Book Review: If She Wakes by Erik Therme

Who do you trust when everyone is lying?

My name is Tess Parker.

Two days ago, I was in a car accident with my sister-in-law, Torrie. Before she slipped into a coma, she asked my husband and me to care for her four-month-old son, Levi.

Yesterday, a woman claiming to be Torrie’s estranged sister knocked on our door. But Torrie has no siblings . . . or so she said. She and my brother were only together a short time before he left, and Torrie has clearly been keeping secrets.

Today, another of Torrie’s “sisters” has come to town. Both say the other is lying about who they are.

Neither of them is telling the truth.

Both of them want Levi.

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My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I have read Erik Therme‘s books and enjoy his writing style and the suspense in his books. I read the first book in this series, If She Dies, about a year ago. It wasn’t my favorite book, but I really liked that last quarter of it, so I was happy to read If She Wakes. I was not disappointed.

This book is full of suspense. I had to find out what was going to happen, so I had to stay up late into the night to finish reading it. Tess is still a mess but part of that is because she’s too hard on herself and her husband is not supportive. He thinks he is, but he blames Tess for overreacting to everything. But is she?

The end was a surprise which is always nice. A lot was resolved but because of the last line in the book, I’m sure there will be a book #3. I’m looking forward to reading it.

PROLOGUE


The first thing I see when I open my eyes is blood; running down my left forearm, glazing the backside of my hand and dripping from my fingers. My father cursed me with thin blood, and my first emergency room visit was at age seven after crashing my bicycle and cutting my ankle on a broken spoke. It had been a gusher, painting the sidewalk red within seconds. Genetics, the friendly ER doctor with the overbite told my mother. My bone marrow didn’t produce enough platelets to properly clot.

Pain flares through my neck as I turn my head. I’m in the driver’s seat of my car, and something white and soft dangles from the steering wheel. It looks like a crumpled pillowcase, and it only takes me a moment longer to realize it’s a deflated airbag. Through the cracked windshield, I can see the giant wooden utility pole that’s taken a large bite out of my hood. The Malibu’s left headlamp is flickering, and the right headlamp is pointed crazily toward the sky.

A deer, I tell myself. We swerved to avoid hitting a deer.

We.

My heart leaps inside my chest as I look to the passenger seat for Josh. The seat’s empty, but the airbag there has also deployed, and the door is open. Someone was in the seat, but not my husband. Josh is home babysitting, because I went out to dinner with—

“Torrie,” I rasp.

Everything comes rushing back.

About the Author

Erik Therme has thrashed in garage bands, inadvertently harbored runaways, and met Darth Vader. When he’s not at his computer, he can be found cheering on his youngest daughter’s volleyball team, or watching horror movies with his oldest. He currently resides in Iowa City, Iowa—one of only twenty-eight places in the world that UNESCO has certified as a City of Literature. Join Erik’s mailing list to be notified of new releases and author giveaways: http://eepurl.com/cD1F8L

Website: http://www.eriktherme.com
Twitter: eriktherme

Book Review: Yes, Again by Sallie H. Weissinger

Yes, Again:(Mis)adventures of a Wishful Thinker by Sallie H. Weissinger

Publisher:  She Writes Press, (October 26, 2021)
Category: Memoir, Grief, Loss, Romance, Dating
ISBN: 978-1647423155
Available in Print and ebook, 224 pages

In this laughter-through-tears memoir, Sallie H. Weissinger, a late-in-life widow, recounts the highs and lows of navigating the tricky online dating world of the 2000s. Interwoven throughout her adventures in search of a new relationship are stories from her childhood as a military brat, her southern heritage, her various marriages, and the volunteer work in Central and South America that helped her keep moving forward through it all.

Weissinger keeps her sense of humor as she meets men who lie, men who try to extort money, and men with unsavory pasts. When she experiences even more loss, her search for a partner becomes less important, but—with the help of friends and dogs—she perseveres and, ultimately, develops her own approach to meeting “HIM.” Blending the deeply serious and the lighthearted, Yes Again shows us that good things happen when we open up our minds and hearts.

