would be numbed. That is how the author reacts. How do you make a meal - FOR ONE! Everything is hunky-dory and then her husband's handwritten recipe falls from a cookbook and the tears just flood down her cheeks. Over a recipe?! "I cannot stop the tears.........But what can I do, they have arrived.I trust they will go. I could call a friend. I don't. These tears are not matters for a friend. Just between H and me. Whiich under the circumstances means just for me. Tears do not wash away the debris they bring any more than rain empties the sky of water. I go to my desk. 'Welcome,' says my computer. Writing stops the tears: immediately. I would never risk harm to my computer. Water might seep in and destroy a chip, an electronic pulsea necessary connection. I type dry-eyed. I have restored the levee." This is what I mean by humor! Had I written a review as I read the book I would have quoted much, much more - the writing is excellent. I have not been disappointed. This is a five star book. A daunting subject, dealt with honestly and perceptively, interwoven with humor. Starting the book: I am tired of being so naive, thinking every book is going to be magical and then getting disapopinted. So I am going to keep my mouth shut until the end. I will only say that this is definitely not the kind of book I usually pick, but I was impressed by the writing. Now through page 19 I confirm that the writing IS very beautiful, very expressive and poignant. This woman has something to say and she says it well. Please don't let me be sdisappointed. One short quote to give you an idea: "I am not here if no one sees or hears me. Like the proverbial tree in the forestI neither fall nor stand unobserved. But I am observing myself and that should be enough. " How ill one feel after 40 years of marriage and your husband dies?

  2. 5 out of 5

    Danna

    If you've passed Anne Roiphe's books on shelves at BookPeople and Borders like me (see Up the Sandbox! through Water from the Well...), you may already be familiar with descriptions of her feminist writings, which combine realism and romance. Roiphe is also a well-established memoir writer (1185 Park Avenue and Fruitful: A Real Mother) connecting with women readers for four decades. Her latest memoir, Epilogue , is true to her trademark duality, without detached factual research and fiction's If you've passed Anne Roiphe's books on shelves at BookPeople and Borders like me (see Up the Sandbox! through Water from the Well...), you may already be familiar with descriptions of her feminist writings, which combine realism and romance. Roiphe is also a well-established memoir writer (1185 Park Avenue and Fruitful: A Real Mother) connecting with women readers for four decades. Her latest memoir, Epilogue , is true to her trademark duality, without detached factual research and fiction's artifice. This is her life, after the end of a thirty-nine year relationship - the beginning of the end as the title implies. Epilogue conflicts with the notion of the typical feminist memoir in that it admits what many diehard feminist writers won't - that a longterm companionship with the opposite sex is not a weakness, but a strength. It relates a universal message: When we lose that closeness, that intimacy we've had for so long, we struggle, even with a network of family and friends who grieve with us. The reader is is carried along the widowed author's natural grief and recovery process - indicated by the natural phases of the moon replacing numbered chapters and parts. Roiphe's memoir contains tersely profound prose that doesn't offer a self help cure for grief and loneliness after the death of a loved one. It isn't a golden god memoir about her life partner, an imperfect lover, husband, father, and psychoanalyst either. Epilogue is a personal account of life after a partner dies, and how we struggle for normalcy and companionship - which can often contradict the feminist notion of an independent woman. Roiphe asserts that despite our independence, we are social animals who need relationships in our lives. Not because they define who we are as women, but because we all need to connect - and thrive - as human beings. The widowed septuagenarian author's brusque prose and lack of dialogue between the real life characters may be a turn-off to younger readers. However, older readers (over thirty) who have experienced a personal loss of someone close may appreciate and relate to the text as a cathartic testament of a writer compelled to share her story. Overall, Anne Roiphe's Epilogue is a good read.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    Roiphe is a poetic, gifted writer. The way she describes certain situations in her life or her feelings of grief after the death of her husband are masterful. I meant to give some example quotes from the book I liked, but I forgot and put it in the "to be returned to the library" pile. Wikipedia describes Anne Roiphe as a feminist writer. I've never read any of her books before--and in fact I think I might check out one of her novels out of curiosity. She is the mother of the very controversial K Roiphe is a poetic, gifted writer. The way she describes certain situations in her life or her feelings of grief after the death of her husband are masterful. I meant to give some example quotes from the book I liked, but I forgot and put it in the "to be returned to the library" pile. Wikipedia describes Anne Roiphe as a feminist writer. I've never read any of her books before--and in fact I think I might check out one of her novels out of curiosity. She is the mother of the very controversial Katie Roiphe. If I hadn't read that description, I would never have labeled her as a feminist. She describes how her husband would always unlock the front door--she had never unlocked the front door until after he died! How does a woman have any independence if she never leaves her house without her husband (or if she does, he is always there to open the door for her when she returns)? She is a bit of a throw-back, if you ask me. Roiphe enters the dating world after the death of her husband, and chronicles her adventures in this book. What I found most puzzling about her story was her apparent interest in the last man she found online. He was conservative, racist, sexist, and homophobic, yet she was strangely drawn to him. I cannot imagine ever falling in love with some diametrically opposed values to mine, to begin with. But for her to be attracted to this man, or the idea of this man, when he was sending her these soapbox e-mails about how all the world's evils were caused by the Arabs, homosexuals, and women? I cannot for the life of me begin to understand this. Finally she wised up, but it took her a heckuva long time. So I give it three stars because of the beauty of the writing. However, as a person, I did not find her particularly appealing. She writes about her children and grandchildren as if they are very distant from her. Perhaps it's a New York WASP kind of thing to do. She wrote eloquently about grief, but another oddity was that she celebrated many Jewish traditions (Seder, Kaddish, etc.), yet seemed to be an atheist and was absolutely positive that there was no life after death. I'm debating about the number of stars, but I think I will leave it at three for now.

