Cover Image: Welcome to the Grief Club

Welcome to the Grief Club

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Member Reviews

This book is a must-have for anyone who is either grieving or is close to someone who is. I lost my mum in 2021 and it's been a journey for me and my broken heart. Since then, I've been reading lots of books about grieving and this one is up there at the top with "Dancing at the Pitty Party". I loved the way the author approaches grief and explains how complex and different the process could be for us. 

I received an e-copy of the book from the publisher and I just bought the print copy as I want to have it in my collection. 

Sending lots of love to anyone who has recently lost a loved one ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️
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There are very few books that tackle the topic of grief and that is even lower in children's literature. There are even fewer that speak to a child as an equal and with respect. Welcome to the Grief Club does not talk down to the reader but instead greets them as a friend and companion in what they are going through. Through the emotional and understanding style of writing, readers will feel seen and understood. I loved the way the book approached this topic with no guilt or superficial way. From the start it is individual-based and allows the reader to take what they need
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This book is essentially a big hug from Janine Kwoh. Designed with full-page, hand-drawn illustrations, words of encouragement and a thorough sense of understanding from an author who has been there. 
I feel that the purpose of Welcome to the Grief Club is exactly as the title suggests. Inviting those who've experience grief into a community to say "you're not alone, we are here for you". I wish I had been able to open this book when I first experienced grief, but I'm so glad to have come across it now. 
An easy, feel-good read jammed packed with honesty and relatability.
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This is a book I wish I could have read when my father passed 15 years ago. It's short, and the simple pictures allow you to take a lot in while also not having to concentrate too hard. Even now it has helped me feel better about how I process my loss and grief, after all this time. 
The great thing about it is that it also helps you to help others. Though I had my own loss, I sometimes struggle how to help friends when they are experiencing grief and this book helps you both to think about and express how you are feeling. The author mentions her own loss but it's not the main point, never distracting you from your own interpretation of the book. Overall a small but mighty tool to think and talk about loss.
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I loved this book. It is very short and I read it at one sitting. It would be so good when a person has recently lost someone and has brain fog. When the person is in that spot, it is very difficult to concentrate on the long books which can be good later.
The author lost her boyfriend who was in his twenties but she does not tell how he died. She reaches out to anyone who has lost someone and perfectly describes how it feels and how disorienting that it is. I recommended this book to two friends who are grieving. It is a breakthrough and a very helpful resource.
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Welcome to the Grief Club by Janine Kwoh

After loosing my mother to cancer six years ago, I struggled with my grief and tried to find books to help.
I recommend Welcome to the Grief Club to anyone, even young adults and children.
It is very easy to understand, where you are in your grief (everyone is different), and how to help other's and how to be supportive. It also validates you for your own grief, whatever you are felling.

Thank you to the author Janine Kwoh for writing this amazing book as well as the publishers at Workman Publishing Co, Inc.

Thank you to NetGalley for my copy and the opportunity to read this book.
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This book was a great discussion of loss and how to cope with it. It approached the topic in a uniquely light yet not comical way that helped the message get across without being patronizing. I Highly recommend this book to anyone who is struggling to move past the loss of a loved one.
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Welcome to the Grief Club: Because You Don't Have to Go Through It Alone is a helpful and sensitive guide for those who are experiencing grief in any of its many forms. Author Janine Kwoh's background in the greeting card industry is evident in the beautiful illustrations and many well-encapsulated thoughts and reflections contained in the book. Kwoh combines a deceptively light touch with a deeper message very skilfully and successfully indeed.

My own major experience of grief was the loss of my mother to breast cancer 18 years ago, at the age of 56. I certainly found that many of the observations and prompts within Welcome to the Grief Club resonated for me, and wish I'd had access to such a resource at the time. However, I've also considered the book's message from the perspectives of several friends who are presently going through different grief journeys - the loss of a spouse, the loss of an infant / miscarriage and the loss of a sibling in young middle-age.
"I imagine all of us walking around in our own personal parallel universes with our unseen broken places, wondering if we're the only ones. I think it's worth opening up our worlds and wounds to one another - I suspect that they are more similar than we think." (loc.60)
The overall message is reassuring and hopeful, that grief can be experienced in all sorts of different ways, each of them valid, and that there is no universal pattern by which grief should be timed or measured.
"You don't need to justify your grief to anyone, or hide or act out certain emotions in order to match expectations. This is a complicated situation - give yourself permission to have complicated feelings." (p.56)
Kwoh's message is also delivered in an accessible style for those going through trauma - it's not weighed down with technical information, and is punctuated with visual representations breaking up the text. At 128 pages, it's also of a size that is manageable for hopping in and out of, backwards and forwards, as need dictates.

