A powerful, timely exploration of the art of living and dying on our own terms by one of Australia’s most respected voices
Of all the experiences we share, two universal events bookend our lives: we were all born and we will all die. We don't have a choice in how we enter the world but we can have a say in how we leave it.
In order to die well, we must be prepared to contemplate our mortality and to broach it with our loved ones, who are often called upon to make important decisions on our behalf. These are some of the most important conversations we can have with each other - to find peace, kindness and gratitude for what has gone before, and acceptance of what is to come.
Dr Ranjana Srivastava draws on two decades of experience to share her observations and advice on leading a meaningful life and finding dignity and composure at the end. With an emphasis on advocacy, leaving a legacy and staying true to our deepest convictions, Srivastava tells stories of strength, hope and resilience in the face of grief and offers an optimistic meditation on approaching the end of life.
Intelligent, warm and deeply affecting, A Better Death is a passionate exploration of the art of living and dying well.
Dr Ranjana Srivastava OAM is a practising oncologist, award-winning writer, broadcaster and Fulbright scholar. See www.ranjanasrivastava.com
Dr Ranjana Srivastava OAM is a practising oncologist, internationally published and award-winning author, broadcaster and Fulbright scholar. She is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and works in the public hospital system. In 2017, Ranjana was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her contribution to doctor-patient communication and was recognised by Monash University as Distinguished Alumni of the Year. Her writing has been published worldwide, including in Time magazine and The Week, and in prominent medical journals such as The New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet, Journal of the American Medical Association. In 2018 she was a finalist in the Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism for her work as a regular columnist for The Guardian newspaper. Her acclaimed non-fiction books include Tell Me the Truth: Conversations with My Patients about Life and Death (shortlisted, NSW Premier’s Literary Awards),Dying for a Chat: The Communication Breakdown Between Doctors and Patients (winner, Human Rights Literature Prize) and What it Takes to be a Doctor (finalist, Australian Career Book Award). She lives in Victoria. See www.ranjanasrivastava.com
‘Uplifting and forthright, calm and positive – and alive to all our needs’
– Michael McGirr, author of Books that Saved My Life
‘At last, a book to help us prepare for the end of life, with tremendous warmth, wisdom and compassion’
– Caroline Baum, author of Only
‘Death is a subject most of us try to avoid, and all of us need to discuss. I can’t imagine a better starting-point for that conversation than Ranjana Srivastava’s illuminating, inspiring and intensely practical book. The things we most want in a doctor – kindness, compassion, empathy and the reassuring blend of technical skill and professional integrity – are all here, shining through every word.'
– Hugh Mackay, social researcher and author of The Good Life
‘A book brimming with pathos and profound insights on facing death with compassion, kindness and forgiveness for ourselves and those we may be caring for who are dying. In helping us grapple with our own mortality with unflinching honesty and pragmatism Dr Srivastava empowers us to live our lives to the full with an urgency and authenticity that will transform all our lives for the better.’
– Kon Kon Karapanagiotidis, author of The Power of Hope
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