Thursday, June 4, 2015

The Art of Losing Yourself

GIVEAWAY

GANSHERT, KATIE
THE ART OF LOSING YOURSELF

Just like in my dream, I was drowning and nobody even noticed.
 
Every morning, Carmen Hart pastes on her made-for-TV smile and broadcasts the weather. She’s the Florida panhandle’s favorite meteorologist, married to everyone’s favorite high school football coach. They’re the perfect-looking couple, live in a nice house, and attend church on Sundays. From the outside, she’s a woman who has it all together.  But on the inside, Carmen Hart struggles with doubt. She wonders if she made a mistake when she married her husband. She wonders if God is as powerful as she once believed. Sometimes she wonders if He exists at all. After years of secret losses and empty arms, she’s not so sure anymore.

Until Carmen’s sister—seventeen year old runaway, Gracie Fisher—steps in and changes everything. Gracie is caught squatting at a boarded-up motel that belongs to Carmen’s aunt, and their mother is off on another one of her benders, which means Carmen has no other option but to take Gracie in. Is it possible for God to use a broken teenager and an abandoned motel to bring a woman’s faith and marriage back to life? Can two half-sisters make each other whole?

My Review:

There's a heaviness to this story that I wasn't completely prepared for. A gut-wrenching sorrow that shadows every page. A hard read in so many ways but a real one. And a challenging one because of that glaring reality.

Where is God when you do everything right only it all turns out wrong? That's the question Carmen struggles with as she tries to bury her grief beneath a plastic façade. She's drowning in a wave of hopelessness -- an internal battle of doubt and despair; afraid to let anyone know that she's teetering on the edge of desperate. I kept willing her to open her mouth and talk to someone -- especially her husband! But Carmen has spent her whole life doing 'perfect' to counter the reality of being raised by an alcoholic mother and admitting imperfection is terrifying for her.

Gracie isn't even sure God exists at all. He certainly hasn't shown up in her life so far. Still living with her alcoholic mom, she's chosen the exact opposite coping mechanism than her sister. Gracie is a rebel. A cynic with an impenetrable wall around her heart...until her latest escapade lands her living under Carmen's roof.

Ganshert alternates perspective between the sisters, using 1st person POV and it really works to take the reader deep into the psyche of both Carmen and Gracie. It makes the read more poignant and heart-wrenching.

And while The Art of Losing Yourself is a heavy read, there are moments of light and laughter worth savoring. A certain incident with a goat comes to mind. And Gracie's sarcastic wit.

But ultimately, this is a powerful story of hope. The kind of hope only faith can bring you. And with that faith comes the ability to trust. And when you have trust you can have relationships. Such a beautiful testimony of the richness of living.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like an opportunity to win a copy of The Art of Losing Yourself please leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you post a comment and add your email address, please use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in the address to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email please remember to put the title in the subject line so that it's easy for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday June 7 2015. Offer open to international readers. Good luck!

21 comments:

  1. This does sound like a very powerful story. I'd love to read it.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  2. Thanks for your review. I was on the fence about reading this but I think she is such a good writer that I will regret it if I don't...

    colorvibrant at gmail dot com

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    1. It's definitely worth the read, Heidi. You just can't go into it thinking it's like her other books. Good luck.

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  3. Great review, Kav. I love Katie's writing, even when it's emotionally difficult to read.

    writer_weaverATyahooDOTcom

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    1. Emotional is definitely the key word here. Good luck, Anna.

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  4. I would love to read this. Maybe it could help me get through my own present struggles.
    melissa dot snoopy at yahoo dot com

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  5. I'm looking forward to this read! I really enjoyed A Broken Kind of Beautiful. Ewe_r_merritt(at) yahoo(dot) com

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    1. It's a read to look forward to, for sure. Good luck, R Merr.

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  6. I enjoyed Katie's A Broken Kind of Beautiful, and am sure I would enjoy this one. Thanks for the giveaway, Kav!!!
    jacsmi75 at gmail dot com

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    1. You're welcome, Jackie. Good luck.

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  7. I read Katie's first book and enjoyed it. Sometimes these deeper books are just what I need to read (then I need to read a lighter book after that). Thanks for the chance to win The Art of Losing Yourself.
    pmkellogg56[at]gmail[dot]com

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    1. I like to piggy back book types too, Pam. The joy of having a tottering TBR pile! Good luck.

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  8. I have not read any of her books but I have heard high recommendations for this one. My birthday is Saturday Kav. Want to know what I want ? I want to surround myself with books sit in my chair with tea and whatever I decide is my favorite snack and have a chance to read 2 whole books. Now that would be a perfect day, lol.
    Deanne Patterson
    Cnnamongirl(at)aol(dot)com

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    1. That sounds like a divine birthday, Deanne. Good luck!

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  9. I love deep novels with lots of emotion, troubled relationships, etc., and knew immediately that I wanted to read "The Art of Losing Yourself"!! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity and the review, Kav!!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. You'll love this one then, Bonnie. Good luck.

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  10. I love Anne's novels. I would love to read this one! Thanks for the chance to win. YOU ROCK, Kav!

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  11. Oh, this sounds like a box of tissues for me but it sounds really great too! Please add me, Kav. :)
    worthy2bpraised at gmail dot com

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