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My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me: A Memoir

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An inspiring memoir of life, love, loss, and new beginnings by the widower of bestselling children’s author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal, whose last of act of love before her death was setting the stage for her husband’s life without her in the viral New York Times Modern Love column, “You May Want to Marry My Husband.” On March 3, 2017, Amy Krouse Rosenthal penned an An inspiring memoir of life, love, loss, and new beginnings by the widower of bestselling children’s author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal, whose last of act of love before her death was setting the stage for her husband’s life without her in the viral New York Times Modern Love column, “You May Want to Marry My Husband.” On March 3, 2017, Amy Krouse Rosenthal penned an op-ed piece for the New York Times’ “Modern Love” column —”You May Want to Marry My Husband.” It appeared ten days before her death from ovarian cancer. A heartbreaking, wry, brutally honest, and creative play on a personal ad—in which a dying wife encouraged her husband to go on and find happiness after her demise—the column quickly went viral, reaching more than five million people worldwide. In My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me, Jason describes what came next: his commitment to respecting Amy’s wish, even as he struggled with her loss. Surveying his life before, with, and after Amy, Jason ruminates on love, the pain of watching a loved one suffer, and what it means to heal—how he and their three children, despite their profound sorrow, went on. Jason’s emotional journey offers insights on dying and death and the excruciating pain of losing a soulmate, and illuminates the lessons he learned. As he reflects on Amy’s gift to him—a fresh start to fill his empty space with a new story—Jason describes how he continues to honor Amy’s life and her last wish, and how he seeks to appreciate every day and live in the moment while trying to help others coping with loss. My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is the poignant, unreserved, and inspiring story of a great love, the aftermath of a marriage ended too soon, and how a surviving partner eventually found a new perspective on life’s joys in the wake of tremendous loss.


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An inspiring memoir of life, love, loss, and new beginnings by the widower of bestselling children’s author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal, whose last of act of love before her death was setting the stage for her husband’s life without her in the viral New York Times Modern Love column, “You May Want to Marry My Husband.” On March 3, 2017, Amy Krouse Rosenthal penned an An inspiring memoir of life, love, loss, and new beginnings by the widower of bestselling children’s author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal, whose last of act of love before her death was setting the stage for her husband’s life without her in the viral New York Times Modern Love column, “You May Want to Marry My Husband.” On March 3, 2017, Amy Krouse Rosenthal penned an op-ed piece for the New York Times’ “Modern Love” column —”You May Want to Marry My Husband.” It appeared ten days before her death from ovarian cancer. A heartbreaking, wry, brutally honest, and creative play on a personal ad—in which a dying wife encouraged her husband to go on and find happiness after her demise—the column quickly went viral, reaching more than five million people worldwide. In My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me, Jason describes what came next: his commitment to respecting Amy’s wish, even as he struggled with her loss. Surveying his life before, with, and after Amy, Jason ruminates on love, the pain of watching a loved one suffer, and what it means to heal—how he and their three children, despite their profound sorrow, went on. Jason’s emotional journey offers insights on dying and death and the excruciating pain of losing a soulmate, and illuminates the lessons he learned. As he reflects on Amy’s gift to him—a fresh start to fill his empty space with a new story—Jason describes how he continues to honor Amy’s life and her last wish, and how he seeks to appreciate every day and live in the moment while trying to help others coping with loss. My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is the poignant, unreserved, and inspiring story of a great love, the aftermath of a marriage ended too soon, and how a surviving partner eventually found a new perspective on life’s joys in the wake of tremendous loss.

30 review for My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me: A Memoir

  1. 4 out of 5

    Brandice

    My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is Jason Rosenthal’s story of marriage and coming to terms with great loss and grief as his wife, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, died of cancer. 10 days before she died, in 2017, the New York Times published Amy’s essay “You May Want to Marry My Husband” in its Modern Love column. The piece went viral (also included in this book), propelling Jason not just into some spotlight but into seeing a path for his future. This book was undoubtedly sad at parts yet also inspi My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is Jason Rosenthal’s story of marriage and coming to terms with great loss and grief as his wife, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, died of cancer. 10 days before she died, in 2017, the New York Times published Amy’s essay “You May Want to Marry My Husband” in its Modern Love column. The piece went viral (also included in this book), propelling Jason not just into some spotlight but into seeing a path for his future. This book was undoubtedly sad at parts yet also inspiring. Jason is a great writer and it’s clear from the book that Amy was a creative, dynamic force, loved by many. She wanted more for the two of them and their children, she made lists upon lists, and lived by the majority of tenets they outlined. The one I admired most was to really live the life they wanted, and it seems they made great effort to do so — It’s something people often say, but how many actually do? ”What a gift to have had these moments, and why shouldn’t the rest of us have them now, while we’re still healthy? What are we waiting for? How arrogant of us to believe there will always be “more time.” I’ve read reviews of this book calling it saccharine or glossy. It’s unfortunate some readers don’t respect it for what it is — A personal perspective on love and loss. While no relationship is ever perfect, it’s certainly possible Jason and Amy’s was close to it, at least from their own view, which in this case, is really the only one that matters. My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is a tribute to a wonderful life together as well as a story of resilience and moving forward.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rose

