Friday, February 22, 2013

Road to Tomorrow by Mary Metcalfe (Review, Giveaway)

About the Book - About the Author - Prizes!!!

Andrea Garrett is trying to escape her abusive marriage. Fearing for her life, she leaves her two small children with her twin brother and flees her home the day before her husband is due to arrive back from a tour of duty. After falling asleep at the wheel and landing in a ditch, her life takes on a new direction when strangers step in and introduce her to a life she could only have imagined and one that could save her soul and give her children the future they deserve. Get Road to Tomorrow through Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Title: Road to Tomorrow
Author: Mary Metcalfe
Publisher: Laskin Publishing (October 15, 2012)
Book genre: Women’s Fiction
Number of pages: 198

Mary Metcalfe lives in the foothills of the Laurentians, northeast of Ottawa, Canada with her husband, three cats and a very large dog. Love of writing runs in the family. Their daughter is a published literary non-fiction author. Clarion Review described Mary’s debut novel as a “sparkling debut… readers will love being swept along by Winds of Change.”Road to Tomorrow is her third novel in the Look to the Future series. Connect with Mary on her website, blog, Facebook, GoodReads, or Twitter

Enjoy an excerpt from the book:

Andrea put another box in the trunk of her ’96 Toyota and went back for the suitcases. Emily and Simon were asleep in their car seats. She looked up from the sidewalk and saw Sean standing in the doorway, his tattooed muscular arms folded across his chest. Before she could say anything, he leaned over and picked up her two large suitcases and disappeared inside the brownstone.
Oh God! What’s he doing now?
Running up the aging wooden steps, Andrea looked for him. “Sean? Where are you?”
She heard water running and ran up the dingy carpeted stairs to the second floor. What the hell is he doing?
The bathroom door was closed. She turned the handle and pushed with all her might, but it wouldn’t budge. He’s leaning against it. She could hear the bathwater running and pounded her fist on the door. “Sean, open the door. Please.”
An acrid smell reached her nostrils and made her eyes tear up. She pounded on the door again.God, please. I can’t stay here another day. I have to get away. He’s going to kill me.
She pounded with both hands on the door as steam began to emerge around the frame. After a minute, she stopped and leaned against the wall. She slumped to the floor, her head in her hands.
“Why are you doing this to me? Why can’t you just let me leave?” He’ll make it look like an accident. An accidental overdose. A suicide. He keeps telling people I have postpartum depression.
Minutes later, the bathroom door was quietly opened. Clouds of steam billowed out. Andrea raised her head and watched Sean walk away without a word. As she stood up, she heard him open the fridge door and pop open a can of beer. If I’m lucky, he’ll just fall asleep in his chair.
She already knew what she’d find. She walked into the still-steamy room, and there, in the bathtub, were all her best clothes—stewing in a pool of water the color of an angry bruise. Her cotton shirts, wool sweaters and pants, and silk blouses were ruined, their colors bleeding as the bleach-laden water sucked the life out of them.
He’s beaten me again, without even touching me. Andrea’s face showed no emotion as she went back down the stairs. She saw Sean sitting in his chair with his beer, watching baseball. The children were still in the car. She could hear them crying and went to them, tears streaming down her cheeks.

About the prizes: Who doesn't love prizes? You could win one of two $50 Amazon gift cards or an autographed copy of Road to Tomorrow! Here's what you need to do...
  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
  2. Leave a comment on my blog.
That's it! One random commenter during this tour will win the first gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win--the full list of participating bloggers can be found here. The other two prizes will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Road to Tomorrow tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!   

My Review:

The third book in the Look to the future series, Road to Tomorrow finds the protagonist of the story upbeat and focused on the road ahead, rather than what lies behind. Mary Metcalfe wrote an informative book about the trials and tribulations facing many of our military families today. With spousal abuse and PTSD cases on the rise due to harsh deployments away from home and civilization, many soldiers are having a difficult time readjusting to living at home. This book is about one such family, and although fictional, this could be the family next door.

The author incorporated humor into an otherwise dismal existence - "I'd say Kyle and Andrea have advanced to the next level,"..."What makes you say that?"..."Andrea wasn't wearing the same clothes when they came back." Janet smiled smugly. "And she didn't say anything about spilling something and having to go home and change."

