Book Review & Giveaway: Blessed by the Best: My Journey to Canton and Beyond by Brian Dawkins with Michael Bradley

Blessed By the Best by Brian Dawkins

Blessed by the Best: My Journey to Canton and Beyond by Brian Dawkins, Michael Bradley (Contributor)

Publisher:  Camino Books, Inc; 1st edition (August 30, 2021)
Category: Memoir, Football Biographies, Sports, Inspirational
ISBN: 978-1680980257
Available in Print and ebook, 256 pages
Blessed By the Best

Description

Drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in 1996, Dawkins fought to elevate not only his own game but that of his entire team. He sweat, bled, and dominated through sixteen season in the NFL all the way into the Hall of Fame, but not for a moment did he believe his strength alone brought him that glory. Every step of the way the Lord had his back. From coaches that wanted to break him to defeats and bitter lessons in humility, his career is a testament to his faith and an homage to the countless people that helped him along the way.

In the wake of his success, Dawkins comes forward to describe his journey to become one the best safeties in the NFL. Physical training wouldn’t cut it. Blessed by the Best follows Dawkins trials to train his mind and faith along with his skill. As a nervous kid from Jacksonville, he never dreamed of one day standing in front of a crowd to accept that golden jacket. But one way or another, he made it. Dawkins tells his story straight, unafraid of exposing his own weaknesses; his over competitive spirit that takes losses to hard, the tunnel vision that estranged him from his kids, and the self-doubt that plagued much of his early years. Triumphs, pitfalls, love, and struggles Dawkins shares them all, not for himself, but in gratitude of those who have helped him along the way.

“I had been blessed by the best. First, that meant the Lord, who has blessed me with so much. It also meant all those people and things around me that I believe were the best for me. Maybe they weren’t the best for somebody else. Your best may not be my best. That’s fine. Everything that has happened to me has been to bring out the best in me. Even the toughest, hardest times in my life were the best things for me. If I hadn’t gone through them, maybe I wouldn’t be the person I am today.”

“This is not a football book. It has football in it, but this is a life tool,” Dawkins told Heavy. “These are things that I have gone through in my life, that others have taught me.”

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Guest Review by Sal

In ‘Blessed By the Best,’ Brian Dawkins delves into some tough subjects and offers insights from his life that are both refreshing and reassuring.

Dawkins faith is a huge motivator in his life. Raised Catholic, he never saw much interest in going to church until he was brought to a Christian church by his high school girlfriend, Connie. Dawkins was fundamentally changed by this experience and his reinvigorated faith would follow him throughout the rest of his life–as would Connie, whom he later married.

Later going on to play for both the Philadelphia Eagles and the Denver Broncos, Dawkins has always credited his faith in God as a big portion of who he is and how he got to where he is now. After playing football in high school, college and then sixteen seasons with the NFL, Dawkins retired, ready to appreciate new opportunities such as public speaking and television experiences.

When he found out that he was going to be inducted into the NFL hall of fame, it was important to Dawkins that his wife, Connie be there with him and wear a gold wrap as a form of her own hall of fame jacket. Not only had Connie been there with him throughout his entire career, but she had also given him three beautiful children and Dawkins relates that retiring gave him a new perspective on all that she does to support their household.

Speaking on subjects like mental health, racism that he has experienced, and difficulties in his career, ‘Blessed By the Best,’ is filled with insights that could only come from someone who has lived these experiences. Dawkins tackles these issues with a level head, and clearly isn’t afraid to talk about them.

A great inspiration not only on the football field, Dawkins’ memoir is one you should definitely check out for yourself!

About Brian Dawkins

Blessed By the Best by Brian Dawkins
In this Aug. 25, 2006, file photo, Philadelphia Eagles safety Brian Dawkins stands on the sidelines during a preseason NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Philadelphia. The veteran safety announced through his Twitter account Monday, April 23, 2012, that he is retiring from the NFL after 16 seasons. Dawkins spent his first 13 seasons with the Eagles and his last three with the Denver Broncos. (AP Photo/George Widman, file)

Brian Dawkins entered the NFL in the second round of the 1996 draft and has since achieved 1,131 tackles, 37 achieved passes, 26 recorded sacks and 19 fumble recoveries, which has earned him a place in the NFL Hall of Fame. Out of his 16 career seasons, Dawkins spent 13 with the Eagles before signing as an unrestricted free agent with the Denver Broncos in 2008. Despite the team change, Dawkins still holds several team records for the Eagles, and as of 2012 his jersey number 20 has become one of only nine to be retired in the history of the franchise.

Website: https://briandawkins.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/briandawkinssr/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BrianDawkins

About Michael Bradley

Michael Bradley is a writer, broadcaster and professor who lives in suburban Philadelphia. He has written for numerous national publications, and he has authored 32 books, including Big Games: College Football’s Greatest Rivalries. Bradley has appeared on TV and radio networks across the country, including ESPN and NFL Network. He is an Assistant Teaching Professor of Communication at Villanova University.

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Book Review & Giveaway: Dragons in My Classroom by Barbara Kennard

Dragons In My Classroom: A Teacher’s Memoir by Barbara Kennard

Publisher:  She Writes Press, (June 14, 2022)
Category: Memoir, Educator Biographies, Mid-Life Management, Inspirational
ISBN: 978-1647423650
Available in Print and ebook, 224 pages

As a young book lover with dyslexia, Barbara found the solution to her reading struggles in Miss Gluding, her first-grade teacher, who showed compassion for her student’s plight—and knew how to help her. From that time on, Barbara knew what she wanted to be: a teacher, just like Miss Gluding.

