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Dying Unafraid Hardcover – May, 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Synergistic Pr; 1st edition (May 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0912184116
  • ISBN-13: 978-0912184111
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #858,592 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Fran Johns has a gift for portraying this important subject in a way that lets us see it in a new light. Her writing is intriguing. These stories of laughter and tears, choices and forgiveness make for wonderful reading. We grow individually and as a society by telling our stories." -- Maureen Redl, Director, Voices of Healing, Marin County, California

"This isn't a chicken soup of inspiration tales, it's a thick stew of subtle and lasting flavors. There are lessons here..." -- Compassion in Dying Newsletter, August 1999 issue

"We grow individually and as a society by telling our stories. Fran Johns offers a wealth of stories here. She tells them tenderly and clearly, to touch and to teach. I hope they persuade us to tell our own families' stories--of good deaths and bad. In doing so we can reclaim dying as the essential part of the human experience that it is." -- Barbara Coombs Lee, Executive Director, Compassion in Dying Federation, Portland, Oregon

About the Author

Fran Moreland Johns, born in Brazil to American educational missionare parents, grew up in Ashland, VA and spent her adult life in the Southeast until 1992, when she switched coasts and moved to San Francisco. After graduating from Randolph-Mason Womans College she began her writing career in Richmond, VA with the Times-Dispatch and in public relations before moving to Atlanta. There she did another stint in public relations, wrote for the Journal-Constitution and a wide variety of trade magazines and was a reporter, feature writer and columnist for the Dekalb News-Sun. The interest which evolved into Dying Unafraid began when Ms. Johns was a volunteer in a pioneer public facility for the elderly and chronically ill. In the 1980s she was a Florida Hospice volunteer and a daily visitor to hospitals and nursing homes, while continuing to write, for USA Today and other publications--and serving on the board of The Extended Family, a non-profit adult day care organization.

In California Ms. Johns has worked with a number of AIDS-related causes. H er writing since 1991 has focused on Dying Unafraid and an awakened interest i n short fiction. Her work has appeared in Parenting, Grit, The Sun, Literal Latte (where her short story was a 1997 fiction award winner) and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 16, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Fran Johns book is certain to become a popular classic. The book speaks to all of us, regardless of our prior persuasion on the subject of dying. It succeeds by avoiding any and all positions based upon dogma or "expert" insight.
The book is based upon the premise that dying is a uniquely personal matter, a singular experience, hence not subject to benefit from our own experience. The only experience likely to provide some possible insight into how we feel or react when this event is immediately upon us, is the experience of others who have managed to die unafraid or helped others in the process. The author has a well honed talent for relating the stories of real people, stories which touch upon the many aspects of dying: what the dying person brings to the experience, the role of family and friends, of the physician, and of the chosen environment. Johns reaches the reader by virtue of her personal involvement with many of the people about whom she writes. This is not the work of a "researcher" of other people's views on the matter, but of a dedicated hospice volunteer. She has thought deeply about the subject and our different reactions to it, based upon personal involvement.
She does a particularly fine job of exploring the matter of assisted dying, not as a strident advocate of one position or another, but by providing us with the context in which this most diffiult of all decisions must be made. Of particular interest to me was the observation, that in the not too distant past, the "family doctor" was part of the family and considerations of liability and legal implications did not enter into the decision making process.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 7, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I believe, after reading Dying Unafraid, that when my time comes I would like Fran Moreland Johns to be here with me. She is strong, yet compassionate - obviously a take-charge kind of lady - but one who is willing to hold hands and, why not, really cry. Yes. I'll dial 911 and then call Fran!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By goodmourningliz@sfo.com on February 28, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The author has created a wonderful collage of feelings that touches every fiber of the readers soul. Dying Unafraid will make you laugh and cry....you will be enlightened and empowered. The stories are straightforward, deeply moving, and inspiring. There are triumphs. You will experience the threat of imminent death that is transformed into a celebration of life.This is a very compassionate journal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 7, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I believe, after reading Dying Unafraid, that when my time comes I would like for Fran Moreland Johns to be here with me. She is strong, yet compassionate - obviously a take-charge kind of lady - but one who is willing to hold hands and, why not, really cry. Yes. I'll dial 911 and then call Fran!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Wodehousian on May 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover
It would be nice if the consciousness after death were beautiful and fearless, but there's only one way to find out. Guidebooks like this, about the process and adventure of our personal (and pending) meeting with Joe Black, only help if they heal fear in the telling. Some books that attempt to tell the stories, tales of life and death, read like procedure manuals.

This book hauls the airmail. It would be arch to say that you should buy it as a gift for anyone you know who, uh, happens to be dying ... but aren't we all making that fascinating, intimidating journey? I wish I had read this book before taking Hospice classes 20 years ago; it would have been of great benefit to the folks I sat with since then, in holy hours uncounted; and it certainly would have helped this humble witness to see more deeply. My brother Tim has been with the dying many times in his profession, and although he works now with troubled kids as a psychiatric nurse, I believe his job title is, he'll enjoy reading it. But I'll have to buy him one, as I've only read my copy a dozen times. Or so.
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More About the Author

Perilous Times: An inside look at abortion before - and after - Roe v Wade. This is Fran's newest work, coming in May 2013 from YBK Publishers. Author Anne Lamott calls Perilous Times "an important contribution to the discussion" about reproductive rights.

Fran Moreland Johns grew up in Ashland, Virginia in the 1940s, a place and time that come alive in many of her short stories and nonfiction works. A graduate (BA, Art) of Randolph-Macon Woman's College and lifelong freelance writer for newspapers and magazines, she raised three children (parents of her 5 flawless grandchildren) in Decatur, GA before eventually marrying her final husband, Bud Johns, moving to San Francisco, picking up an MFA in short fiction (USF, 2000) and broadening her literary adventures. Fran remains active with end-of-life, arts and interfaith causes.

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