This book about bereavement is not just one person’s important experiences; nor is it an academic investigation into the common threads among those suffering severe grief. “Don’t Mention The Coal Scuttle” is a compilation from over fifty different and real experiences of those facing the death of a husband, a wife, a partner, a soul mate. That is not necessarily any more sad, but very different from other bereavements. Some of the contributors have been named; others wanted to remain anonymous but all of them wished to help others by sharing what they have gone through and what they continue to go through. It also contains brief extracts from over eleven different authors on this subject.
The authors of this book, Alison Pringle and Graeme Pagan, first met in Oban over 50 years ago. A chance meeting on a bus 38 years after they had last seen each other, five years after the death of Alison’s husband and three weeks after the death of Graeme’s wife, led to the realisation that sharing what that is really like could be very helpful in facing what is undoubtedly one of life’s worst happenings. Graeme, a retired solicitor after 53 years in his profession, and Alison, a retired nurse after 31 years in her profession, inevitably came across a lot of people in bereavement which was helpful when it came to the writing of this book.
Graeme Pagan is already a successful author having had published ten years ago “Once Bitten Twice Fined” which sold over 3500 copies and which its readers found both interesting and funny. Humour plays a very important part in life and “Don’t Mention The Coal Scuttle” has many amusing moments. It has been said that somehow you can carry on in life even without your loved one if you can talk, laugh and cry. This book has several examples of that and it is highly recommended for anyone facing the death of a loved partner and also for those who are related to or know someone affected by such loss. Appreciating what other people are experiencing in life is always important and this book adds to that understanding.