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Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

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Caitlin Doughty was born and raised in Hawaii before gaining a degree in Medieval History from th... Read More

Product Description

Caitlin Doughty was born and raised in Hawaii before gaining a degree in Medieval History from the University of Chicago. She currently lives in Los Angeles where she owns an alternative funeral home, Undertaking LA. She is the creator of the 'Ask a Mortician' web series, the founder of the death acceptance collective The Order of the Good Dead and co-founder of Death Salon.


'Unforgettable . . . a hilarious, poignant and impassioned plea to revolutionise our attitudes to death' Gavin Francis, Guardian

From her first day at Westwind Cremation & Burial, twenty-three-year-old Caitlin Doughty threw herself into her curious new profession. Coming face-to-face with the very thing we go to great lengths to avoid thinking about, she started to wonder about the lives of those she cremated and the mourning families they left behind, and found herself confounded by people's erratic reactions to death. Exploring our death rituals - and those of other cultures - she pleads the case for healthier attitudes around death and dying. Full of bizarre encounters, gallows humour and vivid characters (both living and very dead), this illuminating account makes this otherwise terrifying subject inviting and fascinating.

The critically acclaimed account of Caitlin Doughty's first year working on the funerary frontlinesA zingy, fresh and possibly even important book about death . . . This book might change your lifeUpbeat, brave and brilliantly, morbidly curious . . . Important and timelyA well-researched, beautifully observed book and Doughty is a convincing and impassioned advocate for changes in our cultural attitudes towards death . . . There's much to enjoy in this thoughtful, unflinching and highly entertaining memoirAbsolutely and utterly life affirming . . . Nothing is off limits . . . And yet all of it is written with the utmost respect . . . There are many moments that moved me . . . Doughty's language is full of the notion of careFunny but not flippant, sometimes painful, but rightly so, and always compellingFrank . . . philosophical . . . engaging and even wickedAcerbic, hilarious, and thoughtful . . . Doughty's feisty but lovable personality shines through, and that would be enough for a decent memoir, but she does so much more here. The author uses her own life as a jumping off point in this beautifully crafted piece of writing, dovetailing her own observations with the work of psychologists, literary figures, industry professionals, philosophers, and religious leaders to argue coherently and convincingly that the impersonal, big business model of the funeral industry is robbing us of a vital component of the human experience. She argues that only by facing our mortality and becoming intimate with the idea of death can we live our lives to the fullest, and it's hard to argue with herEye-opening, cringe-inducing, often hilarious, occasionally haunting, always insightfulCaitlin Doughty blows a huge matter-of-fact hole in the grim curtain of silence surrounding the death industry - and what a blessed relief that is. This book absolutely must be read, if only to remind all of us that exercise, organic food and plastic surgery only work up to a point. Doughty is my kind of death crusader - compassionate, unblinking and very, very funnyCaitlin Doughty is not what I imagine a funeral director to be . . . she is funny, young and enthusiastic, the same characteristics that infuse her memoirStrange and funny. It may well blow your mind wide open[Doughty's] sincere, hilarious, and perhaps life-altering memoir is a must-read for anyone who plans on dyingArresting . . . refreshing . . . rivetingTimely, funny, honest and interesting, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes is an enormously helpful contribution to the current taboo-breaking debate about deathWith the dark wit you might expect from an undertaker and the compassion and insight you might not, strong storytelling and vivid descriptions, she displays a protective mechanism that the psychologists seem to have forgotten - humourBrave and fascinating . . . unusually funnyA death-changing book . . . It is impossible not to be inspired by Doughty's commitment to her causeOften funny . . . yet never irreverentA book as graphic and morbid as this one could easily suck its readers into a bout of sorrow, but Doughty - a trustworthy tour guide through the repulsive and wondrous world of death - keeps us laughing most of the wayThere's a welcome honesty to Doughty's account of her time as a mortician, which starts when she has to shave the face of her first corpse. In some ways, it's reassuring that we return to dust, and Doughty's healthy humour and practicality are reassuring tooThere's something about her understanding of how fragile life can be that got to me . . . And although none of us wants to be confronted by that all the time, Doughty has a matter-of-factness that makes that not as scary as it usually seemsDoughty writes about her life with corpses with all the sassiness that other young women bring to penning romcomsDoughty is determined to lead the way in confronting mortality. Indeed, she does not so much meet Death's gaze as attempt to stare him into submission...Doughty's corpse-collecting adventures are often hilarious as well as informing. If you had not planned to pack a book about crematoria for your holiday read, this one offers plenty of reasons to reconsiderA highly unusual memoir . . . a manifesto for how to live - and die - better. Caitlin, with her no-nonsense style and absolute single-mindedness plus a healthy dose of goth sensibility, bravely shows that death is nothing to be afraid ofTruly riveting . . . this funerally forthright book rings with life and dead-pan humour . . . Having read her brilliant contribution to the death debate, I'm with her all the way to the cremation chamber (and I'd let her push the button)

Product Details

Title: Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
Author: Caitlin Doughty
SKU: BK0431080
EAN: 9781782111054
Language: English

About Author

Caitlin Doughty was born and raised in Hawaii. She moved to California after gaining a degree in Medieval History from the University of Chicago. She is now a licensed funeral director and the host and creator of the 'Ask a Mortician' web series. She founded the death acceptance collective The Order of the Good Dead and co-founded Death Salon. She lives in Los Angeles.

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