Life's That Way

( 30 )

Overview

A remarkable memoir that shows the capacity of the human heart to heal after the challenge of having to say goodbye.

Even the hardest lessons contain great gifts.

Jim Beaver and his wife Cecily Adams appeared to have it all-following years of fertility treatments, they were finally parents and they were building their dream home and successful Hollywood careers. Life was good. But then their daughter, Maddie, was diagnosed as autistic. Weeks ...

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Overview

A remarkable memoir that shows the capacity of the human heart to heal after the challenge of having to say goodbye.

Even the hardest lessons contain great gifts.

Jim Beaver and his wife Cecily Adams appeared to have it all-following years of fertility treatments, they were finally parents and they were building their dream home and successful Hollywood careers. Life was good. But then their daughter, Maddie, was diagnosed as autistic. Weeks later, Cecily, a non-smoker, was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. Sadly, after 14 years of marriage, Jim became a widower and a single dad.

Faced with overwhelming grief, Jim reached out to family and friends by writing a nightly email-a habit he established when Cecily was first diagnosed. Initially a cathartic exercise for Jim, the prose became an unforgettable journey for his readers. Life's That Way is a compilation of those profound, compelling emails.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
There are times in life when we hope, despite all evidence to the contrary. When we declare that we've hit rock bottom, only to find we've still got plenty of room to fall. Beaver, the author and a TV actor, celebrates this innocent yet profound belief -- that things will indeed get better -- in his unique memoir, Life's That Way.

Beaver's book consists of a series of e-mails he wrote over the course of a year. They began as a convenience, a way to update his friends and family nightly. His wife, Cecily, had just been diagnosed with lung cancer. At the same time, he was grappling with the recent diagnosis of his two year-old daughter, "a perfect child who's autistic." His efforts to regularly communicate express his deepest thoughts about fear, life, love, and family. We are all much richer for the experience of living it with him. (Summer 2009 Selection)
Publishers Weekly

Beaver, an actor, playwright and film historian, collects a series of riveting, heartfelt e-mails chronicling the courageous cancer battle of his beloved wife, Cecily, from her diagnosis of lung cancer to her death in little over a year. Unafraid to examine their life together and his acting career as a performer on two popular TV dramas, the role of Ellsworth on Deadwood and Bobby Singer on Supernatural, he kept family and friends informed with his nightly online messages of Cecily's deteriorating status and the bittersweet childhood of their autistic daughter, Maddie. The revealing e-mails depict the somber travail of Beaver on the horrific death watch of his wife, and detail the roller-coaster ride of emotion from hoping for a speedy halt to the disease's onslaught to experiencing the dark abyss of loss. After the death of his father during this time, he writes: "This year of writing has freed me from the shackles I don't know I could have borne otherwise." While this cancer memoir often chills the reader to the core with pain and frustration, it offers countless reasons to cheer Beaver as a remarkable man, a loving husband and a responsible single parent. (Apr.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
All was going well for character actor Beaver (featured on HBO's Deadwood) and his wife Cecily (acting teacher, casting director, daughter of comic Don Adams) when suddenly their American Dream turned into their personal nightmare. Jim's father, Cecily's father and other family members became ill. Their toddler Maddie was diagnosed as autistic. Then, just when the Beaver family was preparing to move into their new home, Cecily was diagnosed with cancer. By spring she was dead. To help cope, Jim composed thoughtful midnight e-mails for 150 family and friends. During the course of a year, his messages gained wide circulation by being forwarded to thousands of readers. Edited for this book, they form a genuine memorial: sometimes clinical, frequently sentimental, always openhearted. Early, hopeful entries tell of chemo, transfusions, blood tests, oncology consults, CT scans and MRIs. It wasn't long before Cecily developed an inflammation surrounding her heart and pneumonia that required a ventilator. Throughout the winter of his young wife's illness, Beaver maintained that "the fight has only begun and has a long, long way to go." Readers, of course, know the inevitable end. After this devastating loss, Jim's nocturnal musings turned to his daughter, who with early intervention soon shed the diagnosis of autism, along with memories of her lost mother. The author warmly acknowledges the friends, family, helpers, babysitters, companions and bringers of good thoughts, food and love. His passionate book is about how we mourn, a topic familiar sooner or later to every reader. Beaver treats it with uncommon honesty and a bit of wisdom. A year of grief and love, forthrightly revealed.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425232507
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 4/6/2010
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 627,572
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Jim Beaver

