The Whole Death Catalog: A Lively Guide to the Bitter End

Front Cover
Ballantine Books, 2009 - Family & Relationships - 304 pages
19 Reviews
In the tradition of Mary Roach’s bestselling Stiff and Jessica Mitford’s classic exposť The American Way of Death comes this meticulously researched, refreshingly irreverent, and lavishly illustrated look at death from acclaimed author Harold Schechter. With his trademark fearlessness and bracing sense of humor, Schechter digs deep into a wealth of sources to unearth a treasure trove of surprising facts, amusing anecdotes, practical information, and timeless wisdom about that undiscovered country to which we will all one day travel. Topics include

• Death anxiety–is your fear of death normal or off the scale?
• You can’t take it with you . . . or can you? Wacky wills and bizarre bequests
• The hospice experience–going out in comfort and style
• Deathbed and funeral etiquette–how to help the dying and mourn the dead with dignity
• Death on demand–why the right-to-die movement may be the next big thing
• “Good-bye everybody”–famous last words
• The embalmer’s art–all dressed up and nowhere to go
• Behind the scenes at your local funeral home
• Alternative burial choices–from coral reefs to outer space

From the cold, hard facts of death to lessons in the art of dying well, from what happens in the body’s last living moments to what transpires in the ground or in the furnace, from near-death experiences to speculation on the afterlife, The Whole Death Catalog leaves no gravestone unturned.

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Review: The Whole Death Catalog: A Lively Guide to the Bitter End

User Review  - Colona Public Library - Goodreads

This book is what the title suggests a whole death catalog. This book has everything you could want to know about and some bonus fun death related trivia! Reading it is like a series of short articles ... Read full review

Review: The Whole Death Catalog: A Lively Guide to the Bitter End

User Review  - Gia - Goodreads

Interesting, but it repeats itself, too often. Read full review

About the author (2009)

Harold Schechter is a professor of American literature and culture at Queens College, the City University of New York. He is widely celebrated for both fiction and true-crime writing, including The Devil's Gentleman and The Serial Killer Files. He lives in Brooklyn and Mattituck, Long Island, with his wife, the poet Kimiko Hahn.

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