Unfortunately, Barbara also had some bad teachers in the years that ensued—including her sixth-grade teacher, an exacting woman who called attention to Barbara’s learning disabilities in front of classmates. Still wanting to follow in Miss Gluding’s footsteps in 1964, Barbara vowed she would be a better one than her sixth-grade teacher; instead, however, she became very much like her, with unattainable expectations for her students and herself. After seventeen years in the teaching profession, she realized she had to either change her teaching style or change careers. By providence, right as she stood at this crossroads, she was offered the opportunity to teach overseas at The Dragon School in Oxford, England, for a year—an opportunity she jumped at.

In the year that followed, Barbara would rely on her faith in God to give up a lot of what she knew about teaching and learn to do it differently—ways that wouldn’t have room for her perfectionism. In short, she would have to begin again.

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Guest Review by Sal

‘Dragons in my Classroom,’ by Barbara Kennard is proof that the thing you need most in life can sometimes be found right where you least expect it.

After seventeen years teaching middle school and special education, Barbara was feeling a little burned out. The year was 1998, and she had been teaching at an all boys school in Boston where she felt underappreciated, both by the parents of the students and the faculty.

On the hunt for a new opportunity, Barbara was told about a school in Oxford called ‘The Dragon school,’ where she might be able to do an exchange program where the schools would swap teachers for one year. Barbara was immediately excited by the idea– an excitement that she had feared she’d lost for teaching altogether.

After interviewing for the position, Barbara moved to England in September of 1998, leaving her husband at home back in the states for four months until his own job opportunity started in the country. Being a stranger (and an American) created unique challenges for Barbara as she navigated the new curriculum and dodged pranks from her thirteen-year-old students. Ultimately, however, this choice taught the author a lot, not just about how to love teaching again, but about who she was as a person.

‘Dragons in my Classroom,’ is a rewarding reading experience in many ways. Not only is Kennard’s prose well constructed (and grammatically perfect enough to make any teacher proud) but her sense of atmosphere, even in writing a memoir is impeccable.

As a lover of memoirs, this was a great read for me and I think it would be very enjoyable for anyone who feels the same. This book made me want to be a teacher, and it really made me want to take a trip to Oxford, it sounds beautiful!

Five stars all around!

About the Author

Barbara Kennard taught English and performing arts to elementary, middle, and high school students from 1980 to 2015 and has received two teaching awards: The Christa McAuliffe Award for Teaching Excellence and The Barbara Kennard Sixth Grade English Prize, established in her name at The Fessenden School by a Fessenden family.

Barbara lives in Texas with her husband, pianist Brady Millican, and their cat, Piper.

Website: barbarakennardauthor.com
Facebook: facebook.com/barbara.kennard.167
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BarbaraKennard7

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Excerpt from Bookmarked: How the Great Books of Western Literature F*cked Up My Life by Mark Scarbrough

A poignant, funny, and timely memoir that marries the intimacy and the sexual identity themes of Boy Erased with My Life in Middlemarch’s interest in the way literature shapes and influences our lives, written in the authentic Southern voice, deeply incisive wit, and with quirky but erudite observations evocative of John Jeremiah Sullivan’s Pulphead.

Mark Scarbrough has been searching for something his entire life. Whether it’s his birth mother, true love, his purpose, or his sexual identity, Mark has been on a constant quest to find out who he really is, with the great Western texts as his steadfast companions. As a boy with his head constantly in a book, desperate to discover new worlds, he can hardly distinguish between their plots and his own reality. The child of strict Texan Evangelicals, Mark is taught by the Bible to fervently believe in the rapture and second coming and is thus moved to spend his teen years as a youth preacher in cowboy boots. At college, he discovers William Blake, who teaches him to fall in love with poems, lyrics…and his roommate Alex. Raised to believe that to be gay was to be a sinner, Mark is driven to the brink of madness and attempts suicide. Hoping to avoid books once and for all, Mark joins the seminary, where he meets his wife, Miranda. Neither the seminary nor the marriage stick, and Mark once again finds himself turning to his books for the sense of belonging he continues to seek….

In the tradition of beloved titles like The End of Your Life Book ClubReading Lolita in Tehran, and The Year of Reading DangerouslyBookmarked tells a deeply personal story through the lens of literature. An examination of one man’s complicated, near-obsessive relationship with books, and how they shaped, molded, ruined, and saved him, Bookmarked is about how we listeners stash our secrets between jacket covers and how those secrets ultimately get told in the ways that the books themselves demand. 

Excerpt

Caution: A Preface

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: “I found myself in Middlemarch!” Or “Shakespeare saved my life!”

I call bullshit. Shakespeare never saved anyone. Least of all, me. Although I sure wanted him to. Ached for him to, somewhere in the marrow middle of my bones. And not only him but all the other literary lions, like William Blake, Charlotte Brontë, and Henry James, now dead and mounted on the wall of Western culture.

I got sucked in by their promises, the best things. A once upon a time that leads logically to the end. Characters who remain true to themselves, despite what the plot throws at them. And desires that can be—ta-da!—fulfilled. Or at least understood.

And something more tangible, too. Down in my soul’s basement, where the lights are dim and my hopes are laid away in boxes, I dreamed up a mad quest through the great books to find a home. To hear the crackle in a fireplace. To feel the weight of the covers at night. To breathe in and out all that’s human and loved.

Maybe I should have lowered my sights. Maybe only the main character gets home. Problem is, I’ve always felt like a minor one: the sidekick in a baggy sweater, the wiseacre two desks down. The guy who steps into a story, pushes it along in some vague way, and gets a one-liner as his reward: Years later, I heard he died in a car crash.

