Publishers Weekly gave Widows’ Words edited by Nan Bauer-Maglin a great review in the April 1 issue.
Widows’ Words: Women Write on the Experience of Grief, the First Year, the Long Haul and Everything In Between
In this collection, 43 women (including PWcontributing editor Sonia Jaffe Robbins) explore widowhood with authenticity and eloquence. Editor Bauer-Maglin—whose own essay describes life after her husband’s death from pancreatic and liver cancer—observes in her introduction that widows far outnumber widowers, with the U.S. Census Bureau reporting three million widowed men and nearly 12 million widowed women in 2016. She divides the book into four parts: Expectant Widows, Recent Widows, Long Time Widows, and Unique Takes or Digging Deeper, the last containing Patricia Life’s story of being raised by her single mom after her dad died at age 34, and violist Susanne Braham’s of simultaneously losing her husband and her hearing. The writers offer both solace and advice; some find comfort in bereavement groups, with friends, or by journaling. Though many essays are strikingly sad, a few voices offer a lighter outlook: Anne Bernays, married for nearly 60 years, notes that without her mate, she can eat whatever she likes and enjoys a daily cocktail hour. This heartfelt collection should help widows, and widowers as well, feel less alone as they move through a wrenching transition. (May)