Not All Bad RECEIVES FIVE STARS FROM CLARION/FOREWARD MAGAZINE!


"The work consistently reaffirms the importance of choosing a positive view without turning hazy, overtly spiritual, or repetitive. . . . the  general exhortation to appreciate life in all its brevity is worth hearing." "At times conversational and at other times meditative, this book is written in an engaging voice." (Read the full review here.)


KIRKUS MAGAZINE GIVES Not All Bad RECEIVES A THUMBS UP!

 "Mock wrote this lively, motivating memoir from the cancer trenches . . ." and shares her story of "'deciding to pursue joy, not gloom,' fully aware that 'staying true to the wisdom gained from having cancer is an ongoing process.'" Kirkus calls Not All Bad an "inspiring, instructive memoir for cancer patients and their loved ones." (Read the full review here.)


MARIN MAGAZINE calls Not All Bad a "surprisingly joyous cancer memoir."

Ms. Mock was interviewed by Marin Magazine's Laura Hilgers about publishing her first book. (Read the full story here.) 


5-Star Reviews:

 

Psychlyst (from Amazon.com) --  Not All Bad Comes to Harm You was a delightful read, a down to earth account of what the struggle takes to lead a meaningful life. The foundation of this book deals with much more than cancer, as the author states. There are plenty of spiritual books out there that "tell" you the importance of returning to your inner self, finding meaning and what is important in life. A few even "tell" you how to go about it. But the simplest things are usually the most difficult and it's just not that easy. The author provides an unusual glimpse of the process of achieving access to her larger self within her struggle of such a devastating diagnosis. She makes the journey poignantly accessible to the reader in very human terms. This is what makes this book different. Anyone facing a huge life crisis or a “mid-life” crisis will find Ms. Mock’s humor infectious. Whatever predicament lands on your doorstep, this work lends permission to approach it with all the messiness, grace, compassion, and immediacy without constructing a façade of the perfect way to go through such things. Bravo for the candid introspection – it lights the way for us to do it in our own way.

 

D. Goldstein (from Amazon.com) -- A prescription for living. I will recommend this book to just about anyone. Whether you're a person facing a life threatening illness or not, Ms. Mock's inspiring story delivers a prescription for living one's life to its maximum potential. This is a true "conversion" story. Facing a life and death proposal, Ms. Mock describes to the reader how she is led through a soul searching process in which every aspect of her life is re-evaluated. Without making any direct reference to any specific religion or definition of God, Ms. Mock has nonetheless described one of the most beautiful stories of a true "spiritual awakening" that I have read. I am a health care professional who works with people living with, and at times dying from, severe chronic illnesses. I plan to recommend Ms. Mock's book to both my clients and other health care professionals.

 

YG (from Amazon.com) -- Loved this book! This well-written succinct (and, dare I say, fun) book stays with you long after its last page. As it should. A mandatory reading for everyone who is handicapped by fear of anything, not just cancer. The author focuses on and yet at the same time dismisses her own life-threatening challenge (as an “inconvenience” to actual living – for example, three words here: “Penguin Cold Caps”) and gradually her spiritual transformation becomes evident as she examines her/our own mortality and love for life. This transformation is what makes this book more than just a cancer survivor book and a must-read. From a busy, career-minded, stressed-out lawyer, the author reaches a new heightened level of priorities -- shifting [to a] spiritually-centered existence. In that respect, she already won the fight while confirming the title of her book: what is considered “bad” actually benefited her – and, along the way, benefits us from reading and absorbing her powerful life-changing and life-affirming realizations and observations. In the author’s straightforward, simple, direct, unadorned and entertaining writing style (her years of legal practice obviously gave her the advantage to go straight to the heart of the matter with astounding economy) we go through the diagnosis, the treatment, the survival. But what could have been painful becomes rewarding, empowering and uplifting. Cancer takes back stage to this strong and resilient person. Friendships, cycling, dancing, traveling, romance take center stage instead. Mock’s style gives you the heartwarming impression and sense of comfort that she’s a friend you know (it helps that she includes photos in the book), sitting right across [from] you on a sunny afternoon with a view to the Mediterranean sea from the balcony of an Italian villa (Italy does play an important part in the book), sipping wine (yes, I took that from the spilled glass on the cover of the book), and telling you that you’re not alone and everything will be OK. And it will. Hope to see more from this author.