  4. 5 out of 5

    David

    memoir of bereavement after her husband died. To the extent there is humor, it comes in her recounting of online dating as a 70-year old and some of the unusual men her search reels in. Does a nice job of describing her late husband, a psychoanalyst who worked with little kids and liked to watch NY Giants football on TV. To some extent the book is repetitive -- it's more a meditation than a factual or chronological description of the year. She certainly says she feels lonely or doesn't want to be memoir of bereavement after her husband died. To the extent there is humor, it comes in her recounting of online dating as a 70-year old and some of the unusual men her search reels in. Does a nice job of describing her late husband, a psychoanalyst who worked with little kids and liked to watch NY Giants football on TV. To some extent the book is repetitive -- it's more a meditation than a factual or chronological description of the year. She certainly says she feels lonely or doesn't want to be a burden to her kids or isn't sure she'll ever find another good relationship or resents her late husband's first wife's hassling for a financial settlement many times each. I enjoyed reading it, though, mainly for (a) her honesty in examining some of her own regrets, old grudges, somewhat snobby views of people with less education or a lower SES, and especially (b) her writing itself, which I found very graceful. A couple examples: [about not minding that a guy she dated once didn't call again:] "It is a blessing of old age not to care if someone should choose not to dance. I find to my delight that I have outgrown, or perhaps outlasted, the need for every eye to shine on me kindly." [about no longer getting invited to social events:] "even the expensive benefit invitations with embossed fancy script, which I used to throw in the wastebasket, rarely arrive. I never properly appreciated the invitations to places I didn't want to go." The one discordant note for me, stylistically, is that she calls everyone by initials -- my late husband H., my daughter K., my nephew P. etc. What's the point of that? She put her real name on the book, and one of her daughters is herself a famous writer, so it's not doing much for anonymity in the case of the family. Even with other people, why not just make up a regular name? would read better. Overall, a good read -- meanders around, but there are individual memorable stories such as a sad one about her closeted gay brother who died of AIDS, and how the posthumous revelation of his secret life affected the family.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Laurel-Rain

