Book Review – Get a Life, Chloe Brown

 

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

Title: Get a Life, Chloe Brown
Author: Talia Hibbert
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: November 5th
Ratings: ♥♥♥♥♥

Goodreads Summary: 

Talia Hibbert, one of contemporary romance’s brightest new stars, delivers a witty, hilarious romantic comedy about a woman who’s tired of being “boring” and recruits her mysterious, sexy neighbor to help her experience new things—perfect for fans of Sally Thorne, Jasmine Guillory, and Helen Hoang.

Chloe Brown is a chronically ill computer geek with a goal, a plan, and a list. After almost—but not quite—dying, she’s come up with seven directives to help her “Get a Life”, and she’s already completed the first: finally moving out of her glamourous family’s mansion. The next items?

Enjoy a drunken night out.
Ride a motorcycle.
Go camping.
Have meaningless but thoroughly enjoyable sex.
Travel the world with nothing but hand luggage.
And… do something bad.
But it’s not easy being bad, even when you’ve written step-by-step guidelines on how to do it correctly. What Chloe needs is a teacher, and she knows just the man for the job.

Redford ‘Red’ Morgan is a handyman with tattoos, a motorcycle, and more sex appeal than ten-thousand Hollywood heartthrobs. He’s also an artist who paints at night and hides his work in the light of day, which Chloe knows because she spies on him occasionally. Just the teeniest, tiniest bit.

But when she enlists Red in her mission to rebel, she learns things about him that no spy session could teach her. Like why he clearly resents Chloe’s wealthy background. And why he never shows his art to anyone. And what really lies beneath his rough exterior…

As I’ve gone on this journey with my reading, I’ve experienced different cultures, ethnicities, social status, orientation, you name it! I’ve been able to find myself in stories centered on mental health and body image, but I’ve never seen a story with a main character who has chronic pain, until this book,

After narrowly missing a near death accident, Chloe Brown wants to live a more fulfilling life—despite living with the chronic pain illness, fibromyalgia.  Her first step is to move out of her parent’s house and into an apartment where she meets the landlord, Red, who helps her live a little.

Reading a book with chronic illness representation—especially fibromyalgia—really made me emotional. Seeing my disorder written on the page (page 10, no less!) is something I never knew I needed. You could tell it’s an own voices novel and written with so much care and insight. I felt like I was sitting there on the couch with Chloe, bundled up on the couch and going through a flare. Or using a chair in the kitchen just to cook a simple dinner.

The romance was so wonderful to read. Red worshipped Chloe; he thought everything about her was intriguing. He didn’t treat her with kid gloves after learning about her condition, but he supports her in such a positive way. He wants to understand and listen to the woman he loves.

This book means a lot to me and I just want shout it from the rooftops. I want to thank Talia Hibbert for writing this book and educating readers that women with chronic pain and chronic illness can be sexy and desirable.

I won this ARC from a Goodreads giveaway

Ten Years

Knowing the exact date you got sick is a blessing and a curse. Going to doctors I’m able to give them a very concise history of when everything started. However, I’m constantly reminded of that day, every year. I’ve talked a lot about my chronic pain journey—especially when it comes to my brain tumor—but I thought today, on this morbid anniversary, I would give you some insight into how this all started.Read More »

Taboo Topics About Chronic Pain

“How much pain for how long is OK before it’s acceptable to just give up?”

Ever since finding the website the Mighty, I’ve had so many more instances of acceptance when it comes to my chronic pain. When you’re diagnosed so young—20-years old is pretty young for a life-long condition in my book—it’s easy to feel so alone. Unknowingly, you start to isolate yourself from friends and family and start to feel like no one else could ever understand how you feel.

The other day I came across an article on the Mighty titled: “18 Taboo Topics About Chronic Illness You’re Not the Only One Having.” It felt as if the dark and gloomy sky had opened up and the sun starting shining down on me. I was finally being heard. Here are some of my favorite topics that come directly from the Mighty community:

“I actually look forward to procedures that require anesthesia because I get to go right to sleep. That’s so sad to me.”

“[I worry] nobody will love me because I’m sick.”

“I think about how much I dread going to the doctor. I hope I have enough symptoms to have them believe me and take me seriously. But I don’t want enough symptoms and hurt going on to warrant a crash. It’s complicated.”

“I think pretty regularly that I’m a burden to everyone around me, and that if only I wasn’t sick. I have been known to think I would be better not being here, not that I want to die, just that my life isn’t exactly worth it because I don’t really do anything. I’m ‘failing.’”

“My taboo thoughts have always been that I hope my tests come back showing something. More clues as to what is going on or why it is happening. Most of my test results come back normal or just ever so slightly off. Nothing is ever off the charts or crazy enough to get the attention I feel I need.

“Any drug that makes me sleepy or slightly ‘stoned’ I love.”

“I feel frustrated every single day. Because the person I am now can’t even do 10 percent of the things I could do before I was sick. I’m constantly irritated and grouchy due to frustration.”

I no longer felt so alone. I’ve had some version of these thoughts ever since I’ve been sick. These aren’t things I can talk about with other people, especially people who have no idea what you’re going through. And to the outside world, I have a wonderful middle-class life filled with a supportive family, successful friends, and financial stability. But if you take the time to look closer, you would see that those successful friends don’t have time for you and that financial stability comes from your parents because you’re unable to work and provide for yourself. We try to put up a front, but on the inside our thoughts are dark and lonely. Knowing there are people out there that share your thoughts—share your pain—the world doesn’t feel so alone anymore.

Here is the original article if you would want to check it out~

My Experience with Cefaly Migraine Prevention

I didn’t get much out of my trip to the Mayo Clinic in December of 2017. I was there to be evaluated for everything. Having been sick for so long, we were at a point where we would do just about anything to narrow down a diagnosis. I had one of the most elaborate and detailed neuro and general exams, tons of tests, and they took nine vials of my blood! Eight days in Rochester, Minnesota (in the snow!) and all I really learned was that my brain tumor hadn’t grown any bigger and that I was lactose intolerant.

Read More »