Horsehoes and Hand Grenades – S. M. Stevens


After suffering harassment and abuse at the hands of others, two women fight to reclaim their careers, romances, and lives.

Fragile but practical Shelby Stewart and ambitious, confident Astrid Ericcson just want to start their PR careers in 1980s Boston and maybe find a nice guy to hang out with. But long-buried memories of incest at the hands of her local hero stepfather keep interrupting Shelby’s plans, affecting her health one way after another. And when will she actually date someone her friends think is good enough for her?

Astrid thinks she wrote the book on How to Get Ahead by Flirting but is forced to re-visit her career advancement strategy when her boss Brad takes the innuendos to a whole new, scary level, threatening her job and her safety.

Suddenly, instead of taking charge of their lives, both women find themselves spinning out of control.

In this fast-paced story for the #metoo generation, the women reach new highs and lows in life, work and romance, while struggling to make sense of the abusive relationships that haunt them.


I enjoyed following the two main characters, Shelby and Astrid with their growth, relationships and respective journeys.

If i’m honest the book didn’t grab me as much as I had expected it too and I did at times struggle to pick it back up. It was however, still an enjoyable read!

It touches of sexual abuse/harassment and other similar themes which are extremely topical following the #metoo movement. The writing dealt with these themes sensitively but not diminishing the issue’s importance. It was heavy in places to read but rightly so.

Overall, the women were strong, brave and full of hope. An uplifting ending and all round solid story!


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