Reviews

Smoke Gets in Your Eyes & Other Lessons from the Crematory, by Caitlin Doughty

kathleenwho's review against another edition

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emotional funny informative reflective medium-paced

4.5


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mcnarnia's review against another edition

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5.0

I really loved this book. Makes you think about aspects of death our culture/the funeral industry very specifically does not want you to think about. How unnecessary embalming is for most people. How separated we are from the natural process of dying. Highly recommend this.

hirndoc's review against another edition

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hopeful informative reflective fast-paced

5.0

yas_8242's review against another edition

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3.0

The writing style was not really my cup of tea, however I understand why people would like reading this book. I learnt a lot about the death practices of other cultures; cannibals, the dead being left for vultures, people digging up their dead, etc; however the actual story line was in my opinion not memorable and not really interesting.

that_one_mike_guy's review against another edition

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dark emotional funny hopeful inspiring reflective fast-paced

5.0

sallsaur's review against another edition

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4.0

Interesting and intriguing, each chapter has its own story or cultural tale associated with it. The ending could not have been better with one of the most deep inner conversations laid out perfectly through metaphors and well thought out phrases to wrap up the authors feeling about the book and what she hopes to have portrayed. Absolutely incredible and would make an interesting re-read in different chapters of life to see what differences are extracted from the pages.

ntedeyan's review against another edition

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3.0

Heads up - the book details the accidental death of a child + discusses the disposition of infant and child remains (i.e. what you do with a dead baby's body).

The author recounts her journey from a terrified-of-death child to the death-positive charter member of The Order of the Good Death. Her premise is that her terrified-of-mortality perspective, shared by the majority of Americans, was a result of her social, cultural, and familial environment. And if it can be shaped, it can be changed.

I am grateful that Jewish culture offers time-tested rituals to guide the preparation and disposition of the body and the journey through grief for the mourners. Because of my personal frame of reference, the extreme fear and denial of mortality that drives the author and so many of the characters in her book didn't really resonate with me.

Except for the thought of the death of a child - any child - most especially one of my children. Perhaps this is my privileged, modern, First World perspective speaking here - two hundred years ago, a woman my age would have almost certainly buried more than one - but I simply can't accept the idea of a parent outliving a child.

Other than that tender subject, the book was an easy, enjoyable, entertaining read.

amelia1224's review against another edition

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5.0

I loved this book so much. Everyone needs to read it imo. If you don’t actually enjoy the book that’s fine but it starts a conversation around death.
- An Order of the Good Death Member

alyyks's review against another edition

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reflective

3.5

jitsumi1221's review against another edition

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medium-paced

3.0