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The Hot Young Widows Club: Lessons on Survival from the Front Lines of Grief

(TED Books #23)

4.54  ·  Rating details ·  431 ratings  ·  55 reviews
From the host of the popular podcast, Terrible, Thanks for Asking, comes a wise, humorous roadmap and caring resource for anyone going through the loss of a loved one—or even a difficult life moment.

In the span of a few weeks, thirty-something Nora McInerny had a miscarriage, lost her father to cancer, and lost her husband due to a brain tumor. Her life fell apart.

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Hardcover, 112 pages
Published April 30th 2019 by Simon Schuster/ TED
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4.54  · 
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 ·  431 ratings  ·  55 reviews

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Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
When I was 27 years old, a peer of mine tragically lost her young husband to a heart attack. She had two young children and a life that changed drastically overnight. Her seemingly healthy husband was gone. The first time I saw her after his death, I literally crossed the street to avoid talking to her because I simply didn't know what to say. I've experienced many more deaths since this event, some expected and some not, so I've learned what to say, but I feel even better equipped now that I've ...more
(3.5) In June 2016 I read It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying Is Cool Too), McInerny’s memoir about losing her father and her husband to cancer and her second child to a miscarriage – all within a few weeks – when she was 31. In this short book, an expansion of her TED talk, she argues that we are all incompetent when it comes to grief. There’s no rule book for how to do it well or how to help other people who are experiencing a bereavement, and comparing one loss to another doesn’t help anyone. All the ...more
Gretchen Rubin
A fascinating consideration of the question: how do you survive grief? It inspired me to listen to McInerny's podcast, "Terrible, Thanks for Asking."
May 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is for anyone who has gone through some kind of grief - and as she says, if you haven't, you will. It made me laugh and cry and talk back to the CD in total agreement in my car! I can't recommend this highly enough.
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grief, 2019, non-fiction
Biggest takeaway: don't be afraid of your sad/grieving/traumatized friends, neighbors, and loved ones. Someday this will be you. It is better to say something stupid than say nothing, but if you read this book you are less likely to say something stupid. (Maybe.)
Sarah Tang
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The definitive book of how to be okay after living through tremendous grief and trauma.

No one tells you what to expect or how to deal when tragedy strikes - why you feel emotions you think you shouldn’t feel or why people don’t act the way you expect them to.

I wish I’d found this book when I’d been raped and desperately searching for answers about how to live in a world when my own experience of it had been so fundamentally changed.

We are all novices at dealing with tragedy and I’m grateful fo
May 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I read this in five minutes. Just kidding, but I did start it late last night and wake up early this morning to finish.

My best friend died of cancer two months ago. So while I'm not a hot young widow, I am a grieving young person whose life recently got turned upside down. Nora makes it clear that anyone affected by a loss, or anyone who cares about anyone else affected by a loss (so, all of us) can benefit from reading this book. Since my loss, it's been harder to connect with my normal circle
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Lots of great advice for how to help others who are grieving in this little book!
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I rarely write reviews about the books I read, mostly because I just want to get in to the next one, but I'm making an exception.

If I could give this book and this author, Nora, 5,000 stars for the mere fact that this book exists in the world, I would.

But the fact that this book *has* to exist in the world at all is so sad. But it does, and thank God it does.

I came to this book looking for something, anything, to start working through the losses I have...not been dealing with well over the past
Chloe Chesla
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I’ve been following Nora’s journey for a couple years and have always appreciated her humor, her perspective, and her communication style. I was a little hesitant to pick up this book, given that I am not a widow, and mostly bought it to support Nora. However, it was such a quick, helpful read! I loved the way she explained grief, and it really spoke to me and helped me understand parts of myself: I’ve never had a “big loss” but I have experienced grief and definitely identified with so much of ...more
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Saw an article in the paper about her podcast and picked this up at the library thereafter. In spite of the heavy topic, she has a funny, quippy style. None of the advice for those experiencing grief [the trajectory won't necessarily be linear; it's ok to be sad; pretty much whatever you're experiencing is normal; prioritize self-care over tending to everyone else's reactions......] or their friends/family [don't ask how you can help; just figure out a best guess and do it; don't pry; do talk ab ...more
Jul 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: listened-to, 2019
Nora McInerny, author, host of the podcast "Terrible, Thanks for Asking," and founder of the nonprofit "Still Kickin" takes her TED Talk "We Don't 'Move on' From Grief. We Move Forward With It"and puts it in book form. She shares lessons and advice on dealing with grief as well as tips for supporting someone through grief.