Or maybe I asked so much from the great books because of my upbringing. When I was ten, my parents left the Southern Baptist church. “It is too liberal,” they said, seemingly in unison, a plainsong truth-telling that led us to the upland pastures of American fundamentalism. Letters were sent. Ministers were challenged. Friends were lost.

Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t latch onto the great books because they were forbidden. I never once read under the sheets with a flashlight. Oh, sure, I had to skip the sex scenes and turn a blind eye to the notion that a liberal could be the good guy. Authors! What can you do?

But nothing could befoul us. We were the true believers. We interpreted the Vietnam War, Nixon, and everything else as a story, a plot, rushing toward the apocalypse. The world sinned, it burned up, and we got out alive. Time was a straight line.

Once I started reading, I discovered that novels, stories, plays, and even poems were alternate timelines, descending and ascending like a grid. They even got to the same places we believed in: just deserts or happily ever after. For a long time, I wanted to homestead on that scaffolding, even though it kept coming apart and slamming to the ground. I just wasn’t myself without a book in my hand.

Then I wasn’t myself with one. Over time, books stopped being words outside my skin and became shadowy bits inside my brain, alternate versions of me, telling their own stories. I morphed into a bizarre body of shredded volumes, stalking the far country of my imagination. That’s how I saw a long-dead poet manifest in front of me one night. How I got a job fishing monks out of gay bars. And ultimately why I tossed the person I loved over the cliff of insanity in a hail Mary! attempt to save my own brain from dissolving like a cheap paperback in a deluge.

All of which is to say, be careful what you read. It can fuck you up, too.

But don’t worry. There’s a truth beyond the great works of Western literature. Life may seem linear, forceps to tombstone. Instead, the cosmos is round and elastic, spiraled and helixed. Atoms, galaxies, your DNA—they spin and come back around. I got out from under literature’s curse. You can, too.

So this story is a comedy, like Dante’s, if not so divine. But there’s no good news without the bad, which is part and parcel of it. In books, in life, even in the old poet’s journey across the universe, the way up starts with the way down.

Copyright 2021 by Mark Scarbrough. Propertius Press All rights reserved.

About the Author

I’m half of the NYTimes bestselling cookbook writing team behind over thirty cookbooks, including THE INSTANT POT BIBLE, THE ULTIMATE COOKBOOK, and THE ESSENTIAL AIR FRYER COOKBOOK. I’m (recently!) a memoirist, too, with BOOKMARKED: HOW THE GREAT WORKS OF WESTERN LITERATURE F*CKED UP MY LIFE. I host two literary podcasts: WALKING WITH DANTE, the only slow-walk through Dante’s masterwork COMEDY; and LYRIC LIFE, a podcast about lyric poetry. I also co-host COOKING WITH BRUCE AND MARK, a podcast and YouTube channel with his husband, Bruce Weinstein. A former academic, I now teach eight-week literary seminars across my part of of the world on Virginia Woolf, William Faulkner, Emily Dickinson, and more; and I lead two book discussion group, one online with multiple sessions and an international membership. I find my peace with two collies on acres in very rural New England. 

Website http://www.markscarbrough.com
Twitter https://twitter.com/markscarbrough

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: September to Remember

A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table (Book Three) – Lombardy, Tuscany, Campania, Apulia, and Lazio (Roma) (Savoring the Olde Ways Series, 3) by Carole Bumpus

Publisher:  She Writes Press (April 27, 2021)
Category: Culinary/Travel Memoir & Non-Fiction
ISBN: 978-1631527272
Available in Print and ebook, 245 pages


Description

This culinary travel memoir is an invitation to join in on a month-long trek through Italy, all in the search of the true Italian experience. Sprinkled with unforgettable characters, you will sup on sumptuous traditional foods, sip regional wines, and enjoy vast panoramas of extraordinary beauty. You may find yourself dancing at harvest festivals, climbing through Etruscan tombs, traipsing among Roman ruins, or bathing in ancient Roman termes (hot springs).

You may also enjoy climbing to the heights of wonder in Capri or to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica. Or delight in soaking up the ancient and cultural history in Milan, Firenze (Florence), Amalfi, Pompeii, Lecce and Rome. You can bask in the sun and rugged beauty of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the Adriatic Sea, or the gorgeous Amalfi Coast. Or you can chat for hours over family meals while collecting a compendium of regional and traditional recipes (cucina povera), while you capture a rare glimpse inside the secrets to the Mediterranean psyche. It is truly a trip of a lifetime.

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Guest Review by Sage

Over 20 years ago, Carole Bumpus and her husband, Winston, took a trip to Italy. The couple toured much of the country, starting in Milan and going on to see Tuscany, Campania, Apulia and Lazio (which includes the capital city of Rome).

Although this vacation took place in 1998, Carole and her husband still look back on it fondly and now, all this time later, Carole has created a chronicle of this trip in her memoir, ‘A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table.’

It is safe to say that this book took me by surprise. I’m not all that knowledgeable about Italy or Italian history so I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this so much, but I definitely did! Bumpus has a way with words that is truly captivating and she made me feel as though I was on this vacation with her, standing in a museum in Rome or a vineyard in Poderi. The beautiful small villages she saw and the warm and inviting people that she met were probably my favorite part of this memoir. It’s obvious that this was an unforgettable trip, and I can fully understand why she felt the need to document it all this time later.

‘A September To Remember’ transcends the genre of memoir and even of travel memoirs, by adding several elements that bring so much more to the book. For starters, Bumpus has included several recipes that she collected during her time in Italy. From Risotto al Pescatore to Caprese Salad there is something for everyone in this section of the book. Even if you generally aren’t a fan of Italian food, I recommend giving some of these recipes a shot. You won’t regret it!

