After a life marbled with exploration, academia, and domesticity, the writer Valerie Lester retired to a residential hospice and set about enjoying the final act of her life.
She knew just where she wanted to be, with whom, doing what, and she communicated this to her family and friends with clarity and consistency. She died nine weeks later, having engaged in dying with equanimity, curiosity, and even amusement.
In Absolutely Delicious, Valerie's daughter, the writer Alison Jean Lester, describes the roads leading to her mother's cooperation with her terminal disease and her decision to forego treatments that might have prolonged her life, but also might have ruined her death. It is a story that illuminates the benefits of acceptance and the many gifts offered by daring to own one's end.