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25 Years in the Rearview Mirror: 52 Authors Look Back

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This collection of poignant and uplifting essays is the perfect book to enjoy over your morning coffee. The stories will warm your heart, raise your spirits and compel you to examine your own life. As a tie-in to her mystery book Twenty-Five Years Ago Today, novelist and award-winning journalist Stacy Juba invited her author colleagues to answer the question "What were you doing 25 years ago?"

Read about school days, quirky jobs, romance, raising a family, hard times, the writing journey, and find out what makes your favorite characters tick. This 30,000-word book will help readers to discover new authors for their to-read list, and inspire them to reflect upon the small defining moments that have shaped their own lives. As a bonus, readers are invited to interact with the authors and discuss the past and the future in an online forum, with details in the Appendix.

Includes a foreword by Elaine Raco Chase, award-winning author of seventeen paperback novels with over 3 million books in print. Publishing credits of the contributing writers include New York Times bestselling, USA Today bestselling and Amazon bestselling. They also include recipients of the Romantic Times Lifetime Achievement Award, Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Award, Mississippi Author Award, Benjamin Franklin Award and Eppie Award, as well as nominees of the Pushcart Prize, Agatha and Shamus Awards, to name a few of the many honors.

108 pages, Kindle Edition

First published August 4, 2012

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About the author

Stacy Juba

24 books366 followers
Author of Storybook Valley fairy tale chick lit series, the Hockey Rivals YA sports series, suspenseful cozy mysteries, and more. Stop by Stacy's website to get your FREE Storybook Valley Welcome Kit. Stacy is also an affordable freelance editor and lover of happy endings. Check out her other website: https://www.hockeyrivalsbooks.com/

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5 stars
23 (41%)
4 stars
14 (25%)
3 stars
16 (28%)
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1 (1%)
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2 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 18 of 18 reviews
Profile Image for Monica Brinkman.
Author 5 books11 followers
September 3, 2012
You will laugh, cry, wonder but anyone who reads this collection of memories from 52 renowned authors as they take a walk down memory lane, will find it truly entertaining.

Stacy Juba got it right when she came up with the idea to ask a few authors to write about what they were doing exactly 25 years ago today. You will be surprised in the variety of tales and will certainly reflect on your own memory of long ago.

If you like 'Chicken Soup for the Soul', then this book is for you. It warms the heart.
Profile Image for R.P. Dahlke.
Author 18 books685 followers
August 11, 2012
wow! This was such a hoot to read after we all contributed. The results are short essays by successful, working published authors of today. It's smart, funny, sad, poignant... but always interesting. What were these authors doing 25 years ago? Some were writing, some just beginning, and some were on a totally different path.

Have YOU ever thought of writing a book, but didn't know if you could, or should? Read these charming entries, and you may find yourself inspired.
Profile Image for Rachelle.
185 reviews2 followers
September 23, 2012
“There is a part of us that pushes us into the danger zones, that urges us to play catch with the explosive and to date the irrational. That skirting with danger can lead to growth and disaster. It can certainly make for good writing.” Ken Weene

This book is filled with essays that take us from grade school to first loves and first jobs to the writing process itself and everywhere in between. Stacy Juba even gives us a couple writing exercises in “Unit-Lessons in Composition.” This was a fun read filled with humorous, encouraging, and informative narratives from writers of all genres. I am excited to check out each of the writers’ individual work, which is easy to do since the editors included a list of author websites in the appendix.
Profile Image for Sharon Cook.
Author 16 books9 followers
August 11, 2012
I'm also someone who's featured in this book--thank you Stacy--and am proud to be part of such an imaginative, humorous and courageous bunch. The variety of experience and outlook make the book lively, quirky and fresh. Readers will take strength in learning how others coped with difficult situations. The stories are incredible--and best of all, they're true!

Sharon Love Cook, contributor and author of A Nose for Hanky Panky and The Legend of Judgment Rock and other Mystery Stories.
Profile Image for Maryann.
Author 79 books532 followers
March 6, 2014
Enjoying all the stories. What a wide selection of topics and writing styles. A real potpourri of essays.
Profile Image for Donna Crow.
Author 68 books114 followers
August 8, 2012
Great collection of essays. Fun, quick to read, great variety. I'm delighted to be one of the authors included.
Profile Image for Patricia Gulley.
Author 4 books37 followers
September 5, 2012
An interesting little book of essays allowing the writers to look back to 25 years ago.
Profile Image for SheLove2Read.
2,815 reviews180 followers
July 8, 2013
This is a collection of very short asides from 52 different authors recollecting events from 25 years ago. Some are sad, some are happy and some are funny and enlightening. I have to say I haven't ever read or even heard of any of these authors so I have no base in which to judge them by. I'm not sorry I read it, but I wouldn't pay money for this anthology. 3 stars
Profile Image for Al.
1,168 reviews29 followers
January 21, 2013
While I read and enjoy fiction, both as entertainment and sometimes for what it can teach about real life, and non-fiction, for learning, the memoir, which I also enjoy, is somewhere in the middle. It’s true, or at least some person���s view of the truth, but done well it can still entertain, just like a fictional story. We all have stories that, given the prerequisite writing chops, could be entertaining. Which leads me to a few observations about books like this (and others like it), as well as where these stories worked best for me, and a few reasons why some didn’t.

