Life & Other Near-Death Experiences + Giveaway

What will you do if everything in your life has turned upside down? This is a story of what Libby did.

Title:  Life and Other Near-Death Experiences
Author: Camille Pagán
Publisher:  Lake Union Publishing
Release Date: November 1, 2015



Libby Miller has always been an unwavering optimist—but when her husband drops a bomb on their marriage the same day a doctor delivers devastating news, she realizes her rose-colored glasses have actually been blinding her.

With nothing left to lose, she abandons her life in Chicago for the clear waters and bright beaches of the Caribbean for what might be her last hurrah. Despite her new sunny locale, her plans go awry when she finds that she can’t quite outrun the past or bring herself to face an unknowable future. Every day of tropical bliss may be an invitation to disaster, but with her twin brother on her trail and a new relationship on the horizon, Libby is determined to forget about fate. Will she risk it all to live—and love—a little longer?

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OK. Let's get this over with. I loved it. I love it. Yes, in past and present tense. As I sit here thinking about it, I love it even more.  Why? For the witty dialogue, the crazy theatrics, the lighthearted approach to a dilemma that can cripple life in general, and most of all the melodramatic mindset of our protagonist, Libby.  Do I agree with her? Not necessarily, but I can relate to her. I believe I have my moments of over-wrought emotional displays and thoughts. I'm probably having one right now over the very fact that this book is just so REAL.  It's real, but with moments that doesn't seem real.  Life happens, and many times things will not go as you wish or as it seems. As I'm reading this, all in one sitting, not even moving a bit, causing my leg and derriere to go numb afterwards, might I add. 

Libby was dealt two very big blow that questioned her school of thought from the beginning. Her optimism had somehow clouded over all the clues that lead to this event, yet I love how it comes full circle for her to find optimism in the midst of chaos and supposedly despair.  Is life really that fragile? And if so, would you have followed what Libby did?  One of the first stages of dealing with trauma is denial and then anger. 
"This was around the point at which I stopped listening and started going through a rapid-fire version of the Kubler-Ross model of grief." (2)
From personal experience, when I heard some bad news from a doctor, I remember having done exactly that. I stopped listening and started staring off to space.  I didn't hear a word. At what stage would you have come to the realization that life may not be as hopeless as you think? Emotionally and sentimentally, Libby's reaction to everything made me root for her. It made me understand her, not necessarily be her. 

As to the characters, Camille did a wonderful job bringing in fun characters to support Libby and the storyline. From Tom, to Paul to Milagos and of course Shiloh, they all added to the element of empathy and attraction to Libby and to Life and Other Near-Death Experiences. Even the "evil" Jackie and Dr. Sanders heighten the realistic factor to all of this. 

The injection of subtle humor and slight sarcasm possibly added to the melodramatic aspect of it all, but it gives this rather somber topic a "light beyond the tunnel" aspect that I truly relish and appreciate. It's hope. It's about finding the hope in every situation which makes it worthwhile and not pull readers into a darkness that already surrounds topics like cancer. Sometimes it's also the journey, and with Life and Other Near-Death Experiences, the journey for Libby changed her and revived her, and I hope reading this will revive you too.   

Now don't forget to enter for your chance to win your very own copy of Life and Other Near-Death Experiences. Scroll down to see how to enter.

NOTE:  I received a complimentary copy through TLC Book Tours for an honest review.


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Simple. Just leave a comment for Camille or myself about this post.  Please include your email in the post. Remember to use [at] and [dot] to avoid spammers. 

One winner will receive a copy of Life and Other Near-Death Experiences, brought to you by Camille Pagán and TLC Book Tours.  Winners will be selected randomly by This giveaway ends on November 25, 2015.  Open to US addresses only. Please feel free to share.  

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Camille Pagán’s work has appeared in dozens of publications and on websites including Forbes,Glamour, Men’s HealthParadeO: The Oprah MagazineReal, and Women’s Health. She lives in the Midwest with her husband and two children.

CONNECT TO CAMILLE  website, facebook, twitter

Also, I came across this great interview with Camille. Check it out if you're interested. 



  1. Sounds like an interesting book. kamundsen44ATyahooDOTcom.

  2. This sounds like a fabulous read! I'm so very glad you enjoyed it!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

  3. Don't you just love books that draw you in so much you can't put them down! This definitely sounds like an intense page turner.

  4. Thanks for the review--sounds like a great read. Good to know there are some fun characters and subtle humor in the story. Would love to win this! kristypetree(at)gmail(dot)com

  5. This sounds like a great book that you'll be captivated with. Thank you for the review and opportunity to win.

  6. I'm intrigued! Evidently the woman has cancer or some other medical issue and is she going to die or what. And why did she go to the Caribbean. I want to read this book. l (dot) bergh (at) sbcglobal (dot) net

  7. Thanks for your review! Piqued my interest!

  8. Love books about the beach since I grew up in Florida! Looking forward to reading it! kebroadmanATaolDOTcom

  9. Interesting. Sounds like one of those books that once you start reading, you can't put it down.

  10. Thank you all for participating. This really is a witty and entertaining book to read. Mr. spoke and it is #11 which is our last poster! Congratulations Linda P. Please contact me via the contact form in the menu bar with your mailing address and TLC Book Tours will send out your prize to you. Thanks again and Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

  11. I would imagine near-death experiences can be frightening and maybe a little enlightening?

  12. Clue Fourteen: I love witty dialogue!

  13. 14. The protagonist went through a "rapid-fire version of the Kubler-Ross model of grief." Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House


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