"My mother always said the devil is in the details." Janet sipped her coffee. "Just remember that if we decide to have a good romp one of these days." Tom sputtered. "Are you suggesting what I think you are?" "Have you forgotten how?" She smiled, put a hand up and patted her hair. "I'm sure I can remember."

It was a story of letting go and moving forward, taking and experiencing what life has to give.  It was about knowing when to walk away. "Keep her memory, but let her go."

Road to Tomorrow is also an educational book. The author used the characters to educate the reader on  head/brain injuries and the effect they have not only on the person with the injury, but on those around him.  The author did an outstanding job incorporating the information into the book along with a military storyline as these head injuries are often associated with explosions. These same head/brain injuries are not uncommon in sport participants due to the high impact of some sports on the body. Ms. Metcalfe gave us insight into what it means to be part of a military family. 

"I think whatever his overseas experiences were just amplified the effects of his brain injuries and his violent tendencies. I don't blame the army or the war. From what I've seen, he went in with problems. But he's in now with many more problems and that's what I can't handle."

I personally felt some of the book had a few unrealistic scenes in it, one in particularly.  It was the scene in the hospital when the abusive husband's mother, after seeing her son in the hospital, and learning of an abusive incident involving an orderly, suddenly "becomes aware of her son's abusive nature" and goes from being an overbearing abusive mother/mother-in-law to being sweet and kind to her daughter-in-law in a matter of minutes. 

Overall, it was a simple love-story with a powerful message about an abused wife and mother of small children, and a husband who was a victim with PTSD.

A Few Facts on PTSD
From the book:

The RAND Corporation estimates that there are over 300,000 American military service personnel returning from combat duty in Iraq and Afghanistan who have traumatic brain injuries (TBI). A tragic consequence of inadequately treated TBI is suicide. And, in fact, deaths by suicide now actually outpace combat deaths in the American military, according to published statistics.

TBI is marked by the kinds of symptoms and actions described in this novel. If you know someone who has served and who has these symptoms, please get them to seek treatment. The rate of marriage breakdown, spousal abuse, and violence has reached epidemic proportions. It is particularly difficult for people with TBI who return to combat after their initial injury.

As Andrea said, even civilians have a duty to protect. If you see these symptoms in someone you know or love, please seek help.

TBI can occur afater any head injury - a fall, a sports accident, a car accident, a bomb blast. The more "incidents" of brain injury, the worse the cumulative effects appear to be. Someone who played contact sports in high school and college, who then goes on to combat duty could experience multiple TBI that will produce increasingly severe symptoms as more accidents/incidents happen. Remember, Traumatic Brain Injuries tend to be cumulative.

For more information, please visit:

The Brain Injury Recovery Network:
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke:
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention:
Traumatic Brain
SAFE (Stop Abuse for Everyone):

Purchase Road to Tomorrow by clicking the icon below:

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

I obtained a complimentary review copy of this book as part of a Novel Publicity tour.
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  1. Wonderful review, Dorine! I love how you added the PTSD facts at the end--this book really did have a very powerful message. Thank you for joining us on this tour, and please take a moment to crosspost your review to Amazon and GoodReads.

    You rock,
    Em :-D

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Thanks for stopping by Emlyn. Great book!

  2. Thanks for a fabulous review! It's very detailed and well-structured for readers like me who've yet to read the book.

    1. Thank you Karielle for the compliment and for visiting and commenting. I hope you'll visit again! Donna

  3. It sounds like a very heavy book...with the abuse and PTSD. Are there many similar books out there?

    1. If you are looking for fiction, I'm sure you can type that in on Amazon. If you are looking for non-fiction, you could try Google. There are several links for information at the bottom of my post. The links didn't come out properly, but all you need do is highlight and right click to follow. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  4. I think this book could have accomplished so much more building on the tension of these issues than the author accomplished. It did deal with some very serious issues but they were all resolved so quickly and easily, such as the scene you mentioned in the hospital.

    Great review.

    1. Thank you Carrie for stopping by. I agree with you. Hope to see you again.

  5. This will be an emotional book. I want to know what Andrea will do to get out of that unfortunate situation.

    1. Hi Anne. I think you will be surprised by the book. Hope you enjoy it. Would love to hear your comments once you read it.


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