Of the numerous books that have been written about loss, Matthews has given us an original, startling and deeply thought-provoking work. . . What we are left with is a sense of peace -- the kind that comes with the knowledge that, even in the darkest places, we are not alone. -- Eve Joseph, author of In the Slender Margin
Minerva's Owl is a memoir that celebrates marriage and explores bereavement a stage of married love. It includes literary references, conversations, letters and memories that are framed in six sections: grieving, longing, belonging, mourning, cleaving and, ultimately, surviving. It does not offer easy answers or a step-by-step guide to grief -- rather, Minerva's Owl provides an unforgettable account of great love and loss.
Carol Matthews has worked as Executive Director of Nanaimo Family Life instructor and a dean at Vancouver Island University. She was awarded a National Award for Leadership (ACCC), an Honorary Doctor of Letters at VIU, the Order of BC and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. She has published a collection of short stories and four works of non-fiction. Her articles, reviews and short stories have appeared in educational and literary journals.
"Minerva's Owl is more than a tender handbook for the grieving; a brimming saga of a courtship and marriage, it reminds us to attend well to the art of living." -- Alison Watt, author of Dazzle Patterns and The Last Island
"Carol Matthews has given anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one a generous gift, insight into the roller coaster that is grieving and the lived experience that demonstrates that life is still worth living." -- Caroline Burnley, Ph.D., Professor, Dept. of Psychology, Vancouver Island University
"This is the best book on grief, mourning, and loss that I have ever read -- and believe me I have read a few." -- Wendy Pratt, former Executive Director of Hospice Nanaimo
"Although Matthews explores the profundity of grieving, she balances this raw pain with new ways of seeing. As her subtitle suggests, she views life after Mike's death not as widowhood, but as 'a distinct phase of our continuing marriage. One in which we are apart and yet together.'" -- Malahat Review
"The process of being authentic towards death could not be narrated better. From recollection and actuality, she faces a potential future where her (Minerva's) owl could once more open its wings and continue living, yet with a deeper understanding of life and accepting oneself as a mortal being." -- Canadian Literature