The Opposite of Certainty

Fear, Faith, and Life in Between

by Janine Urbaniak Reid, Anne Lamott

On Sale: 2020-05-12

Price: $18.99

Book Summary

Janine Urbaniak Reid didn’t want to learn how to live with uncertainty, but when her ten-year-old son was diagnosed with a brain tumor and she was diagnosed with breast cancer, she defied the gravity of her circumstances and emerged transformed.

About the Book

“Brilliant, rich...breathtakingly honest and sometimes very funny.” 

—Anne Lamott

I loved this book.”

­—Glennon Doyle

“Extraordinary.” —Caroline Leavitt

“Observant and warm...the finest company.”—Kelly Corrigan

“A beautiful sucker punch, like life.“

—Ron Fournier

“Subtle, powerful, and hypnotic...”

— Martin Cruz Smith


What happens when we can no longer pretend that the ground underfoot is bedrock and the sky above predictable?

All Janine Urbaniak Reid ever wanted was for everyone she loved to be okay so she might relax and maybe be happy. Her life strategy was simple: do everything right. This included trying to be the perfect mother to her three kids so they would never experience the kind of pain she pretended not to feel growing up. What she didn’t expect was the chaos of an out-of-control life that begins when her young son’s hand begins to shake.

The Opposite of Certainty is the story of Janine’s reluctant journey beyond easy answers and platitudes. She searches for a source of strength bigger than her circumstances, only to have her circumstances become even thornier with her own crisis. Drawn deeply and against her will into herself, and into the eternal questions we all ask, she discovers hidden reserves of strength, humor, and a no-matter-what faith that looks nothing like she thought it would. 

Beautifully written and deeply hopeful, Janine shows us how we can come through impossible times transformed and yet more ourselves than we’ve ever allowed ourselves to be.



'The diagnosis of life-threatening illness is one of the most terrifying challenges any family or individual can face. Anger, resentment, fear, and loneliness rise up ready to do battle with hope, and all are made more powerful by love. The Opposite of Certainty is a deeply personal memoir about such a journey, told with brutal honesty and so much grace it will touch your soul.'
--Jacqueline Winspear, award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of Journey to Munich, A Dangerous Place, Leaving Everything Most Loved, and nine other novels featuring Maisie Dobbs

'A beautiful sucker punch, like life. When the ground crumbles beneath your hopes, big dreams, and great expectations, what do you stand on and for? Where do you find the strength to keep going? You find it in this gem of a book.'
--Ron Fournier, New York Times bestselling author of Love That Boy

'Somedays it's doughnuts and hot coffee. Other days it's gurneys and scans. That's true of almost every full life. Here's the good news: observant and warm, the writing of Janine Urbaniak Reid is the finest company on both kinds of days.'
--Kelly Corrigan, New York Times bestselling author of Tell Me More and The Middle Place

'Full of spiritual grace and shining with a kind of rare hope, yes, it brings you to your knees but miraculously shows you that this might actually be the best vantage point to see the stars. Extraordinary.'
--Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author of Pictures of You and Cruel Beautiful World

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780785230595
  • ISBN 10: 0785230599
  • Imprint: Thomas Nelson
  • On Sale: 2020-05-12
  • Pages: 288
  • List Price: $18.99
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson
  • Publication Date: 2020-05-12
  • Trim Size: 137.000mm x 213.000mm x 17.000mm
  • Weight: 226.000gr
  • Category 1 : BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Personal Memoirs
  • Category 2 : FAMILY & RELATIONSHIPS / Children with Special Needs
  • Category 3 : RELIGION / Christian Life / General