Between this and the rich courses on Italian history, I had such an all-encompassing experience with this book that I had trouble putting it down!

5 yummy stars for this one!

About the Author

Multi award winning author, Carole Bumpus is a retired family therapist, who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She began writing about food and travel when she stumbled upon the amazing stories of women and war in France. Her historical novel, A Cup of Redemption, was published in October 2014, and her unique companion cookbook, Recipes for Redemption: A Companion Cookbook to A Cup of Redemption, was released in August 2015.

Books One and Two of her Savoring the Olde Ways series, Searching for Family and Traditions at the French Table, were published in August 2019 and 2020; her third book in the series, A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table is due out April 27, 2021. All five books have been published by She Writes Press which is part of SparkPoint Studio, LLC.

Website: https://carolebumpus.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carolejbumpus
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CaroleBumpus
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carole.bumpus/

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 3 copies of ‘A September To Remember’, one copy per winner. This giveaway is open to Canada and the U.S. only and ends on June 1, 2021.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Advance Praise

“A cultural and gastronomic tour through Italy by train, car, and ferry with culinary delights at every turn…Elaborate descriptions of almost every meal and snack turn this compelling travel book into an enjoyable vicarious experience…A joyous book of Italian history, traditions, and food that’s worth savoring.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Carole Bumpus’s culinary travelogue A September to Remember is written in the inviting voice of a learner. [Her] exploration as an American abroad will draw in those who hunger for travel as much as they hunger for flavor. For Bumpus, appreciating food requires a strong sense of people and place; in fact, she regards food and culture as inseparable….Bumpus embraces authenticity over simplicity, encouraging cooks to rise to the challenge. A September to Remember is a food narrative that brings the heart of Italy to tables around the world.”—Foreword Reviews

“…here, as in other places, [Bumpus] also sends us on a sensory tour with her descriptions of the marvellous meals they enjoyed, of course all handmade, regional, and accompanied by superb wine. A true celebration of Italy. I believe that Carole Bumpus is such a successful author because of the love and passion she puts into her books, through her writing the landscapes, architecture, and gastronomy of Italy are brought wonderfully to life. Highly recommended!”—Susan Keefe, TheColumbiaReview.com

“…a delightful romp… This is an intimate and affectionate book (complete with a generous array of local, easy to follow recipes!) that takes us with this energetic couple to experience Italian life as it is lived as well as learn more of the rich history of Italy. ”—Mag Dimond, author of Bowing to Elephants; Tales of a Travel Junkie

“Abundant with Italian culinary traditions of ritual and region, this delightful travel memoir charms and entices. Bumpus is genuinely present in her stories, as if reliving the experiences in real time… Bumpus extends a gracious invitation to join her, with delectable, regional recipes—a shared feast that brings her journey home to us.”—Kate Farrell, author of Story Power: Secrets to Creating, Crafting, and Telling Memorable Stories

Book Review & Giveaway: MeaningFULL by Alli Spotts-De Lazzer

MeaningFULL: 23 Life-Changing Stories of Conquering Dieting, Weight, & Body Image Issues by Alli Spotts-De Lazzer

Publisher:  Unsolicited Press (January 26, 2021)
Category: Self-help, Non-Fiction, psychology, memoir, health/wellness, inspirational, eating disorder recovery, weight loss, & body positivity
Available in Print and ebook, 282 pages

“MeaningFULL: 23 Life-Changing Stories of Conquering Dieting, Weight, & Body Image Issues” is a blend of motivational self-help, memoir, psychology, and health and wellness. Alli Spotts-De Lazzer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, an expert in eating and body image issues, and a woman on the other side of her own decades-long struggle with food and body.

A $702 billion global diet/nutrition and weight loss industry shows that people worldwide are devoted to achieving maximum health and their desired bodies. Yet mainstream approaches are failing these individuals, and sadly, science proves this. Intent on gaining the “health” and “happiness” that diets promise, consumers keep trying. They become sad and frustrated, believing they’re failing when they’re not. They simply need a legitimate, alternative path, which “MeaningFULL” offers. Through the contributors’ diverse, real-life mini-memoirs followed by Spotts-De Lazzer’s commentaries, readers will learn about themselves and discover their unique, unconventional formulas for conquering their issues. Along the way, “MeaningFULL” will also guide them towards more self-appreciation, wellness, and fulfillment.

Amazon
Barnes&Noble
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Guest Review by Sage Nor

“Knowing your values helps you to make empowering decisions, including those related to conquering food, weight, and body image issues.”

What a different and sorely needed take on self-help this book was! I assumed that this would be just like every other diet and weight loss book out there but boy was I ever glad to be wrong! Contained in the pages of this book are 23 stories from different people from all different walks of life, all of whom have struggled with their weight, eating disorders and body image issues.

Every single one of these stories is gripping, many are heartbreaking but most end joyfully with the person talking about the path that they were able to take to reclaim who they truly are outside of being obsessed with their weight.  Can diets be helpful to some people? Of course, but this book is an excellent look at how diets and the culture surrounding them can often go too far and how people can begin to feel that their weight is all that they are.

Alli Spotts De-Lazzer provides the gentle, intelligent commentary of a trained therapist throughout the book and, especially, at the end of every chapter. Her summation of the stories is so helpful and affirming that I found myself tearing up at times while reading it. In some chapters she provides exercises that are helpful for looking at your own situation if you suffer from an eating disorder or body image issues. Spotts-De Lazzer is not only an eating disorder specialist but also a family and marriage therapist and I think this shows in her gentle encouragement style of writing.

