The Fragrance of Angels: An Accident, a Taste of Eternity, and a New Life

Martha Brookhart Halda

Winner of the Author's Circle Novel of Excellence for Narrative Nonfiction

It happened in an instant: a car crash, thrown from the vehicle, pronounced clinically dead while lying on the road, rotors turned off the Life Flight helicopter—and then swept into eternity . . . only to return, after being pronounced dead three times, to a far different life.

Welcome to The Fragrance of Angels, Martha Brookhart Halda’s memoir about time on the other side—and how and why she reshaped and developed a new purpose in life after it became more fraught with challenge after visiting heaven.

The Fragrance of Angels distinguishes itself as a mother’s empowerment story, taking us from a parent’s greatest horror—dying while the kids are young—to a profound change in her approach to parenting and life. The former collegiate track, volleyball, and basketball player and mother discusses how she dealt with extensive rehabilitation, a difficult marriage, re-learning to walk and talk, returning to full-time motherhood, running the Dublin Marathon three years after her accident, striking out on her own, meeting new love, and finding new meaning in a world that never looked or felt the same to her again. Within her story is that of so many other women in the middle of their lives, yet infused with a sense of purpose and discovery borne by her time on the other side.

The Fragrance of Angels is filled with a deep sense of love and challenge, physical beauty and emotional upheaval, frustration and triumph. Ultimately, it contains quite a surprise—the one Martha realized when she was in eternity.

Watch the book trailer for The Fragrance of Angels:

Advance Praise for The Fragrance of Angels

“Martha shares the exquisite details of her death experience and how she was gifted with a taste of eternity. Martha offers the reader a heart-wrenching and spiritually uplifting road map of how she was able to navigate back to life then fight with the courage of an athlete to live life fully with the gifts she received from death. The Fragrance of Angels reminds me to continually dance in my own light.”

—Julie Moss, Ironman triathlete legend and motivational speaker

“Martha Halda is a warrior woman! She came back to life fighting for one reason. She did it all in the name of God and for the sake of a mother’s love. If you’re looking for a heartwarming story chock-full of inspiration, you’ve found your book.”

—Holly Kammier, author, Kingston Court, owner, Acorn Publishing

“No matter your religious bent, if you can park your dogmas at the door and let your imagination free, her description of heaven will enthrall.”

Carlsbad Magazine

“The portal between life and death opens the door to many forms of magic, chief among them, blessings. Martha Halda’s The Fragrance of Angels does just that, giving us a guided tour of what is bigger than us all.”

—Matthew J. Pallamary, author, Land Without Evil and Spirit Matters

About the Author

Martha Brookhart Halda, author

My life can be summed up in four words: faith, family, adventure, and perseverance. My life was built around family, until life crashed to a halt on October 8, 1999. I suffered the car crash that provides the basis for The Fragrance of Angels. A taste of eternity is the story of my near death experience during this near-fatal car accident, and my quest to regain a normal life. Being a former college track and volleyball athlete provided me the drive and skills to regain my strength and survive. Writing this book provides me the outlet to fulfill a promise; to my late father, Ray F. Brookhart, and more importantly to God that I would tell my story and of His love.

Today, I live Oceanside Ca. and work in the Vacation Ownership Industry in Oceanside, California. I encourage people to enjoy the marvels of this world, and to create precious memories with the people that mean the most in their life, because I know all we get to take with us is our integrity and our memories.