Grief Is for People
by Sloane Crosley
You must sign in to see if this title is available for request. Sign In or Register Now
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app
To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add email@example.com as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 27 Feb 2024 | Archive Date 27 Mar 2024
Disarmingly witty and poignant, Sloane Crosley’s memoir explores multiple kinds of loss following the death of her closest friend.
Grief Is for People is a deeply moving and surprisingly suspenseful portrait of friendship, and a book about loss packed with verve for life. Sloane Crosley is one of our most renowned observers of contemporary behavior, and now the pathos that has been ever present in her trademark wit is on full display. After the pain and confusion of losing her closest friend to suicide, Crosley looks for answers in friends, philosophy, and art, hoping for a framework more useful than the unavoidable stages of grief.
For most of her adult life, Sloane and Russell worked together and played together as they navigated the corridors of office life, the literary world, and the dramatic cultural shifts in New York City. One day, while Russell is still alive, Sloane’s apartment is broken into. Along with her most prized possessions, the thief makes off with her sense of security, leaving a mystery in its place.
When Russell dies exactly one month later, his suicide propels her on a wild quest to right the unrightable, to explore what constitutes family and possession as the city itself faces the staggering toll brought on by the pandemic.
Crosley’s search for truth is frank, darkly funny, and gilded with a resounding empathy. Upending the “grief memoir,” Grief Is for People is the category-defying story of the struggle to hold on to the past without being consumed by it. A modern elegy, it rises precisely to console and challenge our notions of mourning during these grief-stricken times.
A Note From the Publisher
★ “Crosley’s memoir is not only a joy to read, but also a respectful and philosophical work . . . Crosley fashions a sharp narrative that finds commonality in the dislocation brought on by these events . . . A warm remembrance sure to resonate with anyone who has experienced loss . . . Marvelously tender.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“An indelible portrait of a singular friendship, Grief Is for People is a beautifully written and sharply observed memoir about grief, yes, but also: secrets, betrayal, rage, work, community, and most of all, love. It's both a provocation and a balm to the soul.” —Dani Shapiro, author of Family History
"Grief Is for People captures the feeling of watching a beloved, inappropriate and wild person fit less and less with the times we live in. Like Didion's The Year Of Magical Thinking or Defoe's Journal of a Plague Year, Grief Is for People takes us through the ordinary, awful and never-quite-ending experience of loss. It also made me laugh very hard, many times. I can't stop thinking about it." —John Mulaney
"Potent and propulsive, a lyrical meditation on loss and what comes after. Grief is for People is heartbreaking and wholly original."
—Tara Westover, author of Educated
"Is it wrong to say that a memoir about loss and grieving is fun to read? If so, I’m in trouble, because I enjoyed every word of this book. I also ached and suffered along with Crosley: Her portrait of mourning after the suicide of her best friend is gutting and deeply engaging." —Susan Orlean, author of The Orchid Thief
Praise for Sloane Crosley:
"One of America's wittiest writers." —Andrew Sean Greer, author of Less is Lost
"Crosley wields her wit and commands all of your attention..." —Esquire
“[Crosley] has that rare ability to treat scrapes with sardonic humor and inject serious subjects with levity and hijinks with real feeling — a sort of unlicensed nurse to our souls." —NPR
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 27 members
I absolutely loved this memoir from Sloane Crosley. It was a not altogether new subject matter, but still nuanced in the treatment of death, grief, and processing trauma. Sloane has always had a way of holding you hostage in her pages and wrapping you tight in a feeling. This memoir is no different!
This memoir is wonderful. I read this so quickly as Crosley’s writing is so immersive and witty I didn’t want to put it down. Dealing with such a hefty topic of suicide in the most raw and compassionate way, I will definitely return to this book again and again.
As someone who rarely takes notes, underlines, or scribbles in the margins while reading, it is truly a testament to this book how much of it I ended up highlighting. So many passages and even sentences just stopped me in my tracks and had me reading them over and over again.
It feels almost impossible to weigh in on writing like this that is so raw and personal, but this book completely bowled me over and I will be thinking about it for a long time. I am such a fan of Crosley’s writing and her signature wit remains while she deftly recounts a time in her life that was marked by such devastating grief. I am honestly just so thankful that I was able to read this and find some comfort in how one can begin to deal with this specifically tragic and complicated type of loss.
I can’t recommend this highly enough.
Many thanks to Farrar, Straus, and Giroux and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
For some reason, unbeknownst to me, I always find myself gravitating towards books that deal with grief.
It might be because grief, in its purest form, is deeply personal. When you’re in it, it feels like a thing that can’t be shared with others. At some points you think that sharing your grief would somehow lessen the importance of the thing you’re grieving. You feel alone in it, and sometimes that’s exactly what you want to feel. What you need to feel.
Grief is for People by Sloane Crosley is a vivid, raw portrayal of grief. It dissects those unreasonable, yet very real, feelings you have when someone close to you dies. In line with the theme, she quotes Didion a few times throughout the book. And I couldn’t help but notice the influence of Didion’s style in Crosley’s words. It’s that detached, yet ever so emotional and introspective prose, with quotes so precise that you won’t forget them any time soon. It’s brilliant.
As Sloane writes about the events surrounding her friend’s suicide, she weaves in bits from a burglary that happened to her exactly one month before her friend died. Due to their proximity in time, and her mind being clouded by grief, these events become interconnected for her. We see her trying, and failing, to find proof of her friend still being kept alive in the world. We see her pulling at the last bits of memory she has of her friend, trying to find a reason. An explanation as to why he left her in the world all alone.
This memoir was paradoxically sad and hilarious at the same time. It’s a story that gripped me right from the beginning, and I know I will be thinking about it for days to come. Thank you so much to FSG for the ARC.
I've never read a book on grief that made me feel like someone else had a relationship with grief that comes close to mine, but Sloane Crosley's new book made me feel seen -- uncomfortably so at times, but seen nevertheless. I had to put the book aside multiple times during my reading to cry, wondering how some pixels on a screen could so effectively reactivate my feelings and remind me what it feels like when the grief is fresh, what it feels like to be trying to process the feelings while not wanting to process the feelings because processing them means my person is really gone. It's a beautiful, painful book, and I'll be getting a physical copy ASAP for my personal library.