    In the first year of her life after the death of her spouse—of almost forty years—author Anne Roiphe must face all the usual phases of loss and grieving. As she weaves together the tale of her journey, she moves back and forth, between memory—of her husband, of their life together—and new experiences of life alone. Old friends seem unfamiliar, in their continued state of coupledom, and new friends—men she meets online at Match.com—seem alternately odd and/or discordant in that their stories do not In the first year of her life after the death of her spouse—of almost forty years—author Anne Roiphe must face all the usual phases of loss and grieving. As she weaves together the tale of her journey, she moves back and forth, between memory—of her husband, of their life together—and new experiences of life alone. Old friends seem unfamiliar, in their continued state of coupledom, and new friends—men she meets online at Match.com—seem alternately odd and/or discordant in that their stories do not mesh with hers. She practices being alone—going to restaurants, movies, museums, etc.—and also just being solitary in her apartment. She looks around, studying the landscape of her new life, considering the alternatives. When she isn’t bursting into tears, or dreaming of a time long gone. Before she is ever at ease with the empty space in her bed, she is carefully treading water…not wanting to encroach on the lives of her grown children, carefully considering those boundaries. It is almost like beginning again in an entirely different universe, she discovers. She keeps reaching out, though, despite the disappointments, until finally, at year’s end, she comes to a place of acceptance. Almost. If she never again finds a “soul mate,” she will survive. Grief will not be her constant companion. At the end of this memoir, she states: “If the owl and the pussycat went to sea in a pea-green boat and the owl flew off, the pussycat better pick up the oars and row toward shore—she has, after all, neither wings nor gills. She must dance by herself by the light of the moon.” From the author of “Fruitful” and “Lovingkindness,” Anne Roiphe’s “Epilogue” meaningfully explores a woman’s journey—of starting over. Of the detritus of grief and its aftermath…and the gradual picking up the pieces of a new life in a strange new universe.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    The description from the inside flap of the book was a bit deceiving. It tells the reader that Roiphe loses her husband at the age of seventy and explores new love after loss. There is that element. I got the impression--mistakenly--that the book would be similar to A Round-Heeled Woman by Jane Juska, which discussed later in life dating with a lighter touch, but with some seriousness. This book, for me, was really about the intense emotional deepening of life after the loss of a spouse. Roiphe l The description from the inside flap of the book was a bit deceiving. It tells the reader that Roiphe loses her husband at the age of seventy and explores new love after loss. There is that element. I got the impression--mistakenly--that the book would be similar to A Round-Heeled Woman by Jane Juska, which discussed later in life dating with a lighter touch, but with some seriousness. This book, for me, was really about the intense emotional deepening of life after the loss of a spouse. Roiphe leads her reader through the dark depths of her depression. There are passages that include her attempts at meeting men through the Internet and an ad placed by one of her daughters, but that wasn't the focus of the book. The crux of this memoir was Roiphe's discovery of a new way of life for herself after her husband's passing. Nicely written, but perhaps due to the emotional nature of the prose, a bit scattered.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Patricia L.

    Old Men, if you have ever wondered about dating a widow here is the memoir for you. The author shares her intimate thinking so gonestly it made me blush. "How much easier it would be if we were dogs and could smell the truth about each other and then go run in the park back and forth, jumping and tumbling in the dirt." "A chicken can fall in love with a goat." 'Class is such a loaded word, a marxist word, a thing no decent American wants to talk about. But it is real, real like age, real like your Old Men, if you have ever wondered about dating a widow here is the memoir for you. The author shares her intimate thinking so gonestly it made me blush. "How much easier it would be if we were dogs and could smell the truth about each other and then go run in the park back and forth, jumping and tumbling in the dirt." "A chicken can fall in love with a goat." 'Class is such a loaded word, a marxist word, a thing no decent American wants to talk about. But it is real, real like age, real like your Social Security number.' "He is appealing like a man who has been in a terrible fight and wouldn't think of speaking of it. He is romantic-or is he evil? Is there a point at which these two qualities intersect?" " I am a very non- new Age person. Put more correctly, I am a very old-age person."

  8. 5 out of 5

    Randy

    This book really surprised me. I liked it. Couldn't put it down; and I'm still not quite sure why. Perhaps it's because I'm getting old that the long internal dialogue from a woman nearly my age, grieving over the death of her husband of forty years, contemplating loneliness and how she will spend the rest of her life, struck a chord. Or, perhaps I was fascinated with her unsuccessful search for a new partner via personal ads and Match.com whereby she has a series of email relationships and bad This book really surprised me. I liked it. Couldn't put it down; and I'm still not quite sure why. Perhaps it's because I'm getting old that the long internal dialogue from a woman nearly my age, grieving over the death of her husband of forty years, contemplating loneliness and how she will spend the rest of her life, struck a chord. Or, perhaps I was fascinated with her unsuccessful search for a new partner via personal ads and Match.com whereby she has a series of email relationships and bad dates with unappealing elderly men my age and older. The dating is only a part of the story. It's more about sadness and coping and trying to rebalance herself as a solo act when she had spent so many apparently happy years as a duet. I was unfamiliar with Anne Roiphe but her writing is sharp and funny and poignant and I will no doubt dive into another of her books.

