Prepare to shed a couple tears for this moving, inspirational story about a death doula learning not to fear living.
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BOTM Editorial Team
I’m the type of person who doesn’t buy myself flowers because the thought of them dying in my apartment makes me unbearably sad. So a book all about death and grief wouldn’t typically be my first choice. But Mikki Brammer takes the world’s scariest subject and makes it life-affirming and so full of real emotion I couldn’t help but fall in love with this story.
Clover Brooks works as a death doula, helping people reach the end of their lives with dignity and respect. As someone who sits at many bedsides, it’s not death that scares her—it’s the regrets the dying leave behind. In her quest to avoid having any regrets at all, she ends up avoiding just about everything and anyone that could make life exciting. But those closest and most fond of Clover see her in all her beautiful complexity no matter how hard she tries to hide herself, teaching her in the process that beginnings can be just as important as endings.
I went into this book knowing it would probably make me cry (spoiler: it did). But I wasn’t expecting to reach the end full of hope and excitement at being a human in this big, messy world. The Collected Regrets of Clover is a debut novel that serves as an important reminder that grief and love are two sides of the same coin, and life would be far less meaningful without both.
What’s the point of giving someone a beautiful death if you can’t give yourself a beautiful life?
From the day she watched her kindergarten teacher drop dead during a dramatic telling of Peter Rabbit, Clover Brooks has felt a stronger connection with the dying than she has with the living. After the beloved grandfather who raised her dies alone while she is traveling, Clover becomes a death doula in New York City, dedicating her life to ushering people peacefully through their end-of-life process.
Clover spends so much time with the dying that she has no life of her own, until the final wishes of a feisty old woman send Clover on a trip across the country to uncover a forgotten love story—and perhaps, her own happy ending. As she finds herself struggling to navigate the uncharted roads of romance and friendship, Clover is forced to examine what she really wants, and whether she’ll have the courage to go after it.
Probing, clever, and hopeful, The Collected Regrets of Clover turns the normally taboo subject of death into a reason to celebrate life.