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Reviewed by Erin Nicole Cochran for Readers' Favorite
The Mourning Report by Caitlin Garvey is raw with edges of true honesty that you won’t read anywhere else. A non-fiction memoir, Garvey sits her audience down to listen in as she interviews five people who were part of her mother’s passage from life to death. A priest, hospice nurse, hairstylist, estate planner, and funeral director do their best to give her the answers that she seeks. Each no doubt hoping to bring Caitlin Garvey some small bit of peace.
Caitlin Garvey’s The Mourning Report is able to put you in the center of what it feels like to lose someone too soon and to a debilitating illness. It also takes us on the journey of Garvey’s own recovery process from her days spent in a psychiatric facility. The strength and courage that Garvey exudes go beyond awe-inspiring. Her candor throughout is another connecting thread that draws the reader into her words; she doesn’t sugarcoat or exaggerate, and anyone that is human responds to that kind of voice. One of the instances that pulled me in and rang so true was on page 37: “Spirituality is strange because it’s invisible. You have to feel it. At that moment, I feel something, too. I feel warm…” There were many times that Garvey’s writing overtook me. And I honestly can’t tell you how many times I was overcome by emotion. Too many to count. All I know is that you will be able to understand grief more in depth and in almost every form that it can possibly take when you finish reading Caitlin Garvey’s The Mourning Report.