There was one lesson from Spotts- De Lazzer in particular about figuring out what your core values are that really resonated with me. It makes so much sense to me that, that can help with your body image issue. This is a must read for anyone who is or has struggled with body image issues and if you know someone in the struggle!

About the Author

Alli Spotts-De Lazzer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, and a “CEDS” Certified Eating Disorders Specialist, and a person on the other side of her own decades-long struggle with food battles and body dislike. She has presented educational workshops at international conferences, hospitals, and graduate schools and has published articles in trade magazines, academic journals, and online information hubs.

A believer in service and advocacy, Alli serves on multiple committees and created #ShakeIt for Self-Acceptance!—a movement embodying its message.

Website: https://www.meaningfullread.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MeaningFULLread/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/meaningFULLread
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/meaningfullread/

Giveaway

This giveaway is for one print copy with 2 winners. It is open to the U.S. only and ends on March 31, 2021,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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What Emma Did Next Mar 10 Review (postponed)

Laura Lee Celtic Lady’s Reviews Mar 11 Guest Review & Excerpt

Bookgirl Goodreads Mar 12 Review

Karen Evans (YouTube) Mar 16 Review

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Mar 17 Review

Meagan MLM Opinion’s Reviews Mar 18 Review

Crystal Bookish in Midlife Mar 19 Review & Excerpt (postponed)

Sage Nor Bound 4 Escape Mar 23 Guest Review

Bee Book Pleasures Mar 24 Review & Guest Post

GudReader Goodreads Mar 25 Review

Linda Lu Goodreads Mar 26 Review

Karen T Amazon Mar 29 Review

Betty Toots Book Reviews Mar 30 Review

Miller Amazon Mar 31 Review

Praise for MeaningFULL

“First, let me tell you….YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK! Why? Because it will resonate with you at some level. Whether you’re the person that has had a moment of, “I can’t wear that” or “I don’t like the way my (insert body part here) looks in that shirt” or “That food is bad/good for me”. I promise something in this book will touch you. For me, there were many “A-HA” moments that made me tear up a bit reading them knowing that I was not alone. Alli does a fantastic job of letting these stories unfold, letting the writer tell their truth and where they’re coming from, and where they are going. You will laugh, you might cry, but you will definitely be better for reading this! Highly recommend. 5 SHINING STAR STICKERS!!”-cedarparkmom

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Book Review & Giveaway: Artt of the Black Card by Anthony Ryan Sadana

Artt of the Black Card: No Bullsh*t Guide to Business by Anthony Ryan Sadana

Publisher:  Artt Press (January,  2020)
Category: Self-help, Motivational, Entrepreneurship, LBGTQ, Business, Memoir, & Non-Fiction

ISBN: 978-1734311006
Available in Print and ebook, 140 pages

“The Artt of the Black Card” is a fresh, concise, irreverent instruction manual on how to succeed as an entrepreneur based on the author’s own original insights and his risk-taking record as a businessman and innovator. This is not a cookie-cutter business book filled with tired advice and worn-out clichés. “The Artt of the Black Card” is a contrarian guidebook for a new generation of business owners and leaders — anyone with the smarts, guts and passion for making money. You don’t need an MBA to get rich, and “The Artt of the Black Card” proves it.

Employing nine vital work/life lessons using the exclusive and legendary American Express Black Card, aka the Centurion Card as a framework, author and serial entrepreneur Anthony Ryan Sadana explains how to make money while the world around you is going to hell  and emerge stronger than ever. It’s the perfect antidote to today’s extraordinary challenges.

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Guest Review by Sage Nor

‘The Artt of the Black Card: No Bullsh*t Guide to Business’ by Anthony Ryan Sadana is a financial guidebook like no other. Sadana’s straightforward talk and decisive writing style taught me more about business in the span of a couple of chapters than similar books that I have read managed to do overall.

Sadana is an entrepreneur who talks about getting his start in the business world by selling microwave dinners to his friends in boarding school as a kid. With such business savvy at such a young age, it’s no wonder that Sadana would later go on to experience the success that he has in life.

One of my favorite messages in the book comes pretty early on, in the first chapter when he talks about never brushing off anyone that you meet. Never assuming that someone is worthless to you as a contact just because they don’t seem to be connected on their own. There is a lot of great advice in this book and I really appreciated how Sadana made it relevant to today’s market. He gives advice about using things like Craigslist and Facebook in a way that a lot of older financial advice books obviously don’t.

Of course, like anyone, Sadana has made his fair share of bad deals and he devotes time in this book to talking about them, and what he learned from them in a candid way. He claims that he has learned more from losing money than by making money, a feeling I’m sure most of us can identify with.

Overall, this book was informative, witty and easy to understand. I read through it quickly and was left with a sense that I had really learned something from it, which I can always appreciate from a self-help book. Definitely not one to miss! I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

I received the e-book for my honest opinion.

