Book Review: The Ordeal by Josephine Walden

Book Details:

Author: Joesphine Walden
Release Date: 
20th August 2022
Genre: Memoir
Format: E-book 
Pages: 401
After two major floods with their financial, physical, and emotional ramifications, a car accident, several dangerous encounters while traveling and family deaths, I spiraled down into a life-changing, nursing-career ending illness.  Diagnosis:   Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a little understood illness at the time.  A single mom, I struggled to work but the symptoms slowly overtook me:   debilitating fatigue, flu-like symptoms, a pre-leukemic blood dyscrasia and a slow loss of memory.  Then a beloved sister and I inherited two estates.  She took care of probate.  As I descended into the throes of the illness, she invited me to stay with her and her husband.  While there, fun times were punctuated by unpleasant encounters and accusations of family neglect and other short comings.  Unable to respond due to memory loss and slow thought processes, I kept silent.  As probate progressed, my daughter began to warn me about my sister’s behavior in dealing with the probate issues.  I couldn’t comprehend her concerns as I trusted my sister implicitly.  I was blissfully unaware of game playing, creative manipulations, plots, thefts and acts of revenge.

Finally, there was some improvement and I returned to work.  That attempt failed after only four months.  With trepidation I eventually returned to my sister’s due to her persistent coaxing.  While there, she did all she could to make me physically, as well as emotionally, uncomfortable.  I left.  Once away her behavior became overly hostile and aggressive.  She seemed to be a combination of Baby Jane’s sister and Virginia Wolff!  My ex-husband, a state policeman, guided me through a two-estate, nine-year ordeal.  Julie’s actions would almost financially break me, deprive me of some of my inheritance and cause family members to turn against me. 

Eventually I had to retain an attorney.  He had been a former prosecutor and said it was the worst case he had ever handled.  Finally, after trying to deal with her, the attorneys asked me to meet with her.  Still ill but with some improvement I pulled myself together.  My attempted intervention wasn’t successful.  She was evasive, less than honest, accusatory and walked out of the meeting to avoid answering my questions.  The lawyers made the decision to hold a judicial inquiry so the judge would know how to rule.  Sadly, court would be the next step.

In court the findings influenced the judge to put Julie on supervision to finish the probate business and had her escorted from the parental home and out of town by a Sheriff’s Deputy.  He followed her to the next town.  My lawyer called it “Frontier Justice.”  The home was sealed, and contents and home were sold.  This final resolution brought peace and financial stability to my life.  Estranged family members were reunited with me.


Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Ordeal by Josephine Walden is a touching memoir about the author’s story of having been betrayed by someone she held very dear to her heart and how she had to confront the hard realities of life. But thankfully, the author is later saved with the help of her own wits and her dear daughter.

This book is a memoir that deeply resonated with me even though I still cannot understand why; I think may be because it talks about the basic fear we all harbour in our deep subconscious and unconscious minds about being betrayed by the ones we love the most. This book is a very well-written account of the author’s plight and brings out all the situations she had to endure in great detail making the reader understand the situations well and in a very engrossing way.

I would strongly suggest everyone to read this book as this book is a moving story and would make you emotionally involved in it rewarding you with a great payoff too in the end.

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Book Review: Incoming! by Thomas Josef

Author: Thomas Josef
Release Date: 10th June 2018
Genre: Memoir, Non-Fiction, Autobiography
Edition: e-book
INCOMING is an intimate view of one man’s highs and lows during his four and half years of work as a military contractor at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.
Thomas’ account explores the oftentimes melancholy details of working in a war zone, but equally delves into the beautiful cultivation of lasting friendships, libidinous love affairs, and the many other ways one must find to help them endure a life away from home and family.
Through his vivid recollections of training as a marathon runner, as well as the amorous but sometimes tumultuous exploration of life as a gay man on a military base, Thomas offers a political and social commentary along the way. For every harrowing moment dealing with personal or wartime bleakness, there’s an equally uplifting reminder that we find peace and happiness within ourselves and those we choose as companions.



Incoming! Life Of A Contract Warrior In Afghanistan by Thomas Josef is a remarkable account of his days with the military.

A very well-written book that is brought out by the fact that every emotion and every incident of the book felt not only real but also relatable. The background of the war zone served as a really engaging component. The writing was beautifully descriptive and kept me up at night wanting to read more and more.

I enjoyed reading this book a lot as it made me feel a plethora of different emotions. But more than anything else, I like this book because I was able to feel a connection with the author and felt that the writing was honest.

If you like reading non-fiction and memoirs then you must definitely read this book.

this review is also posted on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: Walking With Peety by Eric O’Grey

Author: Eric O’Grey with Mark Dagostino
Release Date: 10th October 2017
Genre: Memoir, Non-Fiction, Autobiography, Animals
Edition: e-book
Pages: 320
Publisher: Hachette Book Group
Eric met Peety when he was 150 pounds overweight, depressed, and sick. After a lifetime of failed diet attempts, and the onset of serious diabetes due to his weight, Eric went to a new doctor, who surprisingly prescribed a shelter dog. And that’s when Eric met Peety: a middle-aged and forgotten shelter dog who, like Eric, had seen better days. The two adopted each other and began an incredible journey together, and the bond of unconditional love they formed forever changed their lives. Over the next year, just by going on walks, playing together and eating plant-based food, Eric lost 150 pounds, and Peety lost 25. As a result, Eric reversed his type 2 diabetes, got off all medication, became happy and healthy for the first time in his life, and even reconnected with and married his high school sweetheart. WALKING WITH PEETY is perfect for anyone who is ready to make a change in their life and for everyone who knows the joy, love and hope that dogs can bring to human lives. This is more than a tale of mutual rescue, this is an epic story of friendship and strength.



Walking With Peety by Eric O’Grey is a beautiful memoir about the author’s journey, along with an adopted dog, full of hope, lots of ups and downs and love.

This book is a beautiful tribute to the love and happiness an animal brings into the life of a person. A very enjoyable book with honestly that reflected in the writing. It was a very touching and warm read. It proved to be a very inspiring story which left me feeling motivated to change a couple of things in my life that I might be taking for granted.

I’d recommend it to the readers of non-fiction genre as well as to those who love animals or are going through rough times and can do with a bit of a pick-me-up.

this review is also posted on Goodreads, NetGalley, and Amazon