Jim Beaver is a writer and actor who recently starred as Ellsworth on HBO's Emmy Award-winning series Deadwood. He played simultaneous roles on the hit shows Supernatural, Big Love, and John from Cincinnati. He will next be appearing on Harper's Island, a new show to air on CBS in 2009. Beaver is also a nationally recognized playwright and stage actor, writing and acting in award-winning productions. A Vietnam vet and a native of Laramie, Wyoming, Beaver was married to Cecily Adams (daughter of Don Adams) from 1989 until her death in 2004.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 30 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 30 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 21, 2009

    Gifted writer, creating a gift of a book.

    I don't know this man, Jim Beaver, except thru this book. I don't know his child or his wife, except thru this book. But I cried for all of them. More, I cried for myself as I read about their trying year because what Jim Beaver managed to express in his journal was so much of what I would liked to have been able to say (shout, scream, growl) at various points in my life over the past 3 years. Grief is seldom a quiet experience, but it can be a lonely one or a burdensome one, when muffled. Now, having made my way thru a traumatic year of life and death with Jim, Maddie and Cec in barely more than 24 hrs of reading, somehow I feel better prepared to face the future and times of loss and struggle. This book made me FEEL. Wrung out but alive. Runny nose, red eyed, but alive and like I'd been given a gift. The last couple chapters especially are oh-so-important, be sure to note them. Those last, condensed thoughts will serve us all in our futures. A gift to the survivors, because tho 'Life' might be 'That Way', sometimes it's hard to start along that path. Thank you Jim Beaver for sharing

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Life, Love, Courage, and Honesty are this way

    Jim Beaver's book, "Life's That Way," came out on April 16th. This book is his memoir, a poignant compilation of the almost nightly emails chronicling his wife's battle with cancer, their hopes and fears for their daughter who had just been diagnosed with autism and the condition of his father and brother-in-law who were also in battles for their lives. While these emails began as a utilitarian method of communicating the daily news and travails of their family, they morphed into so much more. They became therapeutic for him as well as the nearly 4000 people who eventually were reading about this journey.

    The easy path would have been to give into the despair, rage at the world for its injustices, and withdraw..but he slowly worked his way down the hardest path of his life choosing even in his darkest moments to live each day as best he could; some days that was in tears, other days it was with a smile. In the weeks and months following Cecily's passing and the raising of Maddie as a widowed father, Jim continued to find strength and motivation in his writing of the nightly letter to friends and loved ones. He writes candidly with acceptance, compassion, and humor about his progression from being consumed by sadness and grief to being able once again to truly live life.

    The book is not an easy read. I cried many a time over various entries, but I laughed too, and it is undoubtedly the best book I have read in years. He has an innate way of finding the genuineness in even the most desolate times and moving hearts by sharing his. It is a deeply poignant, extremely inspirational story of discovering courage in the face of astonishing and tragic loss, holding onto love in the face of fear, and an absolute refusal to live in self-pity and anger even though those feelings were almost constant companions.

    Anyone who has been in his shoes and felt the weight of overwhelming emotion or been in a situation comprised of seemingly overwhelming odds can find much inspiration in his words. There is no magic panacea to be found here, but it will help because it's just honest and loving and genuine in its telling of the fact that "Life's That Way' and it's waiting for us to reach out and head toward it.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 31, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Life's That Way...with an arrow

