Cover Image: Don't Make Me Turn this Life Around

Don't Make Me Turn this Life Around

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Member Reviews

This book was much more intense that Pagan’s previous work. Illness, loss, natural disasters, and divorce are all topics covered in her newest book. Pagan gives as a bittersweet ending that made me wish for more from this group of characters.

As a fan of “Don’t Make Me Turn This Life Around”, I recommend this one to readers who enjoy realistic family drama and tough choices.
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Really enjoyed this book - the cover art pops and I would definitely pick it up just for that reason.

All in all this book is about relationships, love, and communication.  Libby is scared that she and her husband are just coasting in their relationship.  I really liked that this book gave a realistic picture of the ups and downs of life and marriage - it's not always sunshine and roses..  Not everything will go as planned, there are always going to be bad and hard things to deal with in any relationship.  Libby and Shiloh learn that they  need to communicate more effectively and that they are going to be just fine.  I appreciated this book as a realistic picture of marriage!  

Additionally this book made Puerto Rico sound like a magical place.  It is now high on my list of vacation destinations.  I am glad that the author also makes a point to talk about the devastation of Hurricane Maria and the slow rebuilding process/lack of assistance for rebuilding.
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Thank you Net Galley for the opportunity to read this book.
3.5 stars

Don't Make Me Turn this Life Around was a good storyline, but I just found it too bogged down with lessons. I almost felt like it was a fictional self-help book or a parable used for teaching lessons about life.  I don't mind that, but it just didn't land for me.
To summarize the book as quickly as possible, it is a book about a family with issues that all almost any family has. This story takes you through some medical, familial, and natural disasters. It shows how this small family navigates the storms.

I get that bad luck happens and most of the time it happens in a relatively short amount of time. Really, it was too much for such a short book. I found it repetitive and thought it could use some editing. I didn't hate it at all. It's a good story. I just think some editing would have helped. It didn't  flow as well as it could have.
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This was my first book by this author, It was pretty enjoyable. I would give this book a 3.5 star rating! It was a pretty Quick and easy read!
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This was my first book by Camille Pagan; the synopsis had me intrigued and the reviews on NetGalley and GoodReads left me feeling confident this would be a light and fun read. Unfortunately, around the 25% mark, I'm calling this a Did Not Finish. Libby has had quite the life up until present, a lot of hardships to deal with that would not doubt leave some people looking for the worst in everything; and with with good reason. However, her character seemed to be a "woe is me" and 'everything' felt like a problem and another wya to complain. If there had been more positive parts in between the complaining it might have been easier the read but honestly, I felt dragged down and fluctuated between feeling sad and annoyed. I understand I'm in the minority with my feelings towards this book, and maybe it would have turned around had I stuck with it longer, but knowing that there was going to be 'one thing after another' on vacation, I chose not to force myself to continue reading something I was already struggling with.
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It was so wonderful hanging out again with Libby from Life and Other Near-Death Experiences. Some characters live in your heart forever and Libby is definitely one that lives in my heart. 13 years after we last saw Libby, her life has certainly changed. She is married to Shiloh and they have beautiful 12 year old twin daughters! Libby is waiting for her scans to come back telling her if she is still cancer free. Shiloh is still a pilot and he is working quite a lot. Libby has been feeling down and when the chance to go to Vieques, she gathers up her family and they go. The vacation and seeing Milagros again is just what she hopes will get her out of her funk. From a hurricane in Puerto Rico to normal life in New York, it was a heartwarming story of love and family. It was wonderful seeing Libby and Shiloh's life together and I am so hoping for another book with these awesome characters. I received an advanced readers copy and all opinions are my own.
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Thank you to NetGalley for this ARC.  Libby finally receives the news she wants to hear - cancer free for 10 years.  However, her home life isn't what she wants it to be.  Her 12 year old twins are constantly fighting, her daughter has just been diagnosed with diabetes and her and her husband just can't connect.  They decide to jump on a plan and fly to Vieques where her and her husband met.  Maybe a change of scenery will help though nothing can go right!  This book was pretty good.  #don'tmakemeturnthislifearound #camillepagan #May2021
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DON’T MAKE ME TURN THIS LIFE AROUND by Camille Pagan kept me reading through the night.  I know that Pagan always delivers well-written and compulsive reads, with characters that jump off the page and into your heart.  This book centers around Libby and her navigation of her family.  While much is predictable, mystery is not what this novel is about.  It has all the feels and makes you feel like you are there with Libby and Shiloh and the twins during the hardest days of their lives as they weather an emotional and a physical storm together.  A wonderful and hopeful read.  I received an Advance Review Copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
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This was my favorite from this author - the characters were so relatable and interesting! I wish we got more details from the perspectives of the kids though, that would have been interesting.

