Grief, Loss, Death & Dying
Resources

 email page    print page

All Topic Reviews
A Brief History of DeathA Commonsense Book of DeathA Message from JakieAfter SuicideAfter You'd GoneAfterwardsAliveAll Alone in the UniverseAll Rivers Flow to the SeaAll Seasons PassAnd a Time to DieAt the End of WordsBeing with DyingBequest and BetrayalBereftBeyond GoodbyeBeyond the Good DeathBodies in Motion and at RestCatalystComfortConfessions of a Grieving ChristianContemplative AgingCoping With TraumaCrispinDarwin's WormsDeathDeath and CompassionDeath BenefitsDeath in the ClassroomDeath Is That Man Taking NamesDeath of a ParentDeath's DoorDefining the Beginning and End of LifeDon't Go Where I Can't FollowDriving My FatherDying in the Twenty-First CenturyElegy for IrisErasing DeathEthical WillsEvenings at FiveFacing Death: Elisabeth Kubler-RossFatal AttachmentsFortress of My YouthGhost at the WindowGoing Through Hell Without Help From AboveGood GriefGoodbye RuneGraceful ExitsGrave MattersGrieving for ChildrenHealing ConversationsHello from Heaven!History of SuicideHonoring GriefHonoring the Dead and Facing DeathHow We GrieveI Remain in DarknessI Wasn't Ready to Say GoodbyeIn the Wake of SuicideIt Takes a Worried ManLayoverLearning to FallLiberating LossesLife after LossLiving and Dying WellLosing Mum and PupLossLost in the ForestLove Is a Mix TapeLove That DogMaking Sense of SuicideMars and Venus - Starting Over.Michael Rosen's Sad BookMortal DilemmasNight Falls FastNobody's Child AnymoreOlive's OceanOn Life After DeathOne Last Hug Before I GoOne More WednesdayParting CompanyPeaceful Death, Joyful RebirthR.I.P.Reason's GriefRemembering GeorgySaying It Out LoudSeeing the CrabShooterSome Thing BlackSpeak to MeStandbyStayStill HereSuicidal ThoughtsSurviving HitlerThe Art of LosingThe AwakeningThe Boy on the Green BicycleThe Cambridge Companion to Life and DeathThe Case of Terri SchiavoThe Color of AbsenceThe Dead Fathers ClubThe Death of a ChildThe DisappearanceThe End-of-Life HandbookThe Forgotten MournersThe Healing Journey Through GriefThe Loss of Self: A Family Resource for the Care of Alzheimer's Disease and Related DisordersThe Lovely BonesThe Measure of Our DaysThe Mercy PapersThe MiracleThe Modern Art of DyingThe Other Side of SadnessThe Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of DeathThe ScarThe TravelersThe Trick Is to Keep BreathingThe Truth About GriefThe UndertakingThe Way of TransitionThe Work of MourningTo Die WellTuesdays with MorrieUnderstanding GriefWakeWhat Dying People WantWhen Breath Becomes AirWitWrinklesYoung@Heart

Related Topics
A Message from JakieReview - A Message from Jakie
A Spiritual Journey of Love, Death and Hope
by Michael Weinberger
Sentient Publications, 2006
Review by Dana Vigilante
Jun 13th 2006 (Volume 10, Issue 24)

When I read the back cover of this book I was, I must admit, somewhat apprehensive; after all the major premise of the book is a man's conversations with his newly deceased wife. Sounded a little hokey to me, but being a devout Catholic and an extremely spiritual person, I decided to give it a look.

I read this book, from cover to cover, in the course of a single evening. It was so good that I found it impossible to put down, and it was a shame to finish it so quickly.

Written by Michael Weinberger, a writer and producer in Hollywood, this story chronicles his deep devotion to his wife Jakie and their children. When Jakie is diagnosed with cancer at 45, Michael becomes her devout caregiver. However, Jakie eventually succumbs to the disease and Michael, beside himself with grief, loses his direction in life.

Suddenly, and without warning, a few days after her death Jakie begins to speak to Michael. Surprised, as well as trying to reassure himself that he's not going insane, Michael begins to record his conversations with Jakie. Again I must voice my own skepticism: I'm fairly sure that Michael's voice is the only one that can be heard on the recordings, no doubt asking Jakie question after question, but lacking a reply.

Jakie, according to the book, reassures Michael that the she is in a wonderful place that defies imagination. She goes on to explain that the courses we all take in life are for a reason, and that the amount of love we give to others here on earth will count once we leave. Michael hits the nail on the head when he draws the reader's attention to a Beatles lyric taken from the song Abbey Road, 'The love we take with us when we die is equal to the love we make while we're here'.

In other conversations Jakie tells Michael that the tears he is crying are perfectly normal and that his love for her has not gone unnoticed in heaven. She explains that she is in a constant state of awareness and beauty, and describes the transitional process, when her soul began to leave her body, in glowing terms (a process that, according to Jakie's account, sounds pretty damn good).

The chapters were easy to read, funny, tender, compassionate and sad. Some of the chapter titles are lines taken from Beatles' songs (It Was Twenty Years Ago Today, I Heard the News Today, Oh Boy and There Are Places I Remember, among others).

This book was excellent, and having lost more than a few close friends and family members in the past few years, it was certainly comforting. Written with candor, humor and a lot of tears, Michael Weinberger has done an excellent job. This was not your typical run-of-the-mill book about death, dying and grief written by someone in the medical field. It was exceptionally well-written by a grieving widower, who, with the help of his wife, showed the reader that life, indeed, does go on.

This book is a must-read for anyone who has ever loved and lost, as well as caregivers, hospice workers and those in the field of spiritual bereavement.

Reading this book was as comforting as a cup of hot chocolate on a gray winter afternoon.

 

2006 Dana Vigilante

Dana Vigilante is a hospice educator as well as an advocate for proper end-of-life care and a certified bereavement group facilitator. Currently writing a book based on interviews with terminally ill hospice patients, she divides her time between New Jersey and San Francisco.


Share

Welcome to MHN's unique book review site Metapsychology. We feature over 7700 in-depth reviews of a wide range of books and DVDs written by our reviewers from many backgrounds and perspectives. We update our front page weekly and add more than thirty new reviews each month. Our editor is Christian Perring, PhD. To contact him, use one of the forms available here.

Can't remember our URL? Access our reviews directly via 'metapsychology.net'


Metapsychology Online reviewers normally receive gratis review copies of the items they review.
Metapsychology Online receives a commission from Amazon.com for purchases through this site, which helps us send review copies to reviewers. Please support us by making your Amazon.com purchases through our Amazon links. We thank you for your support!


Join our e-mail list!: Metapsychology New Review Announcements: Sent out monthly, these announcements list our recent reviews. To subscribe, click here.

Interested in becoming a book reviewer for Metapsychology? Currently, we especially need thoughtful reviewers for books in fiction, self-help and popular psychology. To apply, write to our editor.

Metapsychology Online Reviews

Promote your Page too

Metapsychology Online Reviews
ISSN 1931-5716