    2.5 rounded up A few disclaimers before I really dive in here. 1. I was not familiar with Jason Rosenthal or his wife before I picked this book up today. 2. I've never lost a spouse. I could be the only person who feels this way, but I just expected more from this book. It was thought provoking in terms of making me think about how I want to act now or be prepared if my husband or I suddenly face a terminal illness, and I am right about the age where I have to start admitting to myself that I'm n 2.5 rounded up A few disclaimers before I really dive in here. 1. I was not familiar with Jason Rosenthal or his wife before I picked this book up today. 2. I've never lost a spouse. I could be the only person who feels this way, but I just expected more from this book. It was thought provoking in terms of making me think about how I want to act now or be prepared if my husband or I suddenly face a terminal illness, and I am right about the age where I have to start admitting to myself that I'm not really young and will eventually die. I appreciate the space to confront those things in an honest way. But, I have experienced real loss and grief, and I just felt like this author was masterful at being honest without being vulnerable. It felt a little glossy to me. I was hoping to read and connect to a little more mess and rawness and pain. I know that we all experience grief differently, and I do believe that this was his real experience. But honestly even reading about how perfect his marriage and family was over the course of the 26 years actually made it really difficult to connect with this author or story. I'm not doubting it. I just found it kind of alienating from my own personal grief experience. What I do appreciate about this book and story is that it is clear that Jason Rosenthal deeply loved and was completely devoted to Amy and his children. And that was beautiful and inspiring. I just don't think that this author's point of view and writing style is a good match for me at this time. But if it's helping other people, well yeehaw then.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Paulette

    For those readers familiar with the story of Amy Krouse Rosenthal and her NYT essay about her suggestion that "you may want to marry her husband" that went viral - this is a memoir from her husband about their love story. Touching and honest concerning the grief a spouse deals with when a loved one dies, Jason Rosenthal writes a moving account of their marriage and the loss he has experienced. This is a tribute to his wife, first and foremost, as well an exploration of the resilience that is pos For those readers familiar with the story of Amy Krouse Rosenthal and her NYT essay about her suggestion that "you may want to marry her husband" that went viral - this is a memoir from her husband about their love story. Touching and honest concerning the grief a spouse deals with when a loved one dies, Jason Rosenthal writes a moving account of their marriage and the loss he has experienced. This is a tribute to his wife, first and foremost, as well an exploration of the resilience that is possible in order to live again. Highly recommended - pub date April 21st. Thank you Edelweiss for the advanced reading copy. On a personal note - I am the librarian mentioned in the essay who shared the experience of getting a matching tattoo with Amy.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kaloyana

    This is a book about how privileged people talk about losing a loved one, while having a perfect life. Full of cliches, boring repeatedly shallow sentences are not the problem. The problem is that this simply is not normal. I mean it. This guy needs a big reality check. A huge one. How people live and what happens in the world outside your perfect family and friends, and career and kids and house and traveling, yoga, painting, reading (you do it all and that makes you fulfilled and a good person This is a book about how privileged people talk about losing a loved one, while having a perfect life. Full of cliches, boring repeatedly shallow sentences are not the problem. The problem is that this simply is not normal. I mean it. This guy needs a big reality check. A huge one. How people live and what happens in the world outside your perfect family and friends, and career and kids and house and traveling, yoga, painting, reading (you do it all and that makes you fulfilled and a good person? I know, I know) and perfect parents and dog etc. If you need to know how rich people cry too and also die, this is a book for you. Why do we have to listen to this, really? Maybe the guy is alright, but he can't write this is not a literature, this is "dear diary" level of writing. And also he sounds like those people who think that they understand and help others by donating money and some time. Hello? Anyone? This is your ego speaking right to your consciousness, pal. I guess it is OK talking like this to your friends and your crowd of people, who share same kind of life and ignorance about the big picture, which is OK too, but a real book? Please. This is a huge NO. I'm sorry, but I don't want to marry your husband, Amy Rosenthal. P.S I listen to it, because John Green was saying some good words about it and I am his huge fan. But in the book I understand that they were friends, so I guess this was like a nice thing to do to your grieving friend. Bad, bad boy John! No more recommendations like this, please!

  5. 5 out of 5

    A. H. Reaume

    RECORD SCRATCH. What was a benign memoir took a SHARP TURN in the last part. Jason relates a story about when he and Amy were selling buttons (they sold antique buttons as a side business) in a gay neighborhood. He then mentions how her parents who were ‘more 1950s than 1990s’ came down to support Amy and were horrified by all the gay people. Then teased her about thinking they might want to go to a gay neighborhood... for the rest of her life. This is related as a cute and funny anecdote and th RECORD SCRATCH. What was a benign memoir took a SHARP TURN in the last part. Jason relates a story about when he and Amy were selling buttons (they sold antique buttons as a side business) in a gay neighborhood. He then mentions how her parents who were ‘more 1950s than 1990s’ came down to support Amy and were horrified by all the gay people. Then teased her about thinking they might want to go to a gay neighborhood... for the rest of her life. This is related as a cute and funny anecdote and the parents are said to be great and supportive parents. Please miss me with a fond remembrance of homophobia, thank you. Homophobia that you and your wife failed to call out for years but instead became a fun family joke. To make it worse, Jason then says this remembrance reminds him that Amy had an ‘infectious lust for life.’ Because being around gay people means somehow living more excitingly! Instead of just being... you know... another time you are around other humans. Gay people as an exoticized other used to make a straight woman seem more fun? That’s not a cute anecdote. That’s gross and objectifying and homophobic. Don’t publishers sensitivity edit?

