Review: I would first like to thank TLC Book Tours and Ecco for sending me a finished copy of MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR in exchange for a fair and honest review.
MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR by Noelle Hancock is a terrific read filled with humor and heart. Hancock’s voice often reminded me of Carrie’s in Sex and the City and Bridget in Bridget Jones Diary. Although, MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR is a memoir, it felt very much like a good fiction book. I had to keep reminding myself that it is, in fact, non-fiction.
I could easily relate to Hancock who is a writer and was laid off from her job as an entertainment blogger. I always thought it would be interesting to write about celebrities, and if you take a gander at Hancock’s bio, you’ll see she’s written about well known people for a long time for various publications. Hancock has some hilarious one-liners about celebrities.
But when Noelle is forced to take a look at her life and what she really wants from it after her lay off, she realizes she has to take that next step and conquer her fears. Even actor Joaquin Phoenix asked her once if writing about celebrities and reality stars was what she really wanted to do with her life.
One day, while sitting in a coffee shop notices a quote by Eleanor Roosevelt on a bulletin board: “Do one thing every day that scares you.” Hancock takes the words to heart and sets out on a “Year of Fear” as she calls it — doing everything from flying on a trapeze and volunteering in a hospital to sky diving and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro just to name a few — before her thirteenth birthday. Some of things Noelle did had me sitting on edge and wondering…will she or won’t she?
Throughout Noelle’s adventures and experiences, she interweaves Eleanor Roosevelt’s own plight of overcoming her fears: such as her fear of heights and water and her own shyness. I enjoyed learning more about Eleanor Roosevelt than just what has been written out her as the First Lady. Each chapter starts out with a memorable and insightful quote from Roosevelt which also sums up what the chapter will be about. So in a sense, MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR is not only Noelle’s story but also Eleanor’s.
MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR is told in a breezy style which makes it a perfect summer beach read! With friends, former colleagues, family members and her boyfriend, including her funny and encouraging therapist Dr. Bob by her side, Hancock accomplishes her goals and more.
MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR is a compelling read that will make the reader question their own fears. I certainly have! — Although, I’m not sure if I’m willing to go sky diving or ready to grab the bar of a trapeze without a net — quite yet. Several things I would love to overcome are my fear of public speaking, procrastination and making the move when it comes to dating…so you never know what this year brings! Thanks Noelle for inspiring my own “Year of Fear”!
I’m giving MY YEAR WITH ELEANOR 5 “Relaxing with a Good Book” retro pictures for being hilariously inspirational!
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