 

SL (from Amazon.com) -- Absolutely Excellent Book - much more than just another story about cancer. I'm the type of reader with 10-15 books in the house I'm reading at once and usually too busy/distracted to finish one right away. This book is different - I stayed up last night and read the entire book. The author's writing style is easy to read and the message is one that will have you asking yourself many questions - in a good way. Hope she writes another book soon!

 

CyGuy (from Amazon.com) -- A really good book. Ms. Mock gives the reader an intimate glimpse of the emotional ups and downs of dealing and fighting cancer. Her candid assessment of her own issues coping with her situation and the people who are weaved in and out of her life was especially thought provoking. After reading her book, I too joined the C club, making some of her points that much more relevant. Key lessons . . . enjoy the people close to you, drink more good wine . . .

 

C. Gnos (from Amazon.com) -- Five Stars. Being a cancer survivor myself this book hits home.

 

R. Davis (from Amazon.com) -- I highly recommend Not All Bad comes To Harm You!. Ms. Mock's experience with cancer and the wisdom she has gained from it is embodied in this wonderful book. Not only do you get a clear sense of her struggles with this disease, one also gets her methods and means for managing the ups and downs with a huge emphasis on hope and love of life. As one living with incurable but manageable cancer, I found her writings to be a tonic and a road map for coping in my years ahead. I highly recommend Not All Bad comes To Harm You!

 

SFAlly (from Amazon.com) -- Honest, witty, and encouraging. Recommended by a friend and cancer survivor, this book hit the perfect tone with me as I began my own journey. It's well-written with healthy doses of humor, honesty, and authenticity. It's also an incredible resource (cold caps work!) and affirming (don't join a support group if it doesn't resonate!). I've also sent a copy to a friend recently diagnosed. I've read many books to help me through my cancer journey and this one stands out among the crowd.

 

SH  (from Amazon.com) -- Not just about cancer ... a powerful read. This book rattled me -- and then inspired me to take a closer look at how I spend my time and energy. I know that life can indeed change in an instant, but need to be reminded to factor that into the decisions I make every day. Thank you, Ms. Mock, for a powerful read that came to me at the right time.

 

D. Ham  (from Amazon.com) -- Intimate, Insightful, Inspiring. Please read this book if you have ever met anyone who has dealt in any way with a cancer diagnosis. The author shares her hard truths with a candid courage that welcomes you right in to the middle of her swirling life while challenging you to live yours more fully. The topic may be about the devastation of cancer . . . but this book is truly about hope. Well done, Ms. Mock! Well done.

 

Amazon Customer 5/25/16 (from Amazon.com) -- I found it helpful and an easy read. My sister was going through cancer treatment when I read Jan's book. I found it helpful and an easy read.

 

C. Rentzel (from Amazon.com) -- An inspiring mind you want to know. Ms. Mock embraces her reader with humor and honesty. Bits of self-talk throughout serve as helpful guidance to anyone seeking to survive LIFE, not just a particular tragedy. She is an exceptional role model as a writer and a survivor.

 

Amazon Customer 4/9/16 (from Amazon.com) -- So beautifully and thoughtfully written. This 170-page book, so beautifully and thoughtfully written, pulled me out of a very sad place - post divorce depression. Though I was dealing with a death of sorts, I was not facing my own so squarely in the face as Ms. Mock was. Not All Bad Comes to Harm You made me acutely aware that indeed, not all bad comes to harm you!! I wept while reading her profoundly honest, smart and yes, humorous - Ms. Mock is quite funny - observations of her inspiring journey surviving cancer. She takes the "C" out of cancer and places it firmly into Courage! Courage to face cancer and the myriad of exhaustive information. Courage to face the choices she's made and will make in her life. Courage to face her own mortality. Courage to live with a capital "L".

"My suggestion, learn firsthand is this: Stop. Breathe. Just be. Know that everything will be as it is, but for now,
only this moment matters. It's really all we have, after all. Don't fear the fear. It's part of what makes us human.
Just let it go, and be where you are." - Page 107

I highly recommend this inspiring book. Ms. Mock helped me find the strength to move out of the darkness of emotional pain and into the lightness of living. I'm forever in her debt.  Thank you!

