Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Gracie's Diary; a book review
Many of you might know Bobbi and Gracie through their blog Gracie Owns Me. Gracie is an adorable dog who let's say has a way to be mischievous and get into a lot of trouble, but deep down she is deeply loved by Bobbi and like most pets brings much love and happiness and laughs to her family.
Bobbi recently wrote and had published a book (Gracie's Diary, a Memoir) about her and her second husband, Gary, meeting online, their relationship before marriage, their marriage and early years, their agreeing to get a dog, Gracie, the chaos Gracie caused at times, and the struggles Gary had in dealing with his ex-wife over issues to be able to see his then young daughter after their divorce despite his best efforts to continue to try to have a relationship with her, which included at times 12 hour drives to where she lived, only to be rejected by his ex-wife to not see his daughter.
After the book was published, Bobbi had a contest on her blog to give away the books. I entered the contest but told her regardless if I won or lost the contest, I would still get a copy of the book, even if I bought it, and read it and review it on my blog. As luck would have it, I was one of six winners and received a copy of Gracie's Diary, a Memoir, to read.
What struck me about the book was Bobbi's and Gary's willingness to have their life written in pages of a book that would be read by total strangers as well as friends and acquaintances. They had some very tough years of adjusting to married life together, fixing up their first home together in West Virginia, adapting to a puppy that basically refused to be potty trained, as well as dealing with their children from their respective previous marriages. I ached as I read some of their struggles for there were painful ones and painful lessons learned.
Gary truly did his best to try to maintain a relationship with his young daughter despite his ex-wife doing everything she could to prevent such a relationship, but in the end he realized the relationship would only happen after his daughter was an adult and if she was strong enough to be able to get past the brainwashing that had been done to her for years regarding her father and other family members. He became instrumental in offering support to other parents going through similar situations.
Through it all, Gracie provided to be that comic relief that they often needed despite her antics of destroying this or that.
In the end of the book, there is no resolution to the relationship between father and daughter, but there is acceptance life will go on. Several wonderful things do happen in Bobbi's and Gary's life including birth of grandchildren.
It is a book of a couple's life together. Of trying to blend together families, of trying to adapt to each other, of dealing with the struggles that life throws us. Of determination, of hope, of love, of commitment, of God working in their lives.
I truly did enjoy reading the book. I've been reading Bobbi's blog for over two years now. Her wit and humor in writing Gracie's take of things can be hilarious at times. I particularly liked the entry when she mentioned perhaps getting a king size bed so that there would be room for the two of them plus Gracie and Gary's take that Gracie would still manage to hog the majority of the bed. I could definitely relate to that.
I do have to admit the book was painful to read at times seeing the struggles they had early on in their marriage and life together, but in the end they have persevered and are still together, still in love with each other despite the obstacles. It is a story of love and a story of a dog that kind of ties them all together.
It is a good read and I would highly recommend the book and Bobbi's blog.