Bittersweet Surrender by Diann Hunt

Bittersweet Surrender is the story of Carly, a cancer survivor who has a chocolate spa.  She is an amazing character, her body feels broken (to her) and she’s lost so many people that she cared for.  She had a mastectomy and her husband left her, letting her know that he felt she wasn’t enough.  Her father has recently passed away and her best friend died in a car crash.  This book is not about who and what she’s lost but rather what she does have.  She has her faith and God has given her the spirit of resilience and strong supporting cast.  A crazy step mother, the widower of her best friend a brother and sister in law (that rely on her and she can rely on)and cast of secondary characters that keep life interesting.

I have to mention (fcc and all) that I received this book for free in exchange for a review.  The review is my own and not required to be positive (that wouldn’t be right now would it)

Bittersweet Surrender opens in Carly’s spa, with interactions with her employees and customers.  Scott (Carly’s best friend’s Ivy’s husband) is working in the spa trying to help with bookkeeping and taxes).  He keeps chocolate in his pocket because he knows she’s needs it.  Scott becomes her jogging partner and determined to help her lose weight.  She wants to drop 20 pounds because she has been emailing Jake, her brother’s best friend and Carly’s crush from high school.   Magnolia is her step mother, she makes an offer to let Magnolia stay with her.  There’s some funny moments where Magnolia’s bad healthy cooking, drum playing and sleepwalking make this story amusing.  We find out that Magnolia is Scott’s mother in law.

Jake and his daughter come to town and bring another fold and dynamic to the story.  A nice twist!  Jake and CJ (Carly’s brother) have a secret.  CJ has gambling debts and continually borrows money from Carly.  She is trying to save for breast reconstruction.  When CJ asks for $5000, she realizes enough is enough and she has to tell him no.  Like most addicts, he loses it and gets really upset.  Through CJ’s wife Rita, we feel the ups and downs of the spouse of an addict.  We learn some ugly truths about some of the characters that I sort of figured out half way thru the book (it did not take away from the book at all, at this point you want to see how the ends get tied up).  I won’t give away any spoilers or secrets.  Do they end up with who they started with?  Does Carly get reconstructive surgery?  Does she throttle Magnolia?  Give the book a read and let’s chit chat.

I need a nifty little thumb thingy so I can say, I give this book four thumbs up!


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