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Shoes on the Stairs

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  335 ratings  ·  82 reviews
***An International Best-Seller and Best Book Awards Finalist***

Inspired by the many frustrations of parenthood and the ever-present fear of failure, SHOES ON THE STAIRS centers around a mother’s struggle to accept what she has left behind after her death. She takes the reader on a journey of both laughter and tears while learning even the smallest of gestures can make a s
Published July 1st 2019 by Acorn Publishing
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Average rating 4.50  · 
Rating details
 ·  335 ratings  ·  82 reviews

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Aug 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I got to read this book, and I consider myself fortunate. The emotions in it caused me to have a lump in my throat so many times. Love was beautifully portrayed, and a mother's love for her family was pure and eternal.

A fatal road accident where Claire lost her life, but her soul hanged around in a limbo. There was something she perhaps had to do. She then decided to be a fly on the wall and see her children's lives, if possible help them. Few hard truths came to life, shocking and heartbreaking
Gloria ~ mzglorybe
This is a story about one woman’s life coming to an end, and the limbo she is in as she observes her family until she can proceed to her just reward. She is in for a very insightful look at her busy life. Claire is a wife and mother of 3. Life in her household is pretty typical for the times, everyone busy with jobs, school, feeling the many pulls in various directions. Just getting everyone going in the morning seems to be a major challenge. This is where the shoes come in, but you’ll have to r ...more
Heather W
Aug 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shoes on the Stairs is the first book I have read by Jan Steele but it will not the last.

This is a beautiful and emotional story of a mother's life lost, her afterlife, and the family she left behind. The author deals with topics such as bullying, organ donation, and grief in a way that engages you and keeps you reading until the end.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Ginger Harvey
Jun 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Being the mom of three children; I adored this book. Such a precious book about a family of five. Three kiddos, a mom and dad.
Although the loss occurs; the family finds faith, strength and love to move forward.....
I became a single mom when my children were around the age of the kids in the book. I can relate to the storyline.
Jul 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was first drawn to the cover and blurb of Shoes on Stairs, so I was excited to read this. We follow Claire as she manages this new afterlife in which she hasn't quite made it to heaven and is with her family instead. She learns some startling truths about not just her children but her husband as well.

So often in life we really don't appreciate the people in our lives, we take advantage of our most precious resource, time. We see that in Claire's story, that she doesn't quite know what her chi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katie Cahill
Jul 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was a fantastic read! I don't normally choose stories like this to read, but it was an amazing story. You will get all the feels in this story. ...more
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Amazing tale and definitely deserving of 5 stars! I truly loved this story and really felt the pain and sorrow that Claire was going through. Really a unique look at the after-life and what might happen if one does not go on but hangs around, yet still can't truly touch their family; however, Claire soon does start interacting with them and although she knows she can't "Be" with them she is with them in a sense and it's phenomenal how the author gives us this angle. This is my first book by Ms. ...more
May 14, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed the story and the characters . The story makes you realize how short life is and to spend your time on the important things .
Athena D.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5 STARS

This book brought tears to my eyes and gave me so many feels!

Shoes on the Stairs took me on a journey of EPIC proportions!!! As a mother, I could relate to the main character, Claire Blackwell. Her unexpected situation resonated with me and made me question how I live and see my everyday life. Be prepared to laugh and cry when reading this book!

Shoes on the Stairs by Jan Steele will join the ranks of the BIBLIO-ARISTOCRACY!!!
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Moms everywhere will relate and enjoy this debut novel. A well written, heartwarming story full of drama, with just the right amount of humor woven through! Jan Steele's character development put such a vivid picture in my mind that I felt like I was inserted into the story myself, that's just how well I felt I got to know the characters.
Claire, mother of three, constantly faces feelings of insecurity, doubt, jealousy, inadequacy, and fear. Claire's fear of failure as a mother consumes her, and
Jennifer Patino
Jul 20, 2019 rated it liked it
"Shoes on the Stairs" is a heartwarming novel about a woman who dies suddenly and is given the chance to visit her family as a ghost. Unresolved family issues arise as each member starts to become aware of her presence and can even communicate with her. The novel is filled with different emotions. Tender scenes are balanced with some pretty good humor. The three children in the family have many real life issues in school to contend with, and bullying is a big theme in the book. The ending is ver ...more
Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hits close to home...

I gave the book 4 Stars.
Reason - I grew up in the burbs of Chicago.
And moved to Poway when I was in middle school.
I often wonder what happens when I pass on.
I cried at the beginning of the 4th chapter
Good for you and Now a Hometown Hero.
Janell Madison
Aug 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book immediately got my attention!

Claire, an over scheduled Mom, sounds a lot like me! Loves the snooze button, yoga pants are the best, my age, my hair color, my eye color-WHAT?!! I know-how could I not be drawn in to this book? And, I loved it. The message it has is so current for today-actually there’s more than one message! But, the main one is this-Bullying is a very real thing-and it goes through many stages. Let’s all keep our eyes and ears open to fight this very real problem! Five
Georgina Power
Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
A well crafted and well written story! As it began, I kept hoping what appeared to be happening, wasn't, but it did. (You'll have to read it to understand!). The story is compelling and uplifting. While there were plenty of times when I found I had sand in my eyes (must have been a sandstorm in my living room!), it was a happy read. I enjoyed Claire's release of her worldly cares and loving understanding that her family needed to move on. The story touched me; all of us who are parents have foun ...more
Sep 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed-by-me
Shoes on the Stairs could be about any busy wife and mother, any family. We try to do it all, be there for everyone, take care of all the details of family life and often are the managers of our busy family. Claire is so busy rushing around, doing everything herself, that she forgets to enjoy her life, her husband and her children. They take her for granted. That is, until she makes a fatal mistake while driving to her son's school-she texts him that she's bringing his detention slip he forgot a ...more
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
The writing and flow of the words caught me first thing in this book. It was just like the beginning of a prologue; you know those things you skip if you’re anxious and want to start a book? And yet it grabbed my attention and I couldn’t quit reading, not even there. I did the “just one more page” thing for several pages, or at least until people were yelling at me to come on.

