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Summary

Penguin presents the unabridged downloadable audiobook edition of Grief Works, written and read by Julia Samuel.

Death is the last taboo in our society, and grief is still profoundly misunderstood. So many of us feel awkward and uncertain around death and shy away from talking honestly with family and friends. Grief Works is a compassionate guide that will inform and engage anyone who is grieving, from the expected death of a parent to the sudden unexpected death of a small child, and provide clear advice for those seeking to comfort the bereaved. With deeply moving case studies of real people, stories of loss and brilliantly accessible and practical advice, Grief Works will be passed down through generations as the definitive guide for anyone who has lost a loved one and revolutionise the way we talk about life, loss and death.

©2017 Julia Samuel (P)2107 Penguin Audio Books

Critic reviews

''A profoundly moving book by an extraordinary storyteller - Julia Samuel describes her patients' stories of loss with great sensitivity and fascinating psychological insight. Essential for anyone who has ever experienced grief, or wanted to comfort a bereaved friend.'' (Helen Fielding, best-selling author of Bridget Jones's Diary)
''Fascinating. A wise and compassionate book full of insight and understanding that would help anyone experiencing grief, or those surrounding them. I am so glad this book exists.'' (Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love)
''What an amazing book! I absolutely LOVE it. Intelligent, empathetic, modest, funny, and learned - it's an amazing feat.'' (Rabbi Julia Neuberger)
''A wonderfully important and transforming book - lucid, consoling and wise.'' (William Boyd, best-selling author of Sweet Caress)

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What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Very helpful.

My rock, my lover, my husband who I met when I was 13, 46 years ago died last month. This audible really helped me

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Brilliant

A remarkable book made more remarkable by the author reading it. Expressive, heartfelt, honest and important. I will probably read it again.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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For those grieving or those caring for them

Fantastic exploration of how grief affects people in similar and different ways. Not always easy to hear but always thought provoking and invaluable for those in caring professions and for relatives and friends of those suffering from grief.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Must read

I found Julia's honesty and openness about Grief refreshing and insightful. We don't talk enough about it or prepare ourselves and loved ones. I also found Julia's personal honesty about herself inspirational and how it is so important to be self aware too.
I have brought this book for family and have recommend it to friends .
The book was so easy to listen to .
Thank you Julia

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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excellent book

As a dyslexic breavement counsellor I found the audio book brilliant and informative. Thank you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Brief works

Amazing book, tacels a difficult topic and in-depth knowledge really helps to build an understanding.

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Painful but worthwhile

I am studying counselling and it was hugely beneficial to my understanding; but I feel this is a book that should be read by all ... because at some point in our life we will experience loss and overwhelming grief, it is best to be prepared and welcome it in

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Great insight into how grief counselling works. Not a self help book

I was listening to this book from a perspective of counselling student. I found it very good. Author gives some insight as to how grief works, the impact of unprocessed grief, the process of building rapport with her clients and obstacles that can get in the way. Overall I found this book invaluable insight into what happens in grief counselling, behind closed doors.

I wouldn’t attempt to be listening to this immediately after loss myself though. I personally don’t think it can be used as a self help book. It’s sort of book to familiarise yourself with if you want to help others.

I found authors manner of reading a bit monotonous and depressing at the beginning, but now I actually can’t imagine it read in any other way or by anybody else. Tentativeness, warmth and care really shines through.


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Very insightful

I am hoping to become a volunteer for the charity Cruse Who offer support to bereaved people. I have found this book very interesting and insightful and would recommend it to anyone interested in counselling and or supporting a friend who is grieving.

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  • RICK
  • 11-05-17

some good information, but...

Would you try another book from Julia Samuel and/or Julia Samuel?

The author clearly has a great deal of empathy and sympathy for the bereaved. The book presents a broad range of clinical studies based on her actual clients who have lost family members, and in some cases, people in the painful process of facing death themselves.

I lost my dear wife almost 2 years ago, but I am still seeking help to deal with that. While I found some useful, relatable information here, be warned that many of the case studies are so heartbreaking this book is just as likely to trigger bad associations as it is to help you to heal. At times, the book wanders from the first-person memoir to self-help, to an approach so clinical it seems to be intended for other therapists. Her delivery does not help - though a jaunty speaking style would not be appropriate given the subject matter, Ms (Dr?) Sameul's soft, emotionless voice is so cold, it makes me think that she herself has been (understandably so) traumatized by her years of working with the bereaved. All this considered, I would still recommend the book, but suggest the written form would be a better choice, as you can skim through some of the truly heartbreaking stories and seek out the ones you find best relate to your own loss. And I would recommend it for clinicians as well.

My dear wife was a wonderful psychotherapist - it's not without irony that I would have suggested she read it herself. If you are curious about this book because you have lost a loved one, my heart goes out to you. Stay active - don't get lost in your own darkness - don't wait for friends to ask what they can do - reach out for the help you need or the quicksand of grief will be too hard to pull yourself out. How we experience grief is a deeply personal thing - there is no right or wrong way to work through it. Find what works for you. As my dear wife would tell her clients, "If nothing changes, nothing changes." It seems insurmountable at first, but find something every day that allows out to feel like you are moving forward.

Stay strong.

Would you be willing to try another book from Julia Samuel? Why or why not?

possibly - more likely if she uses another reader next time

Would you be willing to try another one of Julia Samuel’s performances?

no

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

oh hell yeah! An anthology about people losing family to death would be SO entertaining!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful