Hello, beautiful folks of the internet!
I know, I know. It’s been forever. I keep performing this same song and dance but I have words to share with y’all in regards to that. I’m preparing a post with all the lovely ranting to come soon.
Interesting enough, this book I’m sharing with y’all today is in direct correlation to the next post where I explain all the things about where I’ve been; Running a Small Business While Also Doing Life.
Let’s get into it! We’re talking about ‘HELL ON HEELS’ by Anne Jolin.
Seriously, where the hell do I even begin with this book? This is definitely a, ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover’ case. Promotions rolled in presenting us, The Charleston Three; Beau, Dean, and Maverick. This book seemed like it would be about a strong, independent woman who rocked some killer heels as she takes over the world unapologetically and juggles three men along the way. But, my goodness, people! This story was SO MUCH MORE than you can possibly imagine.
I had the kismet pleasure of meeting Anne at this year’s Wicked Book Weekend in South Florida. You know when you meet someone for the first time and just instantly connect. Later, you process and believe wholeheartedly that meeting them was not a coincidence. That is what happened for me when I met Anne. I briefly shared with her my struggle to accept my dream as a writer even if that meant changing career paths later in life and living in a way others would frown upon. Her encouragement and belief in me was genuine. I needed her words and kindness that day.
As many of you who follow this blog may know–because I’ve written plenty on it–I’ve struggled through the writing process. Mostly due to outside voices, doubt, and anxiety. My writing had taken another pause which made my soul very unhappy. But before I get ahead of myself, back to my story leading to this book.
After the event, I had this book in hand ready to be devoured. Anne had warned me it was like nothing she had written before and that it was a story she had to fight for. It was very dear to her heart and involved the addiction of a loved one.
From the prologue, I knew I was in deep. I instantly felt a mirror slowly rising up to face my soul through this book. Chapter one, I laughed and high-fived our main heroine, Charleston for her thoughts and perspective on life and the dating culture that I’m always preaching to my friends about.
Charleston Smith is a gorgeous woman. A woman with real curves (and I don’t just mean boobs which seems to be the general definition in books but no, I mean everywhere) and she isn’t the sad or dowdy girl who doesn’t embrace them. She dresses her body like a woman taking charge. She loves fashion, has her own successful company that allots for the high-end pieces and accessories she dresses her body in, and the woman loves and wears her heels. Even when she’s walking from work to lunch and back, taking the stairs for a little cardio boost in her day, and she’ll still eat the damn cupcake if she wants.
On the outside, Charleston Smith was a ‘Princess’ on top of the world who could charm and beguile any man. In fact, we see, in the course of a year, Charleston dates a saint, a sinner, and a mere mortal from her past–The Charleston Three.
Now, if you think you have this story pegged, let me burst that bubble because nothing could prepare you for the journey a year in the life of Charleston Smith will take you. No, don’t worry, I won’t rob you of the experience. This will be a NO SPOILER ZONE!
In my professional life, I was a sniper. In my personal life, I was a mess. -Pg. 13
Our main character has lost someone very dear to her due to addiction. “You’re my angel, with no halo, and one wing in the fire.” This loss propelled Charleston to venture into her own addiction.
I use people. Not in a malicious way, but in the way an addict abuses their substance of choice. People are my vice–men specifically. I crave the emotional high they give me with a unique and reckless disregard for my own well-being–eagerly floating into an unsustainable euphoria.
This isn’t your typical “fun”, sex-filled soap opera that leads to your usual happily ever after (and hey, I love those stories too). This story will grip your heart, make you shed a few tears, and in the end, leave you looking at yourself, perhaps a little raw and vulnerable but it’ll be an achingly beautiful experience nonetheless. The true hero rises and conquers in the end. There is a happy ending, it’s just not what you may expect and I loved it.
I believe there’s a piece of Charleston Smith in us all and that is why everyone needs to read this book!
Loving the ugly parts of ourselves isn’t easy, but if we can’t love them, how can we expect someone else to? -Pg. 96
I can go on and on about this book but will end my shared thoughts of it with y’all here. There are so many quotable lines and these 265 pages are full of so much wisdom that we are not just told of but see unfold in our main heroine’s life. I loved this book. I loved that I had to journal right after and gush and confront certain things about myself. I personally struggle with my own darkness inside that I’m learning to fight daily and for that reason, I know that’s just one of the reasons this book hit all the right spots for me. I will be rereading this one for sure. I highly recommend it!
CHECK OUT HER ROCK FALLS SERIES!
– ABOUT THE AUTHOR –
I was born and raised in Ladner, a small farm town just outside Vancouver, Canada.
I never expected to be an author. Writing was something that snuck up on me and rooted itself into my life. It was beautiful to discover that love, and I’m truly grateful to say I’ve found my passion.
If I could leave y’all with one thing, it’s that life’s far too short to not live it out loud. Drown in your passions, hold on tight to the things that inspire you, and chase your dreams relentlessly. I can promise you without a doubt that you won’t regret it. I know I don’t.