Other Praise for the book

“Irreverent, honest, and right on the money. Powerful business insights from a man who’s seen itall. If you want to make a lot of money on your own terms, this is the book for you.”– Robert F. Burris, Film/TV Producer

“Incredible book; every person looking to be successful in business needs to read this book. The story is engaging and educational. Not a long read, perfect for reading on a plane or train ride. You will ask yourself why you have not followed this advice before. Cannot say enough about this book; read it as soon as you can.”– Julio Garcia, MD

“Anthony Ryan Sadana has no difficulty speaking his mind in The Art of the Black Card. And he has no filter on his voice or words, which perhaps describes “the no-BS guide to business” that serves as subtitle.
His message is positive. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and fail. It happens to the best of us. When hardships occur, as they inevitably will, be prepared to lift yourself off the ground and get back in the game. No excuses allowed. Learn from the experience and work harder (and smarter) next time.
Sadana’s experiences bring to mind a couple of lines from the Van Halen song, Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love – “I been to the edge, an’ there I stood an’ looked down, you know I lost a lot of friends there, baby, I got no time to mess around.”
The author’s answer to everything is to outwork the competition, to pivot when necessary to find new sources of income. There is a confidence to his voice that some may mistake for arrogance. Whatever you call it, he has discovered ways to channel that trait and his own savvy to become a successful entrepreneur who has overcome multiple setbacks, one of which left him flat broke and millions in debt. Several of his lessons, his roller-coaster life and his willingness to lay it all on the line make this a fascinating and worthwhile read.”-Brian Rouff, Imagine Communications and Author

“Authentic, to-the-point, easy to read because of its anecdotal style. Sometimes funny, sometimes controversial, sometimes preachy, sometimes arrogant. Not for the easily offended. Has some very honest truths and good points about how the business world really works.”-Christina, Amazon

About the Author

At the tender age of 23, Anthony Ryan Sadana received an exclusive invitation to apply for the fabled no-limit American Express Black Card, which represented, in his mind, “the pinnacle of my financial success and the ultimate recognition for measuring any sort of achievement against your peers.”

A scant two years later, he found himself flat broke and millions of dollars in debt. Today, this entrepreneur, innovator, author and influencer enjoys a multi-faceted, successful career on a global scale in a wide range of businesses. He’s run retail operations, consults for large and small companies, owns his own real estate investment organization, and is involved in a series of high-ly profitable online ventures.

Sadana’s hard-won knowledge and insights, applied properly and with the right amount of motivation, will help budding entrepreneurs and seasoned business veterans alike create their own success stories.

Sadana currently lives in Las Vegas with his faithful sheltie, Lucky.

Website: https://www.arttonline.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/arttonline
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Arttonline
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/arttonline/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNrusVnZ10I1e-I7uZMK7CA?view_as=subscriber

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 1 print copy for 3 winners and is open to Canada and the U.S. only. This giveaway ends November 14, 2020,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Sept 29 Kickoff & Interview

Andy K. Amazon Sept 30 Review

Infantina Periodical Gazette Oct 5 Review & Excerpt

Tricia Amazon Oct 13 Review

Katy Goodreads Oct 16 Review

Sage Nor Bound 4 Escape Oct 19 Guest Review

Nora S. eBook Addicts Oct 22 Guest Review & Excerpt

GudReader Goodreads Oct 26 Review

Mark S.Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Oct 27 Review

Lisa Lisa’s Writopia Oct 28 Review

Lisa Lisa’s Writopia Oct 29 Guest Post

Becky W. Amazon Oct 30 Review

Sol A. Celticlady’s Reviews Nov 2 Guest Review

Betty Toot’s Book Reviews Nov 9 Review & Interview

Miller Amazon Nov 10 Review

Linda Lu Goodreads Nov 12 Review

Bee Book Pleasures Nov 13 Review

Book Review: Keeping the Lights on for Ike by Rebecca Daniels

Keeping the Lights On for Ike by Rebecca Daniels

Publisher:  Sunbury Press, February 2019
Category: Memoir, History, Military, WWII, and Biography

ISBN:  978-1620061145
Available in Print and ebook, 284 pages

Daily Life of a Utilities Engineer at AFHQ in Europe During WWII; or, What to Say in Letters Home When You’re Not Allowed to Write about the War

Most people don’t realize that during the war in Europe in the 1940s, it took an average of six support soldiers to make the work of four combat soldiers possible. Most of what’s available in the literature tends toward combat narratives, and yet the support soldiers had complex and unique experiences as well. This book is based on personal correspondence, and it is primarily a memoir that creates a picture of the day-to-day realities of an individual soldier told in his own words [as much as he could tell under the wartime rules of censorship, that is] as well as giving insight into what it was actually like to be an American soldier during WWII.

It explores the experiences of a non-combat Army utilities engineer working in a combat zone during the war in Europe and takes the protagonist from basic training through various overseas assignments—in this case to England, North Africa, and Italy as a support soldier under Eisenhower and his successors at Allied Force Headquarters. It also includes some reflections about his life after returning to Oregon when the war was over.

The soldier involved is Captain Harold Alec Daniels [OSU, Class of 1939, ROTC] and most of the letters were written to his wife, Mary Daniels [attended U of O in the late 1930s]. They are the author’s parents, and she inherited the letter collection, photos, and all other primary source materials after her mother’s death in 2006.

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Barnes&Noble
Powell’s
Indiebound
Sunbury

Guest Review by Laura Lee

The author of this book, Rebecca Daniels dedicated it to both of her parents and I can’t think of a more fitting tribute to two people who led such extraordinary lives.
In the 1930’s, two people, a man and a woman lived in the same town and attended the same high school without ever meeting each other. The two did not meet until college, when Alec, a reserved and quiet engineering student and Mary, a journalism major who longed to be a mother one day, were set up on a blind date by a mutual friend.

But, of course, every good story has to have a little heartbreak, and shortly after the pair were married, the United States entered World War II. Like so many men during that time, Alec was drafted into the war. But, rather than being sent to the front lines, he was sent to a position in a support troop. Being an electrical engineer and a member of the ROTC meant that Alec had a special set of skills that were best used in one of the many troops that provided support to the combat soldiers on the front lines of the war.

