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Smoke Gets in your Eyes

And Other Lessons from the Crematorium
Narrated by: Caitlin Doughty
Length: 7 hrs and 44 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (600 ratings)

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Summary

From her first day at Westwind Cremation & Burial, 23-year-old Caitlin Doughty threw herself into her curious new profession. Coming face-to-face with the very thing we go to great lengths to avoid thinking about, she started to wonder about the lives of those she cremated and the mourning families they left behind, and found herself confounded by people's erratic reactions to death.

Exploring our death rituals - and those of other cultures - she pleads the case for healthier attitudes around death and dying. Full of bizarre encounters, gallows humour and vivid characters (both living and very dead), this illuminating account makes this otherwise terrifying subject inviting and fascinating.

©2016 Caitlin Doughty (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

Critic reviews

"Unforgettable...a hilarious, poignant and impassioned plea to revolutionise our attitudes to death."(Gavin Francis, Guardian)
"A zingy, fresh and possibly even important book about death...This book might change your life." ( Evening Standard)
"Upbeat, brave and brilliantly, morbidly curious...Important and timely." ( Sunday Times)

What members say

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A great listen!

Recently started watching Caitlin's YouTube videos and was so happy to find that she has written several books.
This books contains the same charm as her videos on YouTube and I am looking forward to listening to more of her work.
Not for the squeamish!

25 of 25 people found this review helpful

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A New Perspective, thank you!

I laughed, I cried, I learnt and I started to feel at peace with my existence and ever impending doom.
My 96yr old Grandad lives with me, and I have lived in fear of one morning waking to find him dead, my fear of his body and what I would do about getting rid of it asap.
After reading Caitlen's book and watching ALL her YouTube videos, I now feel at ease with death, not fearing of the dead body, and comforted with my new found ability to cope with giving him a good passing. I want to wash him where he lies, dress him in his best suit, and be in no such hurry to push him out of sight.
That embalming be completely unnecessary too.
I feel confident that I can lead my loving family through a hard time.
Thank you, and thank you for sharing your life in this book. You are awesome!

50 of 51 people found this review helpful

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A glimpse behind the veil (or shroud)

I found Caitlin's work by stumbling across her Youtube channel. Since then I have devoured her books and found great insight in every one. Her broad knowledge and open minded sensitivity has turned my paralyzing fear of death into something I want to connect with and I encourage others to do so as well.

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

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Smoke gets in your eyes

Witty Funny and 110% honesty would highly recommend very unique look into the taboo world of death thank you for writing this hidden world into a rainbow of light Caitlin .

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Not for the squeamish

If you want to hear about death and the industry it generates in all its (often appalling) detail this is the book for you.
I found the book interesting and really agree with her aim of getting us back into the reality of death, and what happens to our bodies rather than the sanitised version we are sold
Recommend to anyone who isn't squeamish

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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You need to read this

Honestly one of the most enlightening, insightful and honest books I've ever read. Amazing! I also love the fact that Caitlyn read this herself.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Great book

This book really made me think. Through funny anecdotes and thought provoking stories Caitlin made me think about the way we approach death as a Western society. I also really enjoyed the informative aspect of it, learning about other cultures and societies and their approach to death. I cried tears of laughter and of sadness. It was also so well read.

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

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Death Becomes us

loved this so much I binged on it one go. I will definitely go back and listen again.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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My first foray into Audible

This is the first book I purchased on Audible. What a great choice. This is really well done and I really love the subject matter and the passion with which the author narrated it. Really happy I chose this book and I look forward to many more.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Death, I no longer fear ye

The lessons this book has taught me in the 7 day span I have listened to it are going to be immensely important to how I approach my life and death! This book carries the important message that we should accept the inevitable and learn to live with it and appreciate it! Through the way Caitlin tells her story, you can tell there is so much passion behind everything she stands for, there is sadness for things lost but also her approach to the whimsical side of this feared thing... Definitely recommend!!

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • A. B
  • 16-08-18

Very enjoyable, touching and interesting

I enjoyed this honest look at something we are all heading towards - Death

I learnt you can view a Cremation (Witness Cremation) instead of just watch the coffin disappear on a conveyor belt or descend into the podium which would be my choice in cremation attendance of a close loved one.

I laughed and gasped once or twice at the sad situations described. But I mostly felt uplifted and welcome this work as our society is so death averse.
It’s so much healthier to talk about it than live by pretending that death isn’t something you’ll be doing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Cat
  • 03-07-19

Positive Views on Grief and Death

Been following Caitlin on YouTube ever since she popped up on my recommendations. A+! Recommend!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-04-19

It was a great book.

Caitlin has a great voice to narrate audiobooks, I could totally listen to her reading anything.

Her life is so interesting and I hope that she makes more books.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 15-03-19

loved it!

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I feel it was written and performed beautifully.

the content is vivid and thought provoking. I would recommend this book whether you are comfortable with death and it's related processes and rituals or not.
we need to spread death positivity.