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Kathy and I are not old friends. In fact, our friendship is rather recent as we have explored each other’s blog posts early this year, discovering that we both were developing our writing skills after long, satisfying careers, hers in medicine and mine in education.

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In March, she featured me on a blog post describing my writing process and in May I published a preview of her memoir now published in July 2014. Beyond this, we have discovered that our values are rooted in a strong Christian faith.

Kathy Pooler’s memoir Ever Faithful to His Lead is a smooth read but with a tale that is often tumultuous. Her memoir unfolds like a novel with pleasing dialogue and silky descriptions of her prom dress and her hand-made wedding gown in stark contrast to the rocky road she travels to become a strong, assertive woman.

In the course of her journey, Kathy earns several academic degrees among them the distinguished Certified Family Nurse Practitioner qualification. Yet she stumbles with poor choices in love, choosing one wrong partner after another in her search for a stable marriage like that she imagined her parents’ to be. In fact, she admits early on that she can trace her “inability to discern dangerous situations to a lack of exposure to anything out of the ordinary.”

Readers can applaud the resilient woman emerging from the frightened person who hid from her first husband in her hallway closet to a woman who is finally able to trust her own instincts. Her candor and vulnerability appear on every page. Kathy often pulls the reader aside to contemplate her motivation, as for example: “I was always second-guessing myself, quickly shoving doubts aside to paint the picture of what I needed the world to be.”

When you as reader want to snatch the blinders off the writer’s eyes and yell “Stop!” into her ears, you know the author has succeeded in pulling you into her world. This memoir is a cautionary tale for anyone on an elusive search for Mr. Right. For anyone already in an abusive relationship, Kathy’s story offers courage and hope. Admitting it is time to make big-girl choices, her last chapter promises, “Raw, hopeful, ready to dance to my own song—my new faith waiting patiently in the background.”

The book concludes with nine discussion questions for book clubs and a “Share the Hope” section with the notation that each purchase contributes toward the National Coalition of Domestic Violence Awareness Association. Author Pooler is already at work on a sequel: Hope Matters.

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You can buy Kathy Pooler’s book at Goodreads and Amazon.

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Coming next: My Mother’s Recitations

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