 

Colleen B. (from Amazon.com) -- A great read that just happens to be about surviving cancer. Janice Mock's book about her battle with stage four ovarian cancer is at once inspiring and haunting, painful and funny. I lost my partner to cancer over 25 years ago. I wish I had Not All Bad Comes To Harm You back then to help me navigate that long and tough journey. Beautifully written and crafted, this book feels deeply personal to the reader. Not All Bad Comes To Harm You draws you in, levels you emotionally and ultimately lifts you up with hope and love. With the story's core of reality, optimism, perseverance, gratitude and grace, this is not just a book about the struggle with a life threatening disease; it's about the space between birth and death and how one ultimately chooses to fill that space.

 

Stephen C. (from Amazon.com) -- As someone who has not experienced cancer directly, I was reluctant to read such a book for fear of being depressed by a self-pitying, overly sentimental story. This is NOT that book. It is refreshingly and directly honest, funny, and painful. As I did with A Prayer for Owen Meaney, I found myself laughing out loud and occasionally holding back a tear. This is a book about life. From someone who understands and embraces all of it.

 

Sue C. (from Amazon.com) -- Loved this book from beginning to end. I could not put it down. The author takes a horrific, life changing, diagnosis of ovarian cancer into a story that is so inspiring. A must read for anyone. Thank you so much Ms. Mock for writing this - can't wait until your next one.

 

Ondina H. (from Amazon.com) -- I would buy this for any friend or family member who has received the dreaded "C" diagnosis - Highly recommended! LOVED this book with it's down to earth, poignant and honest approach to the trials and tribulations of living through a cancer diagnosis. The author's strength lies in her ability to find humor even in her darkest moments battling through cancer. It is very readable and intimate. She takes you to all the places cancer unwillingly takes her and then grapples with how to make sense of it all, always with unflinching honesty and a touch of humor. I would buy this for any friend or family member who has received the dreaded "C" diagnosis - Highly recommended!

 

Leslie (from Amazon.com) -- An impressive piece of work. Not All Bad Comes to Harm You is an impressive piece of work. I found myself laughing and crying from beginning to end. The author gives the reader intimate insight into the world of cancer which includes her highs and lows and her powerful truth about sickness, health, life and love. Mock brings inspiration to those facing health risks but also for many of us facing life circumstances. She ignites hope and confidence and a spirit of joy that is contagious. This is a must read!

 

Amazon Customer 1/28/16 (from Amazon.com) --  I loved the no nonsense approach to a very difficult subject ... I could NOT put it down. I couldn't wait to turn the page and yet when I was finished I yearned for more! I loved the no nonsense approach to a very difficult subject and how her emotions were raw, heartfelt and yet humorous and full of hope. I feel as if a footprint has been laid for us to aspire to. Thank you Janice for a BEAUTIFUL and INSPIRING book. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this book! I am looking forward to your next one!

 

Shel (from Amazon.com) -- Janice Mock is a beautiful writer. I could not put her book down. It is so honest, scary, funny and life-affirming. Thank you, Jan, for this incredible gift you have put out into the world. This book is going to touch and help so many people who are dealing with profound disruptions in their lives, whether it is a medical issue, family strife or something else that rocks their world and worldview. I was especially moved by Mock's description of her life after treatment, and how complicated it can be to create and navigate the new "normal." I can't wait to read her next book. 

 

J. Ricker (from Goodreads.com) -- I LOVED IT!!!

 

T. Harding (from Amazon.com) -- Inspiring book. I started reading this book and could not put it down. It is the thoughtful, true-life story of a middle-aged woman diagnosed with stage 4 ovarian cancer, who gathered her courage and wits to challenge herself to not give up. Mock takes you through the lows and the highs with poignant moments and comedic observations about herself and her circumstances. She summoned an inner strength, when many would have given up, and sought to see beauty around her as experiences unfolded during a most difficult time in her life.  I feel her book should be a must read to help women undergoing cancer treatment as it will give them an alternative perspective on their circumstances and maybe they, too, can find the courage and optimism to embrace new challenges and life experiences. This book is the author’s first and she describes her journey with colorful descriptions and keen observations. To tell you how much I enjoyed this book, I ordered five more to give away as Christmas gifts. I look forward to reading additional works by this talented author and cancer survivor.