  6. 5 out of 5

    Traci Batson

    It’s difficult to give a less-than-glowing review to a book about a man’s journey through the grief of losing his spouse and the mother of his children. That woman happens to be one of my favorite authors of all time- which makes it even more challenging. But, I don’t recommend this book unless you are grieving yourself and perhaps looking for a kindred spirit. I found myself thinking, far too often, “no marriage is this perfect.” And no human being is as perfect as he makes himself out to be. Mo It’s difficult to give a less-than-glowing review to a book about a man’s journey through the grief of losing his spouse and the mother of his children. That woman happens to be one of my favorite authors of all time- which makes it even more challenging. But, I don’t recommend this book unless you are grieving yourself and perhaps looking for a kindred spirit. I found myself thinking, far too often, “no marriage is this perfect.” And no human being is as perfect as he makes himself out to be. Most of the book reads like a cathartic exercise and a way to praise the people he admires and loves- and yet, for me, it only made me miss Amy and her wit and sense of humor more. You should also be aware that he gets deep into his love for yoga, mysticism, etc. Yoga is great, but if you’re not into the “hippy-dippy” stuff, you’ll be rapidly flipping pages to skip this and find content you can connect with. Unfortunately, I never found that in this book, but i do appreciate his honest account of hospice and the devastating toll ovarian cancer takes on even the strongest of fighters.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Karyl

    I’ll start this review with a caveat: while I have lost someone very dear to me very unexpectedly, she was not my life partner or someone I spent every moment of 25+ years with. The grief of losing her was absolutely crushing, and still blindsides me at times, but I know it cannot compared with the grief of losing your spouse or your child or someone so very close to you. While it was lovely to read about how much Rosenthal loves his wife, and how amazing his family is, especially his kids and h I’ll start this review with a caveat: while I have lost someone very dear to me very unexpectedly, she was not my life partner or someone I spent every moment of 25+ years with. The grief of losing her was absolutely crushing, and still blindsides me at times, but I know it cannot compared with the grief of losing your spouse or your child or someone so very close to you. While it was lovely to read about how much Rosenthal loves his wife, and how amazing his family is, especially his kids and his in-laws, it was a bit.... saccharine? I mean, most interpersonal relationships are a little messy at times, and he focuses solely on how well everyone got on together and how supportive they were of each other and what great things everyone had achieved throughout their lives. It’s so foreign to anything I’ve ever known that it was difficult for me to connect with Rosenthal. I do applaud him hugely for pointing out that men do have emotions, and men should absolutely allow themselves to feel those emotions and express them in healthy ways. I agree that too often it seems as though men are told by society that they can’t cry or feel any kind of emotion, and it’s just not a healthy mindset. Personally if you’re looking for a memoir dealing with death, I’d recommend Paul Kalanithi’s When Breath Becomes Air. I was really moved by that book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jennie Duberstein

    I really wanted to like this book. It is clear from their writing that both Amy and Jason deeply loved each other, and their family. There were a few lovely and moving parts, but overall this memoir is a long reflection on how amazing the author’s life has been—his perfect wife, his perfect marriage (up until the tragic death of his wife, albeit), his beautiful and perfect children, his amazing and perfect in-laws, his perfect mother who raised him perfectly in spite of the adversity she faced, I really wanted to like this book. It is clear from their writing that both Amy and Jason deeply loved each other, and their family. There were a few lovely and moving parts, but overall this memoir is a long reflection on how amazing the author’s life has been—his perfect wife, his perfect marriage (up until the tragic death of his wife, albeit), his beautiful and perfect children, his amazing and perfect in-laws, his perfect mother who raised him perfectly in spite of the adversity she faced, his perfect extended family and friends, who where there and continue to be there for him and his family every step of the way, his perfect privileged life where they get to to take a month vacation every year to travel the world as a family and have amazing experiences together, his perfect dog, his perfect transformative experiences after the death of his wife...even his relationship with his father, the one part of his life that is clearly imperfect, is glossed over by reflections on how his relationship with his wife helped him navigate his father’s imperfections, and how a note from a random person from childhood helped him deliver the perfect eulogy at his father’s funeral. I kept waiting for there to be something more substantive, and while there were occasional glimpses, it really just never got there. Perhaps I am just a grouch who has a darker and more skeptical view of things and his life really WAS that perfect—in which case I am happy for him and everyone involved. But it didn’t make for a compelling memoir about moving through grief.

