Lights for the Path
A Guide Through Grief, Pain and Loss
by Madeleine Davies
This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Pub Date 21 Jul 2020 | Archive Date 20 May 2020
Madeleine was nine when she first realised that people could die; she was reading a book where the character lost a parent. Little did she know then that her own mother would die just three years later, changing her world forever.
Over 20 years later, she can still remember the loneliness that surrounded her. It’s what prompted her to write this book: a guide for coping with the loss of a loved one. Bringing together stories of loss, advice from doctors, counsellors, authors and others as well as
Madeleine’s own experience, this book offers practical tips and incredible comfort, telling readers everywhere: you are not alone, and you will find your way.
Average rating from 13 members
This book provided some healthy tips for finding your way back to ‘normality’ after losing a loved one and I found that it was quite appealing and intriguing. Reading stories from other people and also facts from qualified counsellors helped stitch this piece together and I found it quite engaging.
We often think that losing a parent is something that happens to us later in life, so a book about this loss aimed at teenagers may seem quite niche. However, the statistics presented show us that it's sadly not as rare as we may think and there is absolutely a need for a book that speaks to teens with clear, honest, compassion; that doesn't patronise; that recognises just how many possible ways grief can manifest itself. The real surprise for me though was, although it addresses its young audience perfectly, it actually speaks beyond any barriers of age or category of grief. Death touches all our lives at one point or another and I quickly found myself having a conversation with this book - recognising my own emotions in the shared stories of others, and as my reflections created my own questions I found that they too were addressed in the chapters that followed. Structured beautifully with the author's openness of her own experiences, this book also has a wealth of different voices encouraging us through the different chapters, different bereavements, and different reactions discussed. In a society that often tries to avoid discussions of death, this book does not shy away from any cause or any consequence of death. Although clear to stress it is not a "how to" book on grief, the nuggets of advice, the additional materials seamlessly referenced and cleverly drawn upon throughout, combined with the authentic contemplations of those interviewed, provide practical strategies as well as acknowledging the reader's own circumstance. Adding in questions of faith seems inevitable in light of the author's personal story, but it is also essential as death unites the majority of us in wondering what comes next - whether we are arriving at the question with a steadfast faith, from a place of uncertainty, or with no faith at all. The natural, gentle way in which this is skilfully woven in to the book allows anyone from any background to engage with the question. With a call to be kind, to be accepting, and to be honest, this book meets its aims of helping those teenagers who have lost, or are losing someone they love. It is also a perfect resource for a parent, friend, youth worker, or anyone who is on the other side of the situation and wants to understand a little more in order to prepare or support someone who is grieving. And it speaks truth to all of us as we travel our own paths, enabling us to find our way a little easier as we look to the hopeful lights of those who have gone before us and walk alongside us now.
An engaging book that discusses the paths and questions that follow grief, pain and death. For many this is very relatable, and something we will all come to witness and feel some day. This book provides that sense of normality to the thoughts and considerations that may be made in relation to death and moving on. I do believe this book will help others who are struggling or wanting to find a sense of connection with someone else who has face something similar to them. I liked the use of referencing to other books that deals with death and grief. It also relied a lot on religion which although I'm not religious, it did give that sense of comfort that I think others will get more from.
A beautifully written and thought-provoking read that looks at grief, loss and pain. It identifies and addresses the questions that we are sometimes too scared to ask out loud. But what it makes this book stand out is the message it conveys to the reader: You are not alone!
I do believe this book will help others who are struggling or wanting to find a sense of connection with someone else who has face something similar to them. Whole review to come once the book is published **Thankyou Netgalley and publisher for approving my request**.