While there is no universal pattern that grief takes, the sad truth is that we will all experience the loss of a loved one at some point during our lives - we will all one day become members of what Janine Kwoh refers to as the "Grief Club". Whether currently undergoing our own experience of grief, or whether attempting to support someone else in their own grief journey, Welcome to the Grief Club provides a genuinely practical and meaningful guide. It's a book I'll definitely consider purchasing as a gift for any friend in the future who's struggling with the loss of a loved one. It would also be a great resource for school and public libraries, and any workplace which frequently deals with bereaved clients.

My thanks to the author, Janine Kwoh, publisher Workman Publishing Company and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this wonderful book.
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This is an amazing book.  Kwoh has really pinpointed what it's like to go through intense grief, especially recognizing the there is no one way, but many many many ways that people experience grief and that they are all normal. I would recommend this book to anyone.
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I’ve been grieving a significant loss for over two years now and to be honest this book didn’t really give me anything new on how to grieve. It’s perhaps a good novel to give someone in their early stages as a gentle reminder that you are there for them but I went away from reading this feeling the exact same as how I started. This book lacked the personal touch in my eyes, it was too generic and it felt that the author dissociated herself from the subject even though in the intro she states she wrote it for her own grieving journey. How did she overcome her grief? Does she have any proper tips on how to help yourself?? It just didn’t really offer me anything new and the messages were just like simplistic reminders that all grief is valid and everyone grieves differently
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Really enjoyed this book. Don’t think I would pick it up while in grief, so I’m happy to have the words and thoughts in my head beforehand.
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"Please keep in mind that this is the Grief Club. Not the Grief Olympics - any comparison of grief is strictly prohibited." 

I started reading the book in a somber mood only to snort after a few pages, reading the above-mentioned quote. There have been countless times in my life when I became furious with myself for being sad over trivial matters while kids in Syria and Palestine are dying terrible deaths. I compared my grief of losing my maternal grandfather, my nan to greater tragedies and believed myself to be irrational and stupid for overreacting. If only I had this book back then! To hug me tight, to whisper in my ears that it's perfectly fine to be over emotional, to be overwhelmed and angry, to feel the need to lash out at everything and everyone for not mourning with me. It hits so close to home as I have been through this journey and have my own share of experiences. Janine has done an incredible job portraying various types and stages of grief with great precision. She delicately handles the fears and guilt that arrive with the loss of a loved or not-so-loved one, especially if died without resolving the issues and confirms that no matter how bumpy the ride is or how long it takes or how much we think we are inconveniencing others, we, the grieving people, are worth the trouble and the wait as well as the happiness that comes along the way. Whether one is crying or not, whether they were close to the dead or not or whether they are bouncing from the loss too quickly or too slowly are petty and stupid ways to judge one's magnitude of grief. The world will never be the same again without that person but we can adjust to the new normal, paying tribute to the dead in our ways of life. Not wanting to pay tribute is also fine which is probably the most important message of all: we are allowed to make choices for ourselves while grieving without feeling the need to fulfill society's expectations. The illustrations are brilliant, detailed, sometimes cute and effectively passes on the messages. This book can be a very thoughtful gift to someone who is mourning or a great resource to know how to help them cope up with the difficulties. 