Not only were Jan Steele’s characters realistic but I thought this whole book brought up some questions for thought. Woul
Twila Mason
Jul 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I love this book! The description drew me in, as I am currently a stay at home mom that gave up a career. I’m also frazzled, stressed, and admittedly feely greatly under appreciated. The concept that the mom dies and sees how her family functions without her was intriguing. The scenes surrounding her death are heart wrenching. The author really expresses the characters emotions so well. It’s hard to explain without spoilers, but man, I could feel their pain. All of the characters seem so real an ...more
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is my first time reading this author and what a book to read! This is a heartbreaking story but it’s also heartwarming in ways as well. It makes a person, especially me being a mother, stop and think. It touches on so many subjects and I encourage everyone to have a box of tissues handy whilst reading this story. It’s so wonderfully written, there is a religious aspect to the story as the mother once she has died is caught between Heaven and hell. I found this story very moving and welcomed ...more
Sep 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Jan Steele’s talent really shines through with her new release Shoes on the Stairs. I found the plot to be a unique one and it is quite refreshing to read something new to me. It was interesting to find that the main character, Claire, has become a ghost. With her new “life”, she sees the family she left behind in a whole different light. She discovers and learns more than she wanted to about them. I only intended to read just a few chapters before going to bed but wound up staying up to read th ...more
Brenda Moser
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an interesting and unique story that captured and held me from page one to the end. The author does a fantastic job bringing strong well developed characters and weaves a story of a mother's undying love for her family,even after death. It's an emotional story that's both heartwarming and sad and is brought to life with very descriptive writing and detailed scenes with so much emotion that you can feel them coming through the pages. It's a story of family,love and dealing with life's hap ...more
C. Gonzales
Nov 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: women-s-fiction
This is such a powerful read that was unlike anything I've read. I loved the fact that Jan Steele was able to give us a unique, emotional, and inspiring story.

I loved reading about Claire and her journey. There is so much in this book that is more than just being a mom and watching over your children forever, it melds so many important lessons and themes right along with that.

It's whimsical and has humorous moments while being serious and emotional. Jan Steele really manages to succeed in every
Nov 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The cost of texting and driving.

I truly wasn’t sure how much I would enjoy this book however I have loved every piece of it. The best thing about a book to me is when the author can put so much emotion into the words and it causes me to cry. I’m trying to type these words through my crocodile tears.

The author hits on multiple issues that people face today and she does it well. She also is able to truly make each character have a front spot in the book.

I would recommend this to anyone and can’
Lynn Otto
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I knew Jan back in the days when we were both expat moms. When I found out she wrote a book, I needed to read it, wow, what a great read.
It elicits so many emotions, from beginning to end and leaves you with a sense that there is so much we moms do that affects our kids, good and maybe not so good.
Is gives you a second chance to look long and hard at ourselves and really find out what our kids are all about.
Congrats Jan, you have an amazing talent and I look forward to your next novels. Keep
Jan 10, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaway

I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway. This is my honest review. If I could give 10 stars it would not be enough for this book. I warn you ahead of time, to have the tissues ready. This book will grab ahold of you from the beginning. When you are a Mother, your children are your life. When someone is hurting, you hurt too. This journey is about love and letting go. I cannot say enough without telling you the story, but it is a must read for every Mother or parent. Please be there
Oct 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received a complimentary copy from the author via Voracious Readers Only. After reading the synopsis I knew this story would pack an emotional punch, and boy, did it ever! I don’t remember the last time I felt like I was feeling the emotions along with the characters. This was a fantastic book that was well written. Grab the Kleenex box though - I needed it all the way through.
reader 1085
Sep 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I laughed, I cried , I could barely put this book down. Such real life emotions, such real life characters. Bullying, child abuse, death, love , it's all here. Can hardly wait to read more by this author

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Ramcy Diek
Oct 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I looked forward to reading this book and wasn't disappointed. What a heart warming tale about a mother who loves her family more than anything in the world, and then is forced to say goodbye in the most heartbreaking manner.
All the characters are real, the husband just as much in love with her as she was with him. The children, their loss too overwhelming.
I had no idea how it would end, but Jan Steele came up with the perfect solution, satisfying for all. Although not uplifting, I found it a gr
Lori Oliver-Tierney
Oct 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As a mother my heart was breaking for the mom in this story. Like the book said, Was she in heaven or hell when she got to see her kids and husband after she passed away. It was a very clever way to remind us all to make the most of our life on earth. I related to the family and understood the mother's anguish over things that were happening in her children's lives. I kept thinking that it wasn't fair that so many tragedies happened to this one family-but then who said life is fair. The way the ...more
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Jan Steele grew up in the burbs of Chicago and after thirty-two years of shoveling snow, moved to San Diego with her husband and children. She has taught everything from Kindergarten through high school but found her passion for writing years later while living as an expat in Asia for four years. She is a contributing author of Chicken Soup for the Soul, Miracles and More (2018), an MFA graduate a ...more

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