Pre-Order Yes, Again by Sallie H. Weissinger

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Guest Review by Sal

‘Yes, Again: (Mis)adventures Of A Wishful Thinker,’ by Sallie H. Weissinger contains the inner thoughts of a woman on the lookout for love.

At the age of 57, Sallie was widowed when her husband unfortunately died of esophageal cancer. Despite missing her husband dearly, Sallie eventually realized that she was lonely and wanted to find someone else to spend her life with.

So, she decided to try online dating, and I think those of us who have tried it before know what an adventure that can be. Trying sites like match.com brought Sallie an assortment of emotionally constipated middle-aged men.

Finally getting frustrated with the men that she was meeting, Sallie decided to develop a system. She called it PASTRAMI, which was an acronym for the things that she was looking for in a man (physically fit, adventurous, spiritual, etc.) And, Sallie decided to raise the stakes even higher by bringing her friends into the deal, offering them five thousand dollars to the charity of their choice if they could find her a man that she stayed with for one year. What followed was a hilarious and entertaining jaunt through the world of dating in your 50’s and 60’s in the mid-2000’s.

Between the descriptions of these sometimes ridiculous men and the witty prose, ‘Yes, Again,’ is sure to tickle your funny bone at points. Sallie’s openness and full-hearted optimism make for an inspiring read that, despite her pitfalls, might just get you wondering if you should put yourself back out there, too.

This memoir is a one-of-a-kind adventure filled with laughter and surprising depth and one that I would recommend to anyone who has ever tried online dating in any form. I know that I couldn’t put this book down and I would gladly read more from this author in the future!

About the Author

Sallie H. Weissinger is a native of New Orleans and was raised as a military brat away from the South (Germany, New Mexico, Ohio, Japan, and Michigan). Every summer, she and her family returned to visit her mother’s relatives in New Orleans and her father’s family in a small Alabama town. She has lived most of her life in the Bay Area and also in New Orleans. These days, “home” includes not only New Orleans and Berkeley, but also Portland, Oregon, where she lives most of the time with her husband, Bart McMullan, a retired internal medicine doctor and health care executive, and their three dogs.

A retired executive herself, she now teaches Spanish and does medical interpreting for non-profit organizations in Central America and the Dominican Republic. Weissinger is a passionate member of the Berkeley Rotary Club and has served on the boards of Berkeley Rotary, the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley, and the East Bay (formerly Oakland) SPCA.

Website: https://www.yesagainmemoir.com/

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Book Review & Giveaway: Odyssey of Ashes by Cheryl Krauter

Odyssey of Ashes: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Letting Go by Cheryl Krauter

Publisher:  She Writes Press, (July 20, 2021)
Category: Memoir, Grief, Loss, Healing
ISBN: 978-1647421328
Available in Print and ebook, 168 pages

Odyssey of Ashes: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Letting Go begins with the sudden death of Cheryl Krauter’s spouse. Five months later, in a stroke of irony and magic, her husband wins a long-desired guided fly-fishing trip in a raffle―and Cheryl decides to go in his place, fulfilling a promise to scatter his ashes by a trout stream.

Part I of this memoir is an account of the first year after Cheryl’s husband’s death, where she becomes an explorer in the infinite stream of grief and loss, a time traveler between the darkness of sorrow and the light of daily life. Part II concludes with stories of the poignant and humorous adventures she had during the ensuing year. Tying it all together and woven throughout is Cheryl’s account of the creation of an altar assembled during the three-day ritual of Los Días de los Muertos.

Poetic and mythological, Odyssey of Ashes is a raw story of loss and the deep transformation that traveling through darkness and returning to light can bring.

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Guest Review by Sal

A stunning, emotional memoir about one woman’s struggle with grief, acceptance and the life beyond both.