Thank you so much Janine for writing the book. You nailed it. Thank you to Netgalley, the author and the publishers for granting my wish to read 'Welcome to the Grief Club'.
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Having lost someone very close to me this past year due to a traumatic death, I was looking forward to reading this book to try and grasp concepts and feelings around grief.  I loved how the author put thoughts to paper in a way that normalized all of the feelings and thoughts that a grieving person experiences. The author was able to send the message that it is OK to not be OK and it is OK to feel what you’re feeling. She further explored the idea that there truly is no set framework or guideline to grief.  I feel that these messages are vital as society tends to want to put everything in a neat tidy box but the author pushes those boundaries by suggesting that each grief story is unique to the griever. I so appreciated this book and can’t wait for it to come out so that I can purchase copies to have for family and friends in their time of need. The comfort it will afford a grieving person is something to be grateful for. I wish this was a resource available to me last March when I went through the loss of my brother to Covid but I am grateful for the chance to review it now with a little more perspective. An invaluable resource!
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You know the feeling of a long hug from a good friend? That's what reading this book felt like. Grief can make you feel like you're on a deserted island alone - lost and sad and hopeless and a million other not-great things. To have someone there to remind you that you're not alone and you're not deserted was so comforting. I will absolutely be recommending this gem of a book to any friend that may need it.
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didn’t enjoy this as much as I thought,the only reason why I finished it in 2 days was because I had a quota to meet…. By the end of this month and I’m just challenging myself to read more.but it was kinda nice and  the drawings were cute <33
like towards the end,I was just trying to skip the words and view the illustrations and then I actually shared some of the very interesting and important views with my friends because hey!! It may actually turn out to be useful (unfortunately)
as the title goes,the book shares about many important and super useful tips with grieving so if you’re in that process,it’s definitely super handy!!you’ll get over this for sure,it just takes time,I believe in you 💗💗don’t give up,stay positive!!(ok bye hehe)
Urm…fortunately I haven’t gone through the process of grieving for quite some time so yes i really didn’t have the motivation to read the words after a while.picked the book up because the cover’s so cute !! And the title is kinda interesting <33 (still stand by my opinion)
didn’t regret it anyway,I think it has some really useful advice and it’s a very nice guide for those who feel lost along the way.if it’s too wordy,(yes too wordy for me,I’m not the biggest fan of nonfiction)you could just skip it and view the illustrations because I think they’re equally as important as the words :))
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I just lost my mom, and this book was so timely and helpful to me. I am very thankful for my "membership" to the club that no one really wants to be in. 
I feel less alone and am very glad I received an ARC .
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A supportive and relatable book that talks about grief, and doesn't expect a 'quick fix' but rather explains strategies for managing this. It's a useful resource and one I would recommend
Thanks to NetGalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
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"Welcome to the Grief Club" by Janine Kwoh is a welcome and well-needed addition to current grief and dying literature.  Well-known for her illustrations and the owner of stationery and design studio Kwohtations, Kwoh peppers "Welcome to the Grief Club" with full-page color art inclusive of her grief experiences.  For example, one spread titled "acceptable times and places to cry" notes all the varied places one should be able to cry, or might cry inadvertently, particularly in the throes of loss ("on the bus," "inside," "during special occasions"). 

Kwoh's own experience with partner loss in her 20s is woven throughout the narrative of "Welcome to the Grief Club."  Her desire to connect with others in similar situations, as well as attempts to break down concepts of bereavement that are not healthy or inclusive is an added bonus to this gem of a book.
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Welcome to the Grief Club is an accessible, digestible friend to have when you are facing dark times. The feel is affirming and comforting, assuring you that all will be okay while acknowledging the depth of the feelings you are confronting. 
Having been through therapy for grief I did not find any red-flags or content warnings to be aware of. I particularly appreciated the acknowledgement of all losses, even if others may not understand (pets, for example). Recommended for all collections.
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"Welcome to the Grief Club - we're sorry that you're here"

In this little book but meaningful book by Janine Kwoh, grief is presented as "one of the most isolating experiences, despite it being one of the most common" and it aims to help the reader find a companion to feel less alone in their experience (if they want to).

What I liked:

- This book doesn't aim to help the reader overcome their grief, but since we will always carry our grief with us, this book helps to reach the point where the effects of the loss will have soften over time
- Diverse and inclusive 
- Loved the little comics throughout the book; they were relatable, entertaining, and they helped a lot to make the subject lighter (the one about the types of grief monsters was probably my favorite)
- Loved this statement: "Not all grief is the same but all grief is valid"
- The graphs throughout were creative and intriguing. My favorite was the "Ripple effect of loss" that shows that with the loss of a person we also experience secondary losses such as the loss of security, relationships, and self (and all or some of the multiple subcategories that fall under those three).
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