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Called Back: My Reply to Cancer, My Return to Life

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Called Back: My Reply to Cancer, My Return to Life Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In her intensely personal and insightful memoir, Mary Cappello wonders aloud for us what breast cancer awareness really makes us aware of, and responds as if for the first time to the deceivingly simple command: tell me what you're feeling. Unable to eat on chemotherapy, Cappello feasts on the paintings of Marsden Hartley, yearns in the tradition of Emily Dickinson and Gertrude Stein, keeps company with Marcel Proust, and lets queer artists tease her back to life. Called Back looks through the lens of cancer to discover — often with humor — new truths about intimacy and essential solitude, eroticism, the fact of the body, and the impossibility of turning away.

Review:

"Ezra Pound said a writer has to 'make it new' and Cappello has done that rare feat. Cancer books have become a genre that nobody wants to read, except this book. Read this book." Patty Dann author of Mermaids, and of The Goldfish Went on Vacation: A Memoir of Loss (and Learning to Tell the Truth About It)

Review:

"With precision, passion, wit, and a poet's eye for the incongruous and devastating — that is to say, the human — [Cappello] has written a book that will open your eyes and touch your heart." J.D. McClatchy, editor of The Yale Review, author of Mercury Dressing

Review:

"Cappello makes stunning connections between literature, art, her life, medicine, cancer. A brilliant book." David Shields, author of The Thing About Life is One Day You'll Be Dead, and Reality Hunger

Review:

"I loved the precision and passion with which this book about facing mortality attends to the particulars of being alive — both in the body and in language." Jan Clausen author of If You Like Difficulty, and From a Glass House, and Apples and Oranges: My Journey through Sexual Identity

Synopsis:

Written in a wholly original voice, at once sensuous and intelligent, Called Back is a cancer memoir for the 21st century.

Synopsis:

A candid lesbian cancer memoir told with the intelligence and humor of Rachel Maddow

Synopsis:

Mary Cappello's Called Back shimmers on the page. Ezra Pound said a writer has to ‘make it new’ and Cappello has done that rare feat. Cancer books have become a genre that nobody wants to read, except this book. Read this book. Called Back is exquisite.”—Patty Dann author of  Mermaids, and of The Goldfish Went on Vacation: A Memoir of Loss (and Learning to Tell the Truth About It)

“There is no scarier moment than when the doctor looks at his feet, clears his throat, and mutters that you have cancer. The earth opens under you. After a while, most patients summon a remarkable courage to confront the relentless disease and the rugged cures. But few have summoned the clear-eyed, large-hearted intelligence that Mary Cappello has to describe the experience in harrowing, redemptive detail. With precision, passion, wit, and a poet’s eye for the incongruous and devastating—that is to say, the humanshe has written a book that will open your eyes and touch your heart…Called Back is an astonishing literary achievement.”—J.D. McClatchy, editor of The Yale Review, author of Mercury Dressing

“The momentum of Called Back…derives from [Mary Cappello’s] extraordinarily capacious mind: her intelligence, wit, and emotional candor; the clarity and alertness of her train of thought; the restlessness of her style… Cappello makes stunning connections between literature, art, her life, medicine, cancer. A brilliant book.”—David Shields, author of The Thing About Life is One Day You’ll Be Dead, and Reality Hunger

“I loved being offered the companionship of Cappello’s feeling mind… I loved her insistence on taking everything in, not rushing to be ‘healed’ before experience registers. I loved the precision and passion with which this book about facing mortality attends to the particulars of being alive—both in the body and in language.”—Jan Clausen author of  If You Like Difficulty, and From a Glass House, and Apples and Oranges: My Journey through Sexual Identity

In her intensely personal and insightful memoir, Mary Cappello wonders aloud for us what breast cancer awareness really makes us aware of, and responds as if for the first time to the deceivingly simple command: “tell me what you’re feeling.” Unable to eat on chemotherapy, Cappello feasts on the paintings of Marsden Hartley, yearns in the tradition of Emily Dickinson and Gertrude Stein, keeps company with Marcel Proust, and lets queer artists tease her back to life. Called Back looks through the lens of cancer to discover—often with humor—new truths about intimacy and essential solitude, eroticism, the fact of the body, and the impossibility of turning away.

Mary Cappello is the author of two previous books of literary nonfiction, Night Bloom and Awkward: A Detour, a Los Angeles Times bestseller. Her essays and experimental prose appear in such places as The Georgia Review, Salmagundi, Southwest Review, and American Letters and Commentary, and they have been awarded the Bechtel Prize for Educating the Imagination from Teachers and Writers Collaborative, the Lange-Taylor Prize from Duke University’s Center for Documentary Studies, and Notable Essay of the Year citations in The Best American Essays. A former Fulbright Lecturer at the Gorky Literary Institute in Moscow, Russia, Cappello is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Rhode Island.

About the Author

Mary Cappello is the author of two previous books of literary nonfiction, Night Bloom and Awkward: A Detour, a Los Angeles Times bestseller. Her essays and experimental prose appear in such places as the Georgia Review, Salmagundi, Southwest Review, and American Letters and Commentary, and they have been awarded the Bechtel Prize for Educating the Imagination from Teachers and Writers Collaborative, the Lange-Taylor Prize from Duke University's Center for Documentary Studies, and Notable Essay of the Year citations in the Best American Essays. A former Fulbright Lecturer at the Gorky Literary Institute in Moscow, Russia, Cappello is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Rhode Island.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Your Memoir Mentor, January 23, 2011 (view all comments by Your Memoir Mentor)
Award-winning author Mary Cappello is not only a unique poet, she’s a trenchant activist—the kind of artist that makes you see something you thought you knew very well as if for the first time.

