About Alice

This is from a review written by Peter Stevenson in the New York Times Book Review about Calvin Trillin's new book "About Alice":

To read a first-person narrative too often involves being clamped in an embrace by a writer who means well but insists on meaning too much. The banality of ego.

And yet.

Sometimes we come across a piece of first-person writing that shocks us back into a restorative innocence vis-à-vis the human heart. The secret of Calvin Trillin’s slim but walloping book, “About Alice,” is that its structure follows the contours of an old-fashioned piece of reportage, using a scrim of detachment to build tension and, when that is pulled aside, revealing an underlying core of enchantment. “About Alice” is an unabashed love letter to Trillin’s wife, Alice, who died in 2001 at the age of 63 while awaiting a heart transplant, after a battle with lung cancer 25 years previously had left her heart weakened by radiation.