The Overdue Life of Amy Byler by Kelly Harms

Rating:           7 (7.5 out of 10, or a 4 out of 5)

General Rating: A fun summer read.

Skip factor:  4%. I skipped a little, not much.

Who should read: If you are a single, unappreciated mom or a woman immersed in the dating world, you’ll like this book.

Summary: Amy Byler’s ex-husband up and left three years ago, so when she runs into him in the drug store, she’s shocked, to say the least. John, the ex, went to Hong Kong on a business trip and never returned. He left Amy alone to raise their two children, Corrinne (Cori) and Joe, and moved in with a much younger woman, as his son Joe puts it, “to rebuild his self-esteem at the expense of his family.”

With the help of Amy’s best friend Lena, Amy gathers herself together, lands a library job at her kids school, and carries on as best she can.

But when John comes back in the hopes of reconnecting with his children, Amy, for the first time ever, is able to concentrate on herself. A little frightened, she takes off to a conference in New York City and her life does a complete three-hundred-sixety degree turn.

While she had thought she and John might reconnect, she begins dating, strikes a romantic relationship, and begins questioning her life and where she is going.  

Characters:  Harm’s characters are both realistic and unique. Amy’s children and friends each have their own quirky personalities, and I especially liked her daughter, Cora, and looked forward to reading the remarks she sent her mother.

Storyline:  Simply, this is the story of a mother who finally has time for herself. I rated this a bit lower because I couldn’t identify with the main character in that, she sometimes appeared sorry that she had children. I couldn’t fathom a mother even remotely feeling that emotion. The story evolved into a happy medium between being a good mother and finding yourself, but I liked Amy the least after that.

Writing:  Writing is good. This wasn’t a page-turner, but it was a fun, easy read. While I didn’t have a passionate desire to return to it, I did look forward to finding out how the story would wrap up.

Read this author again?  Yes. I’d try another of Harm’s books.

Read on!

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CJ Zahner is the author of The Suicide Gene, a psychological thriller, Dream Wide Awake, and Project Dream, two thrillers that carry a sixth-sense paranormal element, and Friends Who Move Couches, women’s fiction. These last two novels were inspired by Zahner’s own experiences. See the video of her own paranormal experience, a premonition of 9/11 here. Download her Beyond Reality Radio podcast here. Follow her on Instagram, TwitterFacebookGoodreadsBookBub, or LinkedIn. Purchase her books on Amazon.

NetGalley readers, need a fun summer read?

Don’t Mind Me, I Came with the House is a frivolous, easy-to-read rom-com about an unappreciated, awkward mom who finally finds love.

This is the stand-alone sequel to Friends Who Move Couches!

Thank you to Isabel Nicholson for your lovely ARC review. Here’s her review:

I loved the first book and this book took that journey further into a wonderfully fun, warm and funny world. A big part of the joy in these books is Nikki Stone, she’s that awkward part of every woman who survives as the walking disaster she is and is loved for it. I love her resilience but also how she copes with the crazy that happens around her. This book continued her journey and it was a joy to return to her world. I also love her cast of supporting characters, you can feel every eye roll, hug and tear from the start to the finish.


I really love the way CJ Zahner writes, it is captivating and succeeds in making me laugh out loud like a crazy person (even in public). The book has a great pace and even though some of the situations Nikki finds herself in seem initially to be unbelievable, when you think about your own life, the unbelievable can and does happen.


One thing I really took away from reading this book was about change, we are often nervous about it and it takes time to cope with, but it is possible. I really liked the message that working to change things about yourself because you want to can be successful but it won’t happen overnight.

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CJ Zahner is the author of The Suicide Gene, a psychological thriller, Dream Wide Awake, and Project Dream, two thrillers that carry a sixth-sense paranormal element, and Friends Who Move Couches, women’s fiction. These last two novels were inspired by Zahner’s own experiences. See the video of her own paranormal experience, a premonition of 9/11 here. Download her Beyond Reality Radio podcast here. Follow her on Instagram, Twitter, FacebookGoodreadsBookBub, or LinkedIn. Purchase her books on Amazon.