  9. 5 out of 5

    BookOfCinz

    I fell in love with Modern Love, I loved all the stories about people falling in love. One of the stories in the collection that I thoroughly enjoyed was You May Want To Marry My Husband , it was a dying wife's attempt at finding her replacement. I remember reading that essay and have actual tears in my eyes- so sad. Fast forward to 2020 I see that the husband of the now dead wife wrote a follow up book, of course I had to read it. In My Wife Said You May Want To Marry Me Jason Rosenthal tal I fell in love with Modern Love, I loved all the stories about people falling in love. One of the stories in the collection that I thoroughly enjoyed was You May Want To Marry My Husband , it was a dying wife's attempt at finding her replacement. I remember reading that essay and have actual tears in my eyes- so sad. Fast forward to 2020 I see that the husband of the now dead wife wrote a follow up book, of course I had to read it. In My Wife Said You May Want To Marry Me Jason Rosenthal talks about his life with Amy, how they met, got married, handled challenges, raising kids and how the death of his wife shook him to his core. He also spoke about the essay that went viral and how it affected his life. This is a book about grief and how Jason processed losing his wife in such a public way. I liked getting to know more about Amy and what their life before her death was life. I did seem very fairytale-ish but who am I to judge. I loved hearing about the list of goals they had for their marriage, I think thats a big take away for me. Overall I was not as moved as I thought I was reading the book. I did like it for what it was, an ode to his wife.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn in FL

    Jason Rosenthal recounts a wonder life with his wife, Amy in this bittersweet tale. It is obvious that they shared an extraordinary marriage. It is a marriage that most would be both jealous and also aspire to experience. Both Jason and Amy seem like such kind and enthusiastic people. There is no doubt that those who know them value their interactions with both of these special people. So, why the three star rating? It isn't the book per se, it is me. I can't really seem to connect to either peo Jason Rosenthal recounts a wonder life with his wife, Amy in this bittersweet tale. It is obvious that they shared an extraordinary marriage. It is a marriage that most would be both jealous and also aspire to experience. Both Jason and Amy seem like such kind and enthusiastic people. There is no doubt that those who know them value their interactions with both of these special people. So, why the three star rating? It isn't the book per se, it is me. I can't really seem to connect to either people and the fairy tale portion of their life. They had the flexibility to travel to amazing places both alone as a couple and with their children. Since both had successful careers in their areas of their interests, which they had started from scratch, they had both the ability to schedule adventures across the globe and the funds to do so. Though Jason touches upon the pressures of making these choices and dealing with the problems that arose from putting clients on hold and even creating conflicts, it is such out of reach experiences that I can't relate to on a personal level. I know the challenge of having a business, it is a 24/7 responsibility, you are always thinking of things that need to be done, the money inflow and outflow, so even if you can walk away when you need to, however, I didn't roll in the money, I eventually lost it due to injuries that a bad driver created for me and altered my life in a myriads of ways forever, (without any consequences to him). While some people in America have this kind of lifestyle, many do not. I don't envy them (well maybe a smidgen). This is the American Dream Realized. Obviously, money doesn't solve all your problems. It didn't for the Rosenthals, after all Amy died in middle age after her struggles with cancer. I can't imagine how someone would cope after the person, who has been your soul mate is suddenly gone and the futures dreams with them have perplexingly vanished. How difficult the grief involved in this loss of the person that gets you and has been so deeply connected with you. How does one process this? So, for the first 75 pages, I read a recounting of their goals, which they had set for their together while on their honeymoon. Then, how they were able to make these goals workable in everyday life. So, in a sense it was as much a guide to young people, who are starting out their married life partnership. I would recommend it as a Wedding Gift. However, as someone who isn't planning on marrying and has more cautionary tales to offer to young people than regaling them with tales of success. I just couldn't connect. I also expected more about the challenges they faced together and a little deeper dive on the emotional side of things based on comments from others after reading it. Jason was not required to share these points, I just found it a little to much of a "fairy tale" though I surely don't have the insights to make this claim, more I suspect this to be true... I think many will enjoy and benefit from the story. I read that Jason and Paul Kalanithi's widow ( When Breath Becomes Air) were now a couple. I don't know if this is true but I hope so. They both sound like terrific individuals, who have suffered great loss.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Violet

