Having a book published and out in the world is a new experience for me. In some ways it's felt daunting but, in other ways, strangely life-affirming. The latter is due to the feedback I've received, which has helped me to overcome my feelings of vulnerability in openly and honestly charting my personal journey during the first year after the death of my son.
If you're a bereaved parent, you'll no doubt have heard of The Compassionate Friends, the leading bereavement charity for families coping with the devastation of child loss. A review for 'Love Untethered' appeared in the latest edition of Compassion magazine - here's an excerpt from it:
I thoroughly recommend this book, especially for newly bereaved parents. In my experience, both personal and with the library, I know how difficult it is to concentrate and books written clearly, with the text broken into digestible chunks, are what we need. Also the honest and immediate way Vanessa tells her story makes it easy to connect with someone who knows what it feels like to grieve for a child. Add to that her really useful advice and this book is excellent".
Soon after publication I was honoured to be asked if they could stock 'Love Untethered' in their online bookshop: TCF bookshop
I imagine all authors want to receive positive reviews for their books, but when you’ve shared your personal story and you hope others will resonate with your words and that they might be comforted by them in the depths of their own grief , “positive” reviews become even more meaningful.
The emails I've been sent and the DM's I have received over Instagram and Twitter have been both touching and heart-breaking. But to know that there are people out there who relate to my story and have found my advice helpful has warmed my heart, helping my own healing.
Here are just a few of the responses I've had - no names are included in order to respect privacy.
"I felt compelled to email you to let you know how moving I found your book 'Love Untethered'. Your account of your beautiful son resonated deep inside me. It was like reading my own nightmare but as sad as that was I found comfort in knowing I'm not alone in my pain."
"I finished reading your stunning book yesterday. It is very powerful, extremely moving and searingly honest"
"My son was my whole world and I’m having a really hard time accepting his passing. I received your book as a gift and I just read the whole thing in 2 hours. As I was reading I felt like I was the one writing it. Your feelings are exactly how I’m feeling. I just wanted to say thank you."
"Your book is wonderfully written and I will highly recommend it"
If you’ve read ‘Love Untethered’ I would love to hear what you thought. It would also be greatly appreciated if you could consider leaving a review on Amazon (or the place you bought it from). This would mean more bereaved parents would discover the book and what I hope is some useful advice for surviving traumatic loss.
If you haven’t read the book yet it’s available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Waterstones, WH Smith’s and anywhere else you can buy books.
See here for links
And watch this space because my next book comes out on 21st February (they're like buses - two come at once!)