<b>Relevant. Subjective. Not for everybody</b>. Death... We seem to be having a lot of it around us lately, huh? Perhaps this why "Light of the Path" feels so relevant and on point. Grief is a very emotional topic. There's no right or wrong way to talk about it as it touches all of us quite differently. And this is why the core message of Madeline Davies' book might get lost. As someone touched by grief multiple times I feel sufficiently equipped to give advice to people who need consoling in this time. But I also know, there's no single way of dealing with grief. The author talks about her experiences in a very enlightening way. But I could help but think that there is no "one size fits all" solution to the pain of losing a loved one, as not all deaths are equal. They are harrowing and emotionally taxing, but we deal with each loss differently. As Jay Neugeboren said: "A child who loses his parents is called an orphan. There is no word for a parent who loses a child." And equally, there is no way to describe a person who loses a sibling or the closest friend. The pain of loss is not a universal feeling, but unfortunately, this is how the author seems to be treating this subject. <b>Language and the message of hope</b> Having said that, Madeline Davies speaks in a beautiful, comforting way. The language she uses is emotional but relatable, and the tips for 'returning to normality' are well thought out and, given the sensitive nature of the subject, extremely considerate. The author talks very openly about her personal experiences. Be she does in a very matter-of-factly way. She is in no way preachy. She's not trying to be sanctimonious. But very human. Why three stars? The religious aspect of the book is something that got completely lost on me. This is what in my opinion lets the book down. The general consensus seems to be that grief can be managed as long as one has one's faith. This is why I feel the non-religious readers will not be as receptive to the book as these who have strong beliefs. Again, religion and the take on the afterlife are extremely subjective. Intimate even. The notion that faith is the answer to the complexities of grief feels somewhat uncomfortable. Lights for the Path: A Guide Through Grief, Pain and Loss if a nicely written anecdotal memoir which many will find helpful on the basic level of dealing with a loss. It will bring a certain degree of comfort, but won't prepare you to deal with grief.
I think this book was well written. I have not dealt with a loss of a parent but I can only imagine the grief and how troubling it can be readjusting to life. The character had to grow up and mature at such a young age for her siblings and it made me realize how many children must go through that process when one of their parents or both parents are absent. It almost didn’t sound like fiction to me because of how well written it was.
I received this book as an advance reading copy from NetGalley, and I’m so glad I requested it. I only wish that this book had been around for me a few years ago. Although aimed primarily at teenagers who have experienced loss, I think this book is valuable for any age range, I certainly found it so helpful to think about the ways I’ve been experiencing and ‘dealing with’ my grief over the last few years, and I think it would be helpful for anyone else in that situation. “We were not made for a life narrowed by fear, but one lived with courage, in the knowledge that ultimately, God has conquered every darkness it contains.” The author has personal experience of the worst kind of loss, losing her mother as a young child, and along with her own experiences, she also talks to other people who have experienced losses of their own, whether sudden or expected, and while these stories are heartbreaking, they really help you to realise that you’re not alone and what you’re feeling is not unusual or wrong. The writing style was very relatable, perfect for teenagers, but also full of emotion, not afraid to shy away from talking about the hard stuff, like most people do when talking about grief. Written from a religious perspective, the book may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I loved how the author talked about how God sees us and is with us in our grief. “God sees our bruises, even if others don’t, and doesn’t ask anything of us at this time. He doesn’t promise us that bad news will never come to our door, but he does promise to be with us, always.” As well as people’s stories, the book is filled with practical tips for helping you find your way to a new normal after experiencing a loss, even though things feel like they may never be normal again. This book is filled with comfort and hope and the reassurance that you’re not alone, even if you’re not experiencing your grief in the same way as everyone else. “Only you can do your journey through grief”
4 stars I dont know what to say but just want to share the amount of grief I have for this book was beyond mind. Loneliness is such an important factor which can lead to depression. adored the storyline of this book and the suspense of the book as I don't really read this type of genre. Thank you for approving this arc! Highly recommend you to pick this up I never expected this from a middle grade book!
A beautifully written, helpful and hopeful book that I would have loved to have when I was younger, trying to help my best friend navigate her loss.
Lights For The Path by Madeleine Davies is an invaluable book for younger audiences (young adult/middle grade) who are going through tough times, this book would be so incredibly helpful for those who have lost someone and are struggling, and just don't understand their loss - bereavement can be a really difficult topic to tackle with younger audiences but Lights For The Path does it so well. Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with an advanced readers copy in exchange for an honest review.