Miracle in a Dry Season    Dangerous Passage





A Mile In My Flipflops by Melody Carlson

Reviewed by Melissa J. Carswell

"...a light hearted and humorous read."

Gretchen, eighteen months post-jilt, is still hiding behind Ben and Jerry’s, HGTV, and wedding gifts bought for herself before the harsh reality of no wedding made itself evident. Instead of a husband, she has a dog. Instead of her dream home, she has an apartment that is cluttered and littered with solo shoes, their companions being consumed by her dog in an ironic symbolism of her own discarded heart.

Coming to a rude awakening one day as she catches a glimpse of her Ben and Jerry thighs, Gretchen decides it’s time for a life change. She decides she needs to re-invent herself. How better to do that than put into practice everything she’s observed the past eighteen months on HGTV—flip a house?

After convincing her dad to back her up financially and be her consultant, Gretchen buys the house that will be transformed. No matter that the house reeks as bad as her life and that the back yard has been fertilized by dogs. Gretchen needs a purpose and she decides this house is it.

Of course, nothing can go smoothly in this venture. It is after all, Gretchen’s fairy tale life. Fairy tale life, in that it has a villain and a crisis but the happily-ever-after ending eludes her. Hardly surprising, are the unplanned complications with the house which eat away Gretchen’s profit margin, her father’s heart attack which takes him out of the picture, and a too-handsome-for-his-own-good construction worker entering the picture. Gretchen seems to have jumped from the pan right into the fire. Adding to her misery, she begins to really notice the good looking construction worker despite her attempts to sternly tell herself not to notice him, because he is “divorced and had a child” and that screams out, “Dangerous. Baggage! Don’t touch with a ten-foot pole!”

A Mile in My Flip-Flops proves predictable at times (is it any surprise that there are house crisis and a handsome guy in the story line?). But despite this, the book is a light hearted and humorous read. Throw in some cuteness via an adorable little girl, and it’s a well rounded story that most single women will enjoy reading and find glimpses of their own lives in.

Melissa J. CarswellMelissa J. Carswell: Melissa is a Board Certified Christian Counselor. However, due to the appearance of a little bundle of Miracle in the past year, the counseling practice is now on indefinite hold. Instead, Melissa has entered the world of freelance writing from home. She is currently one of the content writers for TotallyHer.com (to be launched in September of 2008). Melissa has a passion for mentoring teen girls and young women and does so whenever possible. Her heart longing, along with her husband, is to use her education and credentials someday to have a home full of abandoned, abused, and terminally ill childen. They are still waiting for God's hand to unfold that particular chapter of their lives. When Melissa isn't changing diapers, doing laundry, cooking meals, mentoring the afore-mentioned young women, tending to her garden, being her husband's biggest fan, and soaking in every cuddly moment with her daughter, she reads and she writes. It is not unusual to see 2-3 books laying around the house at any given time and the hard drive to her computer houses several partially-written manuscripts to the secret dreamed-of-published books Melissa hopes for in the future. You can check out A Weak Rose here.