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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Book Review and Giveaway: These Boots Weren't Made for Walking by Melody Carlson

This is a light bit of fluff -- easy reading but not really stirring or inspiring.
These Boots Weren't Made for Walking
by Melody Carlson
  • Paperback: 314 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook Press; First Edition edition (June 19, 2007)
  • ISBN-10: 1400073138
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400073139
Genre: Christian Chick Lit
My Rating: 3.5 of 5.0 (See more positive reviews at Amazon link.)

Book Description
Publication Date: February 19, 2009
Willing to make the necessary sacrifices–even skipping the occasional latte–to ensure career success, 31-year-old Cassidy Cantrell “invests” in a chic pair of boots, certain they’ll make a spectacular impression and help seal the deal on a long-anticipated promotion from her Seattle employer.

But reality tromps all over her expectations. Cassie’s job is abruptly eliminated–and her love life obliterated, when her longtime boyfriend dumps her for a “friend.” Her self-esteem in tatters, Cassie limps home to the resort town she once so eagerly fled–only to find her recently divorced mother transformed into a gorgeous fifty-something babe with a thriving social life. Cassie wrestles with envy and apathy as she considers the dismal shape of her own physique and romantic prospects. What will it take for her to jump back into life and regain her stride?

This sassy and hilarious novel leads readers on a romp through the wilds of relationships, romance, career, and spirituality, revealing that, while God’s plans may look drastically different than our own, it’ll always be a perfect fit.

As one of the ladies in my book club declared: “Cassie is a mess!” She just spent hundreds of dollars on a pair of Valentino boots which look stunning, but are sorely lacking in comfort. She winces off to work where she anticipates a promotion only to be told that her entire division is being cut. To add to that injury, her fiancé belatedly shows up to announce that ‘we’re just not making it’ and leaves Cassie stunned to learn he is dating someone they met in their church singles group.

Cassie falls into a depression, locked in her apartment and overeating to combat her sadness. As she drifts in this morass funk, she learns that someone, her neighbor ‘friend’ she thinks, has stolen her brand new, unsigned credit card, and maxed it out. When she barges next door to challenge the girl, she discovers that Monica has abandoned the apartment to her live-in, dead-beat boyfriend, Will.

Since misery loves company Cassie and Will strike up an unlikely friendship. Cassie is surprised to learn that Will is actually a great chef and he decides to clean up his act and get a job. When job searching is unsuccessful for Cassie she decides to move back to her resort community home until she can get her feet back under her. She figures that she can comfort her mother who has had to deal with rejection the past year when Cassie’s father left her for a younger woman.

Cassie arrives home, still struggling with her weight gain and scrambled life, only to discover her mother has made herself over into a svelte, toned woman. Cassie doesn’t want to think of her mom as a ‘cougar’ but she totally resents her mother for getting her life together and ‘hanging out’ with a man that Cassie went to high school with.

Cassie continues to flounder while some old friends urge her to get back to church. Another friend encourages her to find a job that suits her passion. Will Cassie find a suitable job and, now that she is looking for a new marriage mate, will she find the right guy?

There are some funny moments in the book – our favorite being Cassie in a bear costume tumbling down the ski slope - ouch! There are a few spot-on tidbits of inspiration – like finding a job that suits your passion. And there is the message that we have to get to a point where we let go trying to fix things and allow God to work things out. Unfortunately, the good messages are buried in a mess of poor self image, depression, obsessive behaviors (overeating) and misplaced priorities (shopping for new clothes to look and feel better). Most of my ladies book club members felt this book was a mix of fluff and soap opera and mostly not our cup of tea.

However, now that I am writing the review, I see that these negative behaviors served the purpose of showing the mess Cassie was in and showing the only way out was to stop focusing on those negatives and allow God to work with the positives. Maybe are group just had a hard time relating to the depression that Cassie experienced so it overshadowed the “sassy and hilarious” parts of the story.

Although we weren’t going to purposefully choose another book by Ms. Carlson it turns out that our December read, which I purchased for the group over a year ago, is also by Ms. Carlson. So we will be giving her a second chance to inspire us and show why she was recently honored with a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award.

We picked this up to read for Ladies Book Club.
ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY for my and another gently read copy:   TWO COPIES - TWO WINNERS.

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* This contest is open to those with US or Canadian address.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on October 18, 2013.
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED on or after October 19, 2013.
Winners will have 72 hours to respond by email or the winners form linked in the announcement.


  1. What I found that was very interesting was that the author and her husband also have a renovated a beach cabin. That would be awesome!!

  2. Wow! She has published over 200 books. And she wrote the book Grace Unplugged for the movie that is currently playing.

  3. I like how Melody's website is setup. I also found it interesting that she and her husband really appreciate nature and that they started their own mini farm.

  4. One of her favorite books is To Kill a Mockingbird.

  5. She sold over five million books

  6. Melody has been writing professionally for over twenty years.

  7. they have two pets — a yellow Labrador retriever Audrey and a Maine coon cat named Harry.

    tiramisu392 (at)


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