The Waiting Gate

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Alex Kelburn is a psychic medium who knows full well where we go when we die for he has been there. But what about those in the grip of severe dementia whose minds have disconnected? Where, indeed, do they go? He knows he must find the answer. Not only for Erin, the caring, compassionate nurse who has asked it, but also for his own wife, and for friends Kallie and Trish, and the thousands of others who are grieving and bewildered because they have loved ones who have gradually disappeared until only their physical selves remain.

 

 

Reviews

A poignant, emotive story for anyone who has considered what happens not just after death, but just before. For anyone who mourns the loss of a loved one to dementia. J Merrill Forrest has such a vivid style of writing that you instantly become swept up in her stories and invested in the outcome of her characters. The Waiting Gate opens up a difficult conversation about the impact of dementia on individuals and, their families, friends and carers.

What a wonderful book. No matter what your personal beliefs about life after death or what happens to the spirit when suffering from dementia, The Waiting Gate sensitively captures the imagination and heart of the reader. Through the main setting of a dementia wing in a hospice, and the work of psychic medium Alex, we are granted an insight into the lives of various characters and their relatives, who are all grieving in their own way, adapting to loss, and trying to make sense of life, death and the space in between.   

Dementia – the new generations biggest health fear for which there is no known cure, no physical scars to see and to the vast majority of people it is terrifying. Loved ones of those affected struggle and do not know how to handle the questions and behaviours of friends or relatives suffering from this horrendous disease. The Waiting Gate delves into this much feared subject with honesty yet compassion and sensitivity. Nurse Erin is depicted as the perfect role model we would all wish for in our hospices/ hospitals – spot on! And who better to help the reader gain an insight and deeper understanding into this taboo subject than the gentle and warm-hearted Alex. We met Alex in The Flight of the Kingfisher; having had way more than his fair share of grief and trauma in his life Alex is like a comfort blanket wrapping his psychic senses around those who are in some way affected by this debilitating disease – and in the process giving hope and optimism to them that there IS more to this horrifying disease than we currently understand. To those of us who have strong beliefs in the Afterlife J Merrill Forrest serves to cement that those beliefs and notions might just be plausible. I loved The Waiting Gate – authentic and heart rendering and, yes, I’d like to think plausible!
Sharon Herd, Registered General Nurse with a Diploma in Gerontology and 27 years experience in caring for the elderly

The Waiting Gate… I’ve been waiting for this book since 2014. I first read J Merrill Forrest’s ‘Flight of the Kingfisher’ in 2014. It was almost a year after I lost my best friend and sister-in-law Dianne and the impact the story had on me was unprecedented. In fact, it totally changed how I think about life, death, the afterlife, spirituality, and many more things that I’ve since gone on to consider and discover. The Waiting Gate…well, I’ve been waiting for this book since 2014! The author has an uncanny way of tapping into my life at that particular stage. My grandfather passed away three months ago after battling dementia for many years. Somehow, once again, the author has helped me consider BIG issues and ideas in a totally different way. The story itself is emotive, real, insightful; you’ll find yourself reading it and the story lingering with you for days, weeks, months…or in my case,years, after you’ve finished. Despite tackling themes such as ageing, bereavement, dementia and murder, The Waiting Gate is ultimately a life-affirming book.
     
Thought provoking and lovely book. I have just finished reading J Merrill Forrest’s The Waiting Gate, and wanted to review this wonderful book whilst it was still fresh in my mind.Without giving the plot away, the book is centred on Alex Kelburn who is a psychic medium, although there are other main characters whose stories interweave cleverly with Alex’s own. The author has pulled the threads of several narratives together with skill and compassion, and what could have been a sad and morbid book, is instead one of hope and love. The subjects of dementia, loss, and life after death are difficult to write about without being over sentimental, harrowing or mawkish but the author has put a rather unique and uplifting theory as to what happens to people during dementia, and also after death. Like a lot of people I am quite sceptical about mediums and their supposed ability to discourse with the dead, however I know the author has done a lot of research into the subject and has personal experience of messages from loved ones that no medium would be able to fake. And Alex comes across as a believable and genuine which makes the whole story easy to read, thought-provoking and very uplifting. If you’re looking for a book that challenges your beliefs, evokes genuine emotion and ultimately leaves you feeling strangely reassured, I would recommend this book very highly!

Absolutely love this book and it’s very interesting, sensitive thoughts on the topic of dementia. As I work in the dementia care field I found it particularly touching. Can’t wait for this author’s next book.

After losing my beloved brother to dementia three years ago this book gave me comfort and the hope that, although sometimes turmoil almost engulfed him, his vacant stare was a gateway to a world of peace and tranquility… Thought provoking read.
    
Gorgeous book! Such a comfort for those who are dealing with illness with a loved one.

I have just finished reading J Merrill Forrest’s The Waiting Gate, and wanted to review this wonderful book whilst it was still fresh in my mind. Without giving the plot away, the book is centred on Alex Kelburn who is a psychic medium, although there are other main characters whose stories interweave cleverly with Alex’s own. The author has pulled the threads of several narratives together with skill and compassion, and what could have been a sad and morbid book, is instead one of hope and love. The subjects of dementia, loss, and life after death are difficult to write about without being over sentimental, harrowing or mawkish but the author has put a rather unique and uplifting theory as to what happens to people during dementia, and also after death. Like a lot of people I am quite sceptical about mediums and their supposed ability to discourse with the dead, however I know the author has done a lot of research into the subject and has personal experience of messages from loved ones that no medium would be able to fake. And Alex comes across as a believable and genuine which makes the whole story easy to read, thought-provoking and very uplifting. If you’re looking for a book that challenges your beliefs, evokes genuine emotion and ultimately leaves you feeling strangely reassured, I would recommend this book very highly!

If I judged every book I reviewed on how many tears I shed, this one would have 7 stars not 5! J. Merrill Forrest has a craftsman’s skill in character development along with a sensitive heart that treats the thorny and sorrowful subjects of dementia, untimely death and clairvoyance with a deft pen. I shall look forward to the next one.

ISBN: 9780995780668

Publication Date: October 2017

Published by: Hashtag Press

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www.hashtagpress.co.uk