Book Review: ​Through the Valley: The Art o​f Living and Leaving Well

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Home > Articles > Book Review: ​Through the Valley: The Art o​f Living and Leaving Well

 Book Review: ​Through the Valley: The Art o​f Living and Leaving Well

Today's Manager
March 1, 2019
By Dr William Wan
The Straits Times Press
Reviewer: Sadie-Jane Nunis

Learn How to Face Death 
without Fear​

DEATH. Now that is something that does not pop up in this book reviews list often. However, subconsciously due to some recent events, some of the books on my 2019 reading list have included When Breath Becomes Air.

Dr Wan’s approach to life has always amazed me as he is just like an Energizer bunny running the Singapore Kindness Movement, being a pastor, giving talks, and the list goes on. Then I remembered celebrating his 70th birthday with him and his mentioning writing this book, I was intrigued as I was wondering what his approach to ‘leaving well’ would be like because I know how he lives his life to the max.

After going through the numerous introductions and forewords written by formidable people, I finally got to the chapters. First, I love how they have drawn Dr Wan into each chapter, and I admit that I flipped through the book to check out how they drew him for each chapter.

Now for the book proper. I read it and I have to say, this is not just a read for those in their golden years but it should be read by everyone. You never know when it is your time and this book is going to help you see death in a different light. In fact, that is exactly why Dr Wan wrote this book in the first place, which is to turn the taboo topic of death into something to be approached more positively, instead of with fear and anxiety and I think he has done so very successfully.

Dr Wan shares not just good advice but uses his own stories with honesty as he always does. His knack for piecing words together helps makes this a compelling read that you will want to go back to when you might be losing someone dear to you and feel unprepared. Yes, talking about death is always a taboo topic and many are lost as to how to approach it. I think Dr Wan has hit the nail on its head as this is one of the best books I have read that manages to find the right balance between discussing death honestly and yet, making it a more approachable topic for all. Kudos to Dr Wan as this is no easy task so pick up your copy at all good bookstores or via

Copyright © 2019 Singapore Institute of Management

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Today's Manager Issue 1, 2019

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