Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons From The Crematory by Caitlin DoughtySmoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons From The Crematory by Caitlin Doughty

Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons From The Crematory

byCaitlin Doughty

Paperback | October 27, 2015

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Armed with a degree in medieval history and a flair for the macabre, Caitlin Doughty took a job at a crematory and turned morbid curiosity into her life’s work. She cared for bodies of every color, shape, and affliction, and became an intrepid explorer in the world of the dead. In this best-selling memoir, brimming with gallows humor and vivid characters, she marvels at the gruesome history of undertaking and relates her unique coming-of-age story with bold curiosity and mordant wit. By turns hilarious, dark, and uplifting, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes reveals how the fear of dying warps our society and "will make you reconsider how our culture treats the dead" (San Francisco Chronicle).
Mortician Caitlin Doughty—host and creator of Ask a Mortician and the New York Times best-selling author of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes—founded The Order of the Good Death. She lives in Los Angeles, where she runs her nonprofit funeral home, Undertaking LA.
Title:Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons From The CrematoryFormat:PaperbackDimensions:8.22 × 5.47 × 0.71 inPublished:October 27, 2015Publisher:WW NortonLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0393351904

ISBN - 13:9780393351903


Rated 3 out of 5 by from Was expecting more Okay so I understand the whole point of this book and I can see why it's popular, but as a fan of non fiction and memoirs, this left me desiring more. Half the book is anecdotes, half is self introspection. The anecdotes are fun but the other part seemed like a personal journal that I had no interest in reading. I thought this book would be funny, and I didn't even smile once.
Date published: 2018-08-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Consumerism of Death Caitlin is so good at making such a heavy topic enjoyable to read about. She is sarcastic, witty, and bursting with personality. I really pondered on the things she spoke about, especially the consumerism aspect of the death industry (i.e. embalming) and how our customs would seem just as strange to outsiders as theirs seem to us. Will be picking up her other novel.
Date published: 2018-08-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Eye-Opening Read This book is a lovely and empowering introduction to the simple art of reflecting on the role of mortality in our lives. Caitlin Doughty offers an unabashed glance at death and the realities of working in the death industry, inviting her readers to question and reconstruct their attitudes about death; the accessible language and honest tone of the writing - as well as the author's obvious passion for her profession - makes it so much easier to approach this difficult and often taboo subject.
Date published: 2018-06-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Smoke Siren Amusing and drenched in the soot of reality, Doughty unravels western mortality fears with delightful prose and ease.
Date published: 2018-06-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a voice! Caitlin Doughty is one of the modern day death care advocates and this book tells of her start in the field. She talks to us about death in a way that is positive, real, accepting and often humorous. This book began my motivation towards becoming a Death Doula and I have followed her since on youtube, on her website, on interviews and TED Talks and more recently through her next book, From Here To Eternity.
Date published: 2018-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love Cailtlin!!! If you don't watch Caitlin's YouTube channel Ask a Mortician then you totally should! Watching her videos and learning a bit about her personality and experience in the death care industry definitely made me feel like a total insider while reading this book. But it is in no way a necessity. Caitlin finds a way to make She is quirky and relatable and it translates so well in this book. She really opens your eyes to how little you know about something that happens to us all.
Date published: 2018-04-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Death is something to respect and accept I loved this book because it's real. It's funny, it's sad, it's thought-provoking. Doughty wants us to think about death, not in fear, but with hope and acceptance. It is a part of life, and the natural processes that bring us back to being one with the earth should be considered an honour. This was truly a great book. I have a new outlook!
Date published: 2018-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Death should not be feared Caitlin Doughty does an incredible job at making death approachable by explaining different death practices throughout history and culture, using her own experience and knowledge to round it all out. Given the gravity of the topic at hand, Doughty creates a lighthearted and open discussion that can even make you laugh at times.
Date published: 2017-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Re-thinking Death Despite "uncomfortable" subject matter (i.e., death), this book is witty, engaging, and pensive. This book challenged my perception of death, and left me with a lot to think about.
Date published: 2017-12-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Essential Death Reading Doughty is an honest and brilliant voice. She brings intense intimacy and care to subjects we've been taught to avoid speaking about. The death positivity movement is lucky to have her, and so is the genre of memoir.
Date published: 2017-10-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful I have read this book over and over and I absolutely love it. I would highly recommend that you pick it up and give it a go.
Date published: 2017-07-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Interesting book. This book wouldn't be everyone's first pick off the book shelf but if your open to learning what actually goes on in a crematorium. Pick up this book. It's so interesting to learn ! #plumrewards
Date published: 2017-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic story and commentary on death! This book is about death but it is written in a gentle and comforting way that draws you in rather than shocks you
Date published: 2017-04-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a great look inside. Absolutely loved this book and was able to meet the author and get my book signed. The fascinating history and personal stories will have you hooked.
Date published: 2017-01-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fascinating While completely fascinated and terrified of all things surrounding death, I found this book to be a fresh take on...dead people. Although not all will, I fully appreciated the humour and found myself laughing out loud. A must read if you are contemplating your final arrangements or, when the time comes, your loved ones.
Date published: 2016-12-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Helped me think about my own life and final arrangements in a new way. This really gave me a lot to think about in regards to the way we handle death. While I don't dislike the idea of a celebration of life after one passes, the typical funeral with viewing is something I try to avoid because I feel it is so... well... unnatural. I feel that with the spirt gone, a mortal coil is doctored up and then people are looking at it and talking to just rings all wrong. They're not here anymore. And the elaborate casket and flowers...I don't really understand it. These sentiments are echoed in her writing. She does a good job and she is witty, funny and well read. That said, the end lost me a bit as she veered into the territory of being lovelorn and planning a suicide she didn't carry out. It felt like filler after what I had read up until that point. Glad I read it though. I'm only half way through life but this solidified that I'd like a green burial when the time comes. Around a tree sounds nice. Without all the manufactured hullabaloo that is so prevalent. I remind myself that the laws of psychics state that energy can neither be created nor destroyed. The body is only the shell of who we are and all the gilded caskets and tchotchkes in the world can't change that.
Date published: 2016-12-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fresh and Informative A whole new approach to the often uncomfortable topic of death.
Date published: 2016-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Gives new life to the topic of death! Caitlin Doughty has written this book so well and skillfully respects the topic of death while similtaniously seeing the humour in it as well. Great read if you want to think about death in more than a traditional north american way.
Date published: 2015-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An enjoyable read I really enjoyed this book. Although I am not sure that I am the typical reader as I have had more experience than most working with dead bodies.
Date published: 2014-12-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Woman?s Journey through the Death Industry In this wonderfully sincere and touching memoir, the author recounts her life in the world of dead bodies. She gives details on collecting them, preparing them, embalming/cremating them and disposing of them. Along the way, the reader learns of fascinating and often disturbing death rituals in other cultures both past and present. The author pulls no punches about the appearance of the deceased prior to ?preparing? them for a viewing, pointing out that the relatively serene appearances of ?corpses? that we see on TV dramas are a far cry from reality; she gives plenty of details to support this. Although the main bulk of the book is on the author?s professional life, some space is devoted to her personal life as well as on her evolving philosophical attitudes towards death and dying. The prose is friendly, lively, often humorous and witty and quite captivating; I found this book to be an easy, quick, enjoyable read. This book should appeal the most to those who are curious about how our bodies are dealt with after we pass away (and are not afraid to read about the often gory details).
Date published: 2014-09-26