    Many times I have picked up books I just simply cannot put down. Occasionally I will read a book that truly inspires me. Rarely do I find a book that touches me so deeply that it sticks with me long after I’ve soaked in the final word. I feel lucky to have found a book that checks all three boxes. “My Wife Said You May Want To Marry Me” checks each of these boxes, and so many more. When my children were young they owned several Amy Krause Rosenthal books, our favorite being “Yes Day.” Beyond tho Many times I have picked up books I just simply cannot put down. Occasionally I will read a book that truly inspires me. Rarely do I find a book that touches me so deeply that it sticks with me long after I’ve soaked in the final word. I feel lucky to have found a book that checks all three boxes. “My Wife Said You May Want To Marry Me” checks each of these boxes, and so many more. When my children were young they owned several Amy Krause Rosenthal books, our favorite being “Yes Day.” Beyond those children’s books, I knew nothing else about AKR, her life, or her family. That was until her essay, “You May Want To Marry My Husband”, was published in the The New York Times. I was one of the five million+ who read it, and one of the countless people whose heart absolutely broke upon hearing of her passing so soon afterward. When I saw that her husband was publishing a book I was intrigued and couldn’t wait to check it out. This book was so much more than I expected. Usually as I read I am trying to get a clear picture of what the characters look like physically. Through Mr. Rosenthal’s words I was able to develop a clear picture of not just Amy’s appearance but also her light and love and her joyful energy. Their love story, the life they thoughtfully and purposefully planned for themselves and their children, and the joy they filled the lives of those around them with is both enviable and inspiring. Admittedly, I did favor the happy, love story tone of the first half of the book, to the more serious, somber second half. Even so, the author’s journey is not complete without both the good and the bad and I appreciated Mr. Rosenthal’s candid heartfelt words about his wife’s end of life journey. There were several times that my heart physically ached and I wept. I cannot imagine living through that, then writing down those intimate details and vulnerably sharing them with the world. His bravery and honesty are admirable. I really enjoyed the personal elements of the book such as the photographs, letters, art, quotes and song lyrics that were sprinkled throughout the book. 5/5 stars. A must read! Thank you to Netgalley and HarperCollins for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Maureen Grigsby

    A heartfelt book about love and grief. Jason Rosenthal lost his wife just as they were starting a new phase in their lives as empty nesters. Ten days before she died, Amy Rosenthal published an essay in The New York Times, titled “You May Want to Marry My Husband”. It was an ode to the lovely 26 years they had together, but it also made his grief more public at such a difficult time. This book is an homage to Amy and the difficulty of moving ahead when the person you love most has left you behin A heartfelt book about love and grief. Jason Rosenthal lost his wife just as they were starting a new phase in their lives as empty nesters. Ten days before she died, Amy Rosenthal published an essay in The New York Times, titled “You May Want to Marry My Husband”. It was an ode to the lovely 26 years they had together, but it also made his grief more public at such a difficult time. This book is an homage to Amy and the difficulty of moving ahead when the person you love most has left you behind.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lettergirl

    I’m sure Jason Rosenthal is a really nice guy. He sounds like a really nice guy. He’s also a thankful guy. He has lots of people to thank, and he thanks them often. But dude, your wife (a writer) wrote an essay, and you (a lawyer) answered with a book. What was your editor (whom you thanked) thinking? The narrative is undeveloped, leaping from cliche to folksy entitlement. I’m sure there’s a story in there somewhere. I read to the end (which is rare for me when I’m not feeling it) to honor AKR’s I’m sure Jason Rosenthal is a really nice guy. He sounds like a really nice guy. He’s also a thankful guy. He has lots of people to thank, and he thanks them often. But dude, your wife (a writer) wrote an essay, and you (a lawyer) answered with a book. What was your editor (whom you thanked) thinking? The narrative is undeveloped, leaping from cliche to folksy entitlement. I’m sure there’s a story in there somewhere. I read to the end (which is rare for me when I’m not feeling it) to honor AKR’s memory & my own memory of first reading her Encyclopedia 15-ish years ago. But yikes, what a mess.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    It’s very clear from this book how special Amy Krause Rosenthal was and how much her family loved her. I kept wishing, though, for deeper reflection and a more specific and unpolished presentation of reality in this book. It seems like their family is strong, connected, and loving, but there were so many statements about how great people were that it felt like I wasn’t getting deep into what the family dynamics were really like. There’s also a level of privilege here that goes unexamined, and th It’s very clear from this book how special Amy Krause Rosenthal was and how much her family loved her. I kept wishing, though, for deeper reflection and a more specific and unpolished presentation of reality in this book. It seems like their family is strong, connected, and loving, but there were so many statements about how great people were that it felt like I wasn’t getting deep into what the family dynamics were really like. There’s also a level of privilege here that goes unexamined, and the attempts to examine it often fell short for me (e.g., remarking that low-SES people don’t “eat healthy” because they lack the privilege of education to know what food is healthy). I have no doubt there’s a beautiful love story and a beautiful family here, but I felt repeatedly that I was being told those things rather than being shown them.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Scorpioseah

    An inspiring memoir of life, loss and new beginnings. Grief is dynamic and unique, and everyone handle it differently. I believed we all have our own share of sadness especially when someone you loved passed away suddenly or after a long struggle of sickness. As what Jason said “grief is a complex and unforgiving beast” but we all have to learn to accept death as it is a part of life, don’t we?