Thanks to publisher and NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Libby has reached ten years cancer free. Its great news, but she cant help feeling off. She feels like she is losing her family, buy a trip back to where she and Shiloh fell in love will surely bring their family back together right? Her positive attitude will make everything better. Except that everything that can go wrong does. Will Libby be able to save her family?

This was such a wonderful story of facing hard times and trying to find your way through them. It was hard to read at times, but I needed to know what was going on with Shiloh, and I was rooting for the vacation to make things better right alojngside Libby. Milagros was one of the best characters, she was the friend that becomes family, and it made me so happy Libby had her ton lean on. I have loved Pagans books in the past and this one did not disappoint!
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I am a long-time fan of Camille Pagan's writing and Don't Make Me Turn This Life Around reminds me of why. This heartfelt book is filled with emotion as Libby's life has been one hard hit after another. When she gets the all clear on her 10-year cancer check-up, she should feel happy, but sometimes life's emotions don't make sense. As her husband grows more distant, her twin preteens grow more moody, and she feels like she is falling deeper and deeper, she decides to visit a dear friend in Puerto Rico and hopefully pull her family back into synergy at the same time. 

I found myself incredibly emotional during this book. I could relate to Libby's character quite a bit, but that is why this book was so difficult for me to read. Each chapter added one more emotional layer, and even the ending was bittersweet. There was never any release from the heaviness for a well needed contrast. I highly recommend this book, but it may affect more sensitive readers.

4.5 stars/5
Content warning: cancer, stroke, heart attack, grief, parenting a sickly child, divorce, depression, marital issues

Advanced copy provided courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Coming soon!
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Stunning cover and catchy title. 

I enjoy Camille Pagan’s writing—full of wit and clever analogies. 

I laughed out loud many times while reading this novel. It’s so relatable, just like all of her books.

Don’t Make Me Turn This Life Around is an emotional journey of a woman who views life through rose-colored glasses but seems to be at a loss when they slip off and get stepped on, as most people would be.

This is the much anticipated sequel to Life and Other Near-Death Experiences. I couldn’t wait to read this to see how Libby’s life had turned out over the past thirteen years. She’s married to Shiloh, birthed twin girls, is still friends with Milagros, and even started her own foundation. And ten years cancer free! But, after losing her father, life just doesn’t feel the same.

Maybe returning to Puerto Rico with her family and recreating some memories will help fix her funk? You’ll have to read it to see!

My two favorite characters, besides Libby, are her brother Paul and Milagros. The dynamics between Libby and these two are heartwarming and endearing. Most of my laughs erupted with their engagement. I highlighted so many sentences to revisit.

The lesson I took away from this book is that it’s okay not to be okay, and to acknowledge this is a better way of living—because often, “Repression turns into depression.”

This is a fast read and I highly recommend it.

Thank you to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing for this gifted ARC.
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first fell in love with Camille Pagan's books when I read Life and Other Near Death Experiences, so I have been eagerly anticipating this sequel. It was so so nice to catch back up with Libby and see where her life had taken her. I enjoyed seeing how she had grown since the last book and getting to know her family.  This book is heartwrenching but also makes you feel good and want to hug your family.  ⭐⭐⭐⭐💫My only problem is that now I need another book to see what happens next!
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Thanks to Netgalley for the book. But sadly, I didn't finish the book. I kept getting lost in between. The language of the book was way to colloquial. The author has received several good reviews of her books. Somehow this book didn't work for me.
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Libby has just been declared cancer free. She should be over the moon right? But she’s not. She’s worried that her husband is slipping away, her daughters no longer need her, and she’s dissatisfied at her job. What is the answer? A trip! A trip that is the trip from hell, with everything going wrong that could go wrong. However, all is not lost. Libby emerges from the storm with a stronger bond with her girls and husband. The ending leaves readers hanging on one issue, but perhaps it’s better that way. Sometimes not knowing is better than knowing. I liked this breezy read, with some heavy topics, but still a beach read.
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I am a big fan of Camille Pagan’s previous books, including her early book that this was a sequel to, Life and Other Near Death Experiences, so I was excited to get an advanced copy of this book, out 5/11/21. So I’m sorry to say I was disappointed by this one. Libby and Shiloh have been married for 13 years and have 12 year old twin daughters. But despite being declared ten years cancer-free at the beginning of the book, Libby spends most of the book seriously unhappy - fearing her marriage is in a rut, worried about her daughter’s type 1 diabetes, grieving her dead father, etc. A trip to Puerto Rico, where they first met, seems like the answer, but comes with its own challenges. What was missing for me in this one was Pagan’s trademark humor (despite the book being incorrectly described by the publisher’s blurb as “seriously funny”). Based on the cover, and her previous books, I was expecting something more escapist and fun, not something so downbeat. It was interesting to see the characters again though, and I did like the ending, and will definitely keep Pagan on my must read list.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publishing house for providing a review copy of this novel. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Camille Pagan is back with another contemporary fiction read that will be hitting store shelves on May 11th!

