Monday, February 2, 2015

Blog Tour: 39 & Holding by M.R. Joseph

Author: M.R. Joseph
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Standalone Novel
My name is Greer Walker. Mom of two. Friend. Daughter. Dance instructor. And, let’s not forget—a woman scorned.

For the fourteen years we were married and the twenty years we were together, I devoted my life to my husband. What did I get in return? Heart break, crows feet, stretch marks, and a slew of insecurities.

You see, the douchebag dumped me for a twenty-five year-old, real-life Barbie Doll with a large repertoire of medical enhancements. He crushed my heart. His affair destroyed me. The signs were there-I just chose not to see them.

Finally with my eyes wide open, I vowed to never go through that kind of heartache again. I didn't need someone to make me feel special or beautiful, or sexually charged. Hell, I can take care of that part on my own if you know what I mean. It was twenty years since I last dated-and I was okay with never doing it again.

But…There’s always a but.

The day Nick Costa walked into my life—or rather drove right into it—he made me feel all sorts of things that this woman right here had no business feeling. Lot's of feelings. He made me ask myself questions.

Could I allow someone into my life again? Could I risk being hurt? Could Nick deal with all the insecurities the fallout of my marriage produced?

I am thirty-nine! Can I start all over again? Can I let go of the past in order to have a chance at a future with this man?

You might want to stick around to discover the answers.

For now, I'll be 39 & holding.

I was blind. Blind as a bat. I mean I was actually more blind than a bat. At least a bat can see what it needs to see when it needs to see it, or what it wants to see.

I didn't see it and it was right there in front of me.

For months.

I guess I should have really spotted all the warning signs. They were as bright as the lights on a neon sign that hangs above a bar, or a tattoo shop, or a strip club. You know the ones that practically flash in your face and say, “Hey, come on in and open your eyes, moron.” Well, I was not that person. Like I said before, I was blind.

Oh, right, back to the signs. Okay, so the first, let's call this exhibit A. This would be the new job, late nights at the office, and late dinner meetings with clients. Totally acceptable. You have to start at the bottom if you want to make it to the top. I got it. Back then, I got it.

Then there's exhibit B. Last-minute business trips. Yes, spare-of-the-moment trips that required a bathing suit and a crazy looking Hawaiian shirt, and a trip to Macy's for some new underwear. Sigh...yes. Fucking boxer briefs. No more tighty whities with the wet fart stains. I tried to bleach them out for fourteen years. What the fuck was I thinking?

Well, I wasn't.

Let's not forget about exhibit C. See C is a big one. It's the one that made me start to question my sanity. Electronics. They are the devil. If I could rid the world of cell phones or email, trust me I would. They are the spawn of Satan himself. If I didn't have to use a cell phone to keep in constant contact with my kids, I wouldn't have one. But this is the age of electronics and the be all and end all of love, hope, and forgiveness. And don't even get me started on girly, fruity, sexy fragrances. They are the eye of newt in this witches brew of lies and deceit. But I'll get back to that later.

I'm still on electronics. Yes, phones buzzing in the middle of the night and feeling the shift in the mattress as the phone that was buzzing is picked up and taken out of my earshot. I heard the whispers, thinking maybe, God forbid, someone forgot to tell someone about a big audit.

Big audit problems at one a.m. Yeah...audit my ass.

Emails. Ha, ha. Oh, yes. Emails. Such a brainless way of getting information from one person to another via the computer.

Whether for business or pleasure—well in my story it was for someone else's pleasure—it's the cherry on the proverbial top of the sundae in the form of communication or miscommunication. Depends how you see it.

In my case, it was simply the means to the end.

One email. One stupid email that sent my happy home into turmoil and into a tornado of absolute disarray.

I'm not a violent person by nature. I mean, I don't even own a fly swatter and I hate those outdoor bug zappers. Just listening to a mosquito in the summer sizzle as it’s electrocuted by a thousand bolts of electricity...I just hate it. But when I saw the words written in an email to my husband when I accidentally—yes accidentally—clicked on his account, I felt violent.


Can't wait for you to fuck me even harder tonight, baby.

xx- Giselle

Who names their kid that unless she's a princess in a Disney movie or some shit like that?

Giselle. Christ Almighty. That name. I can't even say it without green, acid-inducing vomit rising up in my throat, which will probably be the cause of esophageal cancer somewhere down the road.

But back to the email, oh and my distaste for swatting at innocent insects. Remember me telling you I'm not a violent person? The night I found the email, when my husband of fifteen years was fast asleep in our marriage bed, the man I had been with since I was nineteen and in my final semester as a freshman year in college. Yes, that one with the thick dirty-blond hair. Well…that night he had a little less of it because a clump rested in the palm of my hand after I dragged his sorry ass out of bed by the roots to confront him. The man is dead weight when he's asleep, but the adrenaline I felt that night took over any weakness or guilt of harming another human being, animal, or insect. Ryan Walker was all of the above except for the human part. He was the animal and the insect. If I had one of those outdoor insect buzzy-killing things, I would have thrown him in it and watched his body be charred to a crisp. Like he did my heart.