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    I hate to critique a book about such a devastating loss. He obviously wrote the story he needed to tell. I just found it to be dripping with privilege and blind spots... he really believes his wife and the family they raised are perfect, unassailable, a model family. He may be right, but how can the rest of us hope to follow that model when we can’t all afford to build our “dream house” in downtown Chicago (he must have used that phrase a dozen times) and take a month off every single year to va I hate to critique a book about such a devastating loss. He obviously wrote the story he needed to tell. I just found it to be dripping with privilege and blind spots... he really believes his wife and the family they raised are perfect, unassailable, a model family. He may be right, but how can the rest of us hope to follow that model when we can’t all afford to build our “dream house” in downtown Chicago (he must have used that phrase a dozen times) and take a month off every single year to vacation around the world with our kids? After his wife died, he found healing in showing up late to work and working less, then traveling more and seeing more live music. I think his experience will be completely unrelatable to anyone with concerns about medical bills, the necessity to work, the inability to afford private yoga instructors or fulfill self indulgent bucket list trips. It is his story and that’s fine. I just found it hard to connect with his life.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Cindy Burnett

    I found this to be a compelling and thought-provoking read. I enjoyed interviewing Jason for my podcast too: https://www.thoughtsfromapage.com/s1e26. I found this to be a compelling and thought-provoking read. I enjoyed interviewing Jason for my podcast too: https://www.thoughtsfromapage.com/s1e26.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Hope

    https://bound2books.co/2020/06/05/my-... I wanted to like this book. I really did. As many of you know, I review and write a lot about grief here on Bound2Books so this memoir from Jason B. Rosenthal seemed like a no-brainer. The problems I have with this memoir are too many to out way anything else really. Firstly, the subtle homophobia is just not okay. I don’t care if you’re wife died and you miss her dearly. You don’t get to make homophobic remarks. There really isn’t much more to say about th https://bound2books.co/2020/06/05/my-... I wanted to like this book. I really did. As many of you know, I review and write a lot about grief here on Bound2Books so this memoir from Jason B. Rosenthal seemed like a no-brainer. The problems I have with this memoir are too many to out way anything else really. Firstly, the subtle homophobia is just not okay. I don’t care if you’re wife died and you miss her dearly. You don’t get to make homophobic remarks. There really isn’t much more to say about that. Secondly, the memoir sugar coats everything. You can tell the author is holding something back. Doesn’t want to reveal the truth. It makes me apathetic to story. I felt like I was about to read that birds dressed them every morning. Now, you might be thinking that some people just have perfect love stories. Although, that was not this story. You can sense moments of tension and awkwardness throughout the book. Just look at how Rosenthal talks about the relationship he had with his father. He states that he will be there for his father financially, but rarely actually asks why his father is sad, lonely, or angry. I also get the impression that Rosenthal thinks his father should be grateful because he was put in a care facility. The fact that his father suffers from Parkinson’s disease, an illness known to affect moods causing anger, apathy, and anxiety is never discussed. Yet his father is described as exhibiting all those. I mean, if you hate your father, fine. But he can’t even say what he really thinks. Even this relationship is glossed over. Lastly, the privilege. The yoga classes, the meditation classes, the fancy home in Chicago. The white savourism – we build stoves for poor Guatemalan people and they are so grateful! It is gross. In the end, I finished this memoir out of frustration. And now that I have read it and reviewed it for you, I would suggest you don’t waste your time. There are some amazing books about grief. Be sure to subscribe to my blog so you can keep up to date with all things bookish. What are you reading at the moment? As always, share the reading love.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne Tanner

    3.5 and maybe 4. Mostly this book made me miss Amy so much, and wish that she were still alive. Okay, I read a bunch of negative reviews about this book accusing Jason of painting way too perfect a picture of his life and marriage and not being vulnerable or opening up about any real issues. And after reading this, I do have to say that if you have any problems with comparison and jealousy... you will probably find yourself extremely jealous of Jason and Amy's life together. It does seem fairy-t 3.5 and maybe 4. Mostly this book made me miss Amy so much, and wish that she were still alive. Okay, I read a bunch of negative reviews about this book accusing Jason of painting way too perfect a picture of his life and marriage and not being vulnerable or opening up about any real issues. And after reading this, I do have to say that if you have any problems with comparison and jealousy... you will probably find yourself extremely jealous of Jason and Amy's life together. It does seem fairy-tale perfect (except for a less-than-perfect father and the fact that he doesn't seem to love his lawyer job). However, I'm the last one to throw shade about this because honestly, my life is shaping up to be just as fairy-tale perfect (except I'm no Amy Krauss Rosenthal, and my lawyer husband who maybe doesn't love his job so much has an amazing father, but prefers board games to cooking gourmet meals...). To me, Jason just comes across as a deeply positive person who tends to look on the bright side, and really doesn't dwell in negative spaces (people who have happy lives tend to be this way). Also, I think he is a deeply private person, and I think he talks about grief in as vulnerable a way as he is capable of without giving up the core of his private self. I also understand these feelings, and have a hard time faulting him for that. I will say that I've read better books on grief and grieving, but I also still appreciated this look into Amy's life from this perspective, and I'm still so sad for the world that we have lost her.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Robyn

    First, I am sorry for this family's loss and for his wife. But this book is almost so personal that it becomes painful to read page after page. I thought that it might be very sad, but somehow the sadness has not come through the writing. I don’t know if this is the intent of the author, but maybe only relating the facts reduces the tenderness of death. So, it is really difficult to say that a loving family man who lost his wife... well, bored me. I admit that I did not know his wife, and I am g First, I am sorry for this family's loss and for his wife. But this book is almost so personal that it becomes painful to read page after page. I thought that it might be very sad, but somehow the sadness has not come through the writing. I don’t know if this is the intent of the author, but maybe only relating the facts reduces the tenderness of death. So, it is really difficult to say that a loving family man who lost his wife... well, bored me. I admit that I did not know his wife, and I am grateful for her sake that he is such a nice man. Really! Really he seems nicer than anybody I have ever known, he reiterates what a nice man he is, how he doesn't regret any part of their relationship. But when you know the punch line at the start of the book, it is challenging to stay engaged during the recounting of just about every day of the 26 years of marriage and how he "humbled" himself during the dying phase. I hope the experience of writing this was cathartic for Mr. Rosenthal. 2 stars Happy Reading!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Esther King

