Book Review: The New Face of Grief

Book: The New Face of Grief

Author: Katie Rössler

Genre: Contemporary, Self-Help, Non-fiction

Review Copy: Reedsy Discovery

Available at: Amazon.in

Recommended: Must Read!

The New Face of Grief is a relevant book because grief is omnipresent in human life. Through the global pandemic, grief is a prevailing emotion. This work aims to help us not to make grief omnipotent in our life.

The author, Katie Rössler, highlights important concepts that we relegate to the background. Grief is not always about death, illness, and separation. Grief abounds in more sub-categories than we realize and accept. For example, a change of location, getting married, or changing jobs may cause grief and it is not just a passing emotion. At the onset, she sets the pace, “The reality, dear reader, is that the journey of grief cannot be rushed.”

The book is full of wisdom, neatly laid down in concise chapters. Initially, I felt the author unnecessarily seemed to justify writing this book because of her personal traumatic experiences. Once you get past that there are real grief stories, too. You find a comprehensive yet deep inquiry into everything within and beyond grief. It touches on ignored topics like humor as a tool to tackle grief, or when grief becomes a family matter.

The New Face of Grief

This book is relevant for those who want to understand and tackle their grief and for caretakers or loved ones to learn how to help a grieving person. While judging and shaming are not expected, telling someone to pull themselves out of “the pit” is also not acceptable. Grief-handling is a delicate and mostly long process that is shrouded in diverse social and emotional inhibitions. However, grief should not be hampered by guilt or the demands to spur back to normal. There are no rules of grief.  

The author addresses important aspects of grief that may lead to addiction, depression, and physical and mental ailments. There is power in “ugly crying” and there are “deeper lessons” in the process of grieving. Part 3 of the book is engrossing as it highlights the manifestations of grief in both physical and mental terms. In the end, she talks about the tools of healing.

This book is a succinct treasure trove of all grief-related questions and challenges. I recommend this as a handbook for yourself and also your loved ones. We cannot face what we do not understand. When we find a simple guide, like in the pages of this book, the journey may feel less lonely and far less intimidating.

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