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Mark Salzman

Autor(a) de Lying Awake

11+ Works 4,330 Membros 126 Críticas 15 Favorited

About the Author

Mark Salzman is the author of Iron & Silk, an account of his two years in China; Lost in Place, a memoir; and the novels The Laughing Sutra, The Soloist, and Lying Awake. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and their daughter

Inclui os nomes: M. Salzman, Mark Salzman

Image credit: Photo Credit © Jessica Yu

Obras por Mark Salzman

Lying Awake (2000) 1,063 exemplares
Iron and Silk (1988) 970 exemplares
The Soloist (1994) 726 exemplares
True Notebooks (2003) 661 exemplares
The Laughing Sutra (1991) — Autor — 371 exemplares
The Man in the Empty Boat (2012) 59 exemplares
March. Book one 1 exemplar
Le verdict du soliste (1996) 1 exemplar
SVD & SIDEN (1988) 1 exemplar

Associated Works

Bad Trips (1991) — Contribuidor — 231 exemplares
They Went: The Art and Craft of Travel Writing (1991) — Contribuidor — 35 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum



An unflinching look at the paradox of redeemable human beings who commit unredeemable acts. The author develops as a teacher while we witness the challenges of the classroom. What is writing for? the book asks. It is for self-discovery. We cannot make the effort to write without revealing something about ourselves. What jumps out from these pages is the poignant relationships established between these desperate boys and their writing teacher. Also a sad commentary on the 1990s attitude toward criminal justice.… (mais)
itheodore | 22 outras críticas | Jul 26, 2023 |
This is a beautifully written book that is ultimately sensitive and perceptive about the cloistered life. Yet, as much as it *is* about a nun, it is not. Salzman lets the universal truths of our humanity blossom throughout the book, without being preachy or cliché. Sister John of the Cross's waking dreams are the key not just for the protagonist, but for the reader as well. The end did seem to be abrupt, in terms of narrative flow, but it is one instance where the lack of conclusion seemed apt. A good read for anyone who is devoted to a passion and has crafted a life around that passion.… (mais)
rebcamuse | 26 outras críticas | Jun 25, 2023 |
“What makes a life successful? I’ve always thought it boiled down to wisdom and effort—but mainly effort. You succeed when you make the right choices and muster up sufficient effort to do what you want to do, learn what you want to learn, and become what you want to become. What is always at stake when you set out to do something important is your integrity, which I define as how you measure up in terms of accepting responsibility for your own destiny—and then not screwing it up.”

Mark Salzman’s self-analytical and touching account of a stressful year in his life. He has always been anxious and consumed with finding meaning in human existence. At an early age, he explored Chinese philosophy and martial arts. He speaks of his relationship with his wife and the ups and downs of family life. He tells personal stories in an engaging way.

The bulk of the narrative deals in a forthright manner with his experience of panic attacks, the tragic death of his sister, and how he eventually finds a sense of acceptance. I appreciate his self-deprecating humor. It provides a needed respite from some of the more emotionally wrenching content. I think the first two sections are stronger than the third, but overall, it is a well written and thought-provoking memoir.
… (mais)
Castlelass | 11 outras críticas | Oct 30, 2022 |
Protagonist Sister John of the Cross is a Carmelite nun living in a convent near Los Angeles. In 1982, she has been there for thirteen years and is going through a “spiritual desert.” She then starts experiencing a vast period of creativity, writing poetry for hours at night, and publishing a book on the contemplative life. This is a period of spiritual awakening. Sister John believes these new visions and out of body sensations are a consequence of her faith.

As she pours water into a bowl, ‘‘The motion of the water as it spiraled toward the basin triggered a spell of vertigo. It was a welcome sensation; she experienced it as rising from within, as if her spirit could no longer be contained by her body.’’

This is an unusual novel that looks at the relationship between the sense of self, mind, and soul. It explores the relationship between the spiritual self and neural functioning of the brain, as she is eventually diagnosed with a neurological condition. She must then decide whether or not to treat this condition medically, and if she does, whether she risks becoming another person entirely from the person she believes herself to be. She does not want to let go of her mystical experiences, and her creative writing, which she sees as giving meaning to her life.

‘‘I can’t bear the thought of going back to where I was before. I prayed and scrubbed and went through the motions with no feeling of love, only a will to keep busy. If the surgery were to take my dream away, everything I’ve gone through up to now would seem meaningless. I wouldn’t even be able to draw inspiration from the memory of it.’’

She consults a doctor and a priest, but neither is particularly sensitive to her dilemma. It is important to note that Sister John of the Cross decided upon this name after the Spanish mystic and poet, Saint John of the Cross, author of the poem ‘‘Dark Night of the Soul.’ Sister John must navigate her own “dark night” as she decides whether or not to go down the medical path.

From reading psychology, I understand that this is a very real problem for many individuals. Inner life and imagination can be released through many outside influences, including disease and neurological dysfunction. The person’s sense of the self is intimately involved, and it is difficult to separate what is internally originated versus externally imposed. They may resist being “cured.”

This short novel engages readers in exploring the spiritual dimensions of the self. The author has brilliantly illustrated Sister John’s desires, doubts, fears, and internal struggles. It depicts monastic life in a much more realistic manner than some I have read recently. I do not think one needs to be a follower of religion to appreciate this book and empathize with Sister John. I found it extremely thought-provoking. I am stopping now before I write a review that is longer than the book!

… (mais)
Castlelass | 26 outras críticas | Oct 30, 2022 |



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