The title, "Called Back," comes from the tombstone and last words of Emily Dickinson. The book’s jacket cover makes an x-ray morph into an impossibly beautiful flower of sorts. Will it bloom or whither? We cannot tell. Thus, before the reader even opens the book to read page one, she encounters the way this gifted writer thinks, feels and sees the world after hearing that she’s been diagnosed with breast cancer.

Learning that you have cancer would wake up anyone but Cappello turns this “journey” in to a wake up call for her readers. Inspired by the way she frames her experience of being “called back” after her previous breast exam, we learn more about the world not only in and around her but in and around all of us. We cannot help but feel with her as she is handled in all kinds of ways—frightening, infuriating and at times with tender care.

"Called Back" is unlike any other book about “living with cancer”—there’s no “cancer is a gift” message, no search for a new age, karmic cause, nor is there any romance with corporate pink ribbon “activism” toward “cancer awareness.” What does cancer awareness even mean or produce?

As author Megan Sullivan says, “'Called Back' is for all of us—those of us who do not have cancer, those of us who do, and those of us who will someday.”
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Product Details

ISBN:
9781593501501
Subtitle:
My Reply to Cancer, My Return to Life
Publisher:
Alyson Books
Author:
Cappello, Mary
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Women's Studies - General
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Diseases - Cancer
Subject:
Biography-Literary
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20091001
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
220
Dimensions:
8 x 5.2 x 0.6 in 7 oz

Related Subjects

Biography » General
Biography » Literary
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Cancer
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine

Called Back: My Reply to Cancer, My Return to Life
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 220 pages Alyson Books - English 9781593501501 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Ezra Pound said a writer has to 'make it new' and Cappello has done that rare feat. Cancer books have become a genre that nobody wants to read, except this book. Read this book." Patty Dann author of Mermaids, and of The Goldfish Went on Vacation: A Memoir of Loss (and Learning to Tell the Truth About It)
"Review" by , "With precision, passion, wit, and a poet's eye for the incongruous and devastating — that is to say, the human — [Cappello] has written a book that will open your eyes and touch your heart."
"Review" by , "Cappello makes stunning connections between literature, art, her life, medicine, cancer. A brilliant book."
"Review" by , "I loved the precision and passion with which this book about facing mortality attends to the particulars of being alive — both in the body and in language." Jan Clausen author of If You Like Difficulty, and From a Glass House, and Apples and Oranges: My Journey through Sexual Identity
"Synopsis" by , Written in a wholly original voice, at once sensuous and intelligent, Called Back is a cancer memoir for the 21st century.
"Synopsis" by ,
A candid lesbian cancer memoir told with the intelligence and humor of Rachel Maddow
"Synopsis" by ,

Mary Cappello's Called Back shimmers on the page. Ezra Pound said a writer has to ‘make it new’ and Cappello has done that rare feat. Cancer books have become a genre that nobody wants to read, except this book. Read this book. Called Back is exquisite.”—Patty Dann author of  Mermaids, and of The Goldfish Went on Vacation: A Memoir of Loss (and Learning to Tell the Truth About It)

“There is no scarier moment than when the doctor looks at his feet, clears his throat, and mutters that you have cancer. The earth opens under you. After a while, most patients summon a remarkable courage to confront the relentless disease and the rugged cures. But few have summoned the clear-eyed, large-hearted intelligence that Mary Cappello has to describe the experience in harrowing, redemptive detail. With precision, passion, wit, and a poet’s eye for the incongruous and devastating—that is to say, the humanshe has written a book that will open your eyes and touch your heart…Called Back is an astonishing literary achievement.”—J.D. McClatchy, editor of The Yale Review, author of Mercury Dressing

“The momentum of Called Back…derives from [Mary Cappello’s] extraordinarily capacious mind: her intelligence, wit, and emotional candor; the clarity and alertness of her train of thought; the restlessness of her style… Cappello makes stunning connections between literature, art, her life, medicine, cancer. A brilliant book.”—David Shields, author of The Thing About Life is One Day You’ll Be Dead, and Reality Hunger

“I loved being offered the companionship of Cappello’s feeling mind… I loved her insistence on taking everything in, not rushing to be ‘healed’ before experience registers. I loved the precision and passion with which this book about facing mortality attends to the particulars of being alive—both in the body and in language.”—Jan Clausen author of  If You Like Difficulty, and From a Glass House, and Apples and Oranges: My Journey through Sexual Identity

In her intensely personal and insightful memoir, Mary Cappello wonders aloud for us what breast cancer awareness really makes us aware of, and responds as if for the first time to the deceivingly simple command: “tell me what you’re feeling.” Unable to eat on chemotherapy, Cappello feasts on the paintings of Marsden Hartley, yearns in the tradition of Emily Dickinson and Gertrude Stein, keeps company with Marcel Proust, and lets queer artists tease her back to life. Called Back looks through the lens of cancer to discover—often with humor—new truths about intimacy and essential solitude, eroticism, the fact of the body, and the impossibility of turning away.

Mary Cappello is the author of two previous books of literary nonfiction, Night Bloom and Awkward: A Detour, a Los Angeles Times bestseller. Her essays and experimental prose appear in such places as The Georgia Review, Salmagundi, Southwest Review, and American Letters and Commentary, and they have been awarded the Bechtel Prize for Educating the Imagination from Teachers and Writers Collaborative, the Lange-Taylor Prize from Duke University’s Center for Documentary Studies, and Notable Essay of the Year citations in The Best American Essays. A former Fulbright Lecturer at the Gorky Literary Institute in Moscow, Russia, Cappello is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Rhode Island.

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