Sound a little violent to you? The dance instructor turned murderer? I guess you could say violent. I mean I wouldn't have done it...that way. Arsenic-laced cupcakes anyone?

He didn't deny it. After I screamed and cried and clawed at his face—and smashed the laptop jumping on it like a two-year-old—we just sat there in silence. We leaned against our bed like we were two strangers. Not two people that had been together for twenty years. We leaned our backs against the bed we picked out when we got home from our honeymoon. The bed we fucked in, watched movies in, had tickle fights in, and made two amazing children in. Now, it was just holding us up from falling. Me mostly. I learned he fell about six months before that. When he had her in my bed. My husband fucked Giselle, the long-legged, half-French-half-whatever whore, when I was away in Phoenix for a master class in Ballet, in my bed. Did I mention it was in my bed? My loving husband said he had to work that entire weekend and thought it would be better if the kids went to my dad’s because he felt bad he would not be able to spend ample time with them. He would not be able to take Cole to his baseball game or go watch Sophie take her dance class. What a good dad. Thinking of the children before himself.

Enter sarcasm here. Asshole.

Have you even tried to figure out what to do with a broken fifteen-year marriage in one sleepless night? I have. Trust me, you don't look like Miss America after a night of crying and lack of rest. The bags under my eyes—yes there was enough of them to take me to Mexico for a month. And the leftover mascara that streamed down my face, ha, ha, it made me look like Courtney Love from Hole. It's sad really. You think you know someone. You sacrifice for that person, you give them everything, and what they give you in return is heartache.

Do you know what it feels like to have someone tell you they are no longer in love with you? You don't? Truth is, I don't want you to know. I would never want anyone to feel the pain that I have felt. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

Did you know that your heart actually hurts when you break up? I mean that fateful night I thought I was having a heart attack. Here it was just my heart cracking inside, dying—weeping—in total agony. That's exactly what a broken heart feels like. Doubt me? Think I'm exaggerating? I wouldn't think those things if I were you.

I told him I smelled her in our bedroom but at the time thought it was the scent of the new laundry detergent I had recently bought.

Remember the fruity, girly, sexy scent I told you about? Yeah, well laundry detergent doesn't smell like that. Guess I couldn't smell that well either.

He told me he loved her. I think I would have tried to make it work with him if he would not have told me that. He told me he loved me for being a good mother to our kids, but that he was no longer in love with me.

He left the next day.

Please don't get me started on how my kids reacted. Cole, my thirteen-year-old, bad, I mean real bad. He said he hated Ryan. I told him that was wrong. Daddy just didn't love Mommy and sometimes that happens, but he would always love him and his sister. Sophie, my six-year-old, just asked questions about having two Christmases and then she went back to play with her Barbies.

The first hard thing was seeing his side of the closet empty and his medicine cabinet in the bathroom bare of all his shaving things and colognes. A few days after he left I still smelled his scent lingering in the air, and I have to admit, I clung to it. Inhaled it and kept it in my lungs until they burned with remembrance. I had grown tired of that.

It eventually left. There were no traces of Ryan Walker in my home. Our home. The one we once shared. He gave me the house. I earn enough to keep it up. He pays the mortgage out of guilt I suppose and lives with...oh, God forgive me while I swallow my vomit...okay…I'm back…while he lives with what’s her name.

I got rid of the bed by the way. I wanted to set it on fire like Angela Bassett did in ‘How Stella Got Her Groove Back.’ Torch it in the front yard for all the neighbors to see.

The trash men took it instead. That's what it wound up being. Trash. Like the way I felt. Left out on the curb. Discarded. Replaced.

So here I am.

Greer Walker, thirty-nine, and single after twenty years. My kids are gone most weekends with their dad and one night during the week.

And I'm alone. But that's okay because I won't ever let my heart or my pride be smashed beyond recognition again. I'll be a cat lady once my kids are grown and out of the house. No offense to all the cat lovers out there.

I'm done with giving myself completely to one person. I can do this. I'm a big girl. I'll be okay.

Being single isn't so bad. Being thirty-nine and single isn't so bad.

Soon forty will be knocking at my door and I'll answer it with my head held high. I'll do my best to welcome it.

Forty. The big 4-0. The over-the-hill; the crest of going from a Lamb to a Cougar.

God, I hate that analogy. But it is what it is. I'll hold on to thirty-nine as long as I can.

I'm Greer Walker and this is my story.

