All of Us Together In The End
All Of Us Together In The End is a lyrical, elegiac affirmation of the awesome, strange, otherworldly ways our loved ones remain alive to us, even when they are out of reach, by a writer The New York Times calls "irresistible" and "utterly convincing."
All Of Us Together In The End is a lyrical, elegiac affirmation of the awesome, strange, otherworldly ways our loved ones remain alive to us, even when they are out of reach, by a writer the New York Times calls "irresistible" and "utterly convincing."
Vollmer’s family memoir, shimmering with wonder and enchantment, begins with the death of his mother from early-onset Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Soon after, unexplained phenomena (specifically flashing lights and floating orbs) appear in the woods surrounding his family’s home in rural North Carolina, where his widowed father lives. Formative memories resurge in Vollmer’s mind, particularly from his childhood in the church of Seventh-day Adventism, hastening self-reexamination and reckoning. A retired geology professor corresponds with him about “ghost lights,” which supposedly occur more in North Carolina than any other American state. An eccentric shaman who lives in Spain administers transcendental psychotherapy to him over Zoom. And Jolene emerges, a woman endeared for decades to Vollmer’s father, holding secrets to their family’s past.
Praise for All Of Us Together In The End
“If I had witnessed what Matthew Vollmer has seen, I think I would, like him, resist the mystery; that is, I, too, would think it was too good to be true, too good to be believed. The world owes us nothing yet gives us everything, the lights seem to proclaim, and yet. Vollmer restores the mortal body to its shine, existence to its sublime and brilliant mystery. All of Us Together In The End will make you reckon with your ghosts, and will teach you exactly what matters in the end. I am a more aware witness now of the brightness of this world, and I have to thank Vollmer’s spiritual memoir for allowing me to see it and, consequently, believe it.”
—Jenny Boully, author of Betwixt & Between and The Body
“All of Us Together In The End is Vollmer’s best work to date. The book showcases his keen awareness for the very present (pandemic, institutional racism, Zoom, TikTok,) and also his ability to gather the weird, mystical, and poignant threads of his life to tell the engrossing story of how loss can lead to transformation and how his family history comes to inform his path as a seeker. Vollmer can do funny and tender and mystical all at once in fluid prose that gets me thinking deeply about the tradition of American storytelling. Like Mark Twain, he collects narrative ephemera: the kooky, the folkloric, the lingua franca of the nation to narrate an elegiac story of a man evolving through grief by the gleam of a mysterious but vital light.”
—Carmen Giménez Smith, author of Be Recorder