One of the positives is that these short, autobiographical stories are variously interesting, entertaining, enlightening, and all the other adjectives sometimes used to describe a good tale of this type. They stand on their own. But they also give the reader some exposure to an author they might not be aware of, and what avid reader isn’t on the lookout for that? To pretend the contributing authors don’t see this as a marketing tool would be naïve, but it is marketing that is a win-win. With the hundreds of books I’ve read in the last few years, I’d only read a handful of these authors. Getting a glimpse into their way with words is much more efficient for a reader than reading sample after sample of their novels. Plus, many of us like the glimpse behind the scenes, at the real person behind the fiction we’ve been reading.

Which leads me to the one aspect of this collection that didn’t work as well for me. These were ten of the stories that broke the pattern of the autobiographical memoir, instead using the same exercise of writing about something from twenty-five years in the past from the viewpoint of one of the author’s characters. While pertinent as a writing exercise, which is the reason these pieces were originally done, and on the surface a good marketing move, I found these stories much harder to get into. The exception was the character I was familiar with, which seems the opposite of the desired effect.

**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy. **
Profile Image for Mareena.
319 reviews5 followers
March 29, 2014
'What were you doing 25 years ago?' That was the question posed to 52 of her author colleagues by novelist and award-winning journalist Stacy Juba. In this collection of poignant and uplifting essays, you will read personal stories dealing with early school days; quirky first jobs; finding and keeping romance; the joys and difficulties of raising a family; going through various hard times; the pride and pitfalls associated with the writing journey; and discover what makes the characters these authors have created truly tick. Each story will alternately warm your heart, raise your spirits and ultimately compel you to examine your own life.

25 Years in the Rearview Mirror: 52 Authors Look Back by Stacy Juba will help readers discover a entire crop of new authors whose names they can add to their to-read lists. Publishing credits for each of the contributing writers include New York Times bestselling, USA Today bestselling and Amazon bestselling. They also include recipients of the Romantic Times Lifetime Achievement Award, Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Award, Mississippi Author Award, Benjamin Franklin Award and Eppie Award, as well as nominees of the Pushcart Prize, Agatha and Shamus Awards, to name a few of the many honors.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this particular book. Alright, so it only took me two years to actually read, but I guess good things come to those who wait. :) I give 25 Years in the Rearview Mirror: 52 Authors Look Back by Stacy Juba a definite A+!

My mother had read Sink or Swim by the same author in March of 2011 and enjoyed it very much. I'm delighted to say that I have Twenty-Five Years Ago Today - the mystery that was the basis for the question asked in 25 Years in the Rearview Mirror - already on my TBR pile. I can assure you that reading Twenty-Five Years Ago Today won't take me another two years! :)
Profile Image for Thom Swennes.
1,822 reviews53 followers
February 17, 2016
When a blog for writers was placed on the net, it received many reactions. The request was made for writers to contribute stories, tales and tidbits about their life and doings a quarter of a century earlier. The many responses were heartening but the realization that these impromptu tidbits could easily be lost forever in the ever-expanding World Wide Web; never to be seen again, prompted this publication.
I am sorry to say that I haven’t read anything from ANY of the fifty-two writers that contributed snippets, micro-essays, and anecdotes. To me, this says three things. Number one: there is a multitude of writers (bad, mediocre, good, great, and phenomenal…..much like the star rating system in Goodreads).
Number two: I consider myself good read but am humbled by the knowledge of how far I lag behind.
Number three: In their own small way, each and every writer I read leaves something behind that creates and form the way I am and/or the way I think.
While reading this, the question was raised in my mind as to what I was doing twenty-five-years-ago. That would be 1991. That would mark the eighteenth anniversary of working at the same company (I am now six weeks from retirement, making it now forty-three years and high time to spread my wings). I enjoyed this book and recommend it to others.
Profile Image for Tom MacCasarlaigh.
99 reviews2 followers
September 13, 2016
I was a while reading this book as it's not the type of book you would read in a few sessions. It's more a magazine type book which can be revisited again & again hence the time taken for me to read the book. The theme of the book is in the title and if I am honest I would say that the book did not work for me. I found the essays, for that is what we have here, essays, I found it some of them to be a vehicle for some of the contributors to advertise their previous works which didn't sit well with me. Another theme within the book was looking back 25 years of the contributors main characters. I didn't see the point in that as I would reckon that if a character deserved a prequel then by all means write the prequel as a short essay cannot do it justice. The book didn't bring it for me but I did complete it as it promised so much more but just didn't manage to get there.
Profile Image for Judy Sheluk.
Author 40 books339 followers
January 24, 2015
A series of very short blog post by 52 authors, looking back 25 years. Some work really well, some less so. This is a great go-to read if you're waiting at the doctor's office, or for the train, the kind of book you'll pick up if you have a spare 10 minutes. I enjoyed it, but found that as I waded through story after story, I was yearning for a bit more detail, a bit more depth. Perhaps 25 authors looking back 25 years, with lengthier prose, would have satisfied more, but I admire Stacy Juba's editing skills at pulling this together in a cohesive manner.
Profile Image for Julie Powell.
Author 68 books311 followers
March 12, 2015
I was given this book for review and found it to be fascinating. A whole host of authors offer peeks into an array of thoughts and feelings about 25 years ago.

A clever and insightful look into great writing and what affects our lives, choices and decisions.

Certainly worth reading these well written pieces.
327 reviews4 followers
August 10, 2015
Stacy Juba came up with the idea of asking her author friends to write an answer to the question: "What were you doing 25 years ago?" This collection of essays/answers is a great read and really provides insight into the ups and downs of life. Some of the stories make you laugh out loud and others make you cry out loud! A treasure not to be missed!
14 reviews
April 29, 2019
Mixed bag

Like any varied author collection, some were better than others. Good read for airplane travel or waiting rooms. Would look for other work by some of them.
Displaying 1 - 18 of 18 reviews

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