Cheryl Krauter’s husband, John, died suddenly of a stroke one night in their home. Having only recently recovered from a bout of breast cancer that almost took her own life, Cheryl is devastated and overwhelmed by the loss.

A few months later, while her world is still in upheaval, Cheryl is shocked to discover that John has won a raffle for an all expenses paid fly fishing trip that he had always wanted to go on. When he was alive, John was an avid fly fisher and although, in the beginning of her marriage Cheryl wasn’t too keen on the sport, she began enjoying it as therapy while recovering from cancer.

Knowing that her husband had always said he wanted his ashes scattered in a fly-fishing stream, Cheryl decides to go on the prized trip in order to fulfill that final wish for the man that she loved. What follows is a touching and sometimes downright funny trip into the wilds of Montana that any memoir-lover will enjoy.

Cheryl Krauter’s writing is marvelous. As an avid Buddhist, she shares many quotes and meditations from her religion as well as quotes from famous authors, musicians, and other sources.

The book is divided into two parts, the first of which gives more of a background on John and Cheryl’s life together. The second contains most of her fly-fishing adventure in Montana.

This was both a poignant and beautiful book and one that I know I will remember for a long time to come. Cheryl’s take on grief and healing are so universal that anyone can relate to them and she writes with the conviction of a woman who has been through the worst and come out the other side.

About the Author

CHERYL KRAUTER is a San Francisco bay area psychotherapist with more than forty years of experience in the field of depth psychology and human consciousness. A cancer survivor, she is the author of Surviving the Storm: A Workbook for Telling Your Cancer Story (Oxford University Press, 2017) and Psychosocial Care of Cancer Survivors: A Clinician’s Guide and Workbook for Providing Wholehearted Care (Oxford University Press, 2018). She lives with her personal assistant, a cat named Amie.

Website: http://www.cherylkrauter.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tellingcancerstories
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CherylKrauter

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Book Review & Giveaway: Balloons for Tiger by Lori Orlinsky

Book Title:  Balloons for Tiger by Lori Orlinsky
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  38 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Mascot Books
Release date:   May 4, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.

Book Description:

How can children begin to heal after losing a pet? Balloons for Tiger takes an imaginative look at this tough topic as colorful balloons travel from the hands of children to their beloved cat who has passed on. This book lets children open up their hearts and imaginations for a magical journey to the farthest corners of the world, where they’ll meet skydivers, astronauts, superheroes, and everything in between. As they watch the balloons voyage to the other side of the rainbow bridge, they learn to positively process their grief. Balloons for Tiger is a great tool for any child who has experienced the loss of a pet- or any other loved one, too.


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My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I love books like this one. It is easy to read and it has bright and colorful illustrations that will keep the attention of young children. At the same time, it contains an important lesson. Balloons for Tiger teaches children that it is normal to grieve the loss of a pet and that even though their pet is no longer with them, it is still okay.

I thought of a quote from Toni Morrison when I read the author’s information at the end of the book: “If there’s a book you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” That’s exactly what she did when she couldn’t find any books to help when they lost their cat, Tiger. How do you help young children understand death? Balloons for Tiger uses imagination and a positive way for children to deal with their grief.

There are even questions at the end for discussion and more importantly, coping strategies for parents to help their children through this difficult time.

About the Author

Lori Orlinsky is a multi-award-winning children’s book author who lives in Chicago. She was inspired to tell this story after her family experienced the loss of their beloved eighteen-year-old cat, Tiger. Unable to find books about pet loss to help her young kids cope with their grief, Lori wrote Balloons for Tiger. She hopes this book will help others, too.

connect with the author: website ~ instagram ~ facebook ~ goodreads

Giveaway

Win signed copy of Lori Orlinsky’s BALLOONS FOR TIGER) (USA only) (ends June 7)