  9. 4 out of 5

    ╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥

    I abandoned this one without really reading it. It might be the greatest memoir ever written in the history of the world but I'll never know. It is a massive personal pet peeve of mine when authors remove names from their memoirs. Change them? By all means, go ahead! But when the book is nothing but a series of: K said this to H and H said "aww hell no bee-otch" and L and B got into a fight over who could eat the most amount of raw bacon in under 30 seconds. It drives me insane - just give them a I abandoned this one without really reading it. It might be the greatest memoir ever written in the history of the world but I'll never know. It is a massive personal pet peeve of mine when authors remove names from their memoirs. Change them? By all means, go ahead! But when the book is nothing but a series of: K said this to H and H said "aww hell no bee-otch" and L and B got into a fight over who could eat the most amount of raw bacon in under 30 seconds. It drives me insane - just give them a new name! At least it's a little better than the authors who do the dreaded "T---- went to B--- L---- Elementary on G--- Rd in Wa-------". Maybe. I don't know which one is worse but it definitely makes me less inclined to finish a book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Janet

    One writers passage through the grief of losing her husband of 40-odd years. After tough times of loneliness, odd internet dating and friends who dissolve away (all described in wonderful detail), she discovers that she will make it on her own. Sad but not always. Lonely but not unbearably. She recognizes that altho close companionship is often a key to happiness and comfort, being on her own is enough. We are all, after all, in this alone. You an almost feel her relief at settling in with a mea One writers passage through the grief of losing her husband of 40-odd years. After tough times of loneliness, odd internet dating and friends who dissolve away (all described in wonderful detail), she discovers that she will make it on her own. Sad but not always. Lonely but not unbearably. She recognizes that altho close companionship is often a key to happiness and comfort, being on her own is enough. We are all, after all, in this alone. You an almost feel her relief at settling in with a meal and the telly after spending too much time out in the world. Ahhhh.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ann Rutkoski

    The author felt like a kindred spirit to me in many ways. I felt her pain; I walked in her shoes. She has put into words the thoughts I cannot.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Bettye

    This book was an insightful meditation on becoming a widow. In this book grief is not the focus, as you might think it would be, but rather the change of circumstances that death imposes on the surviving spouse. No dates are supplied but in this book the author is trying to date, after her daughters placed an ad in the New York Review of Books. These attempts at companionship were, not unexpectedly, funny, sad, and not successful. At the end of the book, you feel as if you have been on a journey This book was an insightful meditation on becoming a widow. In this book grief is not the focus, as you might think it would be, but rather the change of circumstances that death imposes on the surviving spouse. No dates are supplied but in this book the author is trying to date, after her daughters placed an ad in the New York Review of Books. These attempts at companionship were, not unexpectedly, funny, sad, and not successful. At the end of the book, you feel as if you have been on a journey with the author and all is going to be okay.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Anne Vandenbrink

    Anne Roiphe suddenly loses her husband of 42 years at the age of 70. The book describes her life the year after his death. Anne takes us through her day to day thoughts, her grief, her memories, her attempts to start a new life. She decides to join Match.com and humorously describes her emails and meetings with different suitors. In the end, she comes to realize that even though she may never find a soul mate, she will survive and will be just fine.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Shanna

    While incredibly insightful and raw, even brilliant at some points, this was one of the most depressing titles I've read in ages, and makes the author seem like perhaps not such a nice person to know. While incredibly insightful and raw, even brilliant at some points, this was one of the most depressing titles I've read in ages, and makes the author seem like perhaps not such a nice person to know.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Dr. Kerin Groves

    This memoir of surviving widowhood is a must-read. I read it twice in a row. Just because.

