Written in the wake of the death of celebrated novelist Francisco Goldman's beloved wife, Aura Estrada, Say Her Name is a love story, a bold inquiry into destiny and accountability, and a tribute to Aura, who she was and who she would have been.
Celebrated novelist Francisco Goldman married a beautiful young writer named Aura Estrada in a romantic Mexican hacienda in the summer of 2005. The month before their second anniversary, during a long-awaited holiday, Aura broke her neck while body-surfing. Francisco, blamed for Aura's death by her family and blaming himself, wanted to die, too. But instead he wrote Say Her Name, a novel chronicling his great love and unspeakable loss, tracking the stages of grief when pure love gives way to bottomless pain.
Suddenly a widower, Goldman collects everything he can about his wife, hungry to keep Aura alive with every memory. From her childhood and university days in Mexico City with her fiercely devoted mother to her studies at Columbia University, through their newlywed years in New York City and travels to Mexico and Europe—and always through the prism of her gifted writings—Goldman seeks her essence and grieves her loss. Humor leavens the pain as he lives through the madness of utter grief and creates a living portrait of a love as joyous and playful as it is deep and profound.
Say Her Name is a love story, a bold inquiry into destiny and accountability, and a tribute to Aura, who she was and who she would have been.
"Goldman's colorful, detailed wail of grief is also . . . his determined, lyrical effort to claim his beloved Aura, once and for all, as his own." ---The Los Angeles Times
"Robert Fass's narration is never melodramatic; instead he maintains an even keel throughout---even during the book's most heart-wrenching moments. Fass captures the book's spirit with its gentle mourning for a lost paradise of marital bliss." ---Publishers Weekly Audio Review
"Out of crushing loss and despair, Goldman has forged a radiant and transcendent masterpiece." ---Booklist Starred Review
"The feeling, the memorial incarnation that this book creates, is monumental. Essential for all libraries. This book about tragic death is a gift for the living." ---Library Journal Starred Review
"Goldman calls this book a novel and employs some novelistic techniques...but the foundation is in truth: messy, ugly, and wildly complicated truth." ---Publishers Weekly Starred Review
"The narrative is touched with essential and painful wisdom about love.... A stirring tribute to a loving marriage." ---The Wall Street Journal
"[Goldman] wishes that everyone could stop to remember Aura. In his rich reconstruction of their love of each other, of humor, of life and of language, Goldman has, in effect, granted his own wish." ---The New York Times
"Appropriately, in this novel of death and dying, Goldman writes gorgeous, heartbreaking prose." ---Kirkus Starred Review
"Even after the book ends, the sting of Aura's absence lingers. A–" ---Entertainment Weekly
ReviewNew York Times
's Favorite Novel of the YearThe Guardian
's Book of the Year AudioFile
Earphones Award Winner Kirkus