Reviewed by Lauren Kirk

We all have so many questions about our lives and beyond. Often death and the unknown bring many of those questions to the foreground of our minds. It can be fear, concern over the loss of a loved one, or just a genuine interest in what is out there. To some people, like Maureen Hancock, these are issues that are handled on a daily basis and handled well.

After reading The Medium Next Door, Hancock’s memoir on what it is like to be a psychic medium, it can only be concluded that she is the kind of woman that everyone wants in their corner. Maureen’s words are light and friendly, and you can almost feel her warmth radiating off of the pages. While many books by psychics or mediums can come across as abrupt, pushy, or breezy, this one does not at all. For those with little or even no interest in the metaphysical world, reading this book might be a good place to start.

The stories that Maureen tells are heartfelt, realistic, and in many cases astonishing. While her gift is admirable, it is not enviable, but it is refreshing to learn as the book continues on about the good that she does with her gift. Coming from a close, large, Irish family, Hancock explains her upbringing and describes the powerful women in her life. Her strong female bonds shaped her to be the woman she is today and most likely passed the gift of second sight down to her as well.

After suffering an accident, the gift that many people simply turn off unknowingly, was switched on in full force. The images and voices did not stop and Maureen knew that they would never go away. As Hancock grew older she began to find ways to use her gifts to help others; she works with police departments, helps connect families to missing loved ones, and helps cancer patients free of charge. In fact, most of her work is pro bono which is truly admirable. I’m sure she makes a living/profit from her gift but nowhere in the memoir does it ever appear that this is her main motivation.

One of the most amazing things is that Maureen is a normal woman even though she has this tremendous gift that is also a burden at times. She has children, a husband, and a dog. She lives in the suburbs and is active in her community, all while still maintaining celebrity status in her own right. She truly is an inspiration. A nice addition to the book is the notes at the end of every chapter that provide tips for the readers to use in their own lives. There are instructions for mediating, reflecting, and for handling a wide variety of situations.

The Medium Next Door is friendly, never preachy, and lacking, thankfully, in spiritual lectures or jargon. The memoir is instead a quick peek into the life of an extraordinary woman who does wonders with her ability.

Rating: 4/5

Lauren Kirk is a graduate student, freelance writer, wine lover, and avid reader. Random musings can be found over at www.goldiesays.com.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by HCI Publishing. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.