I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A woman finds comfort and courage through journaling and her community of support’s responses in the face of a cancer diagnosis in author Antoinette Truglio Martin’s novel “Hug Everyone You Know: A Year of Community, Courage and Cancer”. 

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The Synopsis

Antoinette Martin believed herself to be a healthy and sturdy woman–that is, until she received a Stage 1 breast cancer diagnosis. Cancer is scary enough for the brave, but for a wimp like Martin, it was downright terrifying. Martin had to swallow waves of nausea at the thought of her body being poisoned, and frequently fainted during blood draws and infusions. To add to her terror, cancer suddenly seemed to be all around her. In the months following her diagnosis, a colleague succumbed to cancer, and five of her friends were also diagnosed. Though tempted, Martin knew she could not hide in bed for ten months. She had a devoted husband, daughters, and a tribe of friends and relations. Along with work responsibilities, there were graduations, anniversaries, and roller derby bouts to attend, not to mention a house to sell and a summer of beach-bumming to enjoy. In order to harness support without scaring herself or anyone else, she journaled her experiences and began to e-mail the people who loved her–the people she called My Everyone–She kept them informed and reminded all to “hug everyone you know” at every opportunity. Reading the responses became her calming strategy. Ultimately, with the help of her community, Martin found the courage within herself to face cancer with perseverance and humor.

The Review

What a beautifully written memoir! This novel does an incredible job of telling the painful, emotional and heartbreaking journey of anyone who has ever faced or lived through a cancer diagnosis. Blending creative and phenomenal writing with a slew of emails written between the author and their support outlets, (family, friends, etc), the author showcases the journey through cancer on a very personal level.

The book is honest, holds no punches and utilizes the author’s natural storytelling ability while giving readers something to relate to. From the initial shock and disbelief of the diagnosis to the impact on friends and loved ones and the moments where friends and family often have or end up struggling with the disease as well, showcasing how scarily  common cancer scares and actual diagnosis’s really are. The author’s ability to command the reader’s attention and illustrate the pain and struggle through this journey allowed the reader to connect not only with the author but the events overall on a much more intimate level, making for an emotional yet incredible read.

The Verdict

This is a must read for anyone who enjoys memoirs, is interested in the stories of those who have survived or lived with cancer diagnosis’s, and those who enjoy personal stories that speak from the heart. A lengthy read that is not only honest but showcases the power of writing and how therapeutic writing and having a community supporting you can help the process of dealing with cancer overall. It is an amazing story that everyone should read, so be sure to grab your copy of Hug Everyone You Know by Antoinette Truglio Martin today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Antoinette Truglio Martin is a life-long Long Islander, teacher, wife, mother, daughter, and friend. She is the author of Hug Everyone You Know: A Year of Community, Courage, and Cancer—a memoir chronicling her first year battling breast cancer as a wimpy patient. Personal experience essays and excerpts of her memoir were published in Bridges, Visible Ink, and The Southampton Review. Martin proudly received her MFA in creative writing and literature from Stony Brook/Southampton University in 2016. Antoinette had also written the children’s picture book, Famous Seaweed Soup (Albert Whitman and Company),and was a regular columnist for local periodicals Parent Connections (In a Family Way) and Fire Island Tide (Beach Bumming). Her blog, Stories Served Around The Table, tells family tales and life’s musings. She lives in her hometown of Sayville, New York with her husband, Matt, and is never far from her “Everyone” and the beaches she loves. Since being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in 2012, she strives to not let cancer to dictate her life. 

Follow her at https://www.facebook.com/AntoinetteTruglioMartin2017/ and https://antoinettetrugliomartin.com/.

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— Blog Tour Dates

October 7th @ The Muffin

What goes better in the morning than a muffin? Join us as we celebrate the launch the blog tour for author Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know. Read an interview with the author and win a copy of the book. 

http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com

October 8th @ 12 Books

Visit Louise’s blog today to read her thoughts about Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know. 

