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From Sun to Sun: A Hospice Nurse Reflects on the Art of Dying

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  90 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Twenty-one people of different ages have one thing in common; they’re within six months of their deaths. They’ve endured the battle of the medical system as they sought cures for their illnesses, and are now settling in to die. Some reconcile, some don’t. Some are gracious, some not. As Nina Angela McKissock, a highly experienced hospice nurse, goes from home to home and w ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published August 4th 2015 by She Writes Press
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Nina McKissock Thank you Pam. It fortified my resolve to speak out and represent those at the end of life. I'm tired of all the fear, paranoia and misinformation peo…moreThank you Pam. It fortified my resolve to speak out and represent those at the end of life. I'm tired of all the fear, paranoia and misinformation people have about this experience and want people to know that emotional, family, and personal healing can occur right to the end. Families are different, love is all different. (less)

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Average rating 4.34  · 
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 ·  90 ratings  ·  26 reviews

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Jul 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I won a copy of this book on Good Reads.

A small percentage of the population of this country has seen someone die; to be there when someone breaths their last breath. Death is something that is behind the walls of the hospital or nursing home. In her book From Sun to Sun, nurse Nina Angela McKissock reflects on the deaths of some of her patients. You see, Nina is a hospice nurse. When someone’s disease has reached the point where doctors cannot do anymore or the patient says “stop, I’ve had enou
Stephen Yoder
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-read
Oh, sweet goodness. This book sits in the common area where devastating and lovely overlap. I thought I could read the last few pages w/o crying yet again, but I was wrong. From Sun to Sun can be avoided by those who are immortal, plus those whose parents and children will never die. Anyone outside of those two categories should read this book. I suppose in the past I have not considered the manner of one's own death to be a political act (in the sense of being empowering), but now I can see how ...more
May 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was such a wonderful, heart warming book. You might think it would be depressing but it is not at all. It is more of a love story. I just hope when I am at the end of my life, I have a nurse like Nina right by my side.
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received this advance reader copy through Goodreads Giveaways.

As someone who works in the medical field (radiation oncology), I wholeheartedly enjoyed reading this book. The insight to Nina's patients' last days make me appreciate the innermost thoughts and stories that come from every last one of us as human beings. The author, Nina, portrays both patients and caregivers in the best light possible, making the reader thrive to be their better self right along with her. Each story in From Sun t
Sandra Clark
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book for those who want to engage with the art of supporting people who are dying. Nina is a hospice nurse, and she takes us through several people's dying experiences and her own experiences supporting them and their surrounding people and environment.

The book reads fast - you want to listen to her tell more stories because of her empathetic voice and her own self exploration throughout. I recommend it for caretakers whether you are in nursing or caring for loved ones.

Hari Brandl
May 08, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I was able to read this book through the GoodReads First Looks program. I was a nurse for more than 40 years and so am able to relate to a lot of Ms McKissock's experiences, though I never worked in a hospice setting. I think the book was well written, entertaining, and uplifting, given the subject. I applaud Ms. McKissock's work, and feel this book is a very valuable addition to the current literature surrounding the move to legitimize alternatives to dying in ICU settings with tubes and medica ...more
Josephine Ensign
Nov 28, 2015 rated it liked it
This would be an excellent book for anyone facing having a family member in hospice care. Very practical, down-to-earth, and honest--with a touch of appropriate humor and lightness. It is an engaging story--or set of stories, although it does verge at times on the overly sentimental.
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
Eh.... Good material to work with, but not very well written and a bit too self-important
Story Circle Book Reviews
Apr 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Nina McKissock drew this oncology/hospice nurse in: "This is my memoir as a hospice nurse for the last fifteen years. It's my belief that the stories will enhance people's understanding that even though there may not be a cure, there can be a great healing within in the dying process." I wanted to immediately offer up a resounding "YES!" I also wanted to immediately share these words with so many people who struggle with the concept of hospice care.

