Book review: ‘A Carnival of Losses’ by Donald Hall

Notes nearing ninety.

A Carnival of Losses

A Carnival of Losses is the follow-up to the late American Poet Laureate Donald Hall’s wonderful and funny essay collection Essays After Eighty. As its subtitle makes clear, this final collection was written as Hall approached his ninetieth birthday. Sadly, he was never to get there, dying a few months short of the big nine-O.

Although not as funny as its predecessor, this collection is another highly entertaining read. It is sadder than the earlier collection, but contains many entertaining anecdotes, particularly about Hall’s fellow poets.

Highly recommended. But read Essays After Eighty first.

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By Richard Carter

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. Website · Facebook · Twitter · Newsletter · Book

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This is a lovely book. I really enjoyed it—partly, I suspect, because I have a similar sense of humour to that of the author and also because I am generally curious about life. [...] The author is good at explanations. I like that. Eclectic—that’s what this book is. And rambling—in a good way (after all, these are walks). I liked it. I hope Richard Carter is writing another volume of his thoughts. I’ll buy it.
Mark Avery, author and former director of conservation at the RSPB, Sunday Book Review

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