cover image Can’t Make This Stuff Up: Finding the Upside to Life’s Downs

Can’t Make This Stuff Up: Finding the Upside to Life’s Downs

Susannah B. Lewis. Nelson, $17.99 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-1-4002-0801-2

Whoa! Susannah blogger Lewis faces life’s challenges with a dose of humor in her delightful nonfiction debut (after Ten Years Taken and other novels). Lewis charms Christian readers with nostalgic memories of growing up in a South where “there’s sweet tea in every refrigerator and piping hot pies on grandma’s windowsill.” Other tales from her hometown of Brownsville, Tenn., include helping her grandfather at his small pharmacy and the sighting of an albino panther stalking her backyard (no one believed her and her mother at the time, though it was later reported that the exotic animal had escaped from its owner). Lewis is a gifted storyteller who relies on her faith in times of despair. She recalls mourning the death of her father when she was 11 and, more recently, the death of her mother. When Lewis decided to write about her grief, she realized, “Grief is a universal language... As I read comments on my blog posts, my pain was no longer mine. Theirs was no longer theirs. It was ours. And I knew I was called to point people to the great Comforter.” Through her lighthearted message, Lewis effectively communicates the value of finding joy in sorrow, forgiveness in flaws, and purpose in pain. (Apr.)