These troops covered things like administrative, logistical and infrastructure duties that made it so the soldiers in the trenches had an easier time staying alive. It’s a seldom talked about aspect of the war effort, and one that Rebecca Daniels covers beautifully not just from the perspective of a daughter but, through the usage of letters and cards between her parents from that time, from the perspective of Alec himself. Though Alec was not able to discuss much about his whereabouts or his work in the letters that he sent home to his new wife, his love for Mary was clear and it is through these letters that the narrative gains a very sweet and humanizing element.

I highly recommend this incredibly touching read! You can’t go wrong with this one! I give it 5 stars, more if I could.

Praise for Keeping the Lights on for Ike

“The book moves swiftly along, while at the same time capturing the frustration of their prolonged separation. The historical timeline provides just the right bit of historical context to these war years behind at the tail of the army. This is not the typical WWII combat book.”- The Montague Reporter

“The lack of military detail — the focus on everyday life and on the relationship between Alec and Mary — ends up being one of the book’s greatest assets. Many works of history detail the story of great battles. Fewer dwell on individual wartime experiences.  The book is also strengthened by the affection expressed in Alec’s relatively inarticulate yet moving letters to his wife on the home front.”- Tinky Weisblat, Greenfield Recorder, author of “The Pudding Hollow Cookbook,” “Pulling Taffy,” and “Love, Laughter, and Rhubarb”

“Carefully researched history and a beautiful remembrance of one soldier’s letters home. A poignant and personal look into the lives of two very private people and an extraordinary first hand example of why it’s called the Greatest Generation. In detail and in truly first class research one is left with the sense that they know these two people very well. Not only is this a well written historical account of World War II, it is a touching and gentle love story from a remarkable author with a most deft touch and turn. Got five stars from me. So worth it.”-W. Richards, Amazon

“This book made me feel almost like I was right there with Alec and Mary as they experienced that time of their lives. My parents, being the same age, also had a similar experience and I thought of them as I read every word. The author cleverly brought to life their story and for that I shall be forever grateful.”- Sunbury Press Reader Review

About the Author

Rebecca Daniels has been a university professor for many years who has also simultaneously had a vital creative career in the theatre. Throughout her career, her work has always been a mix of performance, teaching, and her own writing.

Her groundbreaking book on women directors and the effects of gender on their work is currently still in print [Women Stage Directors Speak: Exploring the Effects of Gender on Their Work, McFarland, 1996], and she has been published in several theatre-related professional journals over the years as well. After her retirement in the summer of 2015, she was finally able to focus all her energies on this book.

Website:  https://rebecca-daniels.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rebecca.daniels.9

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 1 print copy open to Canada and the U.S. only. There are also 2 pdf copies open worldwide. There will be 3 winners. This giveaway ends August 1, 2020,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Follow the Tour

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus June 12 Kick off & Excerpt

Miller Amazon June 15 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews June 16 Review & Guest Post

Dino Goodreads June 17 Review

Bee Book Pleasures June 18 Review

Waqas  Goodreads June 19 Review

Am Goodreads June 22 Reviewe

Betty Toots Book Reviews June 23 Review & Interview

Linda Lu Goodreads June 24 Review

Jas International Book Promotion June 25 Review

Bookgirl Goodreads June 26 Review

Gud Reader Goodreads June 29 Review

Amy Locks, Hooks and Books June 30 Review & Excerpt

Michelle Reading Authors Network July 6

Dawn Bound 4 Escape July 10 Guest Review

Dee Donadees Corner July 15 Review

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus July 17 Review

Kathleen Celticlady’s Reviews July 20 Guest Review  & Excerpt

Amber Imaginative Mama’s Dragonfly July 28 Review & Excerpt

Mindy Room Without Books is Empty July 29 Review

Danielle Urban Book Reviews July 31 Review & Guest Post

Book Review & Giveaway: Teetering on Disaster by Michaela Renee

Teetering On Disaster by Michaela Renee

Teetering On Disaster by Michaela Renee

Publisher:  Bowker (January 11, 2019)
Category: Memoir/Self-Help/Non-Fiction
Tour dates: March/April, 2020
ISBN: 978-0578430805
Available in Print and ebook, 316 pages

Teetering On Disaster

Description

Michaela Renee Johnson was just 12 years old in 1992 when a financial slump forced her family to move from an upscale area in Sacramento to a 27-ft trailer in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, with no electricity or running water — so no Nintendo or MTV. It wasn’t exactly the life that every adolescent dreams of, but it was, in fact, their reality.

Michaela chronicles these formative years (and beyond) in her often humorous, constantly candid true story, Teetering on Disaster. As the young Michaela navigates her way through the inherently melodramatic teen years, she must come to terms with relieving herself in the woods, shaving with a 10-cent borrowed razor in an irrigation ditch and taking what she called “bird baths” with a jug of water.

Somehow, in the midst of disorienting change, she learned to focus on what she was gaining instead of what she had lost. And in the end, she gained profound wisdom about her family and the world around her, and uncovered the truth about her own ability to thrive in the face of life’s inconveniences.

But the effects of her unorthodox upbringing don’t end at adulthood, and Teetering takes readers along as a grown Michaela stumbles upon a few “Mr. Right Nows,” gets divorced in her twenties, and ends up right back where she started: a small mountain town in the middle of nowhere.

Teetering on Disaster is a heartfelt, coming-of-age story written to inspire others to live a courageous life of authenticity and to speak their truth with grace. Michaela’s book is an unapologetically honest, authentic tale that will make readers laugh out loud and cry — sometimes at the same time.

