Books About Death

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Introduction: The permanent ending of vital processes or tissues.

1. Life After Life: by Raymond A Moody: Written by psychologist Raymond Moody in 1975, this book talks about the people the author interviewed who had near death experiences.

2. Stiff: The Curious Life of Human Cadavers: by Mary Roach: The author gives us first hand information on the history of the use of cadavers and explores the ethical and moral issues related to the topic. She puts each chapter’s content into a historical description of the ways of using a cadaver, which she is about to witness.

3. The Tenth Good Thing About Barney: by Judith Viorst:This is a simple story narrated in the first person by a child whosecat Barney has just died. The author covers the emotions a person feels from the loss of a beloved pet and addresses the question of why a living thing dies.

4. Nana Upstairs and Downstairs: by TomiedePaola: A non-fiction book written in 1975, Nana Upstairsdeals with the concept of death. The story is told from the perspective of little Tommy, who visits his grandmother and great-grandmother every Sunday. When his great-grandmother dies, his family comforts him.

5. Goodbye Mousie: by Robbie Harris: This beautifully told story by award winning author Robbie Harris will bring tears to the eyes. When a small boy is told that his pet mouse just died, he cannot come to terms with his loss. However, slowly and gradually, with the support of his family, he accepts the fact that his little mousie is no more.

6. Life after Death: by Deepak Chopra: The author tells us through his book that there is life after death and that there is evidence of the same. He says that the world beyond is not detached from the real world, but is an impassable wall.

7. The Year Of Magical Thinking: by Joan Didion: Published in 2005, this book was acclaimed as the official book of mourning. The book is the compilation of the events that took place in the author’s life following her husband’s death.

8. The Dead Bird: by Margaret Wise Brown: A group of children find a dead bird in a garden and give it a ceremonial burial of sorts. Every day, the children visit it and sing to it and place fresh flowers on its grave.The book introduces the concept of death to children, who tend to have a natural interest in learning about it.

9. Dog Heaven: by Cynthia Rylant: Many people who are close to their pets, especially dogs, feel the same grief as they would if a human relative died. It is often saidthat a dog is a man’s best friend, and the author comforts all dog lovers who have lost their furry friends though illustrations that depict a different kind of heaven where dogs are running around on green grass and are fed on delicious dog biscuits.

10. Elsewhere: by Gabrielle Zevin: The general presumption regarding death is that it is the end of life on earth and a beginning in heaven, as we believe in life after death. Here, Liz, the main character in the book, has been killed in a hit and run road accident and her existence takes an unexpected turn. In Elsewhere, inhabitants become younger, dogs and humans communicate and new relationships are built and interfere with the existing ones on earth. A truly exceptional novel that brings hope to those who feel life has ended after death.

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