Balloons for Tiger Giveaway

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May 4 –Cover Lover Book Review  – book review / giveaway
May 4 – Welcome To MLMOpinion’s Reviews – book review
May 5 –Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 6 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review / giveaway
May 7 – Westveil Publishing – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 10 –The Pen and Muse Book Reviews – book review / giveaway
May 11 –Twirling Book Princess – book review
May 11 – Pawesome Wisdom – book spotlight / giveaway
May 12 – Pick a Good Book – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 13 – I’d Rather Be At The Beach – book review / giveaway
May 13 – Chit Chat with Charity – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 14 – Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
May 17 – Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting – book review / giveaway
May 18 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
May 18 – The Bespectacled Mother – book review
May 19 – The Adventures Of A Travelers Wife – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 20 – Deborah-Zenha Adams – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
May 20 – Nighttime Reading Center – book review / giveaway
May 21 – Icefairy’s Treasure Chest – book review / giveaway
May 24 – I’m Into Books – book review  
May 24 – Reading is My Passion – book review
May 25 –Gina Rae Mitchell – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 26 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 27 – Laura’s Interests – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 27 – I Read Kid’s Books – book review / author interview /giveaway
May 28 – Stephanie Jane – book spotlight / giveaway
May 28 – Books for Books – book review
May 31 – Lisa’s Reading – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
May 31 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway

Book Review: If She Dies by Erik Therme

Nine months ago, Tess’s five-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident. The driver, Brady Becker, was sentenced to two years in prison. It didn’t make Tess’s pain go away.

Brady also has a daughter: A twelve-year-old named Eve who walks to Chandler Middle School every day. Tess knows this because she’s been watching Eve for the last three weeks. It isn’t fair that Brady’s daughter gets to live, while Tess’s daughter does not.

When Eve goes missing, all eyes turn to Tess, who doesn’t have an alibi. But Tess isn’t guilty.

Or so she believes.

Amazon

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I have read Erik Therme‘s books and enjoy his writing style and the suspense in his books. I liked this book but it wasn’t my favorite. I think it’s because the loss of a child hits a little too close to home. We lost a grandbaby and if it had been because of someone like Brady, I can see my daughter-in-law dealing with her immense grief in the same way Tess does. I know everyone deals with grief in their own way, but Tess’s husband, Josh, isn’t able to give Tess what she needs. And they are both terrible at communication.

Tess following Eve might seem over the top and creepy, but she needs to channel her grief somewhere. The story was more about her grief and her failing marriage than the mystery of what happened to Eve. Tess is suspected when Eve goes missing, but could she have done it knowing the heartache she’d cause Eve’s mom?

I really liked the last quarter or so of If She Dies. A lot is resolved in Tess’s world, and there’s a big twist. This is a story of tragedy, grief, and suspense that I recommend to anyone who likes drama with a bit of suspense.

About the Author

Erik Therme has thrashed in garage bands, inadvertently harbored runaways, and met Darth Vader. When he’s not at his computer, he can be found cheering on his youngest daughter’s volleyball team, or watching horror movies with his oldest. He currently resides in Iowa City, Iowa—one of only twenty-eight places in the world that UNESCO has certified as a City of Literature. Join Erik’s mailing list to be notified of new releases and author giveaways: http://eepurl.com/cD1F8L

Website: http://www.eriktherme.com
Twitter: eriktherme

New Releases

Pupy Love

South Yorkshire Author pens autobiography in lockdown in memory of his wife who died shortly after the birth of their son in 2018

“Pupy Love” – a heartfelt autobiography about love overcoming grief

About the Book:

Pupy Love tells us how author Ric Hart tragically lost the love of his life but found inner peace, taking major steps through his grief to find extraordinary strength, resilience and hope for his future with Hugo Jaden Hart, Ric and Jade’s only son.  

Ric Hart met Jade Hazelgrave on Valentine’s weekend in 2002 and they became childhood sweethearts.  They conquered many of life’s challenges that would defeat allbut the most resolute of couples, getting through sixth form, college, University and Jade leaving to go travelling. They still always found each other again and as time went on, they became truly close and connected. Their love they found aged 18 was to stay with them; it never grew old. 

