Reader Notes

This book deals with partner loss and becoming a widow.

Recommended Audience

This book is recommended for adults and, in particular, people who have experienced the death of a partner or spouse.


When FOX 11 weather anchor, Maria Quiban, hears the diagnosis of her husband Sean’s brain cancer, Glioblastoma (GBM), for the first time, she was completely unprepared, and you feel that in how she writes about that moment. Maria shares her story with moments of despair and resolve, honestly and with great affection for her husband Sean and her sons.

In You Can't Do It Alone, Maria tells her story and teams up with licensed therapist Lauren Schneider to provide readers with a roadmap for walking through illness, death and grief. In this supportive guide, they provide guidance and thoughtful advice for anyone dealing with traumatic loss, which I appreciated the combination of both narrative storytelling form Maria and valid advice to help those walking in grief.

Maria writes how family, friends, co-workers at FOX 11 in Los Angeles and the seven Samurai, supported and comforted her through Sean’s treatment and his passing. That’s where the title of the book comes from, we know as we grieve those who step up to support us are what provides us comfort and hope and we make our way through the world as we grieve. It’s not easy to talk about losing the love of your life or your experiences during that time. Maria was honest and open with the hope of helping others should they find themselves in a similar situation. Maria is a very open caring person, and we had a great conversation on our Faith & Grief Podcast, if you would like to hear more from Maria.

About the Reviewer

Shelley Craig is the program director for Faith & Grief, a multi-faith grief support nonprofit offering programs online and someday in-person again. She is the host of the Faith & Grief Podcast and they host a monthly book club as well.