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This Particular Happiness  By  cover art

This Particular Happiness

By: Jackie Shannon Hollis,Jody Day - foreword
Narrated by: Jackie Shannon Hollis
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Publisher's Summary

As a farm girl in eastern Oregon, feeding bottles to bummer lambs and babysitting her little sister, Jackie Shannon Hollis expected to become a mother someday. After a series of failed relationships, she met Bill, the man she wanted to spend her life with. But he was a man who never wanted children. Saying I do meant saying I don't to a rite of passage her body had prepared her for since puberty.

Told in short nonlinear chapters, This Particular Happiness explores the fracturing of female identity as Shannon Hollis questions her childless decision, navigates her roles as daughter and wife and sister and friend, and ultimately learns to listen to her own heart. This debut memoir is about what we keep and what we abandon to make space in our lives for love.

©2019 Jackie Shannon Hollis. Mrs. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing by May Sarton (Copyright © May Sarton) reproduced by permission of A.M. Heath & Co Ltd. (P)2019 Blackstone Publishing

What listeners say about This Particular Happiness

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Love for my Aunt Jackie

I do not have a word available in English to describe the way I feel after listening to this book. Having already read it twice in physical form did not take away from my third experience with this story. The love that my Aunt Jackie and Uncle Bill have is something that is almost fairy tale like. It seems like something that would be unreal for most. But having been exposed to that love for my entire life, I can speak to its realness. The way they feel for each other can be felt almost like an aura, with the warmth of it spreading out in a large bubble around them. This fact is also displayed again and again in the book that Jackie does such a wonderful job narrating. I found myself laughing, crying, and reflecting through each part of the story. One sentence that will stay with me forever is; “Knowing where your scars come from doesn’t make them go away”. This memoir has given me tools that I will be able to use for the rest of my life. One is remembering that the past will always affect the future. Another is that it is important to understand why it is we want something, and what that thing is meant to do for us. Most importantly I was reminded for why my love burns so strongly for these two people. And I am glad that the rest of the world has the opportunity to experience their love through thus book.

2 people found this helpful

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A Cautionary Tale

Hard truths about hard things. Well written, and a cautionary tale about giving up on yourself.

I couldn’t help but think this woman gave up on something very important to her for a man who seems avoidant and stubborn and not willing to really understand her, instead of “healthy” as she attempts to portray. Yes, she wasn’t direct with him at times. She didn’t hold to her own standard of wanting a baby. Bad on her. But she was vocal and insistent at times. And was trying to show him who she was in her own way. He didn’t seem to care in the telling of this. I’m not sure if I admire the honesty or am disappointed in her giving up on her dreams more.

It was frustrating to see an unwanted outcome for the author. We don’t get everything we want in life. But to give up without even trying is a hard truth to live with. There are thousands of men who would have wanted a baby who are, perhaps “healthier” than her husband. I don’t understand why she chose to be with a man who disregarded, not one but, two of her deepest longings (career as well). Perhaps more unwritten about.

No man is worth giving up your deepest longings for. No matter how “self aware” or “healthy” they seem due to their not giving in. Don’t be with someone who is insisting you give up on soul-desire that is healthy and not harmful. To have a marriage full of resentment and resignation isn’t any kind of marriage I would recommend.

A good book about accepting the wrong choices we’ve made.

1 person found this helpful

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More than I expected

Learning to live with being childless (by choice or not), can make navigating some emotions and relationships tough. So much of the authors story I could relate too and that was refreshing. I highly recommend for any woman (or man) navigating this sensitive topic.

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loved the book!

A very personal story, but loved it! Thank you Jackie for sharing your story! Again Thank you!

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Powerful

Listening to this story brought out so many emotions. Sadness, guilt, resent, happiness, relief. Worth listening.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 07-27-22

Beautiful

Thank you Jackie for sharing your beautiful story, it made me laugh and cry. You captured the emotions around childlessness so wonderfully. Thank you ❤