Guest Review by Linda Lu

A joyful, thought-provoking and uproariously funny good read. I love when I find a book that just makes me feel like I am having a great time reading. Michaela Renee Johnson wrote a memoir here that, in a different author’s hands, might have come across as kind of sad and maudlin but she made it fun and life-affirming. With the talent that she has for picking out the silver-lining in every situation, I can only imagine that she is really great to have around in real life.

Here’s what happened, Johnson’s family owned a small construction business that made them comfortably middle class in early 90’s southern California. Until the stock market collapsed on Black Monday. Suddenly Johnson’s parents were selling everything (including their house) in order to avoid filing for bankruptcy. One day, Johnson arrives home to find a “27-foot Terry trailer” waiting in the driveway. Her parents had bought it with the intention that their whole 5-person family would live inside it for the foreseeable future. Of course, Johnson is horrified by the idea of living full-time in what is, essentially an RV.

What follows are faithful re-tellings of her strange and unique childhood and how it affected her adult life in unexpected ways. There was no part of this memoir that I did not love but I especially loved Johnson’s absolutely crazy childhood stories. At one point, her family lived without water or electricity in the trailer which meant that she had to do things like going to the bathroom in the woods and learning to shave her legs in an irrigation ditch. I couldn’t believe how her family managed to survive during such hard times and not kill each other. I can’t even imagine going through something like that with my own family. Yikes! I highly recommend this book if you like a good, funny, crazy memoir! This is a 5 star read.

Acclaim/Awards Teetering On Disaster by Michaela Renee

Best Indie Non Fiction Novel, Shelf Media Group

Non Fiction Author’s Association, Silver Award

San Francisco Book Review, Prestigious 5 Star Award

San Diego Book Awards Best Un-Published Non Fiction

Praise

“Throughout Michaela’s autobiographical story, she sent me through a rollercoaster of emotions. Not being able to identify on a personal level with the extreme of both of her situations in each half of the book, I still felt that as a human being I could sympathize, and it helped me to have a greater appreciation for what I currently have. Michaela’s story had me happy at all of her highs, sad at the many losses, and emotionally confused concerning her relationships. What it all boils down to is that at times, being a grown-up, and a female, can be very difficult.”- Rachel Dehning, San Francisco Book Review

“I really did laugh, and cry, while reading this. I was able to relate to the experiences of the author, even though we are twenty years apart in age; the early years… amazing experience that family went through, creating a precious, ever-lasting bond between a young woman, her parents, and her two younger brothers.
Her humor and positive attitude, her extreme frankness and humility (touched with a bit of narcissism) draw one to her.
She, like the sweet doggies of the Great North, she is ever pleasing, forgiving, hard-working and never tiring. She relates to the dog world so much, calling herself Rio’s mom, that she probably won’t mind being compared to a canine. 🙂 Being a dog lover myself, I think of it as the highest compliment!
I wish I had her strength, her sense of humor and wit, her looks, her intelligence, her resilience and determination; I wish I had her ability to seems so Angie-Jolie-transcendent, and yet admit to being a little Grace-Adler-(Debra Messing)-ordinary … striking and competent, clumsy and insecure… God bless her!!
I wanna go through struggles and come out looking like Michaela Renee! One you just can’t help admiring.
Very inspiring. You just know she is going to be JUST FINE! She has spirit! She has spunk! And she IS LOVED… she will never be alone 😉 When she least expects it her true love will curl up next to her, and he won’t have four legs!”- Marcy Lundy, Goodreads

“Laugh out loud funny, interesting & touching. Teetering on Disaster is like a Modern day “Swiss Family Robinson meets Jerry Springer”! You could know the entirety of the story and Kayla’s writing style, quick wit, raw truth still entertains. If she wrote recipe’s we wouldn’t need the food channel. Buy it for every chick you know and earn major points, but make sure you keep one copy for yourself! Not just a “chick” book – man up and enjoy!”-Rick Harris, Amazon

About the Author

Michaela Renee Johnson is a licensed psychotherapist, Be You Find Happy podcast host and an award winning published author. She inspires happiness by encouraging people to speak their truth with grace, and live a courageous life of authenticity.

Her business Be You Find Happy holds workshops and conversations on happiness in spite of life’s setbacks and has landed her speaking opportunities across the nation.

She lives in Northern California with her husband and son. She enjoys traveling and has visited 19 countries; she loves the ocean and everything in it. She rarely finds herself without an activity whether it be hiking, yoga, tinkering the garden, golfing, reading or spending time outside.

In her most simplest she loves poetic quotes and all things metaphysical.

Website: http://www.michaelarenee.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michaelareneej
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/michaelarenee

Amazon
Barnes&Noble
IndieBound

Giveaway

This giveaway is for one autographed print copy and 2 ebook copies of the book. Print is open to the U.S. only and ebook is available worldwide. There will be 3 winners. This giveaway ends April 21, 2020,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Mar 2 Interview & Kickoff

Becky What U Talking Bout Willis Mar 3 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews Mar 4 Review & Guest Post

Susan Amazon Mar 5 Review

Amber Amazon Mar 6 Review

Michelle Reading Authors Network Mar 9 Review

Wendy Wall-to-wall books Mar 10 Review

Katy Goodreads Mar 12 Review

Gud Reader Goodreads Mar 16 Review

Karen Amazon Mar 23 Review

Jas International Book Reviews Mar 26 Review & Interview

Miller Amazon Mar 31 Review

Serena The Write Review Apr 1 Review

Amy Locks, Hooks and Books Apr 8 Review & Excerpt

Dawn Bound 4 Escape Apr 14 Review

Betty Toots Book Reviews Apr 17 Review & Excerpt

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Apr 20 Review

*This schedule is subject to change

Teetering On Disaster by Michaela Renee Johnson