    All of us at some time or another have grieved over loss. Most commonly, of course, would be over the death of a loved one. But grief comes in all kinds of forms, divorce, betrayal that results in the loss of friendship, the loss of our own health. Whenever grief hits us, it hits us hard like a wave that takes us under, and just about the time we stand back up in the surf, another wave knocks us down again. We all deal with grief in different ways as well, but very few of us deal with it with the eyes of thousands of people watching. In "Life's That Way," author Jim Beaver does exactly that. Through a series of emails that started out as a mass communication way to keep family and friends informed of his wife, Cecily's diagnosis of cancer and her fight against it he opens a door to a very personal part of his life, a door that most of us keep shut tight and locked. He not only opens the door but invites us to walk through and join him on the journey. As I walked these steps with him, I found myself forgetting that this happened 5 years ago. Because his daily communication was so honest, so revealing, so very raw at times, I felt I was living it with him. As a reader, I didn't feel detached. I felt involved, so much so, that even though, much like the "Titanic", I knew what was going to happen, when I read the entry that told me that Cecily had died, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I immediately began to weep, no sob, with racking sobs of sadness and injustice and anger. I thought later, after I had recovered, that if I felt that way, not even knowing Cecily, how must Jim have felt? I didn't have to wonder for long, because at this point the book is only at it's midpoint. The second half is a detailed account of exactly how he felt and how he gets through one day at a time and follows "Life....that way."

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2009

    I knew that I needed something to bring be back to the real joy of living.

    What I found here is the understanding that I have been missing something for years. I was avoiding anything remotely associated with heartbreak or sadness. I had become unfeeling almost, unavailable to relate to others who had lost things or people in their lives. I really needed this book. I found I had worthwhile thoughts and feelings which were desperate to be expresssed. The story was spellbinding and yet oh so ordinary in so many ways. Hysterical in ways that, too were real to this life. Why are we afraid to touch our hearts and souls so much? We shouldnt' be afraid to feel. I feel everything better now and it is a true, unbridiling gift. Meeting these people through the words of Jim brought them close to me in a very personal way. I could smell the smells, I could feel the fear, I could sense the love and resolve, but mostly, I found the courage of one man to grab the sorrow and bring it in close, holding it and cherising it and making it his, and squeezing out of it the gift of this book to us. What an incredible read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    You Must Read This Amazing Love Story!

    Infrequently, a book, a story comes along that quickly settles in and becomes a part of your heart and soul. Life's That Way is that and much more. Author, Jim Beaver, writes the most beautiful love story. His infinite love of Cecily April Adams and baby Maddie abounds from beginning to end. What an amazing, but down-to-earth account of e-mails sent during the time of Cec's fight with cancer. Facing the lung cancer of my own family member, I typed in "lung cancer" on the Barnes and Noble site. This book was there for me. Whatever comes, Jim Beaver, with class and style, will soften all blows. What a gift this book brings! We, as humans, are prone to holding the details of our lives inward. Jim Beaver, almost daily, put it out there for all to share. This book is about love, pain, life, and loss. I wish everyone who has loved would read it. I wish everyone who has known pain and loss would read it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 2, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Must Read

    This book was an absolute gem. A story of sorrow, humor, hope and inspiration. You couldn't turn a page without being touched. A love of ages is also covered in it's pages. Maybe not with the flair of Romeo and Juliet, but none the less sweetly powerful and romantic. It covers it all in this amazing real life tale of life's journey and all the bumps along the way. Strength and support of friends, family and the indomitable human spirit. It makes you wonder just what we are capable of when you see what was thrown at this man and this family along the way. It also gives you an in depth look of what it's like to have an ill loved one, the toll it takes and the discoveries it leads to. All written in a beautifully poetic yet frank way of speaking, covered from all angles. I'd recommend this book to anyone who's ever loved and lost, knew someone who did, or simply as an encapsulating read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Story of Loss and Hope and Life.

    On March 3, 2004 Cecily April Adams died of lung cancer, leaving behind her devoted husband, actor Jim Beaver and 2-year-old daughter Madeline Rose Beaver, who had recently been diagnosed with autism. This book is the story of their struggle with the disease, with Maddie's diagnosis and with grieving the loss of a wife and mother.

    Two days after Cecily's initial diagnosis Jim began writing a nightly email to update friends and family on everything that was going on. This email started going out to a little over 100 people but within a month or so was being recieved by more than 4,000 people across the country, some whom Jim had never even met. Life's That Way is an edited collection of those emails, telling the story of that year of their lives as it was told during that year. As Jim tells the reader in the introduction, these emails were only edited for length and relevance; there was no hindsight added after the fact. They are Jim's thoughts and words as he wrote them at the time.

    As you can imagine, at times this book was difficult to read and there were many tears shed as I was turning the pages. But this is truly a beautiful story. Jim opens up his heart and shares many of his deepest thoughts, fears, regrets and joys during this time period. I am extremely grateful he chose to publish them this way, five years after the death of his beloved wife.

