Malachy McCourt Death Need not be Fatal - Book Review

Imagine the stares I received at the pool this summer as I read Death Need Not be Fatal while my children swam. I blame the cover. Seriously - a curiously happy old man lying in a coffin - and the words death. But hey, that's how I roll. Weird books, weird habits, weird life.

Just by looking at the book, I had no idea what it would be about. Death is a broad subject. After the first few pages, it was clear that the book was written by an old guy - the guy on the cover! I instantly wondered why someone would write a book in their 80s/90s then just as instantly realized "why not?"

Life is not just about making/spending money. It's actually about the doing. Doing things, creating, experiencing. That's what life is really about - and that's what you'll find in this book. A history of the author's "doings." Plus the author's views on death and a few of the times the death of others have changed his story.

The book is frank and I believe every word to be true - even after reading about the author's celebrity and political associates!  Aside from the celebrity interactions, I found much in common with the author: almost as if our childhood stories were one in the same. I have no idea my actual heritage, but after reading this book, I'm fairly certain my spirit is Irish.

Life is not just about making/spending money. It's actually about the doing.

Malachy's story is interesting, sad, and redeeming. It's sad in a "that's life" sort of way. There was fame and fortune, poverty and loss, sickness and health. In short - he lived. I am glad to have read his story and I will remember parts of it for a long time. I've also been inspired to finally see the movie Angela's Ashes.  In case you didn't know (as I didn't!) Malachy was actually a tv star and brother of the author who wrote Angela's Ashes. I had no idea because I don't follow celebrity glop and even though I remember seeing advertisements for Angela's Ashes - I thought it was about the holocaust and since I am filled up on sadness from that era, I skipped it.

The author has experienced a lot of death in his life. As we age, we all start to accumulate a death roster. Every time is different, yet the same. This is a good book to explore that topic - life and death, living and dying. I would recommend it to anyone.

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