They had so much to look forward to in life: their careers, home plans, marriage and the final piece of the jigsaw, starting the family they both dreamed of.  Their dreams were cut tragically short and Pupy Love tells us how Ric found a way through his grief to find a brighter future once again for himself and his beloved son Hugo.   

Ric shows us, through his precious memories of Jade, how love truly conquers all.

About the Author:

Ric Hart is father to Hugo Jaden Hart who lost his mummy shortly after birth in July 2018.  Ric lost his best friend, wife and soulmate. He is two and a half years into his journey as a single parent and widower and has found huge inspiration, peace and acceptance from the loss of his wife by keeping her memory alive through the creation of his books and finding new hobbies and projects that he knows will make Jade so very proud and keep the fire inside him alight. 

For more on the life and love of Jade, see:  www.jadehartpupylove.co.uk  

Excerpt from the book:

“I remember sitting in my room in my apartment, and something came over me, all our special memories, our bond, our cuteness together as a couple and also one thing came to mind “Pupy Love”, which I guess was building up over the summer in my mind. It was as though I had turned my back on Jade, and it was like I had forgotten about us and all the reasons why we were always meant to be. She was my soulmate, and I had turned my back on the most important person to me, and it was like I had contact lenses in and couldn’t see properly. The following day, I went onto my brother’s computer and saw a picture of Jade, sat on a step, sucking her thumb, stroking her nose, and at that point, everything had come back with floods of feelings. I went into my bedroom and broke down for a while but realised I could do something about this or at least try. So at that moment, I said, “Right, bollox to this, I’m going to fight for the girl I want for the rest of my life.” So, I jumped in the shower and threw my jeans and jumper on and called for the earliest taxi to drive me to Jade’s parents in Wakefield, as at this point, my car was in the garage due to me smashing it up in the B&Q car park. The taxi man charged me £90. I said, “Deal just get me over to Wragby.”

“Pupy Love” by Ric Hart is available in hardback from Amazon at:

This book is also available to purchase in paperback at:

This autobiography is also available to download in e-book format from:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 020 8339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Not For All the Tea in China

Entertaining autobiography of a well-seasoned traveler

About the Author:                      

Chris Burrows was born in 1947 to a mother from Barnsley and a father from Essex. He has three great loves in his eventful life: Barnsley FC, Yorkshire County Cricket Club and his wonderful wife. His wife is his rock; Yorkshire CCC is his summertime passion; the Super Reds break his heart year after year- but he wouldn’t swap them for any other team in the world. 

Excerpt from the book:

“The sales manager suddenly turned to me and said, “Don’t look out the door now, but all I can see is smoke.”  And I did look out of the door and there on the 19th floor of this very large hotel was smoke so thick you couldn’t see anything.  And we didn’t know where it had come from.  We had no idea.  Now the staff were I’m afraid typical of the Chinese.  They panicked immediately and just simply did what you shouldn’t do, because at the side of every lift it’ll tell you in a hotel ‘in case of fire do not use lift’.  The Chinese, on a rather lighter note, don’t put ‘if’ they put ‘when’.  In other words, they’re expecting a fire.  They always put ‘when there is a fire do not use the lift’.  The staff just shouted, “There’s a fire,” ran to the lift, got in the lift and went down and chanced their arm.  We were left. 

There were the four of us and I recall there were two other men there who turned out to be two Dutchmen who were on business.  And the six of us headed towards the fire exit at the far end of the corridor, which we could just about glimpse as the smoke was increasing.  It was a very funny smoke.  It smelled.  It was a very odd thing.  And we went on to the end where the fire door was and I was thinking… “Well, all fire doors should not be locked, but since we’re in China it’s a very fair bet that this fire door will be locked.”  And we got there and somebody pushed it and thank goodness it wasn’t locked, but it let us out onto the fire exit which was a series of staircases going all the way down to the ground; stone staircases with a green painted bannister to guide you.  And on each floor as you went down, in green, was the number of the floor.  Well, I, with my poor heart and what have you, was not too sure whether I could manage this. 