    This book isn't just the story of losing a loved one to cancer. Jim continues the nightly emails until exactly one year after he began writing. In the months following Cecily's death, you see Jim and Maddie embark on their new life together, Jim's struggles with being a single father and working a job that has him away for long days and just coping with simple day to day changes in their life. You see Jim's grieving process and how he was able to accept what happened and come to terms with his loss.

    I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone. Whether or not you were familiar with Cecily Adams' work, whether or not you're a fan a Jim Beaver, whether or not you've also experienced the loss of a loved one to cancer. This book is a story of life. It's not just another celebrity memoir. It describes a family during it's most difficult time and shows that everyone, famous or not, faces the same struggles, emotions and problems as everyone else. We are all human. This book also shows how generous, caring and supportive people can be in a time of need.

    This was an amazing story, not only of loss, but also hope. Yes, it will probably bring tears to your eyes, but sometimes crying is good for the soul. One thing this book will teach you is that you can't dwell on the loss and the pain, you have to move on, because, after all, life's that way -->.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Honest, Healing Lessons in Life, Love, and Loss

    This book was edited from an email journal actor Jim Beaver (Deadwood, Supernatural, Harper's Island) wrote each night for a year in 2003-4 to keep family and friends informed about his wife Cecily's desperate fight against cancer, and after her loss, about how he and his very young daughter Maddie continued on with their lives. There is grief here, together with brutally raw and honest pain, anger, fear, helplessness, guilt, and despair - but there is also joy, laughter, and hope, and most of all, there is love: Jim's love for his wife and daughter, their love for him, and the amazing outpouring of love and help from family, friends, and even strangers who responded to Cecily's struggle and its impact on others.

    For anyone dealing with love and loss, this book has hope to offer and lessons in life to teach, all without a word of preaching. If you've loved and lost someone - parent, spouse, child, friend, lover - you've felt what's in this book, and reading it might help bring you healing, if only by letting you know that you are not alone in what and how you feel and by giving you the means and words to talk about it. I'm watching my mother being stolen by Alzheimer's, and this book speaks to me even in the midst of ongoing loss. Read it, and take comfort.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 2, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing! Read it in one sitting!

    This book, the story of a man and his family, is moving and intriguing. It was in the self-help section of my bookstore, and I almost walked by it. I am so pleased that I didn't! I enjoyed every minute that I spent reading his accounts of his family struggling with his wife's terminal cancer. It was touching and inspiring, and I am willing to admit that I did in fact cry at several points. This is a book I will be reading again, giving to friends going through hard times, and keep on my bookshelf. I highly recommend it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2010

    A story that spoke to me.

    Life's That Way is a book that touched me at a time when I had just experienced the loss of my mother to cancer. I had been searching for something to identify with, something to comfort me when nothing else was helping. I could relate to so much of what was going on in this book. It made me feel like I wasn't the only one who was struggling, and that it was OK to have outbursts at any moment over something that may seem so trivial to most. While I'm still having a difficult time, I found this book helped me a lot, more than I can express in words.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 12, 2010

    More than a Memoir

    I originally bought this book because I saw Jim speak of it in a few interviews he'd given and it piqued my interest. When an actor grabs my attention, I like to learn what I can about their personal lives, to see if I'm like the 'person' or just the 'characters they play'. After reading this book, I can certainly say that I like Jim Beaver.

    The book is a series of emails sent out during 2003-04, while Jim and his wife Cecily were going through Cecily's treatment for cancer. Jim sent these emails out to keep friends and family up to date on the goings on of Cecily's treatment, and really their daily lives as well. You follow through the shock, disbelief, pain, love - both given and received, and eventual healing that Jim goes through during that time period. It's not all pretty, it's very raw and truthful, and that is why it held my attention. This is what grief, mourning, and recovery are like.

    This hit particularly close to home for me, as my boyfriend's father had passed away just prior to my starting to read "Life's That Way". He too had cancer, and his final days were very similar to Cecily's. Some of the suggestions Jim gives opened my eyes to how to speak with my boyfriend and his family about this massive loss, and I can't thank Jim enough for that.