39 and Holding was a book about trying to live your life to the fullest no matter your age, and feeling like ur life is falling apart to only be brought back by an unexpected love.  I loved this book, it had so much realness to it for me.  I am 35 and I find myself feeling some of the crazy things Greer feels.. although I haven't been through what she has I still felt like I could relate to her on many accounts.  I loved how this book was a light funny read but still had an intense feel about it as well, oh and the sexy scenes were pretty hot as well!  I would give this book a 4 star and would definitely recommend to others.  It is standalone of thankfully there is an HEA.
Greer is going through a divorce and feels like her life is over.  She will be 40 this year and finds herself to determined to start living again.  Who would have thought that she would find the reason in a sexy man she meets in traffic on a freeway???  It just a fluke because she will never see this man again they went different directions... but fate has a way of intervening and she finds herself in the ER with her daughter and the sexy man from traffic walks in and is the orthopedic surgeon.  
Nick is a surgeon and lives his life to the fullest.  He has his career set but not his love life.  When he meets an amazing woman in traffic he instantly wants to know everything about her but can't because he is going a different direction but when fate brings them together he is sure its a sign and he is ready to pursue.  
Can Greer and Nick make it work, or will the age difference and the fact that she just went through a divorce get in the way?  Or will Greer's insecurities keep her from having what she deserves?  
Go get this book now it will have you laughing your ass off and swooning! Thanks for a great story!

This comedic romance centers on infidelity, love, life and moving on. 39 and Holding is authentic and inspiring. I could relate to her situation that is common and difficult for all involved. Divorce is always messy and picking up the pieces can be a challenge. It can be a reflective and lonely time. It can also be fun and a perfect time to focus on yourself. This is when you need the support of your friends and you can take chances. It is when you get your second chance at discovering your purpose again.
“Can it really happen twice? Love? Can it be even stronger, more resilient the second time around?” - Greer
Greer is a relatable character.  She is mature at 39. She seemed typical, and that was the beauty of this heroine. She kept her focus on her kids and her job, while entertaining the what if….. of life. She finds herself in a relationship with a hot Doctor. Her insecurities get the best of her. Can his devotion and want inspire her to have faith in them?
“There’s no such thing as perfect Greer, but to me, inside my head and my heart, you are perfection.” - Nick
If you are looking for an inspirational read grab this. It had humor, tender moments and a bit of spice. I am sure you will enjoy its charm. I give it 4 stars…..
As a side note--- I don’t care for this cover and probably would of not choose to read it based on the cover. I am just being honest. It seems too cartoony….. and doesn’t depict the story to me.

39 & Holding by M.R. Joseph is a book about starting your life over after a heartache that is unimaginable.  Greer Walker a 39 year old mother of two who has been married for almost twenty years when she reads an email from her husband's mistress.  After discovering that he has been unfaithful to her for quite a while with a woman half her age who looks like a Barbie doll, Greer tries to put her life back together while staying strong for her kids.  This book was full of laughter and hope, showing everything that life can begin again at 40.  This book was a 3.5 star read for me and I have no doubt that you will enjoy it as well.
Greer Walker is content to coast through life after divorce by taking care of her kids and curling up at night with a good book in a hot bath.  All of her ideas of how her life will play out change with a chance meeting while stuck in traffic on her way to meet friends for a drink, with the hot donut guy.  Striking up a conversation with this handsome stranger reminds Greer that she is in fact attractive to the opposite sex but knowing that she will never see him again allows her spunky flirtatious side to emerge even if it is for a few minutes only.  Little does she know that her daughter falling from her horse and breaking her arm will lead her right back to that handsome man and the relationship that ensues is one she never expected.
Dr Nicholas Costa is a 29 year-old hottie who makes Greer feel things that had long since been forgotten after her divorce.  He is entranced by the woman in the car next to him while on a break at the hospital and he strikes up a conversation knowing that he may never see her again.  When he comes face to face with her in the emergency room while tending to Greer's daughter, all bets are off and he begins to pursue her relentlessly until she finally gives in and agrees to go on a date with him, something she hasn't done in twenty years.
Greer has issues that run deep, starting with the image she has of herself because of her age and having given birth to two children.  Constantly worrying that Nick won't find her attractive when he sees her "old" body that tells the tale of her age, she continues to question his attraction to her when he can have a woman much closer to his age, a woman like the one her husband left her for.  Always wondering if her husband leaving was somehow her fault, that she wasn't a good enough wife she tries to keep things with Nick casual but he is looking for anything but casual with her.
Will Greer be able to put her insecurities aside and open up her heart to Nick?  Will Nick be able to convince Greer that she is the only one for him?  You will have to read this entertainingly funny and heartwarming story to find out.


I'm a book enthusiast, turned author, who loves all things "Happily Ever After".
My first book, 'Reunion' debuted in November, 2012. Meant only to be a Christmas gift to my family and closest friends, word got out, and here I am. The second in the series, 'You Belong With Me', released in March, 2013, and the final installment in the series, 'Letters to Luca', released August 2013.
Mom and wife by day, writer of contemporary romance by night, I believe in soul mates, true love, and all that mushy stuff.
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