Book: She Read to Us in the Late Afternoons


“Spellbinding….Hill writes with great elegance, clarity, and soul.”—LORIN STEIN, Staff Picks, Dec. 1, 2017, THE PARIS REVIEW
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“In this multi-faceted gem of a book, Kathleen Hill, a great reader, pays tribute to the masterworks of literature which have inspired her, and uses her prodigious memory and her lucid prose style to celebrate love and compassion as the most noble and enduring of human qualities.”—COLM TÓIBÍN, author of Brooklyn and House of Names“In these gorgeous pages Kathleen Hill explores her own life, and the lives of family and friends, in the company of various novels. The result is a memoir filled with urgency as she struggles to read the world around her, to understand herself, and others, as deeply as Isabel Archer and Lucy Gayheart. This is a wonderful and profound book.”—MARGOT LIVESEY, author of Mercury: A Novel

“We’ve always believed that books were like a soundtrack to our lives and that our day to day lives stood in the foreground. But this stunning book tells a different and surprising tale: it is our lives that slip into the background, and books, those fabulous books that alter who we are, can become the real face of our lives.”—SANDRA ACIMAN, author of Out of Egypt and Call Me By Your Name

“Here is a book that takes up beauty, longing, genius, and spirit; here is solitary thought, not looking to be answered, even by the thinker: an original book that leaves the reader less alone.”—JEAN VALENTINE, poet, author of Break the Glass

“What a delight this is! Hill captures precisely, beautifully, the tremor of a great book crossing our lives at just the right moment.”—ANDREA BARRETT, author of Archangel and The Voyage of the Narwhal

“Eloquent and searching, Hill’s book explores the strange and wondrous resonances between the read and lived while celebrating reading itself as among the most profoundly transformative of human acts. A thought-provoking memoir about the significance of literature in life.”—KIRKUS REVIEWS  Full review

“A deftly crafted, inherently fascinationg, consistently engaging, informative and thoughtful life story, She Read to Us in The Late Afternoons: A Life in Novels is a compelling read from first page to last and will prove to be especially appealing to all of the bibliophiles amongst us.”—MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW

“…[W]hen you put the book down to change your seat or return to the demands of your own life, you will recall, because you are a reader, too, those books in whose worlds you lived and also the world that surrounded you at the time of those readings, and so your experience of this book will add to all those other weavings and layers of memory that are your life…. As a reader, you will not want to miss this experience.”—P. J. GRATH, bookseller, Dog Ears Books. Blog

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