This is a difficult book to read especially if, like me,you are a parent. Thomas is so skilled as a writer he can find words to describe this unthinkable nightmare. I found this book utterly heartbreaking and although I am praising it please be warned it will upset you. Thomas succeeds in bringing kadian to life on these pages, what a lovely remarkable young man he sounds to have been. Thomas and Deborah sound to have given him a wonderful life in those all too short years. What I took away from this book is this, you can only take reasonable precautions against disaster. Life is sometimes random and cruel. I know a part of him will always feel responsible for what happened but it could happen to anyone sadly. You could deny your children all that fun and adventure, which Kadian got to experience, in the name of keeping them safe and something could still strike out of the blue. Whilst being a terribly sad account of loss and love this manages to also be a celebration of a life lived to the full.
It is impossible to imagine being in Thomas Harding's place - watching a loved child die in an accident. So it would be wrong to say that the book helps us to "understand" the grief. But we can empathise with the emotions and the book will help anyone who is going through anything similar. The honesty cries out from each page - the deep love, regret, guilt and, ultimately, celebration of a life that any parent or child or person will recognise. A beautiful book about a beautiful boy.
I was weeping by page 5. What a searingly sad book to read. It made me feel incredibly lucky that my children are OK. I felt every emotion possible that Thomas and Deb, and Sam, felt with the loss of Kadian - all the extreme of emotions were covered in this special book. It made me smile when I read what the school did to celebrate Kadian's life, and what the family and friends did on the first anniversary. Kadian was, like his name, a one-off. A very tragic story of an extremely special boy.
A wonderful tribute to his son, entwined with the horror of such a loss explained bravely and precisely, although I'm sure it's just the surface. I relate to so much of it and feel reassured I'm not alone.
I found it impossible to put this book down. I bought it soon after my husband passing away. Many of the fillings the writer has also apply to.mine: dizzy, forgetting things. My husband died after a long and good life. Kadian at the start of a life still very young. But what a brilliant, lovely person. He will shine as a very bright star in the sky and in your hearts. Thank you for getting to know your brilliant son.Anna Chalk
This book is an amazing testiment of a Father's love for his son and his journey through grief after tragedy strikes his family. This book really helped me, I read it after my biggest Brother died in a tragic accident and much of the book resonated with me and what I was going through. I would highly recommend it