Amy Hatvany's 5 Do's and a Do-over

As much as we love us some light, fluffy reading to escape from the week, we also really appreciate when a book tackles heavier issues with just the right tone.  In fact, it's usually those books that resonate with us for long after we read the last page. That's why we're pleased as punch to feature the lovely  and talented Amy Hatvany and her latest novel, Best Kept Secret today.  It's a story about a mother struggling with alcoholism and trying to put her life back together after her world falls apart-it's a summer must-read!

Cadence's drinking snuck up on her - as a way to sleep, to help her relax after a long day, to relieve some of the stress of the painful divorce that’s left her struggling to make ends meet with her five-year old son, Charlie.

It wasn’t always like this. Just a few years ago, Cadence seemed to have it all—a successful husband, an adorable son, and a promising career as a freelance journalist.  But with the demise of her marriage, her carefully constructed life begins to spiral out of control.  Suddenly she is all alone trying to juggle the demands of work and motherhood.

Logically, Cadence knows that she is drinking too much, and every day begins with renewed promises to herself that she will stop.  But within a few hours, driven by something she doesn’t understand, she is reaching for the bottle - even when it means not playing with her son because she is too tired, or dropping him off at preschool late, again.  And even when one calamitous night it means leaving him alone to pick up more wine at the grocery store.  It’s only when her ex-husband shows up at her door to take Charlie away that Cadence realizes her best kept secret has been discovered….

Sound good?  Well, we have five copies to giveaway-just leave a comment and we'll choose the winners on Sunday June 12th after 6pm PST.  Good luck!


5 DO'S


1.  Do make a gratitude list. I used to snark at this idea, but after practicing it for a while, it has literally become impossible for me to feel grateful and irritated at the same time. In moments of stress, shifting my focus to all the wonderful things in my life lessens the weight of the negative and reminds me how blessed I actually am.

2.  Do wear red. It’s a power color! I always feel so confident and strong when I slip a red piece of clothing on. I even got married (ahem – the second time) in a blood red dress (Go figure: the only person not wearing white in the wedding party was me.) Find the shade that works for you and embrace your inner sassy minx!

3.  Do help someone else out when you’re having a bad day. It can be something as simple as telling a co-worker how great she looks in a particular outfit, or even making surprise dinner for a friend and delivering it to her house. Helping others lifts my spirits so much, and gets my mind off my own “stuff,” even if it’s just for a little while.

4.  Do get to bed early one night a week. Whether you’re single or have a partner, the extra rest or additional “quality” time is a must. In our busy, busy lives, moments filled with wonderful conversation, or just snuggling beneath the covers alone and reading a book in peace and quiet – pure bliss!

5.  Do speak kindly to yourself. Negative self-talk has been so damaging to me in the past. I would NEVER speak to someone I care about with the same judgment and disdain I have used on myself. Several years back, I made a commitment to knock it off, and wow, what a difference! No one deserves your love and compassion more than you.


If I could, I’d convince the little girl I used to be that exercise is pleasurable, not punishing. That way, it wouldn’t feel like I’m being forced to walk the plank on my way to the gym!

Other than that, there is very little I would change about my life. I’ve had a few wishes for “do-betters” for mistakes I’ve made along the way – a few hairstyles come to mind (anyone else have the 1980’s Wall O’Bangs?) - but overall, I believe everything  I’ve done, mistakes included, has led me to the woman I am today. And I’m pretty okay with her.

Thanks Amy!  xoxo, L&L

To read more about Amy, head on over to her website or find her on Facebook and Twitter.