The Dead Wife's Handbook - Hannah Beckerman (2014)

When Rachel Myerson dies unexpectedly at the age of 36, she finds herself alone in a place beyond death, watching on as her husband, Max, and seven-year-old daughter Ellie try to carry on with their lives without her. And whilst these moments give her valuable access to the two dearest people in her life, as well as her other beloved family and friends, they also make her acutely aware of all that she's lost and is missing. But as Max and Ellie begin to move forward, Rachel must come to terms with them building a future without her. This book is an absolute cracker, but be warned, from the very first page through to the last you'll be fighting back the tears. Indeed, it is certainly an emotional journey, but one that is so adeptly delivered and that makes you feel more alive and grateful for having experienced it. And the wonderful perspective of hearing the heroine, not as the one left behind but the one leaving behind, and the poignancy of her predicament is truly exceptional and profound. This is one of those rare, special books that has the power to completely affect you. Surely destined to be an enormous hit. (JC)

Hannah Beckerman, the debut novel by former TV and film producer Hannah Beckerman, is about a woman having to watch her family face a future without her. The summary says: Today is my death anniversary. A year ago today I was still alive. Rachel, Max and their daughter Ellie had the perfect life - until the night Rachel's heart stopped beating. Now Max and Ellie are doing their best to adapt to life without Rachel, and just as her family can't forget her, Rachel can't quite let go of them either. Caught in a place between worlds, Rachel watches helplessly as she begins to fade from their lives. And when Max is persuaded by family and friends to start dating again, Rachel starts to understand that dying was just the beginning of her problems. As Rachel grieves for the life she's lost and the life she'll never lead, she learns that sometimes the thing that breaks your heart might be the very thing you hope for." The Dead Wife's Handbook is out in February 2014.

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