    Read the book, and learn about a great man, and his amazing family and support network.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 25, 2009

    A story that will touch your heart

    Jim Beaver is known to many fans as a wonderful actor. I have watched him play Bobby on "Supernatural."
    I never knew that in 2003 his wife Cecily fought a battle with cancer and at the same time found the medical help for their daughter Maddie after she was diagnosed as autistic.
    Jim Beaver shares with us a years worth of e-mails that he sent to family and friends detailing how Cecily and him first learned of her illness, how she fought to stay alive, to stay with Jim and their daughter, the friends that helped them, the kindness of strangers, the medical treatment Cecily tried, when she lost her battle with cancer and the months following the loss of his wife.
    Jim shares with us his feelings, fears, tears, loss over losing his wife and also his father doing the same year. Yet, he also shares the memories of his wife with us and the moments of joy and laughter his little girl gives him each day as she overcomes her autistic diagnosis.
    You may shed some tears as you read this book, but you will also smile and laugh at different times.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 20, 2009

    Jim Beaver's Life's That Way

    This book was thoughtful, sad, funny, and touching. It was a book that was written from the heart. Sometimes it was hard to read but it was also hard to put down. It shows how real people deal with real problems and how they can be handled.It showed how love is everlasting.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2009

    A Love Story

    Jim Beaver turned a years worth of emails, which chronicled the diagnosis of his daughter with autism and his wife with lung cancer into a poignant memoir.

    "Life's That Way" is a declaration of love, to his wife Cecily, daughter Madeline Rose, his family and a multitude of friends.

    He bares his soul,allowing us to share his courage. And in doing so we become stronger.

    This book speaks of hope and undying love.

    It is a must read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 27, 2009

    Life's That Way - a love story

    LIFE'S THAT WAY, by Jim Beaver
    A Review


    I confess to having some trouble figuring out how to write this review. Not because the book isn't remarkable - it is - but because I did not want to cheapen its import with a casual splash of words. This book means something to me. As a cancer survivor, I found it means more than I can easily express.

    "Life's That Way" is, foremost of all, a love story and a testament to the human spirit. Jim Beaver does not portray his wife as a flawless woman, nor paint himself as a perfect man. Rather he says, look, we're all kinda screwy, but that's just a little dust on the furniture. Loving someone, that's what truly counts.

    Jim's writing style is of such candid feeling that it gives the book a rare grace and readability. The immediacy of the narrative, however, is what struck me most. Presented here are emails and messages in present tense, things that happened now, today, not five years ago. Today Jim talked to Cecily's doctor, today Cecily got her MRI results, today Maddie asked why Daddy was cwying. I think this is what makes the book's reality so poignant.

    It is why I read each entry on Cecily's illness as if following the battle of a friend, so immersed in the story that I forgot this is already done. It is certainly why, when Jim wrote of her death in the terse language of the utterly bereaved, I had to walk away. I had to put the book down and go wrap my mind around the finality of Cecily's loss, despite knowing that she is these five years gone.

    When I resumed reading, it was an amazing voyage. Sometimes I felt like an invisible voyeur, that I shouldn't know this much about another's pain. But lest you think this is a tale of unremitting sadness, know this: it is not.

    What shines throughout is the fierceness of Hope. Every time the darkness falls, every time tears hit like a monsoon storm, Jim picks himself up and goes on. Every step of Cecily's illness, Jim's hope burned unceasing. He speaks with awe of the support of friends, and does not concede the fight for an instant. Even in his darkest days, he reminds us that we're all just human beings. Contrary to the movies, we do not suffer nobly and sometimes we're just plain petty. But it's okay, because if you love, really love someone, you can make the little stuff just not matter.

    After Cecily's death, Jim is a man at Ground Zero of heartache, the smoke and ash of his dreams all around him. But as his brother-friend, Tom Allard reminds him, "Life's that way." Not in tones of fatalism or inevitability, but as a form of direction: Life's *that* way. Go. Find it. It's still out there.

    And it is. Where Jim finds life is an ongoing saga of little, everyday miracles. Maddie's growth and development. Friends who help. Family who cares. Gifts of chance and gifts of love, deeds of caring and deeds of practicality, (a theater troupe helps Jim move into his and Cecily's new home) and random acts of kindness from so many loving hearts. Somewhere along the line, it dawned on me that Jim and Maddie are two of the most blessed people on earth.

