I started this website about a year ago. The primary purpose was to give free information and support on my blog posts for those who are going through the grief journey, and for those wanting guidance to help their friends or loved ones along that difficult path. My book, Courage Road: Your Guide from Grief to Hope, is an extension of this site.
Courage Road is a book I started several years ago. It took much longer to write than I thought it would, but as I went on I grew confident that each adjustment was an improvement. In the end finding a book designer was the trickiest part!
It’s written like a travelers’ guidebook with lots of practical tips and tales.
I am constantly thinking about death, dying, grieving, and grievers because it’s my passion to help people get through their pain in the healthiest way possible. Grief counseling has been my passion for the last 10 years.
Another reason that grief is always on my mind is because it’s a part of our daily lives. Every single day we read a story or hear of someone we know who is ill or has died. I find it heartbreaking every day. And then there are the stories of triumph over heartbreak—but still, it’s all darn sad. Don’t get me going on sad animal stories.
I love to read novels. My sister suggests great ones. Almost every one contains some grief as part of it or whole of it. Some people find it comforting to know that they are not alone in their grief journey.
Here are some suggestions for great grief novels:
Every Last One by Anna Quindlen is about facing the things we fear the most, about “finding ways to navigate a road we never intended to travel.” The descriptions of this mother’s grief are exquisitely articulated, truly beautiful.
Me Before You, and After You by Jojo Moyes are two novels which are much more light-heartened than the above recommendation, and very well written. Yes, the movie is out, but try to read the book first.
The Little Paris Bookshop, by Nina George. This is a gem of a book. Hurry and read it before they make a movie of it. It’s about love and loss and the way back—that age-old theme.
This Old Man: All in Pieces by Roger Angell. He is an acclaimed New Yorker writer and editor who writes from the perspective of his 94 years. Don’t you wonder how an elderly person who has undoubtedly suffered many losses in their lifetime can remain hopeful and vibrant?
H is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald. This is non-fiction and debuted instantly on the NYT bestseller list. To paraphrase the blurb: the young hawk, fierce and feral, mirrors the temperament of the author’s own state of grief after her father’s death, and together they discover the pain and beauty of being alive.
Courage Road is non-fiction, but it’s written in an easy-to-follow style similar to fictional works. When you’re grieving, the last thing you want is to have to concentrate to understand something that’s supposed to be helping. Whether you’re grieving yourself, or know somebody who is, I hope Courage Road gives you the advice and support you need.