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Horseshoes and Hand Grenades

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  19 ratings  ·  16 reviews
After suffering harassment and abuse at the hands of others, two women fight to reclaim their careers, romances, and lives.

Fragile but practical Shelby Stewart and ambitious, confident Astrid Ericcson just want to start their PR careers in 1980s Boston and maybe find a nice guy to hang out with. But long-buried memories of incest at the hands of her local hero stepfather
Kindle Edition, 281 pages
Published September 27th 2019 by TouchPoint Press
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Eileen O'Finlan
Nov 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Stevens has written a timely book for the #MeToo age. In Horseshoes and Hand Grenades we meet Shelby and Astrid, two young women just getting started in their professional careers. They are smart and capable and want to give their employers the best they have to offer. But for Astrid, a superior wants more than her professional talents and has no qualms about trying to force himself on her. He's a man with power in his professional milieu, so he can do and get what he wants, right? Though he is ...more
Aug 27, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Horseshoes and Hand Grenades tells a story in alternating viewpoints of the harassment that women face daily, on the street, at work, anywhere public really. It ranges from heartbreaking to infuriating and all the feelings in between.

Shelby and Astrid are both working in PR which was a tougher world in the '80s when the book takes place and there weren't a lot of women in their profession. Shelby has been carrying a secret from childhood, one that she has tried for so long to keep buried. But
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
trigger warnings: rape, sexual assualt, sexual harassment, coercion for sex, sexism, misogyny, PTSD (within characters), alcoholism, sexist slurs.

This novel is a dual perspective narration, from Shelby and Astrid, our main protagonists within the context of the 1980s. We meet these two characters when they are both working in public relations, in a corporate workplace setting which is conveyed in a very realistic and authentic manner – especially in terms of the contextual forms of misogyny and
Lel Budge
Jan 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Set in the 1980’s, this is a tale of abuse, including child abuse and sexual harassment in the workplace, on the streets and in women’s daily lives.

Told from the perspective of two women, Shelby and Astrid, as these two become friends and who have more in common than they think.

This deals with the trauma of abuse and how it affects lives daily and for many years after the event, affecting relationships and interactions with others.

I found this to be a beautifully written tale of a difficult and
I.J. Miller
Dec 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
HORSESHOES AND HAND GRENADES is a journey for everyone. Sexual abuse, workplace sexual harassment has come more to the forefront than when this 80's saga takes place, but it is still a subject that needs more scrutiny and understanding. So read this book. A window into how awful it feels even to be touched inappropriately (or worse), especially when its design is to make one person powerful and the other powerless. Yet there is always Shelby and Astrid take you through the tangled web ...more
Full review to follow on 2nd Feb!
Jan 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Horseshoes and Hand Grenades by S.M. Stevens is a look at the effects of sexual harassment in the workplace during the 1980s and how women were stuck with few options — tough it out or move to another company. It also examines the lasting effects of sexual molestation and abuse that occurs too often in the home — forever shaping the worldview of the children it directly impacts. Stevens is a talented storyteller and the book is a page-turner.

Read the full review:
Richard J.
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fine and sensitive treatment of a difficult subject in a fictional way that touches and teaches. A heartfelt book and well executed.
Sandra Lopez
Oct 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelby was just re-entering the dating scene and starting a new job. Astrid was a co-worker of Shelby’s. Right away, there seems to be some work tension between them. But can you blame them? Women are competition, after all.

Story starts off fairly slow as the girls navigate through the business structure of their industry, but it soon gravitates to the taboo side. For instance, Astrid has had a crush on her boss for a while, so she doesn’t seem to mind when he flirts with her or occasionally
Pamela J
Oct 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Horseshoes and hand grenades is quite a compelling story. Watching these two young talented women, Shelby and Astrid, as they try to make their way in this world with their Careers, relationships and home life isn’t an easy task.
While demons in Shelby’s past keep popping up to stir up memories full of pain. For Shelby secretly wonders how will she get over the child-abuse and the fear that no one would believe her?
For Astrid, How do you face your current abuser and still come out whole? It is
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book! The story will resonate with anyone who has experienced sexual abuse or harassment, which is pretty much most women today. The story drew me in from powerful page one. The story twists and turns as you follow the characters as they bond through the secrets of the past, to the challenges women face in the workplace.

The story is told through the alternating points of view of the main characters Shelby and Astrid. They are just starting their careers. Two seemingly very
Maureen Maliha
Nov 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
S.M Stevens’ beautifully articulated Horseshoes and Hand Grenades holds a mirror between the reader and the women it portrays. It is that relatable. You cannot look away-nor should you.

Stevens’ work stands solidly as a plainspoken depiction of women who travel a road far too many have shared. Her words are determined, yet lovingly drawn. A less capable writer may have needlessly substituted talking around an event rather than speaking her character’s truths and experiences in a straightforward
Jan 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you so much to the author, S. M. Stevens, for a free e-copy for review (all opinions expressed are my own). I feel I must also mention that I have never in my life been harassed, sexually or otherwise, so I cannot comment on the value this novel might have for victims, but I can say that it is eye opening and gave me insight into the minds and lives of those who have been harassed and abused, so I absolutely believe this is one novel that should be read by victims and non-victims alike, ...more
Julie Morris
Jan 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this book, to be honest. I tend to approach books that purport to have a message with a certain amount of trepidation, as they can often be a little preachy and earnest, which is not something I particularly enjoy in my fiction. However, I have to say that this book really took me by surprise, being thought-provoking and entertaining at the same time, and reaching the perfect balance of both.

This book follows the lives of two young women, Shelby and
Jacqueline  sharp
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Before I start my review on this book, I would just like to give a trigger warning as it does cover sexual harassment in the work place and incest. At times some of this was difficult for me to read not for the two reasons mentioned but another aspect of sexual

This is definitely a book written for the times we are currently living with the #Metoo age. The story is set in the 1980’s, it covers the types of harassment that women face, whether its on the street with a wolf whistle, or
Happy Booker
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Horseshoes and hand grenades is a story about two women who happen to experience abuse. Astrid happens to experience this from work and is severely affected by it. For Shelby things are different. She is scarred from a very young age. This matter influences her in so many ways. Her relationships are most often disrupted, her behavior is not stable, and she often feels sad.

The story takes an interesting turn when both women meet Tina and bond with each other through this matter. Each has their
Amy Atwood
rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2019
Mary Jo
rated it liked it
Dec 01, 2019
Kelly De Angelis
rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2019
S.M. Stevens
Sep 07, 2019 is currently reading it  ·  (Review from the author)
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S.M. Stevens is author of the #MeToo novel Horseshoes and Hand Grenades, nov available from TouchPoint Press.

A lifelong business writer who dabbled in creative writing on the side, Stevens found her opportunity to write fiction in earnest when she broke her pelvis in three places in a horseback riding fall. On crutches for three months and unable to commute to work, cook, clean or shuttle kids to