    This book felt somewhat genuine, whilst also feeling like it was missing the real heart and soul of what it was trying to put across. There’s a lot of padfooting around the fullest idea of grief here, and I wish it would have just taken the thing head on. There’s so much to want to feel here, but none of it feels like it’s quite enough. This book tries to give a full examination of grief, but I didn’t feel the fullest of connections to the author, and so I was left disappointed by it. I wish it This book felt somewhat genuine, whilst also feeling like it was missing the real heart and soul of what it was trying to put across. There’s a lot of padfooting around the fullest idea of grief here, and I wish it would have just taken the thing head on. There’s so much to want to feel here, but none of it feels like it’s quite enough. This book tries to give a full examination of grief, but I didn’t feel the fullest of connections to the author, and so I was left disappointed by it. I wish it had been left more raw, which is how it feels it should have been.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Walker

    Was not at all what I expected, and I couldn't get myself past my first reading binge. I realized that I was forcing myself to continue reading- it wasn't pulling me in, engaging me, and adding to my life. I actually found it unrelatable and it almost felt like it was lacking in humility. It came off boastful and less emotional or sincere than I imagined it would be. Was not at all what I expected, and I couldn't get myself past my first reading binge. I realized that I was forcing myself to continue reading- it wasn't pulling me in, engaging me, and adding to my life. I actually found it unrelatable and it almost felt like it was lacking in humility. It came off boastful and less emotional or sincere than I imagined it would be.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Janssen

    The first half was fantastic - the second half dragged a little for me.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lesa

    I may have mentioned this before. When my husband, Jim, died, my mother gave me the best advice I received. She said, "Your life will be different, but it can be just as good." Jason B. Rosenthal came to that realization as well, that life can go on. He writes about it in his memoir, My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me. He lost his wife, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, to ovarian cancer after twenty-six years together. He says this book is "A story of how you come to the end of one part of your life and I may have mentioned this before. When my husband, Jim, died, my mother gave me the best advice I received. She said, "Your life will be different, but it can be just as good." Jason B. Rosenthal came to that realization as well, that life can go on. He writes about it in his memoir, My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me. He lost his wife, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, to ovarian cancer after twenty-six years together. He says this book is "A story of how you come to the end of one part of your life and find a way to turn the page to the next." Some may recognize Amy Krouse Rosenthal's name. She wrote several memoirs and a number of children's picture books. She was a film maker, and a creative copywriter. But, she's probably most famous for the essay that appeared in The New York Times' Modern Love column just ten days before her death in 2017, "You May Want to Marry My Husband." Rosenthal's book about his love for his wife, their family, and the terrible loss and grief is a response to that article. It was quite a while before he realized that Amy's column was a message to him, and a blank space for him to write the rest of his life. The first third of the book is the story of their love, a gift that never changed through twenty-six years. They were just about to celebrate their life as empty nesters when Amy returned home from an appearance at the National Book Festival saying she was in pain. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and for two years they tried everything. The second part of the book covers those years with supportive family and friends. But, it's no secret that her life ended with hospice and death. Why did Rosenthal, a man deeply in love with his wife, write this book? In some ways, his wife challenged him. This is "An exploration of what it means to love, to lose, and to emerge from that loss somehow ready to be resilient." He makes no secret of the fact that he struggled. However, he had enormous support from their three children and his family. But, in the next couple years, he was hit time and again by loss. He started having panic attacks. It helped to see a therapist. His list of suggested reading is a minor poke at his wife's lists for everything. He had to learn to appreciate music and events and travel by himself. Rosenthal's memoir isn't a how to deal with grief advice book. He says, "There's definitely no timetable for grief and all its complexities." No one goes through the same process. But, it's a beautiful memoir of two people who loved each other and surrounded themselves with love. "I needed to keep talking openly about love, loss, and filling one's empty space." After Jim died, some books just spoke to me. There might have been a message here or there, an ah ha moment about pancreatic cancer in a novel, a passage that made me nod in recognition. Mom's advice was best. But, Jason B. Rosenthal's entire book is filled with moments of recognition. "There's enormous comfort and hope in learning how other widows and widowers got through the inevitable painful darkness, and that they got through it."

