HORSE SHOES AND HAND GRENADES BY S.M.Stevens

MY REVIEW

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 abuse.

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 something inappropriate in the work place.

The two main characters are Shelby and Astrid, both young women just embarking on their professional career paths of choice. In PR which was a much tougher environment in the 80’s for women. Being a mainly male orientated profession. Both women are intelligent, smart and capable and are determined to work hard and get the recognition they deserve once they prove themselves. Still a little strange that in this day and age women are still having to work harder to get the same recognition a man gets for at times doing less. Not in all cases I hasten to add. They are co-workers

Unfortunately Astrid’s boss isn’t just looking at her professional capabilities he is looking for more, and it doesn’t seem to bother him about forcing his attention or should I say intentions on her. He is a powerful man so feels that gives him entitlements, where Astrid is concerned. But he is not successful in his endeavour, but for Astrid this behaviour both inappropriate and violent has left it’s mark.

Shelby has already been scarred, she has been sexually violated during her childhood, it’s a secret she has kept in, which can lead to disrupted lives, a lack of self worth, leading to wrong behaviours. But the toughest thing Shelby has to deal with is the ones who should be their for her aren’t , because they admire and respect her abuser, so trivialise what she has been through. Shelby is trying to keep Astrid happy whilst hiding this, keeping it buried within herself. She drinks a lot, which is one of the ways she blocks things out.

But together Astrid and Shelby, along with a good friend Tina, can gain strength, support each other, and help each other to realise that no these actions are not trivial, they are real, and they should not have happened, they shouldn’t be hidden. They should be brought out into the open.

This is about women finding the strength, being empowered and not letting, the abuse define them, because that’s not who they are. I loved the characters in this book, as they are relatable and likeable, and you really want them to come out on top. it was good to see the women bonding and finding the strength with each other. The writer shows the effects of abuse on the women well.

I give this book ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ well written, a difficult subject addressed in a respectful way.

I would like to thank #SMStevens for a copy of this book in exchange for a fair, honest and unbiased review.


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