 

J. Morla (from Amazon.com) -- A MUST READ -- I LOVED IT!! As I read the praises written about this author’s work, nothing I write in this review will be original or unique. I will say this: Many of the pages of my book are dog-eared, as there are so many key takeaways and pearls-of-wisdom. It was humorous, inspirational and moving. I read it in two days during my commute on the ferryboat (which speaks volumes about how engaging this book is – after all, I do my best napping during the hour-long voyage) – time very well spent! Ms. Mock, thank you for sharing your journey. I look forward to reading more of your work – you truly have the gift! I loved-loved-loved this book!

 

Joanie C. (from Amazon.com) -- Beautifully written, humorous, and enlightening....Mock's vulnerable story of her challenging journey from being swallowed into the dark, deep hole of ovarian cancer diagnosis, to embracing, to surviving, is a gift to all her readers. Not All Bad Comes to Harm You, is an inspiring, heartfelt book that offers us all a profound reminder to live each moment fully with joy and gratitude. Mock's awakening to saying "YES" to life despite her life-threatening diagnosis that will always hover overhead, will cause each reader pause and reflection. Highly recommended for any reader whether one has cancer, knows someone or lost someone to cancer, fears cancer, or just simply wants to embrace a deeper appreciation for life.

 

Melinda R. (from Amazon.com) -- This was an amazing, profoundly intimate, and heartfelt read. Mock, used vulnerability, strength and had a humorous way of expressing a life changing experience! I was so impress[ed] and deeply touched that I had to see her in person at "Book Passage"! ...Mock is a writer in her own birthright and I hope she continues to write and share her amazing wit and heart with the world! Thank you Janice for saying yes to changing the world!

 

Mary Ann J. (from Amazon.com) -- I'd recommend that you read this one. If you had to choose one book to read about getting through cancer, I'd recommend that you read this one. You will draw from her energy and laugh out loud...I know because I am halfway through chemo and know that I am going to make it....

 

Sara W. (from Amazon.com) -- Grabs and inspires. This is an exceptionally well told account of what might be considered a grim situation: Stage IV Ovarian Cancer announcing itself suddenly to a woman in her early fifties. The author does a beautiful job of telling her story and conveying the good she derived from being in this horrible place. It isn't sappy, though . . . it feels smart and sensible and oddly joyous. Its title tells all--in terms of Mock's ultimate conclusion. . . .Reading it could help a reader think about the good that can come from bad situations . . . and it will prod the reader to think beyond the immediate situation. The takeaway is more subtle than the old "make lemonade" adage. It will grab you and inspire you.

 

Matt B. (from Amazon.com) -- I enjoyed how Mock wrote the book as a sort of journal of her progress, in the moment, as she says she has learned to live. It’s so easy to write about cancer and get maudlin or depressing, but she avoided the easy and went for the fences, swinging not just at her personal experience but at the wisdom it brought her. I found it helpful for me looking in from the outside, and especially when I got news of another old friend who succumbed while I was reading the book. Not cutesy, not sweet, and not sugary or unrealistic – but not grim or discouraging, either, a tricky balance but one she maintains well. Excellent writing!

 

Mimi (from Amazon.com) -- I felt like I had made a new friend. Once I picked it up, I could not put this book down. Delivered with swift humor yet told with so much vulnerability, I felt like I had made a new friend while reading Mock's unfortunate, yet all too familiar account.  This book really resonated with me, not because I have cancer, but I have a weird blood disorder with no clear outcome. I can really relate to the personal choice between forging optimistically forward with your life, versus wallowing in the uncertainty and potential severity of your health picture. Thank you for your inspiration and thoughtful perspective. I wish you all the best!

 

Ilene (from Amazon.com) -- Refreshing. While the title of the book is somewhat awkward, once I read the entire book I understand its significance. It was refreshing to read something about cancer that was positive. I've recommended it to friends who have cancer or love someone with cancer. It provoked thoughts and discussions that may not have happened. It was an easy and quick read. I really enjoyed it.

 

Jim J. (from Amazon.com) -- Damn good read.  Sometimes we get stuck in our cancer and forget to get up and carry on.  Mock suggests we can grow in new directions and as well. Great title by the way!

 

Kate K. (from Goodreads.com) --I so enjoyed this memoir of living through the nightmare of a cancer diagnosis. But the book is much more than that. It is an affirmation of the power of living well, regardless. I am not a survivor and hope to never be one, but nevertheless I felt empowered by Mock's bracing and entertaining narrative.

