Death is our most fascinating taboo subject. ABC’s Michaela Kalowski leads a thought-provoking discussion about euthanasia with four authors who have written about death. Steven Amsterdam’s The Easy Way Out looks at what it’s like for the people tapped to do the deed. After is Nikki Gemmell’s searing account of her mother’s decision to end her own life. In his memoir Admissions, neurosurgeon Henry Marsh tries to understand what matters in the end. In Time to Die, Rodney Syme tackles questions around assisted dying. 

Rodney Syme (Australian)

Rodney Syme is an experienced medical practitioner, and a well-known advocate for legalised assisted dying. For the last 25 years he has been counselled over 1700 people about end of life matters, and provided more than 100 with medication to palliate their psychological suffering by providing control over the end of their life. A Good Death described his journey with terminally ill people. Time to Die deepens the argument, focussing on people with advanced incurable illness, and a critique of palliative care.

Steven Amsterdam (Australian)

Steven Amsterdam is the author of Things We Didn't See Coming (which won The Age Book of the Year) as well as What the Family Needed. His most recent book is The Easy Way Out. His short fiction and non-fiction has appeared in publications including The Guardian, The Lifted Brow, Meanjin, and Salon. He is also a palliative care nurse.