Friday, February 27, 2015

Reviews From Readers

Maria's books are reviewed by any number of publications, but some of the most interesting and heartfelt reviews can be found from readers on sites like

Here's a recent review of The Silence in an Empty House that was posted to the book's page on Amazon.

My Ph.D. dissertation, What Forever Means, was a treatise on bereavement. I read hundreds of articles and books on what it means to lose a loved one. But nothing I read then or since has captured the multiple profiles of what it's like to lose someone you loved as Maria Gillan's remarkable poetry collection, "The Silence in an Empty House." If I was still in practice, I'd put this book in my waiting room. It's a book that those of us who knew Maria was dealing with the loss of her husband to Parkinson's disease, a man with whom she was fiercely in love for 46 years, didn't want to pick up, but once picked up, couldn't put down. Almost everything about grief abounds in this book: the sadness at watching a wonderful man be consumed with a devastating illness, the guilt at wishing the end would come so everyone's suffering would end, the horror and shock when the end does come, the regret after the loved person dies, the endless repetition of scenes of illness and death. Someone once asked me if I thought of writing a book on how to deal with the bereaved. I said it would only be one page long with the word "Listen" written over and over again. Maria teaches the reader to listen to her grief, without judgement, only with compassion. She has given everyone who has ever lost a loved one a tremendous gift with this volume. I recommend it without reservation.

- Charlie Brice

Maria's Official Site is at  Her latest publication is the poetry and art collection, The Girls in the Chartreuse Jackets.