We thankfully were going down and not up and we began to go down and down and we put handkerchiefs over our mouths to keep out this awful smelling smoke.  And we went down and down and down and eventually we got down to – and I could see it – just – the number 8 and I felt that that was it for me.  I just felt that I couldn’t go any further.  And I remember saying to…  I don’t know where the Dutch people were, but they’d gone.  They’d disappeared.  Whether they’d gone quicker than us, I don’t know.  I presume they must have done.  And I just said to the two people who were with me, “You go on lads because I’m not going to get out of this.  I will not get out of this.”  And they were most encouraging and said, “Come on, come on, get up, get up, get up.  You must.  You must try.  Get up.” 

 

“For All the Tea in China” by Chris Burrows is available in paperback from Amazon at:

This book can also be downloaded in e-book format from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Flower Song

A celebration in poetry and pictures of the beauty of flowers

About the Book:       

In times of frenetic demand for instant gratification, where habitual haste often blinkers us from the splendour of the world around us, the author conjures an unhurried perspective on the most beautiful of all nature’s gifts, the flower.

With images captured by his camera and captioned by his words, FLOWER SONG is the third book of poetry by the author. His other two books “REFLECTIONS: Mirror of my Mind” and “REFLECTIONS: Rhyme and Reason” are both available from Amazon.

Foreword from the Author:

There are literally thousands of flowers to choose from; why did I pick these few for the purpose of this book?  My reason for the selection is that perhaps we are generally familiar with these in average modest English gardens, woodlands and meadows.  I suppose an element of personal bias, unwittingly, might have crept in.  Numbers are also somewhat restrictive considering the size of the book.

This is the second edition of the book with many more new titles added and also few original ones revised.  All photographs are my own except “Buddleia and Butterfly” beautifully captured by my granddaughter, Jessica, at the age of twelve.

Excerpt from the book:

“Daisy

Weather’s warm and fair, sky’s clear,

Spring’s in the air and Daisies appear

In the fields and on the meadows

Under the sun and in the shadows

Countless blooms and many more

Pure white petals and a golden core;

Few imposters in painted petals, colourful,

Mingling, dancing together and playful.

As the morning sun begins to rise

Daisies, slowly, unfolding their eyes

Greeting walkers and joggers joyfully,

Then, pleading ‘please tread carefully’.

Unbending and enduring plucking pains

As children, unaware, making Daisy chains;

And when the sun sets under the sky west

At day’s end eyes closed for night’s rest.”

“Flower Song” by Omar H. Malik is available in hardback from the major book retailers including Waterstones, Foyles, Blackwells and Amazon at:

This book is also available in paperback from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

Book Review & Giveaway: From the Lakehouse by Kristen Rademacher

From the Lake House: A Mother’s Odyssey of Loss and Love by Kristen Rademacher

Publisher:  She Writes Press (July 21, 2020)
Category: Memoir, Grief, Motherhood

ISBN: 978-1631528668
Available in Print and ebook, 237 pages


Dizzy with grief after a shattering breakup, Kristen did what any sensible thirty-nine-year-old woman would do: she fled, abandoning her well-ordered life in metropolitan Boston and impulsively relocating to a college town in North Carolina to start anew with a freshly divorced southerner.

Dismissing the neon signs that flashed Rebound Relationship, Kristen was charmed by the host of contrasts with her new beau. He loved hunting and country music, she loved yoga and NPR; he worried about nothing, she worried about everything. The luster of her new romance and small-town lifestyle soon―and predictably―faded, but by then a pregnancy test stick had lit up. As Kristen’s belly grew, so did her concern about the bond with her partner―and so did a fierce love for her unborn child. Ready or not, she was about to become a mother. And then, tragedy struck.