 

Pamela C. (from Amazon.com) -- Having walked the bumpy road with more than one friend battling this terrible disease, reading Jan’s book provided a truly valuable perspective. I’ve been on the outside looking in, cancer-wise. Having walked the bumpy road with more than one friend battling this terrible disease, reading Mock's book provided a truly valuable perspective for me. I’m a big fan of those who write honestly and, if I can quote Mock, she “goes vulnerable,” which is such a priceless gift to so many. I agree: Not all bad comes to harm you. Thank you, Jan, for your precious insights about living in the moment, taking nothing for granted, relishing the gift of each day.

 

Lyn M. (from Amazon.com) -- An amazing read. An excellent read and one I would highly recommend to anyone whether you have gone through cancer treatment yourself or know of someone who has had cancer, and lets face it, we have all known of someone dear to us in our lifetime who has gone through this ordeal. This book is very inspirational, humorous, sad, heartwarming, well written and so much more . . . .  I would love nothing more than if Oprah read this one as she would definitely make it a best seller.   

 

Molly K. (from Amazon.com) -- Uplifting. Believe it or not - I found this story about a woman my age dealing with cancer to be an uplifting part of my day. Janice's positive attitude is infectious and made me feel motivated to mirror her thoughts and energy and I now feel inspired to live each day and celebrate the moment. I think I need to go for a bike ride.

 

Kerry D. (from Amazon.com) -- Excellent perspective shifter! Mock is a brilliant writer - she has a way of taking a subject that has been written about countless times and making it a relevant subject for any audience. Whether someone has battled cancer personally or knows someone who has, or might know someone who will - this is a great read. I really appreciated her personal accounting of her experience and it just goes to show you how important the power of positivity can be. Reading this book helped to remind me how precious life can be and that we should all take in that beautiful view a little longer, breathe a little deeper and enjoy things just that little bit more...

 

Nancy C. (from Amazon.com) -- Empower the cancer patient with Penguin Cold Caps! I loved the book and have already recommended it to two women who are early in their diagnosis of breast cancer. . . Your book would be tremendously helpful for people who feel uneasy when learning someone they know has cancer. Thank you for writing the book- I feel reenergized to prioritize my health and psyche. It's a great feeling! Thank you~ 

 

D'Artangan (from Goodreads.com)  -- This book is a real testament to staying focused on one mission and one mission only. The author, a smart, funny and clearheaded thinker, writes of her moment in time being treated for cancer - and that right there is the lesson. The moment. This moment. All you can do is live in this moment - for that is all you can do...not some other moment - you don't have control over it, whether it be in the past or in the future...all you can do is make this moment the best moment. I learned I cannot continue to ask the "what if's" or "I should have done..." [or] I will never, ever get to "my moment." Ms. Mock's missile-like focus on this message is very powerful and very liberating. 

 

Kirsten M. (from Goodreads.com)  -- I found the book wrenching, funny, smart, and thoughtful. Most people undergoing the torture of a serious cancer diagnosis and all the delightful therapies that follow are not inspired to record their thoughts along the way. Mock, being an A-type-over-achiever and highly verbal, creative thinker, did. That's the gift of this book, I think. That the cancer community has someone who took the time and effort to write about the experience while she was actually going through it. The result is a truthful but entertaining report on the surreal experience of having such a life-changing illness. Mock is an astute observer of life who also happens to be incredibly funny, to the benefit of her readers. 

 

Mick V. (from Amazon.com) -- Besos for Mock. I read Not All bad Comes to You on my flight to Colorado last week and found the book to be inspiring, funny, emotional and hopeful. During my flight I had to put the book down a few times to regain my composer as I was overcome with emotions with the author's journey. I feel the book not only addresses people dealing with cancer, it can also be used in everyday life in setting your priorities as to what is most important.......yourself. Thank you, Ms. Mock, for sharing your journey with us.

 

Sallie G. (from Goodreads.com) -- It is eminently readable, despite a foreboding topic: Discovering, treating, and living with the reality of Stage-4 ovarian cancer.  Mock is an excellent writer and has crafted a format that works well. She includes her blog postings written over a period of four years, but closes the gaps between postings with a forward-moving narrative that shares her feelings and belief about her personal imperative to stay positive. She includes anecdotes and details of her life in just the right amount. I'm quite sure her readers will all think of her as someone they know after finishing the book. The overarching message is not particularly original, but Mock treats it freshly and convincingly. Positive and joyful living is what we all should be doing. Even for people who have not lived with or survived cancer, the message has meaning. Nice work!