Book Review : “Fuck Death” By Steve Case

If you’re looking for an honest review about the book “HARDCORE GRIEF RECOVERY, FUCK DEATH, An Honest Guide To Getting Through Grief Without The Condolences, Sympathy And Other BS”, then hopefully the opinions that I’m about to share with you after personally reading it myself can help you decide if this book deserves to be on your binge reading list.

This book was a challenge for me to get through, honestly. Which I have to admit was really disappointing, because the impression that I got from its title, the cover art and the reviews left by its previous readers made me quite excited for it to be more than what it was. At least for me.

I do think this book could be slightly helpful if you’re someone that is freshly experiencing the loss of a loved one for the very first time in your life. However, I think you’d have to be pretty uncultured on the topics of grief and death in general. Meaning, you’ve never read a grief book or article, or you’ve never openly discussed your feelings about death and loss with another person. You would have to consider yourself a completely clueless newbie, for lack of a better way of saying it.

Each chapter of this book is basically devoted to one of the supposed “stages of grief”. From other books, blogs and videos I’ve read or watched over time, I’ve noticed that opinions tend to differ nowadays on exactly how many stages of grief that there actually are. Some people question if the stages even need to be considered at all since everyone truly experiences grief in different ways. Personally, I don’t have an issue using certain words to help summarize the feelings you may have during your grief journey. However, I do have an issue with giving people the impression that the experience of grief is definitely set to go a certain way. Implying that it has official guidelines is bullshit, in my opinion. Now I will say that the author doesn’t give that impression at all (so I’m not necessarily trying to say they are being misleading), and they even acknowledge that the referenced stages in the book could be felt in any order, at any time, repeated, skipped altogether, and so on. I’m just sharing my two cents worth of frustration on the topic of the idea of the stages of grief in general.

The author chose to recognize five stages of grief in this book. Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. So, each chapter focuses on a specific stage with attempts at being “raw and real” with some cuss words thrown in. I’m sure the author wanted to seem relatable and a bit edgy in doing so. I just didn’t get the vibe that everything provided in this book was entirely genuine.

When a person chooses to share their input with me on a topic (no matter what level of experience or expertise they have on the matter), I need real stories shared with me that I can relate to. Providing advice or knowledge is great, but give me firsthand, realistic examples too. Pretty much every scenario that I can remember being shared in this book was an imaginary one. Nothing gave me that hardcore, raw and real twist on grief that you assume you’re going to get. Agree to disagree with me if you’d like, but I just respond better to a person that is capable of sharing their own weaknesses when they’re trying to claim they’re stronger now, and can truly help me with my related issues.

While reading this book, there were moments that I got a little confused as to who exactly wrote it. Reason being, a few times the author (Steve Case) referenced “us” or “we” a lot after giving a word of advice or making a claim. Is the content of this book really a group effort with only one person receiving the credit, or was that just a misuse of wording? Minor setback, but I just thought it was a bit odd.

Understand, I really wanted to like this book. I was even excited to share it with other people that may need some inspiration for new titles to read. I hate to turn people away with my opinion, but I just can’t pretend that this book was really worth my time. So, I can’t promise it’s worth the risk of anyone else giving it a chance either.

I’m honestly very, very surprised that the reviews that were publicly shared online by other readers were practically all positive. I’m kind of questioning if I read the same book that they did.

The branding and title of this book is great, and I’m not going to act like there wasn’t at least a paragraph or two within the book that made me think a little different or were inspirational to some extent. I’ve just read better, and I expected better.

You can give this book a chance if you’d like to. I’m not going to judge you either way. I guess you have to consider that while I was reading this book, I’m already about four years into my personal grief journey. I read and watch a lot of content about grief, death and the funeral industry almost on a daily basis. So, maybe I’m just too advanced (without the intention of sounding arrogant) on the topic of grief at this point in my life? Maybe my expectations were just set too high?

I’ve heard it said many times throughout my life so far that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”. So, if you decide you’d like to grab a copy of this book for yourself to read and form your own opinion, I would seriously love to hear what you think of it after doing so!