Today I am sharing some of the memoirs on the shelves of the bookstore often poignant, heartwarming and always inspiring. Great gifts for lovers of real stories.
The first memoir is by D.G. Kaye and is a self-help book which will strike a chord with all women of a certain age! Meno-What?: Memorable Moments of Menopause.
About the book
“I often found myself drifting from a state of normal in a sudden twist of bitchiness.”
From PMS to menopause to what the hell?
D.G. adds a touch of humor to a tale about a not-so-humorous time. While bidding farewell to her dearly departing estrogen, D.G. struggles to tame her raging hormones of fire, relentless dryness, flooding and droughts and other unflattering symptoms.
Join D.G. on her meno-journey to slay the dragons of menopause as she tries to hold on to her sanity, memory, hair, and so much more!
One of the recent reviews for the book
I tried to read this book in bed before nodding off, but my husband made me go downstairs… apparently my laughter was keeping him up. As someone who’s gone through “The Change,” I found this book highly relatable and, at times, laugh out loud funny. Kaye recommends laughter as a way of dealing with this shocking stage of life, and her account of her own battle with menopause and post-menopausal changes demonstrates that conviction.
Kaye gives an overview of the biological changes, reminds us that she isn’t a doctor, and clarifies that every woman will experience this misery in different ways. Besides offering plenty of opportunities for laughter, she provides suggestions for ways to manage our changing bodies. I especially related to her discussion of post-menopausal changes that begin with a stage called “What the Hell?”
Her anecdotes are relatable… the covers on/covers off routine… opening the car window to let the snow blow in… “alligator” skin… sagging, spots, you name it, she covers the gamut and all with sardonic wit, disbelief, good sense, and a determination to fight back. This book is a memoir but one that doubles as a guide for women during their menopausal journeys. Highly recommended.
Also by D.G. Kaye
Read all the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – follow Debby: Goodreads – : Blog: D.G. Kaye Writer – Twitter: @pokercubster – Linkedin: D.G. Kaye – Facebook: D.G. Kaye – Instagram: D.G. Kaye – Pinterest: D.G. Kaye
Our lives collect moments that stand out in our memories…as in the case of Flashes of Life: True Tales of the Extraordinary Ordinary by Pamela S. Wight
One of the recent reviews for the collection
I was taught if you look hard enough, you will find something in common with everyone you meet. I haven´t met Pamela Wight in person but I feel like I know her well and it didn’t take much looking to find I have a lot in common with her. I love these vignettes of life that she describes so well. She had me laughing and crying, often at the same time. Who hasn´t been caught dancing around the house to a favourite song, embarrassed their children or longed for a heart to heart with a young adult son. The author´s love for her mom, spouse, children, grandchildren and dogs pours off the pages. These ordinary stories prove that when we put together the pieces of our life, we can see it is an extraordinary life after all. A feel good read.
Also by Pamela S. Wight
Next Cynthia Reyes with a recent review for her memoir which is her journey from early life in Jamaica to North America… A Good Home.
About the Book
A Good Home is an addictive read, a profoundly emotional book about the author’s early life in rural Jamaica, her move to urban North America, and her trips back home, all told through vivid descriptions of the unique homes she has lived in — from a tiny pink house in Jamaica and a mountainside cabin near Vancouver to the historic Victorian farmhouse she lives in today, surrounded by neighbors who share spicy Malaysian noodles and seafood, Greek pastries and roast lamb, and Italian tomato sauce and wine (really strong wine).
Full of lovingly drawn characters and vividly described places, A Good Home takes the reader through deeply moving stories of marriage, children, the death of parents, and an accident that takes its high-flying author down a humbling notch. Its pages sparkle with stories and reflections on home as:
A foundation on which to build connections with children, relatives, and friends
A place to celebrate the joys of elegant design, overflowing gardens (except for the wisteria vine, which cannot be coaxed into blooming), and the sharing of good food
A wise teacher, showing us who we really were — and who we really are
When this brave, clear-eyed, and honest book returns, full circle, to the way it began, readers will want to read it all over again.