Editorial Reviews

Demonically funny. — O, The Oprah MagazineFrank…philosophical…engaging, and even wicked. — Natalie Kusz (New York Times Book Review)Upbeat, brave and brilliantly, morbidly curious…Her measure of society is fierce, right on, and radical…[A]n important and timely book. — Helen Davies (Sunday Times)It may well blow your mind wide open. — Elisabeth Donnelly (Flavorwire)Think Sloane Crosley meets Six Feet Under. — Kevin Nguyen (Grantland)In a moving—and often funny—memoir about working in a crematorium and other parts of the ‘death industry,’ Caitlin Doughty argues for radical change in how we face the details of death. — Jessica Ferri (Daily Beast)Demonically funny dispatches. — O MagazineDoughty…a trustworthy tour guide…keeps us laughing most of the way. — Rachel Lubitz (Washington Post)Alternately heartbreaking and hilarious, fascinating and freaky, vivid and morbid, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes is witty, sharply drawn, and deeply moving. Like a poisonous cocktail, Caitlin Doughty’s memoir intoxicates and enchants even as it encourages you to embrace oblivion; she breathes life into death. — Dodai Stewart, deputy editor of Jezebel.comCaitlin Doughty takes you to places you didn’t know you wanted to go. Fascinating, funny, and so very necessary, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes reveals exactly what’s wrong with modern death denial. — Bess Lovejoy, author of Rest in Pieces: The Curious Fates of Famous CorpsesThis book absolutely must be read, if only to remind all of us that exercise, organic food, and plastic surgery only work up to a point. Doughty is my kind of death crusader—compassionate, unblinking, and very, very funny. — Meg Rosoff