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Recovering from Life

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Recovering from Life is the tale of 39-year-old, red-headed spitfire Stephanie McCarthy's rollicking road to redemption. A gifted freelance writer in Northern California, Steph works days hawking frozen foods while her life limps along. Until her husband, Kenny, disappears into the crack ghetto. His descent into addiction catapults Steph onto a wild ride that feels unendurable--but ultimately leads to her own self-discovery.

Marooned in a state of financial doom, legal tangles, and emotional turmoil, Steph navigates the pitfalls of her new path, which takes her into the realms of drug dealers, high finance--and hot romance. With her wisecracking buddy, Lee, and other surprising allies at her side, Steph begins to rebuild her world as she stumbles into her own blind spots and wrestles with her faulty guy-radar.

When Steph at last spies the "Welcome to Reality" sign at the end of the road, she realizes that her job is to heal from a life she never chose--and to recover from the one that she did. But while she rides that roller coaster of recovery, Stephanie has one hell of a good time.

244 pages, Kindle Edition

First published August 31, 2013

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About the author

Debra McKenna

3 books3 followers
After completing a degree in English and graduate work in Creative Writing, I became a feature writer and editor for city magazines in Sacramento, Denver, Lake Tahoe and Las Vegas for over nine years. Recovering from Life is my first novel.

visit http//:www.debramckenna.com

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Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews
Profile Image for Dennis Dupuis.
Author 1 book4 followers
December 16, 2014
This was a fun and painful read. There's no shortage of heartbreaks dealt out by "humans" we've all come across as life presents itself, while humanity springs from unexpected places, and humor carries the day. Guaranteed to bring a smile to your face. I was a Goodreads Give Away winner and am glad of it. Thanks Debra.
Profile Image for Wall-to-wall books - wendy.
938 reviews22 followers
April 10, 2014
LOVED this book! I almost read the whole book in one sitting. You know how I sometimes say that a book is like a roller-coaster with the ups and downs? Well this book was like a race car! I felt like I got in the driver seat on page one and sped at 200 mph all through the book (and I mean that in a good way!). This story was non-stop excitement.
I know I am always saying "This book should be turned into a movie" but... THIS book should seriously be turned into a movie, or a series even - I would watch it. I kept picturing Katherine Heigl (as in One for the Money) as the main character.

The character development is excellent! These two girls Stephanie and her friend Lee are awesome. I definitely want them on my side if I ever get into trouble (or if I ever want to get back at my ex). Stephanie is just a powerhouse, wonder-woman, take-no-crap, my kind of woman! I even like the "thug" she had helping her. What a riot everyone was!

Here's a few lines -
"Do you have decaf?"
Do I have decaf? I was in recovery: I "did" coffee. It was the only drug I had left. I had decaf, regular, half-caf, regular with cinnamon, decaf with vanilla, and mocha flavored. ~ Ha! my kind of gal!

"God, I thought, I should have read Divorce for Dummies. Or, more like Marriage for Dummies. If there wasn't one, maybe I could write it. I felt like the most inept woman who'd ever aimlessly wondered the earth."
"Tell me there are men out there in their forties who know what they want and aren't afraid to get it."
Lee moaned, sounding in pain again "I'm not so sure about that From what I've seen, by forty they're either bitter, emotionally dead, or twitchy. They practically have a grad mal seizure if something significant happens. That's why I was thinking of a younger man."
Now I whimpered "I just had one of those, remember? He was the worst yet."
"Oh, we're doomed..."

This story is hilarious! I would consider this book to be Chick-Lit/Woman's fiction. This story is literally dripping with snark and sarcasm, my kind of book. I really hope the author writes more. I will be waiting in line to buy her next book!
Profile Image for Kari.
8 reviews2 followers
March 8, 2014
Recovering from life was a story about a woman who was stuck in the middle of trying to figure out how to juggle the stressful life she was being dealt along with staying healthy and putting her self first. Stephanie had her life figured out...she had the husband, the dog, the house, and just started on building her career path of becoming a full time editor for a magazine. Yes, she had some bumps in the road, but both her and her husband were survivors of substance abuse and were moving forward in life. Or so she thought.

Little did she know that her husband had fallen off the band wagon and had taken everything they had worked so hard to get along with him. The moment she thought it was over, it wasn't worth sticking it out, she realized she really needed to take a step back and get her life back in check. Through some ups and many many downs, Steph and her closest friends came out the other side the best was they could.

I felt that this book was a good read, and the Debra did a great job of connecting you with a character that is probably very familiar to many in this world. The book stayed light hearted, while throwing in some pretty funny loop holes, and did a great job conveying that these are real struggles, and they are not easy to overcome without a lot of support from great people in your life.

I look forward to reading more from Debra in the future!

Profile Image for Jennifer.
429 reviews15 followers
April 21, 2014
The story of a married women, who finds out her husband is back taking drugs and has completely ruined her financially and emotionally. The story is about her getting her life back on track.

Over all I enjoyed the book, there were some funny moments but also a few moments where I was shaking my head at the stupid things the main character did. Shaking my head and saying out loud why are you doing that?!

The secondary characters are well written and do not drag the story down, but instead help the story progress as the main character, Stephanie, tries to get her life in order. You do really get a sense of her struggles and how they effect her, and do start caring if things will work out for her in the end.

I really enjoyed the ending, while a bit predictable, you are glad it happens the way it does. The book was a fast read, and I didn't feel like the writing slowed down or became too boring to continue reading.

Worth a read if you like reading about a person overcoming their struggles in life, and want to also have a bit of a laugh while she does it.

Profile Image for Kathleen Kelly.
1,308 reviews107 followers
August 11, 2016
Recovering from life is about a woman who finds out her husband is back into drugs, cheating on her and has stolen from his company. A humorous look at a woman's fight back from the humiliations that she has suffered at the hands of her husband. With no money and a job she loathes, she moves in with her bestie and proceeds to get her life back on track. Along the way she comes across some sketchy characters, laughable situations and struggles that only she can realize the way out of. Can she recover and forgive past mistakes? Will she find what she is looking for?? You will have to read this funny, poignant book for yourself. A fresh storyline but not maudlin where the character keeps feeling sorry for herself. Stephanie pulls herself back on track and does it with humor. I loved this book and highly recommend it!
I received a copy for review and was not monetarily compensated for my review.
Profile Image for Jacqueline.
18 reviews
December 4, 2013
RECOVERING FROM LIFE is an entertaining tale of recovery from ruin, as told by Stephanie McCarthy. Steph is an intelligent and sweet 39-year old suffering through the fallout of not only putting her husband first, but also handing him the reins to her life. Hers is a story most women can relate to in one way or another; in her quest to better her life and marriage she has neglected herself and essentially assisted in creating it's collapse. Stephanie manages to wade through it all with wit and humor, and just a few "Mother May I" steps backward. This story is poignant and engaging, but never depressing as she continues to face everything head on. RECOVERING FROM LIFE was a delightful read with charming characters. I highly recommend it and hope to see more from the author, Debra McKenna.
Displaying 1 - 7 of 7 reviews

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