The Illumination
  • Published:
    Feb-2011 (Hardcover)
    Feb-2012 (Paperback)
  • Formats:
    Print / eBook / Audio
  • Rating:
  • Pages:
    257
  • Purchase:



From best-selling and award-winning author Kevin Brockmeier: a new novel of stunning artistry and imagination about the wounds we all bear and the light that radiates from us all.

What if our pain was the most beautiful thing about us? In the aftermath of a fatal car accident, a private journal of love notes written by a husband to his wife passes into the keeping of a hospital patient, and from there through the hands of five other suffering people, touching each of them uniquely. I love the soft blue veins on your wrist. I love your lopsided smile. I love watching TV and shelling sunflower seeds with you.

The six recipients -- a data analyst, a photojour­nalist, a schoolchild, a missionary, a writer, and a street vendor -- inhabit an acutely observed, beauti­fully familiar yet particularly strange universe, as only Kevin Brockmeier could imagine it: a world in which human pain is expressed as illumination, so that one's wounds glitter, fluoresce, and blaze with light. As we follow the journey of the book from stranger to stranger, we come to understand how intricately and brilliantly they are connected, in all their human in­jury and experience.
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