  16. 5 out of 5

    J.T.K. Gibbs

    Another book to reread a few times. So carefully, thoughtfully, honestly written, I doubt it can be all absorbed with one reading.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Denali

    Lovely, quiet and honest.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    A quiet, introspective book, poignant and calming. I suspect it’s not for everyone, but I felt grateful to have come upon it.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Shonna Bexten

    Audiobook. Narration was fine. Hard to follow. Seemed to jump around from topic to topic.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    What a beautiful book. It was like a meditation on love, on loss, on individuality.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ellen

    A widow's journey through grief after the death of her husband of forty years. Good. A widow's journey through grief after the death of her husband of forty years. Good.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Courtney

    Such beautiful writing. I kept rereading parts of it so that I could stay longer in her sentences. Reminded me somewhat of The Year of Magical Thinking.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lois

    As she take you through day-to-day living working on the second part of grief with remaking of your life she concludes that she does not have a soul mate and most likely never will but she will be fine. Her daughters had placed a personal ad in a literary journal that Anne began to consider the previously unimagined possibility of a new man. It said that she was a writer. It said that she was attractive. She loved the ocean and books. She did pursue relationships with men but it just didn't work As she take you through day-to-day living working on the second part of grief with remaking of your life she concludes that she does not have a soul mate and most likely never will but she will be fine. Her daughters had placed a personal ad in a literary journal that Anne began to consider the previously unimagined possibility of a new man. It said that she was a writer. It said that she was attractive. She loved the ocean and books. She did pursue relationships with men but it just didn't work. Each month the moon waxes and wanes, grows full and curves into itself and becomes again a sliver of light against the dark sky. Each month the moon moves across the night, larger and smaller, crescent and full, three quarters of the way, traveling back to the beginning. The tides come in with the gravitational pull of the moon and then they recede as it sends its rays down onto the swelling waters even when human eyes are closed. So time is marked. The tide pirates the dunes away from the shore. The sand returns elsewhere, another village, another beach perhaps thousands of miles away on the shore of another continent. Time is the widow’s friend, they say. But what they say is not always true. What I know is that time is moving forward while the face of the moon changes and changes back again and I am here suspended in time, like the fly I saw in am amber stone, waiting for release. Grief is in two parts. The first is loss. The second is remaking of life. I benefited from her honest telling of day-to-day living. She looks at herself in a full-length mirror taking in she is old and sagged where once she had been taut and firm. She saw where a face-lift might help. But she would never do that. Each wrinkle, each line, each tilt of the eye belonged to her, containing the life she had led, the sadness of loss, the pleasure of birth, the wonder of the landscape, the pleasure of flying in the clouds in a four-seater plane at sunset, the cold of the lake in Maine where she learn to dive. In the remaking of her life she was looking for a new soul mate and in the end it wasn't happening and she concluded: I do not have my soul mate and most likely will never have another but I will be fine. I can read. I can think. I can work. I can see friends. I can watch my grandchildren grow. I can walk in the park and I can listen to music and I can argue politics and I can pass, if fate allows it from old to older in the usual manner. I will be sad often but not always. I will be lonely most always but not unbearable so. I will look forward to small things, a dinner with friends, a movie, the first orange persimmons. I will miss sex. I will miss conversations after midnight with the covers pulled up tight across the chest to keep the warmth inside while cold air frosts the windowpanes. I will have no one to tell good news or bad. I will miss the unsaid things that passed between H. and me. But I will manage without them. I will make new friends in unexpected places. I will take a trip somewhere I have always wanted to go. I will not let grief become my constant companion. I will refuse its offer to accompany me to the corner, to the night, to the next month. If the owl and the pussycat went to sea in a pea-green boat and the owl flew off, the pussycat better pick up the oars and row toward shore-she has, after all, neither wings nor gills. She must dance by herself by the light of the moon.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Deirdre

