Part memoir, part meditation, this book is an exploration of death from an "insider's" point of view. Using the threads of her brother's early death and her twenty years of work in hospice care, Eve Joseph utilizes history, religion, philosophy, literature, personal anecdote, mythology, poetry and pop culture to discern the unknowable and illuminate her travels through the land of the dying. This is neither an academic text nor a self-help manual; rather, it is a foray into the land of death and dying as seen through the lens of art and the imagination.
Rather than relying solely on narrative, In the Slender Margin gains momentum from a build-up of thematic resonances. Joseph writes toward thinking about death and in the process finds the brother she lost as a young girl. She wrote the book as a way to understand what she had seen: the mysterious and the horrific.
Replete with literary allusions and references, from Joan Didion and Susan Sontag to D. H. Lawrence and Voltaire, this is an absolutely absorbing and inspired consideration of how we die and how we deal with it; a profoundly moving and helpful meditation on the mystery that awaits us all.