Insomnia by Marina Benjamin [8/10]

In her slim but punchy memoir “Insomnia,” Marina Benjamin tackles an affliction (or is it? That’s a question she asks) that bedevils many of us, me included. This is not a How-To or praise for a curative process, but a rumination of intelligence and breadth. Exploring philosophy, art, literature, and her own experiences with tackling her sleeplessness. No plot spoilers here but she meanders down a number of fresh, imaginative alleyways, picking away at notions of sleep and the lack of it. Benjamin writes beautifully – insomnia reveals “just sometimes, just maybe, the faintly detectable buzz of a cosmic hum that was there before human beings came into existence and will be there until the end of time.” In the end, she arrives at a conclusion that I think I’d also come to, during my years of reading about insomnia, but a conclusion I had never been able to explicate. Now I can. Highly recommended.

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