A Woman's Voice

Book Reviews ~ 12 Steps 12 Stories Spiritual Messages of Recovery for Children and the Child in You

Debra Alessandra12 Steps12 Stories
Spiritual Messages of Recovery for Children and the Child in You by Author Debra Alessandra

Motivational/Inspirational Author Debra Alessandra has a special gift. She is making every effort to reach out to children to help them understand and overcome the struggles of having a family member/loved one who is dealing with the negative consequences of alcoholism.

12 Steps 12 Stories consists of just that…12 delightful and easy to understand tales that coincide with the 12 steps to the recovery program offered to those with an addiction to alcohol. At the beginning of the book, Author Debra Alessandra adeptly explains the disease of alcoholism and its three dimensional parts of mind, body, and spirit. She states that “the alcoholic has lost their connection to a Power Greater than themselves.” She further extrapolates on the 12 step recovery program.

In her noble effort to help children cope with this debilitating disease, Author Debra Alessandra utilizes colorful characters and illustrations to reinforce each step that a recovering alcoholic is actually facing. In doing so, she creatively and effectively takes the child through the program along with the recovering alcoholic so that they can better understand the experiences of the parent or loved one. This process is a “valuable resource” for the parent as it may “help the children you love feel comforted, included, and valued”.

This children’s book is definitely an enjoyable and easy-to-read little gem. It deals with a very difficult subject in a positive way in order to openly and honestly discuss alcoholism and the effects it has on the whole family as a unit. In other words, it offers the opportunity to deal with this disease as a family rather than the go-it-alone approach. There is a strong “spiritual emphasis” incorporated into the book which stresses the need for a Higher Power to help cope with the devastating disease of alcoholism. In my opinion, this emphasise can be beneficial when dealing with other illnesses as well. As the author states…”these 12 stories will assist parents, grandparents, relatives, counselors, therapists, and members of the clergy to begin to discuss the spiritual principles behind the steps.” I wholeheartedly agree!

Inspirational Author & Book Reviewer ~ Dolores Ayotte


Book Reviews ~ Cape Maybe

Author Carol Fragale Brill Cape Maybe

I came upon this fictional novel strictly by chance. The author did not approach me for a book review which is so often the case, therefore, it is refreshing to write this review just because…

I was immediately captivated by the realistic plot and the protagonist, Katie, in this well-written novel that is both heart wrenching and heart warming at the same time. The story is related in the first person by Katie, an eleven year girl with an alcoholic mother. Katie is in dire need of love and emotional support during these critical and formative pre-teen years. Her mother fails her miserably but her loving and kind grandfather affectionately called Poppi, rescues Katie from her unbearable home life and emotionally taxing situation. Poppi lives with his widowed brother Nack. Together, they readily embrace Katie into their family life and try to create as stable a home environment for her as possible.

Katie grieves the loss of her mother’s presence but fairs quite well with the guidance of Poppi, Great Uncle Nack, his female friend Ursula, as well as her young son, Dennis. Along with her best girlfriend Cam and Dennis…Katie manages to enjoy many aspects of her life. She secretly craves Dennis’ attention but he appears to be smitten with Cam. Unfortunately Poppi suffers a debilitating stroke which takes its toll on not only him, but on Katie and Uncle Nack as well. In order to deal with her grief, Katie succumbs to the temptation of the liquor bottle to deal with her sorrow.

As Katie becomes a teenager, she is put in a very compromising situation with Jake…her sexually demanding boyfriend. Alcohol becomes a factor in many of Katie’s poor decisions and lack of good judgment. The captivating twists and turns in this young love/romance novel along with the daily challenges faced by Katie are a real page turner. I enjoyed every word of “Cape Maybe” by talented Author Carol Fragale Brill

Inspirational Author & Book Reviewer ~ Dolores Ayotte

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