The Mourning Report
Two years after her mother’s death from breast cancer, Caitlin, then 20 years old, was admitted to a psychiatric facility after a suicide attempt. There, a therapist diagnosed her with major depression and anxiety, and she spent time as an inpatient.
Years later, still suffering from grief and depression, Caitlin decided to embark on a “grief journey,” interviewing the people involved in her mother’s dying process: a hospice nurse, a priest, an estate planner, a hairstylist, and a funeral director. If she figured out how they could function after being so close to her mother’s death, then maybe she could learn how to navigate her own life.
Each chapter of The Mourning Report is centered on each interview and the memories, anxieties, and reflections that it stimulated. It asks what it means to “move on.”
My thoughts: This book jumps around in time in its telling of the story. Not necessarily a bad thing, just the choice of the writer, Caitlin Garvey, who shares her extremely painful journey watching her mother pass away from cancer. It details her rough time putting her life back together and moving on after the loss; which some may relate to if they’ve lost someone that close to them. For a young woman like her, there could be no one closer, just as it is for most.
I found the book easy to become involved in and feel a part of. I read it in one go, other than being interrupted by a puppy’s mischief a time or three. I needed the breaks, as I’m the emotional type that tends to go through a lot of tissues reading books like this. I found it really moving and heartfelt. I would suggest it for anyone interested in grief, or memoirs. Advanced electronic review copy was provided by NetGalley, the author Caitlin Garvey, and publisher Homebound Publications for my unbiased review.
Publisher: Homebound Publications – 168 pages
Publication: Oct 6th, 2020
My rating: 4/5 Stars
The Author– Caitlin Garvey is a Chicago-based writer and English professor. She has an MFA from Northwestern University and an MA in English Literature from DePaul University. Her nonfiction has been nominated for multiple awards, including The Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net, and has appeared in The Baltimore Review, Post Road Magazine, The Tishman Review, Little Fiction: Big Truths, Matter Press, Ragazine, JuxtaProse, among others.