    I enjoyed this book, which I just finished in about a day. It's episodic, so it's easy to read - many brief excerpts from Roiphe's life as a new widow. The book brought to mind The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. I've always enjoyed Roiphe's other books, on feminism, marriage and being a mother. This book was very honest, and I liked that aspect, as if she was having a conversation with the reader. She did such a good job of describing her feelings of loneliness and isolation as widow t I enjoyed this book, which I just finished in about a day. It's episodic, so it's easy to read - many brief excerpts from Roiphe's life as a new widow. The book brought to mind The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. I've always enjoyed Roiphe's other books, on feminism, marriage and being a mother. This book was very honest, and I liked that aspect, as if she was having a conversation with the reader. She did such a good job of describing her feelings of loneliness and isolation as widow that I felt slightly claustrophobic reading the book, as if I wanted to escape her apt. and her life along with her. I loved the honesty - yet there were times when I felt she skimmed the top of honesty as it pertained to her relationships with her husband and her children, but then didn't really dig deep enough. I guess I wanted more. I didn't come away feeling like I knew her husband or her family, but perhaps that was her intent. It felt a bit like a stream of consciousness, so there were times when I wished she'd stopped the stream and gone deeper to give us context so we could have understood what she was missing. For instance, I wish there'd been more about her husband and their marriage alongside her dates on match.com. It was hard to relate to her efforts to get out into the world of dating when I wasn't entirely familiar with whom and what she had lost. I didn't fully understand the closeness in the marriage, in the way that I felt I did with Didion's book. Still, the dating parts were intriguing - especially the revelation that dating doesn't really change whether you're in your 30's or your 70's - if a guy doesn't call, you worry about what you did wrong no matter how old you are, and even if a guy is a freak, your imagination immediately carries you into the future, and you start thinking after one phone call, maybe I'll move to his house in Florida and we'll walk on the beach every evening. So that was fascinating. Women don't change, no matter the age. All in all, a good read and highly recommended, especially for anyone who's experienced a loss of any kind.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Edith

    There are many older women writing about their widowhood these days. Writer and journalist Anne Roiphe joins them. She comes from a privileged New York City background (see her earlier memoir "1185 Park Avenue") and is mourning the loss of her psychoanalyst husband of nearly 40 years. She is trying to deal with her need for companionship and love and is actively seeking a new man in her life while still mourning her late husband. Anne Roiphe is a woman with many advantages- she is stable financi There are many older women writing about their widowhood these days. Writer and journalist Anne Roiphe joins them. She comes from a privileged New York City background (see her earlier memoir "1185 Park Avenue") and is mourning the loss of her psychoanalyst husband of nearly 40 years. She is trying to deal with her need for companionship and love and is actively seeking a new man in her life while still mourning her late husband. Anne Roiphe is a woman with many advantages- she is stable financially, has supportive family and many friends, is very healthy, has a job she loves, and obviously has a sharp, sound mind. She describes her feelings well and I like the way she pulled me into her thinking and her experience by asking a lot of questions running through her mind as if she was testing for answers. She often sees things from two opposing angles and sorting out the answer is no easy task. I was dismayed, however, by the fact that while she observes some of the Jewish religious traditions, she does not believe in any life after death. For her, death is the end of existence. I remain amazed at her lack of imagination in this area. There are many stories in her life that she did not cover in this book. Her most recent memoir is “Art and Madness: a memoir of lust without reason.” Besides four memoirs, she has written nine novels. Her second novel “Up the Sandbox” (1970) was made into a movie starring Barbra Streisand and her first memoir “Fruitful: A Memoir of Modern Motherhood” (1996) was nominated for the National Book Award. Prolific writer. Interesting writer.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sharon Bryan

    loved this book. Excellent writing and lots of things to think about long after you finish it.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Diane

    This memoir is the story of Anne Roiphe, a novelist, who at 69 years of age, lost her husband of almost 40 years rather unexpectedly. She was unprepared for life on her own, and she found it difficult to piece together the basics for a new life, as her grief at times seemed unbearable. Several months after her husband's death, her daughters placed a personal ad in the New York Review of Books. They described their mother as a writer, and an attractive woman who loved the ocean and books. What fol This memoir is the story of Anne Roiphe, a novelist, who at 69 years of age, lost her husband of almost 40 years rather unexpectedly. She was unprepared for life on her own, and she found it difficult to piece together the basics for a new life, as her grief at times seemed unbearable. Several months after her husband's death, her daughters placed a personal ad in the New York Review of Books. They described their mother as a writer, and an attractive woman who loved the ocean and books. What follows are several detailed meetings with new acquaintances, often humorous to some degree, but none of these lead to a new satisfying relationship. I expected that this book would be a story about a widow who made a new life for herself after the death of her spouse, but although parts of this memoir were very good, I did find a good portion of the book to be one big pity-party. I realize that there are various stages of grief that one must pass through, before moving on to another stage in life, however, Ms. Roiphe was just so dependent on her former husband that I got annoyed by that: she never unlocked her door before, because he always did it; she never hailed a cab alone in NYC, because he did it. It all just seemed a bit much. Despite these criticisms, I do see how this book might comfort someone who has experienced a recent loss

