Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: The Survivor's Guide to Family Happiness, by Maddie Dawson {ends 11/3}

Of course there were other things. He snored sometimes. He left his toothbrush on the sink. He left little balls of socks in the living room. But the main thing wrong was that he'd had so much--well, so much life before me He'd watched his wife give birth twice, and he'd had new babies to hold and he'd helped toddlers learn to walk, and he'd had family dogs and cats, a couple of houses over the years, and plenty of cars, and besides all that, he'd owned a business for ten years.

And me? I was simply this aging kid who'd floundered around and who was still waiting for life to happen to me. 

But I ached to be with him, as though he was the only one who could teach me how to live in the world and not be afraid. He knew how to be married, and how to fall down and get back up again, and how to sing along to the radio as though his heart had never been broken at all. 

This book often made me laugh out loud - one of the women, Nina, was quite funny. The novel tells the story from three POVs - Nina's, Lindy's, and Phoebe's - and because of that, we get to "hear" from all three of the main characters in the book.

Official synopsis:
Three women, three lives, and one chance to become a family…whether they want to or not.

Newly orphaned, recently divorced, and semiadrift, Nina Popkin is on a search for her birth mother. She’s spent her life looking into strangers’ faces, fantasizing they’re related to her, and now, at thirty-five, she’s ready for answers.

Meanwhile, the last thing Lindy McIntyre wants is someone like Nina bursting into her life, announcing that they’re sisters and campaigning to track down their mother. She’s too busy with her successful salon, three children, beautiful home, and…oh yes, some pesky little anxiety attacks.

But Nina is determined to reassemble her birth family. Her search turns up Phoebe Mullen, a guarded, hard-talking woman convinced she has nothing to offer. Gradually sharing stories and secrets, the three women make for a messy, unpredictable family that looks nothing like Nina pictured…but may be exactly what she needs. Nina’s moving, ridiculous, tragic, and transcendent journey becomes a love story proving that real family has nothing to do with DNA.

I ended up really liking this book - it's not a "new" story, per say (a woman wanting to find her biological mother) but the characters in it were all very compelling, and they all had individual problems and challenges going on.

I'd have to say Nina was probably my favorite, because she made me laugh with some of the things she said, but both Lindy and Phoebe were interesting too. Phoebe is hiding a few secrets, as well; she's happy to see her daughters again, but they also remind her of why she had to give them up, which was a dark time in her life.

I'd recommend this book to anyone who likes stories about unconventional families, or really anyone that likes interconnecting stories in general. 

4 stars out of 5.
{Click here to order}

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book for reviewing purposes. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.


Two of my lucky readers will win a paperback copy of The Survivor's Guide to Family Happiness!

Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Thursday, November 3rd, at 11:59pm EST, and winners will be notified via email the next day, and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner(s) will be chosen.

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

Survivor's Guide to Family Happiness


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