I read this book because I'm a huge fan of McInerny's podcast, read her others books, and have been following her for a few years. I am, thankfully, not a widow, but I found th
Lisa Carr
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
One might see the title of this book and think it’s for people who’ve lost a spouse. But this book is for each of us. Although McInerny writes to the grieving, she also writes to who she calls the “grief adjacent” about how to participate in the grief of another. She’s so practical she even includes fill-in-the-blank templates and form letters for what to say or write to grieving people. We need Nora McInerny’s truth-telling voice. For as much as we fixate on education and advanced degrees and b ...more
June Brawner
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Listened to the audio book of this, being a fan of Nora's podcast "Terrible, thanks for asking". As with her podcast, the author/reader is gracious, funny, and human above all else. Having not been through the sort of grief she discusses, I can only imagine what respite I would find in her words; however, knowing such times are inevitable (I am, after all, one of those 'people who know and love someone who will die one day'), I'm keeping this with me and bookmarking for those dark times. Thank y ...more
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-books
this book should be required reading for everyone. it's not just a book for widows, but a book for anyone who has or will experience loss or grief, or who knows someone experiencing loss or grief (so, all of us). it's a reminder to be gentler on ourselves while we grieve, and to show up for our people who are grieving. highly recommend.
Tracy Farmer
May 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book so much. Had some great insights about grief and death. I really enjoyed the prompts on how to talk to someone that is dealing with grief or a hard subject to talk about. So many times people don’t know what to say and it hurts you even more when they ignore you completely. Thanks for talking about the difficult topics that need to be talked about.
May 02, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lisa by: Emily
Shelves: audio
Fast, thought provoking, and helpful. While I haven't had tragedy strike, like this author, I hope to have learned how to come alongside those who are suffering tragedy and loss. I started and finished this book on one morning walk. It was more like a long podcast, one that I hope others find and listen to.
Ariel Coleman
May 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’m so glad I found Nora McInerny and her TedTalk and her Podcast and finally her books. Her attitude and insight into all aspects of living through grief have been a huge comfort to me in managing my own grief.
Jul 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I just finished this, and my first desire was to read it again from the beginning. So many insights and great pieces of advice. Recommended reading for anyone who has lost someone dear to them, or know someone else who has.
Danyal Wendt
May 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent little read. A good read for those of us who are not widows, but may be experiencing grief in other ways. Nora writes in such an honest and humorous way, it's easy to continue flipping the pages of this book. I recommend this to anyone who wants to learn about grief in any form.
Lisa Gennusa-O'Connell
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
HYWC is a handbook for EVERYONE to read & continue to reference because humans live & die. Every single one of us!! We need to talk about it and learn how to be more comfortable with it so that we can be better for each other.

Thank you again Nora 😉♥
Jess Sohn
Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I think everyone could take away something meaningful from this little book. I look forward to reading her actual books because I really enjoyed her sense of humor and attitude about embracing the awkward corners where life and death meet up.
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
As a devout follower of Nora’s podcast, I own all of her books. This one is my favorite. I found her blue pages of advice very helpful. In fact, I immediately followed advice on page 43 when I read it!
Aug 15, 2019 rated it liked it
(3.5) A memoir about grieving and losing those you love. Definitely one of the best realist pieces I’ve read in a long time. However, I’m a bit too young to relate to some of the authors losses at this point in my life.
Heather L Hernandez
Jul 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Nora has a writing voice that propels me through a topic that I really don't want to read about. Important book for understanding grief, whether you're a widow or not. Especially if someone close to you us grieving.
May 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A short, quick read filled with Nora McInerny's wit, wisdom, and honesty. I highly recommend this book for anyone (not just widows) who has suffered great loss or knows someone who has. So really everyone should read it because we will all be touched by loss sooner or later as Nora reminds us.
Lauren Haas
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent for anyone who has gone through that one really hard loss or anyone trying to help someone grieving that intense life changing loss.
I’ve been there, and can say this book touches on many things I shared in my grief journey.
Nicole Lynn
Jul 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Finished this book in a day. 100% relatable to me I felt like I had written in the book myself. You really get good lessons on life, live, pain, heartbreak- being a survivor coming from the front lines of grief.
Jul 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
This slim little book is like a warm bowl of chicken soup from your best friend. It's wise, comforting, and a little smart-assy. There were some good ideas for actionable things, too. I would highly recommend this to anyone who finds themself (or their loved ones) struggling with a loss.
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