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Hagen

    Epilogue, by Anne Roiphe, narrated by Lorna Raver, produced by Blackstone Audio, downloaded from audible.com. Anne Roiphe, a journalist, uses journaling, and ultimately this book, to deal with the aftermath of her husband’s sudden death and the starting of a new life. She writes this story in vignettes. We see her balancing a checkbook for the first time, hailing a taxi, lockingher own door, going out with a man from a personal ad her daughter puts in the paper, to joining match.com on line and g Epilogue, by Anne Roiphe, narrated by Lorna Raver, produced by Blackstone Audio, downloaded from audible.com. Anne Roiphe, a journalist, uses journaling, and ultimately this book, to deal with the aftermath of her husband’s sudden death and the starting of a new life. She writes this story in vignettes. We see her balancing a checkbook for the first time, hailing a taxi, lockingher own door, going out with a man from a personal ad her daughter puts in the paper, to joining match.com on line and going out with several men. The book is heart-warming as she works her way through the first year of loss. It is very funny as she describes some of the men she met on line. And it is a book that can give hope to those who face the loss of a loved one because we see her get through the first year and ready herself to go on. She decides that, while it would be nice to find another man to love, she is not bereft without a partner. She has inner resources hitherto unknown to her. Lorna Raver was an especially good narrator for this book. You felt as if Anne Roiph herself was right there telling her stories of meeting people through match.com.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Tammy

    An eloquent writer. I read the whole book, but I was a little bit bored with it. I did kind of enjoy the journal-like nature of it while at the same time wishing there were chapters so that I could have a good place to stop and pick it up again later! I'm a little bit curious about her other books, as well as her "controversial daughter" after reading some of the reviews. It was interesting to see what others had to say. I agree about much of the comments, both positive and negative. One final n An eloquent writer. I read the whole book, but I was a little bit bored with it. I did kind of enjoy the journal-like nature of it while at the same time wishing there were chapters so that I could have a good place to stop and pick it up again later! I'm a little bit curious about her other books, as well as her "controversial daughter" after reading some of the reviews. It was interesting to see what others had to say. I agree about much of the comments, both positive and negative. One final note, it reminded me a little bit an Anne Tyler book I read not too long ago- When We Were Grownups. Both women have stepchildren, both are widowed, and both stories have some sadness and at least deal with family dynamics to some extent, though of course one is fiction and one non. Oh, and one other thing that I found intriguing is the part about her brother and nephew. It was interesting for her to bring up a previous memoir she had written and how the effects of something she revealed have played out.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    Roiphe, Anne. Epilogue. Epilogue. New York: HarperCollins, 2008. How do you explain what it feels like to be a widow? It’s not easy for other people to understand, but Roiphe really captures it in this book, a memoir of her first year without her husband, whom she calls H. So often I found myself nodding. Yes, that’s exactly how I feel! Maybe I’m not crazy, just widowed. Roiphe uses the moon and its phases as a theme. Like the moon, one’s feelings cycle in and out. She shares her depression, her Roiphe, Anne. Epilogue. Epilogue. New York: HarperCollins, 2008. How do you explain what it feels like to be a widow? It’s not easy for other people to understand, but Roiphe really captures it in this book, a memoir of her first year without her husband, whom she calls H. So often I found myself nodding. Yes, that’s exactly how I feel! Maybe I’m not crazy, just widowed. Roiphe uses the moon and its phases as a theme. Like the moon, one’s feelings cycle in and out. She shares her depression, her loneliness, her attempts at dating, and the way the hours suddenly stretch out so empty before her. But as a skilled writer, she is able to step back and look at herself and her feelings objectively, knowing she will survive, that she is one of many going through this. Roiphe has published 15 books and written major magazines and newspapers. I plan to read more of her work because hers is a voice that really speaks to me. [Tillamook Library, July 20, 2016]

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