    Life's that way. It's not in a casket or a picture frame draped in black. Life's in the hearts of loved ones, in the eyes of Jim's little girl, in the words he wrote so faithfully, chronicling his journey through the Valley of Shadow. In this book, Jim Beaver unflinchingly bares his humanity for all of us t

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 24, 2009

    Because sometimes life's that way... and because life's that way ->

    This book is one that tells a story of true love between two people. It shares memories of private times and speaks of hope for things in the future.

    You walk away from the story with a feeling of true love between two people who had to separate too soon. Jim Beaver's honesty and forthright manner in opening up to all that took place during the time of his wife's battle with cancer and the days, weeks, and months that follow.

    May we all find someone to whom we can be so treasured, honored, and respected.

    And, Jim, at every mention of "Pie" your love will be remembered and recalled! Thank you for sharing such an open look into your journey!

    Everyone who has ever loved, lost, hoped, fought, cried, or treasured should read this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 24, 2013

    This is a sad, difficult, beautiful story of the life and death

    This is a sad, difficult, beautiful story of the life and death of Cecily Adams seen through emails sent by her husband Jim Beaver to friends
    to keep them updated during her battle with cancer.
    Ultimately heartbreaking and life affirming, Beaver shows all the sides of a very difficult time in his life.
    It is an amazing book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2012

    Excellent!

    I've watched Jim Beaver for a number of years on several tv shows and to learn of the heartbreak he was going through while I was watching his work gives me a new respect for the man. This book made me realize that worse can happen than what you think is the worst. I applaud Mr. Beaver in his candid heartfelt emails to friends and family and he reaffirmed for me how fortunate I truly am.

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  • Posted October 29, 2011

    Heartfelt and moving, it will bring you to tears

    The actor, Jim Beaver, wrote a journal entry each day for a year, telling the story of his family. The beginning started off slow, often because the technical terms were hard to understand, with him talking about his wife, Cecily Adams, and her diagnosis of lung cancer. The story was hard to put down, especially when he began to talk about Maddie's (his daughter) diagnosis of autism, thrown into what they were going through with Cecily's treatments. I enjoyed each journal entry, something new each time and I liked the use of famous quotes and references like for example, "Now cracks a noble heart. Good night, sweet prince, and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest!" (quoted from Hamlet) He explained what life was giving them each day with their fight of defeating cancer and he expressed I thought, brilliantly, the determination his wife had to become well again. He also showed the unconditional love Cecily had for her daughter. It took a lot of will power to keep going, especially the time and effort she spent to get Maddie the help she needed to go in the right direction for each stage of her development. After Cecily's death, Beaver writes with the rawest and the most honest of emotions which I really found moving. I loved when he talked about past stories of their relationship and the different significant places he put her ashes. I also enjoyed the relationship he expressed about him and his father, that though it was hard to see him go, he realized he was the man he was today because of his father. People will enjoy this book because he talks about the grieving process he went through and is still going through which any person can relate to losing a loved one and the connection of feeling these same emotions. He beautifully sums up the points he has learned throughout the year that were very relatable and he expresses gratitude to the people that helped him. Also, I enjoyed reading about how successful Maddie was in therapy and how she brought him humor, light and love.

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  • Posted August 30, 2010

    Favorite Writer But Not Favorite Author

    Jim Beaver is one of my favorite writers, but not my favorite author. Jim, Please write more books.

    Life's That Way is a true account of Jim's wife's illness. Clearly, he loves his wife...in fact, most women would love to have a man love them that much and with such clarity.

    It's his clarity, his way with words, his philosophical look at things that make Life's That Way a a worthy book, but...it's more Jim's style of looking at things than the book itself. About 3/4 of the way into the story, it begins to drag on a bit.

    Don't get me wrong--his life, his wife's illness (and his daughter's difficulties) make for a very compelling story...it's just that what is intriguing is that you can almost tell from Jim's voice that his father was a preacher. There's a level of patience, wisdom and acceptance that I want to hear more about from Jim.

    Soooo, Jim please write more!

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