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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Book Spotlight & Review: Love Thyself by Layla Stevens

Love Thyself (by Layla Stevens)
Thank you for your interest in helping spread the word about my book, Love Thyself! The ebook, a depiction of the internal struggle many LGBTQQ individuals deal with, was made available October 10, 2015. I am available for guest posts, interviews, features, and reviews for the Blog Tour on a request-basis. 
This book is intended for anyone who has ever felt like someone different, knows someone who is of the LGBTQQ community, or simply is open to a good, quality read.  This book is very graphic in nature and deals with other topics as well such as child trafficking.

About the Book:Warning: This book is graphic in nature. 18+ is advised. Have you ever felt like you were different, like you didn't belong? Kellie Kingston knows that feeling all too well. She’s not who she pretends to be, instead from the inside out, Kellie is actually Kaleb. For years, Kaleb has wanted to break free from the reins of Kellie’s lifestyle. He knows he was born in a female’s body, but with a soul of a man. What happens when skeletons are forced to be kept in dirty closets? No one should judge a person by the gender of their body, but the passions found within their heart. Will the people of Kaleb’s community ever be able to accept him for who he really is? Will Kaleb ever be free to truly love himself or will southern socialite secrets keep him hidden forever?
About the Author:
I was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma but moved to Pensacola, Florida in 1996. I have a huge family who I shocked them when I told them I was writing my first book. I have had a love a reading since I was young. Reading has always been my escape. I can read and be a princess or a warrior. Reading for me was always something magical. And I hope to pass that on to you all. I am blessed to be the mom of a little girl named Sage who is the light of my life. {I call her Olga, and she hates it} I did not give birth to her but I choose her. I am blessed with great friends who have always had my back. I have a lot to learn in this world of writing but, so far I am enjoying the ride. I have a fantastic Four that are my true loves. No names will be mentioned as they know who they are. I Love you all very much. {I didn't included alters in that comment}. I'm very opinionated and have no filter. I speak my mind without thinking of the consequences. Does this get me in Trouble? Yes it does every single day. But I will not change. I march to my own beat. My mom says that I can be a one man band.  I am always willing to help out anyone who is in need all you have to do is ask. I never knew that writing a book would show me so much about myself. I have learned so much in a short amount of time. And I can't wait to learn more.

I was gifted the ARC of Love Thyself by Layla Stevens.

Stevens tackles the topic of transgender with the story of Kellie/Kaleb, who is a boy trapped in a girl's body. Growing up, Kellie was forced by her mother to wear dresses, makeup, and compete in beauty pageants. As Kellie struggles with her identity and the need to transition, her father supports her decision, while her mother Cora Beth is against the idea. Kellie tries to get her mother to support, yet Cora Beth's stance against the decision hurts Kellie. As Kellie makes the decision to transition, her life is turned for a loop when secrets from Sterling and Cora Beth's past affect her.

I thought Stevens did a wonderful job of writing about the topic of transgender and she did a beautiful job of capturing the pain Kellie was going through as she struggled with realizing who she is and being rejected by her mother. Sterling, I loved how supportive he was of Kellie and the bond they had. I was surprised by the revelation of his secret, yet I think adding it in made his and Kellie's bond stronger and helped with the message of the story.

As for Cora Beth, she's the antagonist of the book and throughout it she voices her disapproval of Kellie's decision. There are times when I thought Cora Beth went overboard, in one scene she calls Kellie a disgrace. Whenever Cora Beth was harsh to Kellie, I wanted to reach through the pages, slap her, and tell her to stop hurting her child. In the end, Cora Beth ends up getting karma when her secret costs her the things she loves the most.

Overall, I thought it was a good story. The way Stevens was able to weave a story about family secrets and capture the message of loving yourself was great.

Connect with Author Layla Stevens:
Instagram @authorlayla
Google + Layla Stevens
Tumbir @authorlayla
Twitter @authorlayla

Like page

Amazon page

Buy Links Amazon


Goodreads Damaged Love

Goodreads Once Anthology

Goodreads Love Thyself

Goodreads Mouth Anthology

Goodreads Inspirational Beautiful Eescape 2


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