Spy of the First Person Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
The final work from the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, actor, and musician, drawn from his transformative last days
In searing, beautiful prose, Sam Shepard's extraordinary narrative has tremendous immediacy and power. It tells in a brilliant braid of voices the story of an unnamed narrator who traces, before our rapt ears, his memories of work, adventure, and travel as he undergoes medical tests and treatments for a condition that is rendering him more and more dependent on the loved ones who are caring for him.
The narrator's memories and preoccupations often echo those of our current moment - for here are stories of immigration and community, inclusion and exclusion, suspicion and trust. But at the book's core, and his, is family - his relationships with those he loved and with the natural world around him.
Vivid, haunting, and deeply moving, Spy of the First Person takes us from the sculpted gardens of a renowned clinic in Arizona to the blue waters surrounding Alcatraz, from a New Mexico border town to a condemned building on New York City's Avenue C. It is an unflinching expression of the vulnerabilities that make us human - and an unbound celebration of family and life.
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|Listening Length||1 hour and 41 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||December 05, 2017|
|Publisher||Random House Audio|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #170,584 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#288 in Metaphysical & Visionary Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#600 in Biographical Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#1,970 in Metaphysical & Visionary Fiction (Books)
Top reviews from the United States
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The image that sticks here is that of an old man sitting on a wrap-around, screened porch, as his physical abilities ebb away. He puts us in the position of someone across the street, watching the old man, gradually coming to understand as much as he can of what is going on. And he puts us in the position of the old man himself, what it’s like to be “unable”.
The final part of the book moves much more toward the factual, as Shepard ventures out, in his wheelchair, for an outing with family and friends. It ends that way, with his two sons, even a bit sentimental but in that spare, Shepard way.
Writing like Shepard’s turns around the tired cliche about a picture being worth a thousand words — its the words that conjure a thousand pictures. When, from across the street, watching the old man on the porch, he says, “There’s no telling how deep the house goes,” you feel how little you see from the outside, how much more there is on the inside of the old man’s life.
And when he says, “Everything’s in my head,” it certainly reads as a comment on his condition, but it was always true of Shepard anyway.
This is a book to read if you appreciate Sam Shepard. It’s not one of his best works, probably not even one of his best works of fiction. But it completes the story.