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    Amy Krouse Rosenthal's husband. It was really good (4.5 stars) and worth the read. Jason highlights he and Amy's life together, their family, her health decline, and his grief. I liked that he shared both her "Modern Love" column and his response a year later. He also admits the levels of privilege he and Amy had compared to others, which helps make it feel more understandable, relevant and friendly, when he talks about the long vacations they took together and their entertainment choices. I appr Amy Krouse Rosenthal's husband. It was really good (4.5 stars) and worth the read. Jason highlights he and Amy's life together, their family, her health decline, and his grief. I liked that he shared both her "Modern Love" column and his response a year later. He also admits the levels of privilege he and Amy had compared to others, which helps make it feel more understandable, relevant and friendly, when he talks about the long vacations they took together and their entertainment choices. I appreciated that while he does briefly talk about his love life after, he doesn't give many details, protecting her anonymity. He talks a lot about how Amy's legacy may overshadow that person and that whomever he chooses next will also be an extraordinary person for not comparing themselves (made me think of Jeremy and Adrienne Camp, who chooses to embrace Melissa's impact and have turned the story of his first marriage into a movie). Jason also talks about a possible movie. Amy was such a powerhouse in such a tiny body, and he does an amazing job of sharing his image of her with the world. My only negative would be that the pictures are only black and white.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Hannah Moerman

    3.5 rounded up to 4. i once again wept while reading her essay, “you may want to marry my husband”

  27. 4 out of 5

    Donna Hines

    A beautiful inspirational and touching memoir about Jason's wife Amy Krouse Rosenthal. Amy was a best selling children's author who wrote and filmmaker who sadly passed away from ovarian cancer three years ago. She was so thoughtful, loving, and caring in life that it probably came as no surprise when she gave one last gift to her husband. The give of love. The gift of forgiveness. The gift of hope moving forward through her writings in the form of a New York Times Modern Love column, You May Want A beautiful inspirational and touching memoir about Jason's wife Amy Krouse Rosenthal. Amy was a best selling children's author who wrote and filmmaker who sadly passed away from ovarian cancer three years ago. She was so thoughtful, loving, and caring in life that it probably came as no surprise when she gave one last gift to her husband. The give of love. The gift of forgiveness. The gift of hope moving forward through her writings in the form of a New York Times Modern Love column, You May Want to Marry My Husband. What a way to be remembered than to share her love with the world. Her greatest joy was her family. The author Jason mentioned this 'family support' multiple times and each time I couldn't help but think what a blessing to have such an inner circle as not everyone can be so lucky. To live a life without toxicity, without hatred, with full support in every endeavor is something most of us could only dream to obtain. This was one of those e-reads that I came across through a new connection with Bibliotheca that works closely with your local libraries to borrow digital copies for free (library card). I was looking for a change last night and this was exactly what I needed from the normal fast paced thrillers of doom and gloom. What a pleasure to see such light, such hope, such love, and such joy in this family especially when the son moved back in with Jason shortly after his own parents passed. A testament that all is not lost. That parenting doesn't come with instructions. That life is never guaranteed. Thank you to Bibliotheca for this e-read copy.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Andrienne

    I read this in one go. Jason is the husband of the famous author Amy Krouse Rosenthal. The book talks about how Jason and Amy fell in love and how they battled the disease that took her life. The author also shares some advice on how to support those who are mourning (which was a little blunt but that’s how it is). It also features the heartfelt essay in the New York Times in 2017 that Amy wrote that resonated with so many, “You May Want to Marry My Husband” -it’s a beautiful token of love. Whic I read this in one go. Jason is the husband of the famous author Amy Krouse Rosenthal. The book talks about how Jason and Amy fell in love and how they battled the disease that took her life. The author also shares some advice on how to support those who are mourning (which was a little blunt but that’s how it is). It also features the heartfelt essay in the New York Times in 2017 that Amy wrote that resonated with so many, “You May Want to Marry My Husband” -it’s a beautiful token of love. Which then Jason answered with, “My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me” a year later and then this book three years after her passing. So very glad to be able to read this book in advance, thanks to the publisher.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Mackey

    It feels like a dick move to leave a bad review of a memoir about grief by a man who clearly loved his wife greatly but wow I found this book completely insufferable. It’s like the book equivalent of the so-called inspiring sign in fake cursive that you buy at Home Sense and hang in your kitchen. Empty platitudes and superficial descriptions and absolutely dripping with privilege. Lower SES people just don’t educate themselves about how to eat healthy, you see. But please tell me more about your It feels like a dick move to leave a bad review of a memoir about grief by a man who clearly loved his wife greatly but wow I found this book completely insufferable. It’s like the book equivalent of the so-called inspiring sign in fake cursive that you buy at Home Sense and hang in your kitchen. Empty platitudes and superficial descriptions and absolutely dripping with privilege. Lower SES people just don’t educate themselves about how to eat healthy, you see. But please tell me more about your TED talk and Burning Man. 🙄

  30. 5 out of 5

    nicole

    Received an ARC from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. I'm a long-time Amy Krouse Rosenthal superfan and I remember reading her Modern Love column with a lump in my throat. Her husband's memoir of their marriage, losing Amy, and finding his own purpose through grief while being in the spotlight is a beautiful echo to his wife's parting piece. Received an ARC from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. I'm a long-time Amy Krouse Rosenthal superfan and I remember reading her Modern Love column with a lump in my throat. Her husband's memoir of their marriage, losing Amy, and finding his own purpose through grief while being in the spotlight is a beautiful echo to his wife's parting piece.

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