Spring has sprung and Spark Press and BOOKSPARKS continue their spring reading challenge with Deborah Batterman’s, JUST LIKE FEBRUARY…


In Deborah Batterman’s novel, JUST LIKE FEBRUARY (SparkPress), to Rachel, there’s no one in the world like her uncle Jake. Handsome and mysterious, he fills her with stories, sends postcards and gifts from exotic places. And he’s so much more fun to be with than her parents, who are always fighting. When she learns he’s gay, she keeps it under wraps. And when he gets sick, she doesn’t even tell her best friends. Until she realizes that secrecy does more harm than good.

Framed by the passions of the ’60s and the AIDS crisis of the ’80s, Just Like February begins with the wedding of Rachel’s parents when she’s five and ends with her sexual awakening as Jake is dying. As this poignant coming-of-age story unfolds, Rachel is forced to reckon with a home broken by the stormy love between her mother (a social worker) and her father (a Vietnam veteran) and a heart-broken by the realities of homophobia and AIDS.

While reading, I was touched by Deborah’s sense of humanity in such a difficult time in history. Society was trying to come to grips with so many challenges and daring to accept something not seen before. She writes with grace while never making any judgments. This is an important book to read.



Nothing says as much about a writer as her words, and the links in the sidebar will give you a glimpse into my stories and essays—as well as some favorite online sites of mine. In a word, I’ve spent the better part of my professional life writing fiction and essays and whatever assignments come my way; working as an editor/proofreader; and conducting workshops as a teaching artist in elementary/middle schools and libraries. In so many ways, that constant in my life—writing—is fed by all the other things I’ve done and continue to do. There’s no writing without reading, and it’s anyone’s guess how days spent doing yoga, taking walks, reading and answering texts (mostly from my daughter), responding to my husband’s need for tech support, and figuring out what’s for dinner factor into that writing mindset. Then there’s my blog, an exploration of all the small things, and the big ones, that impact our day-to-day lives.  



Thanks to SparkPress we have one copy of JUST LIKE FEBRUARY to giveaway. Just tell us the most heart-wrenching story you’ve recently read. We’ll choose a winner soon. Good luck.



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19 thoughts on “JUST LIKE FEBRUARY by Deborah Batterman & GIVEAWAY

  1. The most heart wrenching story I have recently read was The Radium Girls. It was horrifying what these women endured.


  2. I would love to read this. It sounds like it’s going to be amazing! The most heart wrenching book that I’ve read lately is Never Be Alone by Paige Dearth. It’s a story about being placed in a horrible foster home, then running away and living on the streets. It makes you more aware and compassionate.


  3. The Lilac Girls, it is so hard to get over what they all endured. My heart is broken for the Hollocost.


  4. I haven’t read any sad stories lately — I really try to stay away from sad stories because they hurt my heart! One of the saddest stories I’ve ever read was Sarah’s Key.


  5. Goodness I’ve read a few lately I can’t decide on just one. Orphan Train Raider: One Boy’s True Story; The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks; The Mountain Between Us; as well as And Everyday The Way Home Gets Longer and Longer.

    Liked by 1 person

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