Poignant and insightful, From the Lake House explores the echoes of rash decisions and ill-fated relationships, the barren and disorienting days an aching mother faces without her baby, and the mysterious healing that can take root while rebuilding a life gutted from loss.

Buy From the Lake House by Kristen Rademacher

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Guest Review by Linda Lu

A deeply moving and absolutely heartbreaking tale of one woman’s struggle to cope with loss and change in her life and to keep moving forward.

Kristen Rademacher suffered a lot of tragedies in a short amount of time. Kristen was deeply affected by the attacks of 9/11 after having lived in New York during her childhood and then living in Boston but the grief was compounded by the fact that her serious boyfriend left her on that day.

After coping with that and trying to get back on her feet emotionally, Kristen met a new man while staying at her brother’s house. Jason was everything that Kristen is not, conservative, southern, a lover of guns and country music to Kristen’s liberal, Boston-dwelling self.
They were almost polar opposites, but of course, as the saying goes, opposites attract. Shortly after they started dating and at the age of 39, Kristen became pregnant.

After nine months of excitement and anticipation, Kristen missed her due date and soon found out that her baby, though previously strong and healthy, had died in the womb. Kristen’s account of her delivery of her stillborn daughter and the despair and depression that she suffered afterward were heartbreaking to read. I would be lying if I said I didn’t tear up when she gave birth to her little girl and had to say goodbye to her only one hour later.

This book almost felt like an exorcism for the author, in a really healthy way. Kristen’s writing was very beautiful and I felt for her on such a deep level while reading. She truly made the experience of giving birth to a stillborn baby so devastatingly real for the reader in these pages.
This is one to read if you love stories about overcoming life’s toughest circumstances and the enduring love of a mother.

Advance Praise

“Over the course of this book, in well-structured, descriptive prose, Rademacher effectively leads readers through a gradually withering romantic relationship that culminates in a tragedy . . . Some of the most painful sections of the book are her loving letters to the little girl whom she held for but an hour, and whom she named Carly. It soon becomes clear that these missives helped to lead her back from a precipice of despair, so that she could finally face her future. A poignant and painful remembrance with comforting messages for the grieving.”-Kirkus Reviews

“Kristen Rademacher’s achingly honest memoir about her losses of place, partner, and much-anticipated baby daughter Carly resonates with courage and an abiding gratitude for the preciousness of life. A truly tender reflection about loss that illuminates the devastating experience of baby loss.”-Janel Atlas, writer and editor of They Were Still Born: Personal Stories about Stillbirth

“From the Lake House is an intimate, inspiring story of surviving in a world where blessings and tragedy walk hand in hand. Written with tender honesty and luscious language, it is a joy to read, even amidst the pangs of heartache and loss. As a bereaved mother, I found myself nodding in agreement with so many of Rademacher’s experiences of life after the death of a child . . . This book is for memoir-lovers and anyone who finds themselves in a turbulent relationship or who has said goodbye to a dearly loved child . . . Rademacher champions solitude for its healing capacities and the wholeness birthed from dogged, hard-earned resiliency. Perceptive and endearing, it is a moving saga of motherhood.”-Alexis Marie Chute, award-winning author of Expecting Sunshine: A Journey of Grief, Healing, and Pregnancy After Loss

“In this beautifully written and poignant memoir, we learn that though people and dreams die, relationships don’t. If we’re attuned, the dead can transform our lives, offering enduring love and guidance―and hope.”-Carol Henderson, author of Losing Malcolm: A Mother’s Journey Through Loss and Farther Along: The Writing Journey of Thirteen Bereaved Mothers

About the Author

Kristen Rademacher has lived in Chapel Hill, North Carolina since 2002, which is when she began writing. FROM THE LAKE HOUSE is her first memoir. With a Master’s Degree in Education and a Professional Coaching Certification, Kristen is an Academic Coach and ADHD Specialist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also leads trainings and presentations at national conferences on the topic of academic coaching.

Website:  https://kristenrademacher.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kristenrademacherauthor/

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