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There is no process, no beginning, no middle or end to grief; it just is. And that simple existence changes everything.

Author Pat Brown lost the love of her life in 2005. When Tom, her husband of eighteen years, died of a hemorrhagic stroke, she was surprised—and sometimes dismayed—to discover that grief reopened all the questions often described as spiritual, questions she thought had been settled long before. Her unease, even distrust, of religious answers to mystical conundrums made the journey difficult. But she hung in, bracketing her disbelief, while keeping an open mind and a cocked eyebrow.

In Surprised Pink Geraniums, she shares stories of her life with Tom—stories filled with love, tenderness, humour, and sometimes the annoyances of loving another human being. Irish Wolfhounds played major roles in their lives, and these great beasts contribute their own version of charm and devotion. Even so, Surprised Pink Geraniums is not a depiction of happy couples romping with dogs. It is a story of grievous loss, of connections, and of recreating meaning. This memoir is not focused on redemption—only on the human possibility for joy.

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