McKissock shares the stories of twenty-one indi
Mary G
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I owe an apology to this thoughtful and passionate author-while rushing through my account and cleaning/updating my reading lists, I unjustly gave a lower star review than this book deserves. I myself, am a nurse, and was interested in reading about hospice care and hearing stories from the field about what it may be like to work in that area of nursing. I started reading the book and with life, was pulled away from it and it rested on my ‘shelf’ staying there for quite awhile-prompting me to fi ...more
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
From Sun to Sun, A Hospice Nurse Reflects on the Art of Dying is a beautifully compiled journey through Nina McKissock’s memories as a hospice nurse. The stories are a captivating illustration of the essences of nursing: meeting each patient with compassion and unknowing; balancing joy with suffering; facing grief, anger, and helplessness with dignity; learning and growing through intuition and experience. The patient is described as a client, a friend, and a teacher. McKissock details the honor ...more
Heather Huberty
Feb 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book articulated the beauty of those involved in end of life care. I was inspired by the authors honesty and dedication to helping her hospice clients thru this critical journey. I wish everyone had a nurse like her. It put in words the many feeling I have shared with my residents and family members while taking this journey.
Murray Greenberg
Jan 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
One of he most heart-warming and incisive books I have read. It purports a visual image of its characters better than can be imagined. The book is emotionally uplifting. BRAVO to the brave and caring author!
Susan Frddrickson
This is a beautiful book about life, love and ultimately healing for the author and for her patients. Thank you Nina for opening your huge heart to us. A must read for all who want to live more fully and love more deeply.
Vicki Loe
Jan 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book is an incredible collection of the author's personal experience with death through her career as a hospice nurse. As the population ages this is a realistic and important illustration of the complexities of the dying process. Plus, it is an interesting and at times, humorous read.
Kathryn Bundy
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir, non-fiction
This thoughtful, truthful book is truly a gem. She recounts the stories of clients and their families, and lessons learned in every instance. She writes with the lyricism of a novelist and the heart of a healer. I highly recommend this book.
Reed Stevens
From the first chapter, this offers powerful for the insight into families waiting outside the last chamber and for us comforted by the wise nurse at our side.
Aug 08, 2016 added it
I very much enjoyed this book. Having dealt with hospice with both my parents I can truly say they are truly Angels It takes a special person to do this type of work
Elena Alvarez Dosil
Nov 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Review originally published at:

I listened to Farewell: Vital End-of-Life Questions last year, and it was a topic that I found more interesting than I initially expected. When I read about this book, I immediately wanted to listen to it too. Not because it is something that affects me right now but I think death is something we should not turn our back on. Knowledge is power.

The book is a collection of short stories, each one about a person dying. Nina car
Aug 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I won From Sun to Sun through a Goodreads giveaway and I'm so glad I did!

McKissock, the author, has a heart like no other. I can't even imagine what all she has been a witness to. She did a wonderful job shedding light on dying. Thank God for people like her!
I received this book as a First Read. It's a nice collection of a couple dozen anecdotes about hospice patients. It was interesting to read about how different people handled death and dying. It's a book that makes you reflect about end of life issues.
Kevin M Reese
Pretty good— until....

I enjoyed the book — until the Italian sexcapade chapter. Geez, what was THAT about? I closed the book and opened another.
Irene Allison
Sep 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: death-and-dying

Once in a while along comes a book that seems to rejig the cells of my soul through its humanity, beauty, and insight. This is such a book.

The stories shared by this caring nurse of the deeply intimate final journeys of her patients are full of the kind of wisdom that will stretch your heart in every direction, allowing you to glimpse the precious nature of what it means to fully embrace the human side of illness, to walk the patient’s way, and to blossom through curiosity and heart into the de
Mar 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A poignant and insightful book by a nurse who has so much wisdom to share.
Sep 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Death needs to be spoken about more openly and the author speaks candidly to her patients and their families about this.
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I found this book to be extremely helpful after losing my father to ALS.
Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez
rated it it was amazing
May 08, 2015
mr d a clay
rated it liked it
Nov 23, 2016
rated it it was amazing
Jul 31, 2020
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Sep 23, 2017
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As a registered nurse, a former recreational pilot, an umpire who "blew the whistle" around the world, and as an insatiably curious person, registered nurse Nina Angela McKissock's memoir brings the reader into her deeply colorful, curious and creative life as a hospice nurse and world explorer. She was featured on the Spirituality Channel’s three-part television series Crossing Over: From Hospice ...more

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