When Libby Ross gets the news that she is cancer-free, she is surprised to not really feel *more* alive.

With a spouse that has felt distant and a daughter that requires lots of health monitoring, she knows that the one thing her family could use most is a getaway.

Where better to escape than to the Puerto Rican island where she fell in love and try to rekindle their lost spark?

What she could never expect though is that a tropical storm would hit the island and challenge her in ways that she did not think possible.

Pagan delivers a relatable motherhood journey and all of the struggles that middle age bring to us.

Bigger than that are the beautiful reminders of the importance of family, especially in times of struggle, that we really need right now.
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Don’t Make Me Turn This Life Around by Camille Pagán 

What an emotional rollercoaster! Following Libby, who was just declared cancer-free at her ten year oncology appointment, has it all - successful marriage, twin teenage daughters, a fulfilling career, and apparently, her health. She’s always been known for her optimism, but somehow since the death of her father, she’s more apt to see the glass half empty. Looking for a way to gain some perspective and possibly her spark back, she books tickets to fly her family to a Puerto Rican island where over a decade ago she met her husband in a magical way. Disasters ensue. 

My first novel by this author, I was very intrigued - she’s got a big backlist of books that all sound fantastic. As far as introductions go, I will certainly be adding more of her work to my ever-growing to be read list! I enjoyed this one. It’s surprisingly emotional, with thoughtful and inspiring insights. Character development is realistic and the relationships between characters are moving. It was a bit repetitive at times, and some of the action seemed a bit much (I mean, when it rains it really pours in Libby’s life!) but overall a solid read. 

I’d recommend this for someone looking for an emotional read, life-affirming but not toxically positive, and who enjoys stories about relationships (familial and marital). Overall: liked it! 3.5⭐️ 

Thank you very much to Lake Union Publishing and to Netgalley for access to an e-copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Keep an eye out for this one - publishes May 11, 2021!
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What can I say about this book?! Simply put, it's amazing. Camille Pagán's books always manage to pull a whole range of emotions from me. Happiness, sadness, frustration, relief, joy. She writes it all and she writes it well! 

When I signed up for this ARC, I had no idea it was the continuation of Libby and Shiloh's story. When I realized it, I yelled in excitement! Life And Other Near-Death Experiences is one of my favorite books and I was so happy to slide back into Libby's story. 

My heart broke for Libby's struggles and the obstacles the other characters face. This book drew out so much empathy and compassion from me for the main characters. I had suspicions about certain events unfolding which kept the story moving for me as I was eager for answers. 

There were scenes when I wanted to shake Libby and tell her to communicate, but eventually she got to the level of self realization that Pagán's characters always reach. In a few profound scenes, the author wrote about mental health with compassion and kindness, and we see Libby grow to understand certain battles she's been fighting within herself.

This book is a gem and I highly recommend it! If you love Pagán's other novels, this one is sure to capture your heart as well.
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Life is a curious journey. This is the story about Libby and Shiloh, their family, their dreams, their achievements and their needs. They are going through a rough period. But life is sometimes unpredictable. They are going to face hard tests and will have to think about priorities. Will they be able to learn to appreciate what's been given while it lasts? Will they survive the challenge?
I liked the pace the author worked through the pages, and the characters were well developed. I'll recommend this book without thinking it twice. It's absolutely fulfilling.
Thank you Netgalley for the chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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