Reading List & Reviews

This is where I share the books, blogs, articles, research, etc. that I read as I prepare to write blog posts, or just try to figure s&!t out. It won’t all be about grief, loss or death…eventually.

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Once More We Saw Stars by Jayson Greene

In this beautifully written memoir, Jayson Greene tells the story of how he and his wife Stacy experienced the loss of their 2-year old daughter, Greta, when a brick broke off a building 8 stories up and hit her in the head He provides heartbreaking and poignant details of the events and emotions of the experience, from the tragic moment to the birth of his son nearly two years after Greta’s death. I am so in awe of the author’s ability to use beautiful language to express ugly things, to be real and honest- for himself, and in many ways, for others who do not have the words. I love everything about his memoir. Here are just three of the many quotes that resonate with me: “A year and three months since that day, and two days before Harrison is scheduled to arrive, I take turns talking to both of my children. They seem to be in the same place right now—one dead, one unborn—which makes my life on earth feel even more tenuous. We’re right here, Daddy, I keep hearing, but no matter where I walk, I never find them. There are none of my children here, either, I think rounding every corner.”
“Grief, I am learning, is a world you move into—a world of softer voices, gentler gazes, closer observation, heightened compassion.”
“A pall of societal shame hovers over everyone in this club….Children who lose parents are orphans; bereaved spouses are widows. But what do you call parents who lose children? It seems telling to me there is no word in our language for our situation. It is unspeakable, and by extension, we are not supposed to exist.”

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Modern Loss: Candid Conversation About Grief. Beginners Welcome.
by Rebecca Soffer and Gabrielle Birkner

This book was inspired by the Modern Loss website of the same name. The website is amazing all on its own. The creators refer to it as “a place to share the unspeakably taboo, unbelievably hilarious, and unexpectedly beautiful terrain of navigating your life after a death. Beginners welcome.” The book iincludes of over 40 contributors sharing their perspectives on loss in beautiful, shocking, hilarious and provocative ways. Just like the website, there are several types of work, including essays, stories, illustartions, infogtaphics, and more. My favorite so far (I have skipped around) is a piece about ashes. Theillustrations actually prepared me for what I would see (it’s not just a pile of ashes) and even made me chuckle in the process. The value of that cannot be understated! Other pieces have brought tears, of course. I have found comfort and connection in the experiences of others through this unique book!

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It’s OK That You’re Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn’t Understand by Megan Devine

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The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
by Bessel van der Kolk MD

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The Next Place by Warren Hanson