Friday, August 17, 2012

Aftermath: Growing in Grace Through Grief~Book Review


Aftermath: Growing in Grace Through Grief~by Margaret McSweeney


Growing in Grace Through Grief

Loss is a four-letter word that grips our hearts and gridlocks our lives. Grief can hold us captive until we surrender it to God. How do we find the necessary grace to journey through the mourning process?

Juxtaposed to the outpouring of her mother’s words about grief, the author shares her parallel journey from the emotional abyss of grief after becoming an adult orphan. With candor, the author shares her own emotions experienced along the spectrum of loss after her parents’ deaths: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance—adding interactive options for readers.

Five sections cover these common emotions and provide:

• comfort Scripture lists
• counsel sections from grief experts
• chronicling sections with detailed helps
• tangible handles on dealing with grief during holidays, capturing loved ones’ legacy, and more.


My Thoughts

None of us wants to deal with grief and yet at some point in our lives all of us experience the deep sorrow that is grief. When we lose a parent, grandparent, spouse, friend, sibling or child. We all experience that deep desperate hole of grief that can swallow us up so thoroughly we think feel we cannot cope.

In her book Aftermath Margaret McSweeney shares with us a glimpse of her own grief at the loss of her parents.  In each chapter she shares with us the emotions of grief. The chapters include:

  • Grief needs no introduction
  • Shock
  • Denial
  • Anger
  • Bargaining
  • Depression
  • Acceptance
  • A Comfort Box
  • Handles for Helping
  • Footprints of Faith
  • Leaving a Legacy
  • Learning to Fly
  • Grace in the Wilderness


Sharing excerpts from her mother’s book and Ms. McSweeney’s own stories and experiences, this book will touch you in your deepest places. Helping us to deal with our own struggle with grief and helping to deal with our losses

There are sections in the book that contain comfort scriptures that I found very helpful and uplifting.

In the later chapters of the book there are topics to help process grief: a comfort box, leaving a legacy, grace and faith. 

I would highly recommend this book to anyone struggling with their own grief.

ContentImage-20-75482-margaretheadshotMargaret McSweeney is a well-published author often writing online articles for Make It Better (the former North Shore Magazine) and freelance articles for the Daily Herald, the largest suburban Chicago newspaper. In addition, she has authored and compiled several books including A Mother’s Heart Knows; Go Back and Be Happy; Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace and most recently, Mother of Pearl.

Margaret has a master’s degree from the University of South Carolina in international business. As is the founder of Pearl Girls, Margaret collaborates with other writers on projects to help fund a safe house for WINGS, an organization that helps women and their children who are victims of domestic violence, and to build wells for schoolchildren in Uganda through Hands of Hope. For the past 10 years she has served on the board of directors and leadership advisory board for WINGS. Margaret lives with her husband and 2 daughters in the Chicago suburbs. Learn more about Margaret and the work of Pearl Girls at

disclosure: I received this book in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was received. All opinions in this post and on this blog are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.


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