Exit Laughing

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Published by: North Atlantic Books
Release Date: May 8, 2012
Pages: 304
ISBN13: 978-1583944073



There’s nothing funny about dying … or is there? Exit Laughing makes death more approachable as it reveals the funny side of “passing on.” As painful as it is to lose a loved one, Exit Laughing shows us that in times of grief, humor can help us with coping and even healing.

Barbara Graham describes how before slipping into a coma, her fashionista mother used every last ounce of energy to get herself spiffed up for the hospice rabbi. Amy Ferris explains how her mother’s dementia led to a permanent ban from an airline. Ellen Sussman writes of flying her mother's body home and watching the burial wardrobe spill out on the baggage carousel. Broadway and television actor Richard McKenzie shares the riotous story of a funeral procession led by a lost hearse. These stories, along with the others, constitute a book whose purpose is to remind readers that when dealing with illness, aging, and dying, there is an important place for laugh-out-loud humor.


"Death happens, and the writers in Exit Laughing show that humor can serve as an acceptable and beneficial means to mend broken hearts. Laughter, Zackheim writes in her introduction, 'can open the door to emotions shared, and perhaps through this sharing we can not only process the reality of death but mend the complex and often difficult relationships we share with the person who is dying.'"
—Shelf Awareness

“As we all know, laughter is good therapy, just as writing about death is good grief work. Exit Laughing: How Humor Takes the Sting Out of Death is funny and therapeutic. It’s a useful book for mourners, for therapists, and for anyone who is worried about the impending death of a loved one.”
—PsycCritiques, American Psychological Association

“From beloved husbands to difficult mothers and more, this moving and often fiercely funny collection illuminates with grace, humor, and a few belly laughs the way someone’s death can change our lives.”
—Caroline Leavitt, New York Times best-selling author of Pictures of You

“This gem of an anthology about what we fear, avoid, would rather not mention, let alone read about—death—is the funniest book I’ve read in years. Exit Laughing is a bold, outrageous, never sanctimonious, death-defying collection that looks straight in the eye of the inevitable while making you laugh real tears.”
—Beverly Donofrio, author of Riding in Cars with Boys and Looking for Mary

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