I really liked this line. For me it carried a tremendous amount of emotion, but I’m not sure it was entirely meant to. Two years ago a dear friend of mine died and the paper had all of seven words to say about it. I wondered back then how a man’s life could be boiled down to seven words.
In the story, Hannah Schneider has just been found dead (either murdered or suicide, but in either case traumatic – by hanging with electrical cord) and the main character, Blue, is reading the obit. Pessl writes,
“Instead, according to the Pack, Hannah had simply “passed”; she’d been playing poker and decided not to take another card.”
We don’t deal with death well, as a culture, and I think this line says that beautifully.