The Undertaking by Thomas Lynch
Life Studies from the Dismal Trade

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“[Lynch] brings the lessons of death to life, and turns life and death into art.” —Time Out New York

Here is the voice of both witness and functionary. Lynch stands between “the living and the living who have died” with outrage and amazement, awe and calm, straining for the brief glimpse we all get of what mortality means to a vital species.

About Thomas Lynch

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Thomas Lynch's The Undertaking was a finalist for the National Book Award. He lives in Michigan and Ireland.
Published March 1, 2010 by W. W. Norton & Company. 228 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Literature & Fiction, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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In the high point of these dozen essays, he combines his profession and his vocation, delivering the dedicatory poem for the reopening of the restored bridge to Milford's old cemetery--""This bridge connects our daily lives to them./and makes them, once our neighbors, neighbors once again."" Alre...

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The New York Times

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“The Undertaking,” a memoir of his experiences at Lynch & Sons Funeral Directors, forms the basis of a “Frontline” documentary of the same name to be shown tonight on PBS, and if there is a single trite sentiment in it — about grief, dying, disease, resignation, faith, consolation — it eluded me.

Oct 30 2007 | Read Full Review of The Undertaking: Life Studies...

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Bruce Dixon, former Allegheny County Health Department director, dies at 74 Investigators tracking multiple Pittsburgh police accounts Penguins welcome struggling arch-nemesis Philadelphia to town Pennsylvania returns $50 million lottery payme...

Oct 28 2007 | Read Full Review of The Undertaking: Life Studies...


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Sep 22 1997 | Read Full Review of The Undertaking: Life Studies...

London Review of Books

And while it may be that we assign more equipment or more importance to deaths that create themselves in places marked by initials – ICU being somehow better than Greenbriar Convalescent Home – it is also true that the dead don’t care.

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