One of the recent reviews for the book
This is the second of the author’s three non-fiction books purchased and read over the summer – what a gift!
There are three themes:
1. How your physical and emotional environment becomes you and vice versa
2. How one’s faith is messy at times – we are not promised an easy road, just company along the journey
3. How life’s trials do not come in neat little packages, but persistence and love will help you unwrap them
All three themes resonated with me. I loved learning about the author’s early days, family tales, homes, and gardening, some different from mine, many the same. I also love how she is candid about struggles with faith and openly expresses her questions, not suppressing them as most do. In turn, she is provided with candid responses that support her journey. I also read with tremendous interest the author’s experience with post-trauma recovery which is oftentimes messy and requires sheer persistence during the “going-through” phase until the light breaks through the clouds. I found myself cheering her on as she navigated and negotiated her recovery process!
Such rawness is rare and a sublime talent to do so with poignancy. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us!
Also by Cynthia Reyes
The next memoir with a recent review is written by ovarian cancer survivor, author and retired nurse.. an inspiration Karen Ingalls – Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Survivor.
When Karen Ingalls was diagnosed with Stage II Ovarian Cancer, she realized how little she knew about what was once called ”the silent killer.” As Ingalls began to educate herself she felt overwhelmed by the prevalent negativity of cancer. Lost in the information about drugs, side effects, and statistics, Ingalls redirected her energy to focus on the equally overwhelming blessings of life, learning to rejoice in each day and find peace in spirituality.
In this memoir, Karen is a calming presence and positive companion, offering a refreshing perspective of hope with the knowledge that ”the beauty of the soul, the real me and the real you, outshines the effects of cancer, chemotherapy, and radiation.”
Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir is a story of survival, and reminds readers that disease is not an absolute, but a challenge to recover.
One of the recent reviews for the book
I have had the pleasure of meeting Karen Ingalls at a few of the support groups recently. I am a one year survivor of endometrial cancer. Karen has been so very helpful to myself and many other survivors as this I am sure of. She is there for any question or encouragement you may need. She is truly an inspiration to be positive and on the right path with my journey going forward. I read her book Outshine recently and find her even more amazing as she has shared her inner thoughts and own journey with us. The book is very well written and very interesting to read as she takes you through a life with Cancer and the challenges it faces for many of us. Thank you Karen for being so thoughtful, caring, inspiring and truly a wonderful human being!!! I look forward to reading more of your books in the future. Much Love to you and your family.
Other books by Karen Ingalls
All proceeds from the book sales go to gynecologic cancer research.
The next memoir is by Marian Longenecker Beaman the story of her life growing up within the Mennonite community… Mennonite Daughter: The Story of a Plain Girl.
About the book
What if the Mennonite life young Marian Longenecker chafed against offered the chance for a new beginning? What if her two Lancaster County homes with three generations of family were the perfect launch pad for a brighter future? Readers who long for a simpler life can smell the aroma of saffron-infused potpie in Grandma’s kitchen, hear the strains of four-part a capella music at church, and see the miracle of a divine healing.
Follow the author in pigtails as a child and later with a prayer cap, bucking a heavy-handed father and challenging church rules. Feel the terror of being locked behind a cellar door. Observe the horror of feeling defenseless before a conclave of bishops, an event propelling her into a different world.
Fans of coming-of-age stories will delight in one woman’s surprising path toward self-discovery, a self that lets her revel in shiny red shoes.
One of the recent reviews for the memoir
Different moments in Mennonite Daughter: The Story of a Plain Girl stood out to me such as running through old tombstones from the Revolutionary War (the fact that they were just there on the path Marian played on really captured my imagination), the unfortunate relationship with her dad who was so unreachable and the frustrating showdown over her completely appropriate clothing choices with the “leaders” of the school. I also enjoyed the “everyday” photos from her life like the kitchen utensils and recipes. They, quite literally, brought me into her home. But I think Marian Beaman’s love story with her husband Cliff and how it led her to exactly where and who she was were supposed to be is what stays with me the most. And his drawing of Marian is beautiful.
Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books… thanks Sally.