“A gripping and beautiful book about the power of love in the face of unimaginable loss.”
For readers of The Bright Hour and When Breath Becomes Air, a moving, transcendent memoir of loss and a stunning exploration of marriage in the wake of unimaginable grief.
As the book opens: two-year-old Greta Greene is sitting with her grandmother on a park bench on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. A brick crumbles from a windowsill overhead, striking her unconscious, and she is immediately rushed to the hospital. But although it begins with this event and with the anguish Jayson and his wife, Stacy, confront in the wake of their daughter's trauma and the hours leading up to her death, Once More We Saw Stars quickly becomes a narrative that is as much about hope and healing as it is about grief and loss. Jayson recognizes, even in the midst of his ordeal, that there will be a life for him beyond it--that if only he can continue moving forward, from one moment to the next, he will survive what seems unsurvivable. With raw honesty, deep emotion, and exquisite tenderness, he captures both the fragility of life and absoluteness of death, and most important of all, the unconquerable power of love. This is an unforgettable memoir of courage and transformation--and a book that will change the way you look at the world.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Judging by the massive success of books like When Breath Becomes Air and The Unwinding of the Miracle, there’s a hunger for stories about loss and grief. In Once More We Saw Stars, music journalist Jayson Greene chronicles the headline-making death of his two-year-old daughter, Greta—and how he and his wife, Stacy, coped with the aftermath. This is an honest book, one of the wisest and most generous memoirs we’ve read. It plumbs the deepest and darkest human emotions to unearth truths about love, community, and the human potential for growth and transformation. “Grief, I am learning, is a world you move into,” writes Greene. “It is, in many ways, a beautiful and redemptive place to spend time.”
Freelance journalist Greene struggles with the 2015 death of his daughter in this heart-wrenching yet life-affirming memoir. After two-year-old Greta was killed when a brick fell from an eighth-story windowsill in New York City and hit her on the head (also injuring his mother-in-law), Greene and his wife Stacy descended into despair and realized they must pass "through some magnificent, terrible threshold together." Grasping for solace, the couple attended a retreat at the Kripalu Center in Massachusetts, for people who have lost loved ones, which featured a medium and daily yoga sessions. Afterwards, back home, Greene, jogging through Central Park suddenly felt the world becoming "thin, translucent" and he sensed Greta's presence. Then, on what would have been their daughter's third birthday, they tried a New Age healing ceremony in New Mexico that took them on separate vision quests that allowed them to confront and be at peace with their grief. Their second child was born a year later, and Greene movingly writes of the joy he felt holding his newborn son along with the simultaneous metaphysical connection he experienced with Greta. The result is an amazing and inspirational exploration on the meaning of grief and the interconnectedness of love and loss.
Way too sad for me.
Heartbreaking but so beautiful at the same time. I read it in two days. Couldn’t put the book down I was so invested. Rest In Peace Nick :)
There are no words
It has taken me years to finish reading this book due to how emotionally charged it is. It is so raw and beautifully, excruciatingly heartbreaking, and real. As a mother of a young child, my heart aches for this family. They have endured an unimaginable loss. Because of this book, I squeeze my daughter a little bit tighter every day and I am more patient and kind. To Stacy, Jayson, Susan, and to everyone who had the pleasure and privilege of loving Greta, my heart goes out to you. Thank you for sharing your story. I know that not one single day goes by that you don’t think of Greta and her legacy lives on through each of you and through this book.