October 9th @ The Frugalista Mom

Stop by Rozelyn’s blog where you can read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know and enter to win a copy for yourself!

https://thefrugalistamom.com

October 10th @ Choices

Visit Madeline’s blog where you can read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post on how writing can calm your nerves.

http://madelinesharples.com

October 13th @ Dunning Knicks Interviews

Make sure you visit Mzz Dunning’s blog today where you can read a guest post written by Antoinette Truglio Martin about 5 reasons it’s okay to not be okay. You can also enter to win an ebook copy of the book!

https://mzzdunningtalks.ivacp.com/

October 14th @ Bookshine and Readbows

Make sure you visit Stephanie’s blog and read her interview with author Antoinette Truglio Martin. You don’t want to miss it! 

https://bookshineandreadbows.wordpress.com/

October 15th @ The Burgeoning Bookshelf

You’ll want to stuff your bookshelf today when you visit Veronica Joy’s blog and read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

https://theburgeoningbookshelf.blogspot.com

October 17th @ Reading Whale

Visit Caitlin’s blog today where you can read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post that will give you 5 tips for starting your memoir.

http://www.readingwhale.com

October 18th @ The Burgeoning Bookshelf

Stop by Veronica’s blog again where you can read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post about how to help people help you. Don’t miss this important guest post!

https://theburgeoningbookshelf.blogspot.com/

October 19th @ Bookworm Blog

Stop by Anjanette’s bookworm blog and read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post featuring 5 tips for writing your memoir. Don’t miss it!

https://bookworm66.wordpress.com/

October 20th @ Rachael’s Thoughts

Visit Rachel’s thoughts today where you can read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

https://rachaelstray.com/

October 21st @ Writing Through Life

Visit Amber’s blog and read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post featuring 5 journaling tips when going through difficult trials. You can also read Amber’s review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

October 22nd @ Karen Brown Tyson’s Blog

Get inspired today at Karen’s blog where you can read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post about 5 lessons she learned writing about her cancer journey.

https://karenbrowntyson.com/blog/

October 23rd @ Thoughts in Progress

Be sure to stop by Mason Canyon’s blog where you can read an interview with the author Antoinette Truglio Martin.

https://masoncanyon.blogspot.com/

October 24th @ Bookworm Blog

Visit Anjanette’s bookworm blog again where you can view her video vlog review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

https://bookworm66.wordpress.com/

October 25th @ World of My Imagination

Visit Nicole’s blog today where you can read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

http://theworldofmyimagination.blogspot.com

October 26th @ Keeping it Real

Be sure to visit Lisa’s blog today and read author Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post that is talking about her ways to not let a difficult diagnosis run (or ruin) your life. Plus read Lisa’s review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

https://www.lisambuske.com/

October 28th @ Strength 4 Spouses

Stop by Wendi’s blog today and read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

October 29th @ Bring On Lemons

Turn lemons into lemonade today by visiting Crystal’s blog and read her review of the touching memoir Hug Everyone You Know. 

http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

November 1st @ Bookworm Blog

Stop by Anjanette’s blog again and read her interview with author Antoinette Truglio Martin.

https://bookworm66.wordpress.com/

November 3rd @ Ramblings of a Misguided Blonde

Visit Lindsey’s blog today and you can read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

https://russelllindsey.blog/

November 4th @ Strength 4 Spouses

Visit Wendi’s blog again where you can read Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post about keeping a positive mindset during a health crisis.

November 5th @ Life Like a Galaxy Girl

Be sure to visit Alanna’s blog where you can read her review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s book Hug Everyone You Know.

http://lifelikeagalaxygirl.com/

November 6th @ 12 Books

Stop by Louise’s blog again where you can Antoinette Truglio Martin’s guest post featuring 5 books to keep you motivated during difficult times.

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November 8th @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Stop by Anthony’s blog where you can read his review of Antoinette Truglio Martin’s touching book Hug Everyone You Know.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

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Anthony Avina, (Born March 1990), is an author, a journalist, and a blogger. Born in Southern California, he has battled through injuries, disabilities, moves back and forth across the country, and more, yet still maintains a creative voice that he hopes to use not only to entertain but to inspire hope in even the darkest situations. He writes short stories and novels in several genres, and is also a seasoned journalist for the online magazine, On Request Magazine, as well as the popular site TheGamer. Having grown up reading the books of Dean Koontz and Stephen King, they inspired him to write new and exciting stories that delved into the minds of richly developed characters. He constantly tries to write stories that have never been told before, and to paint a picture in your mind while you are reading the book, as if you could see every scene of the book as if it were a movie you were watching. His stories will get your imaginations working, and will also show that in spite of the most despairing and horrific situations, hope is never out of reach. He am always writing, and so there will never be a shortage of new stories for your reading pleasure. http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

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