If you knew how your life was coming to an end, how would you spend your last dime? In The Selfless Act of Breathing, Michael Kabongo seems to have so much to live for but he doesn’t feel that way. Instead of going to therapy, he decides to cash in his life savings and travel to America. Michael’s intention is to end his life when the money is gone.
“Do you ever wish that you could die… but without all of the dying?” he says, “Like, not die, but just cease to exist, disappear, be invisible, every trace of your life, even the memories of you in other people’s hearts and minds, all gone.”
Michael, a Congolese-British teacher in London, has spent his career connecting with his students and trying to make a difference. He endures a loss that affects him deeply. Michael believes that all of the work that he has done to end the disparagement of and violence against Black men in his community has been in vain.
So he travels around the United States meeting interesting people, spending money and counting down the days until his last day.
JJ Bolla is an excellent writer. Every word is like poetry, which makes sense since Bolla is also a poet. The mental health issues and suicidal thoughts are difficult to read about so if you are sensitive – proceed with caution.
If you are interested in issues like mental health and racism, then this might be a book for your TBR list.
Honestly, I think this should be on a list of required reading for Proud Boy members and recruits.
- I received the ebook from NetGalley. This is my honest review. All opinions are my own. Obviously.
I think those of us that are old and dealing with subsequent illnesses are preparing for our death. I am collecting and organizing all the notifications that must be done to make my post death legal necessities as smooth and complete as possible for my children to process. At 73 now, I’m spending my last dime in tiny increments to relish in the things I love and enjoy.