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  • Published: 16 April 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473574878
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 304

33 Meditations on Death

Notes from the Wrong End of Medicine

33 Meditations on Death is a collection of short and profound real-life stories about death, challenging us to engage with, and prepare for, our final ending.

It's time to talk about death.

What control will I have? Who will be responsible? What will it mean for my family?

Dr. David Jarrett has spent much of his professional career confronting this taboo subject.

33 Meditations on Death is a frank collection of real-life stories that focus on death and the many forms it takes. From the medicinal to the holistic, the tragic to the comic, the old and the young, Dr. David Jarrett recalls his encounters with death with refreshing candour, humility and humour.

This small, instructive and profound book invites us to confront our inevitable ending. Drawing on years of research and professional experience, Dr. David Jarrett asks us to urgently re-think our relationship with death. He challenges us to consider the myriad of death, showing us how to recognise, prepare for, and ultimately accept, the fate that awaits us all.

  • Published: 16 April 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473574878
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 304

About the author

David Jarrett

David Jarrett has been a doctor for forty years, thirty of which as an NHS consultant in geriatric and stroke medicine. He is a clinician, teacher, examiner and former medical manager with extensive experience of frailty, death and dying and the modern world’s failure to confront the realities. He has also worked in Canada, India, Africa and the USSR. He is married with two children and lives in Hampshire during the week, and in London at weekends.

Praise for 33 Meditations on Death

Brilliant - a grimly humorous yet humane account of the realities of growing old in the modern age. Everybody over the age of 60 should read it and ponder their probable future.

Henry Marsh

It is striking how the candour of our public discourse fails when we get on to the subject of death, a significant and puzzling failure for it is the fate we all share. David Jarrett's 33 Meditations, the fruit of forty years of professional experience with people at the end of their lives, is not only timely and important, but hugely enjoyable. One of the most memorable books I've read recently.

The Revd Richard Coles

A remarkably likeable guide to a grisly subject ... daunting, yet ultimately life-affirming


Death doesn’t only touch the dying. This wonderfully enlightening book by a doctor who cares for the dying is a plea for all of us to consider now what a good death should look like and what we’d want for ourselves. Bursting with empathy, common sense and humour, would that we could all be so fortunate as to have the author at our bedside when the time comes.

Professor Dame Sue Black, author of All That Remains

Compelling reflections on the dignity of human life, and the emotional inevitability of its end.

Professor Stephen Westaby

Editors Choice - This life-affirming book takes a multi-faceted look at the end of life. Jarrett blends memoir with science, philosophy and the odd burst of magic as he reflects on death: the tragedy, the comedy and everything in between. It's a wonderfully humane manifesto for all the frank and open conversations that we, our parents, our children, the medical community, our government and society should be having.

Caroline Sanderson, The Bookseller

An extraordinary, unflinching rumination that brings us into a more companionable relationship with death, and in doing so helps us to live. There is a deceptive lightness to David's writing which keeps us in easy company, undoes much of its mystery, and helps us in that most vital adult project: to face our mortality. This book will stay with you.

Derren Brown

Dr Jarrett is addressing such an important topic and he deals with it in such an honest, pragmatic and yet compassionate way. He is telling it how it is day in day out on the acute medical wards in general hospitals throughout the country and he is right that we must persuade people to move away form the concept that length of life trumps quality of life.

Carl Brookes, Consultant Cardiologist and Physician

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