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QUICK NOTE...Update: 2/19/19

Still working through things. We were right in the path of Hurricane Michael (like so many others), and while the family is safe (pups, and parents), the house didn't fair as well. Baby steps back into the blogging world and started to grow, so you know, a post here, a post there, and away we go! Hope you stay along for the ride!

Monday, February 26, 2018

TLC Book Tours presents... THE STORY OF OUR LIVES by Helen Warner - REVIEW + GIVEAWAY!

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're joining TLC Book Tours for a stop along their current promotion starring yet another release from Graydon House.  If you aren't aware of this division of Harlequin Books, it's high time you became acquainted...especially if you like Women's Fiction with "strong commercial appeal".  Yeah, whatever way you slice it, they've got some great titles!  Speaking of which, let's get to today's blog tour guest and book of choice...

Helen Warner
Graydon House

About the book...
They think nothing can tear their bond apart, until a long-buried secret threatens to destroy everything.
Every year they have met up for a vacation, but their time away is much more than just a bit of fun. Over time, it has become a lifesaver, as each of them struggles with life’s triumphs and tragedies.

Sophie, Emily, Amy and Melissa have been best friends since they were girls. They have seen each other through everything—from Sophie’s private fear that she doesn’t actually want to be a mother despite having two kids, to Amy’s perfect-on-the-outside marriage that starts to reveal troubling warning signs, to Melissa’s spiraling alcoholism, to questions that are suddenly bubbling up around the paternity of Emily’s son. But could a lie that spans just as long as their friendship be the thing that tears them apart?


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The title is most appropriate because honestly there is no way to tell simply ONE woman's story here without hitting on another's and another's and...well you get the picture.  Such are the lives of friends, intertwined, overlapping, and filled to the brim with shared moments and histories; some for the better, some for worse, but any load is easier to carry when shared.

Now, we all know that no one can truly be boiled down to simply ONE label, nor should they be, but this is how I came to think of this quartet of wonderful women while I was reading...

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Sophie - the rock
...she was the one they could all count on for support, a kind word, an ear to lean on...and all without ever expecting anything in return.  They'd never imagine that she too had her faults, her weak moments, her secrets...and speaking of which, I was rather surprised at how she and Colin worked that one out, but that's a conversation for someone that's read it.  *wink wink*  Did I like her any less for those cracks in her veneer?  Heavens no...just proved she was human...and she didn't REALLY shoulder all those secrets herself, which brings us to...

Emily - the realist
...she was the one you could be sure would speak her mind.  No sugar coating here, so don't come looking for a candy store.  Surprisingly while she was vocal about her opinions to others, she wasn't about her own life.  She was the one that remained a mystery for more of the story, only opening up towards book's end when she didn't have a choice in the matter any longer...not that I blame her.  I mean, that was some secret!  Anywho, though she spoke her mind, not everyone seemed to listen, which brings us to....

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Amy - the perfectionist
...she wasn't so much a seeker of perfection herself, but rather her life was SEEN as seemingly perfect from the outside looking in.  Beauty, grace, charm, talent in the kitchen, loaded husband, phenomenal housing, house staff, two adorable kids...I mean, what more could you ask for?  Oh, I don't about a little freedom?  Yeah, a gilded cage is still just that, a cage...and while the heart may want what it wants, sometimes the brain has to step in and say WAIT A SECOND THIS ISN'T RIGHT...and when it can't, it's a good thing the friends you thought you left behind, never went anywhere in the first place.  Speaking of freedom and friends, that brings us to...

Melissa - the free spirit
...she lived life fast and furious, until one day, the grass wasn't greener on the other side and decidedly much lonelier than it was intended to be.  She got caught up in "the scene" in which she was working, and while the girls tried to reel her back in, it took some hard love for her find her way again.  Don't worry though, she's a STRONG one and there's no challenge she's met that she couldn't stare down, reason with, or make something better of...especially with her chosen family having her back no matter what.

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In the end, it was the story of them all, as the years pass, the secrets build, and the friendships cement into something more.  True, things got ugly at times, for them and between them, but their connection was built of stronger stuff than all the craptastic things the world could throw at them.  May we all be so lucky as to find that type of relationship in our lifetimes.


About the author...

Helen Warner is head of daytime for Channel 4, where she is responsible for shows such as Come Dine With Me and Deal Or No Deal. Previously she worked for ITV where she launched the daytime talk show Loose Women and was editor of This Morning. She lives in East Anglia with her husband and their two children.


Special thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours for the chance to bring this tour to you and to the Harlequin Books team for the ARC for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, THIS TOUR, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title is available now via Graydon House, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.


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Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

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