Friday, August 8, 2014

Book Blast: My Life in a Nutshell

HealthyPlace columnist, National Certified Counselor, and award-nominated author Tanya J. Peterson tackles anxiety disorders and the redemptive qualities of unexpected human connection in her new novel, My Life in a Nutshell.
A brilliant and talented man crippled by extreme anxiety and panic attacks, Brian has carefully crafted his world so that his interactions with others are severely limited. Although incapable of changing his situation, he discovers that, somehow, he is the only person seven-year-old Abigail can trust. Having bounced from one foster home to another, she has unexpectedly come to live with a childless uncle and aunt she has never known. For very different reasons, both Brian and Abigail are trapped in emotionally and socially isolated lives. Can they learn from each other?
Empathetic, insightful, and emotionally stirring, My Life in a Nutshell delves into the thought processes and erratic habits of a regular man dealing with life-altering mental illness, providing a unique, personal glimpse into a misunderstood and often stereotyped condition.
Praise for Tanya J. Peterson’s Novels
 “Few writers have been able to express so sensitively the variations of thought processes that assault patients who are suffering from degrees of mental illness. Peterson…opens doors of understanding so rarely provided for the general public.”—Grady Harp, Literary Aficionado

“Peterson’s novel is eye-opening and beautiful….The writing flows smoothly, and the depiction of scenes, particularly the dramatic meltdowns, are so detailed that the reader gets sucked in.” —Caroline Comeaux Lee, Psych Central

“Peterson succeeds in demystifying the world of psychiatric care and challenging the stigma that continues to surround mental health. A heartrending, realistic story about grief, depression and schizophrenia that finds positivity in the darkest of moments.”Kirkus Review
“Sometimes in the absence of knowing we fill in the blanks with counter-productive images of the mentally ill. The author helps strip away the surface stereotypes associated with those who suffer from PSTD and schizophrenia to show the real people underneath.”—The US Review of Books
 “Tanya J. Peterson’s ability to create vivid imagery with her words, while using strong storytelling to pull readers in, shines in Leave of Absence. The story tackles heavy topics of loss and mental illness through the characters Oliver and Penelope. But it doesn’t weigh you down because there’s a thread of hope running through each page. Society may label these people because of their mental illness, but Peterson humanizes the characters. And before you know it, you see Penelope and Oliver are more than their diagnosis. They’re two people, with genuine hearts, supporting each other through a rough time. They’re human.”—Jeneé Darden, Host of Mental Health and Wellness Radio  
“Life in a Nutshell is a powerful and poignant novel. Written from a very clear and well-informed perspective, Peterson should be lauded for navigating the field of mental illness and presenting important relative issues in an affable fiction manner. It is a truly fine work that entertains, as well as informs.”The US Review of Books
About the Author
Tanya J. Peterson holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education, Master of Science in counseling, and is a National Certified Counselor. She has been a teacher and a counselor in various settings, including a traditional high school and an alternative school for homeless and runaway adolescents. Peterson is an active volunteer and support group facilitator with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), and she is a regular columnist for the Anxiety-Schmanxiety blog on She has presented at the national conference for the Mothers of Incarcerated Sons Society, the Avera Behavioral Health Center, and with libraries and book groups nationwide. Her previous titles include Leave of Absence, a novel about schizophrenia, grief, and the power of human connection, and Losing Elizabeth, a YA novel about an abusive relationship.
Title: My Life in a Nutshell: A Novel
Author: Tanya J. Peterson
ISBN: 978-1-62901-072-4                
Publisher: Inkwater Press                 
Availability: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Powells,
Distribution: Ingram, Baker & Taylor


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