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What I’d Rather Not Think About por Jente…
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What I’d Rather Not Think About (edição 2023)

por Jente Posthuma (Autor)

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464554,173 (3.62)13
What if one half of a pair of twins no longer wants to live? What if the other can't live without them? This question lies at the heart of Jente Posthuma's deceptively simple What I'd Rather Not Think About. The narrator is a twin whose brother has recently taken his own life. She looks back on their childhood, and tells of their adult lives - how her brother tried to find happiness, but lost himself in various men and the Bhagwan movement, though never completely.… (mais)
Membro:DustinTotten
Título:What I’d Rather Not Think About
Autores:Jente Posthuma (Autor)
Informação:Scribe US (2023), 224 pages
Coleções:A sua biblioteca
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What I'd Rather Not Think About por Jente Posthuma (Author)

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"I walked over to the window and breathed onto the glass until it grew misty. Using my forefinger, I drew my brother's face. He'd been dead for two years. I stroked his cheek, which felt cold and damp. I stroked his face again and again until I'd accidentally erased it."

This book is exceptionally well written and crafted. Somewhat experimental in form, it is comprised of seemingly unconnected short passages that tell the story of the inner life of someone unable to go on living and told by his twin who cannot seem to find a way to grieve. We know from page one that we are hearing from the twin sister of a man who has died by suicide and that she is telling their story. For the first half of the book I admired the craftsmanship, but could not find a way to sink into the story. There was this profound and unbridgable emotional remove, an arctic coldness that was at odds with the sister's words which reveal the most profound grief imaginable. (Neither character has a name, so I have to use "the sister" and "the brother.") It took me weeks to get through those pages, and I had to force myself to come back to the book once I set it down. I am not entirely sure I would not have abandoned ship if I were not doing a buddy read with the lovely and talented Briana https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8...

Then the second half came and it changed completely and I motored through, rapt. Suddenly it was clear that this woman was crammed full of feelings but had no idea how to feel them. That sounds convoluted, but it becomes clear that she has tried to intellectualize the very act of feeling. The sister thinks there is a right way to feel, like there is a right way to play a particular song or solve an equation, and that she just needs to figure out how to do it right. This seemingly emotionless book suddenly became heartbreaking. The sister's desire to connect and to process was just there all the time, and she could not access it. And this was not just with respect to the grief, but to her relationships with her family and her partner and to a large extent her knowledge of herself. The first half of the book suddenly became essential and poignant once I viewed it in the context of the second half.

"Help, I said. I was lying in bed, and said this softly, so that it wouldn't wake Leo. Help, I repeated. I stepped out of bed and walked into the living room, over to the window. Help, I whispered to the window. Outside, a student was bending over her bike. She was searching for something on the ground and almost fell over a few times. Help, I said to the girl with the bike, and the plant on the windowsill, and the Moroccan cushion on the sofa. I picked up the cushion and held it to my face. Help, I whispered."

Strongly recommended, especially for my friends who love very very good prose. ( )
  Narshkite | May 17, 2024 |
This short novel is narrated by an unnamed young woman who has a twin sibling born 45 minutes before she was, but treats her as a younger sister, who he casually refers to as Two. Both twins suffered from a difficult childhood, due to emotionally distant parents that provided for them financially but not spiritually, and that combined with the older twin's difficulty fitting in throughout his school years and his early adulthood led him to have frequent thoughts of suicide, while pushing away his sister, the only person who loved him unconditionally and completely. His sister bore her own emotional trauma from her childhood years, but she wanted nothing more than her brother to live, and to be happy doing so, but her brother found her repeated efforts to help him to be suffocating and crippling.

Each of the twins had unusual fascinations, with the reality television show Survivor, with the infamous Nazi physician Josef Mengele, the "Angel of Death" who performed experiments on the first born of pairs of twins, and survivors of concentration camps, even though none of their relatives were even in any.

The novel consists of very short snapshots, some as short as a sentence or two, which provide a glimpse into each twin in a nonlinear fashion, both during the childhood and young adulthood, his suicide, and how deeply his sister's life was affected, years after her brother died of suicide.

'What I'd Rather Not Think About' is a tragic story, in which the superhuman efforts of one sibling to save the life of another proves fruitless, but it is also filled with small segments of wry humor that keep it from being a morbidly depressing one. Unlike The Details' I found this novel to be a worthy choice for this year's International Booker Prize. ( )
  kidzdoc | Apr 14, 2024 |
3.5 stars

A woman thinks about her late twin brother and their relationships--with each other, with their mother, with their significant others, with themselves. She contemplates his bouts of depression, his struggles, his times of neediness and months away. And she grieves.

There is actually a lot of details here, almost too much thrown together, yet it also makes these characters feel like real people. From sweaters to wood carving to discussions about various seasons of Survivor--nearly everyone here has something they love and stick with through the years. ( )
  Dreesie | Mar 16, 2024 |
Een jonge vrouw die een tweelingbroer heeft, heeft veel steun aan haar broer en ze zijn van plan op hun 28e samen naar New York te verhuizen, maar dan wil hij dat plotseling niet meer en neemt afstand van haar ( )
  huizenga | Sep 19, 2020 |
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Posthuma, JenteAutorautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Timmer Harvey, SarahTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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en hij wist dat Roy van hem gehouden had en dat dat

genoeg had moeten zijn. 

Hij had alleen niets op tijd begrepen.

David Vann, Legende van een zelfmoord (2008)
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I thought about all the love we have inside us and how only a shred of that reaches the people we care about.
My brother believed that all misery began with hope. Or maybe not all misery, he said, but certainly a lot of it. You shouldn't believe that things will get better. As a child you have to make do with what you have, parents who are never around and a sister that is always there, whining.
My brother's life was a series of poor Survivor decisions but the stupidest thing he did was break his alliance with the only other contestant he could trust, the one who would have given him her last grains of rice, who would have carried him on her back to the finish line if it came to that.
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What if one half of a pair of twins no longer wants to live? What if the other can't live without them? This question lies at the heart of Jente Posthuma's deceptively simple What I'd Rather Not Think About. The narrator is a twin whose brother has recently taken his own life. She looks back on their childhood, and tells of their adult lives - how her brother tried to find happiness, but lost himself in various men and the Bhagwan movement, though never completely.

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