Johnnie Calloway is a gifted storyteller and has written a superb personal account of his harrowing childhood and adult life. Although he retells his experiences of emotional and physical abuse, neglect, heartache, and betrayal, and later his own addictions and struggles with mental illness, he manages to keep the reader thoroughly engaged and inspired by his strength and wisdom throughout this page-turner. Johnnie’s willingness to be soul-baringly honest in this book as he traces his earliest memories into his teens and then adult years is truly unlike anything I have ever read. I have no doubt that his display of courage and his determination to go to any lengths necessary for his own healing will serve as a guiding light for countless readers. It is a story of hope and love, forgiveness and healing. I only wish it had been available when I was a practicing addictions counselor. I would have made it required reading!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Johnnie Calloway grew up in a small town in Kentucky. His mother passed away when he was 5, leaving him to grow up with his father who he describes as a sexually-confused, angry alcoholic. Calloway fell into drug addiction, alcoholism and battles with mental illness before finding healing through forgiveness. In “Dragons to Butterflies: The Metamorphosis of a Man” (published by Balboa Press), the author chronicles his abusive relationship with his father and the steps that led him to recovery.
“An astrologist told me that I was supposed to write in 1991 and I then wrote ‘Taming the Dragon,’” Calloway says, adding, “The object is not to conquer the dragon but to tame him and make him an ally.”
Calloway hopes to expose the darkness of child abuse and give “a voice to those kept silent by fear, guilt, and shame.” He lives in Florida and writing a new book to release soon.
What an exceptionally written book and writer Author, Johnnie Calloway is! A true memoirist. As a child, what this man went through and the dysfunctional family dynamic didn’t surprise me that it sent him on a long journey of seeking, affirmation, self-sabotage, and turning to addiction. We seem to forget or not taught when starting to recover; we need to begin the “inner work” of processing the horrific trauma to heal in “Wellness.”
This book proves and is a testament to never giving up and having resilience into Triumph in recovery no matter how lost we are. The chapter that “touched” me the most was Chapter 17, “The Aftermath.” The author starts out; “Humiliation became a way of life for me. I ran into everything head first, hoping to find the one thing, one person, or substance to make me OKAY.”
What a powerful statement as I knew what he was saying. I did this myself in my aftermath of childhood trauma and abuse and had turned to addiction. This book gives an in-depth look at a person who can and has found his way to “other side.”
Was it easy? NO. But with the bravery and courage, Johnnie has found along his journey some peace and serenity and let it go! Life events are just as traumatic, like the death of a parent, which affected the author deeply when his mother passed at his age of five. He spent years blaming himself that he held part of her passing. It started a cycle of self-sabotage and feeling unworthy of anything good in his life.
Reading this book is must read for all and shares no matter how deep our past pain and scars are?
We can we recover no matter the roadblocks in our way!
Johnnie is now on a quest to share what he has learned along his journey to share and give hope to others. Just an amazing true story and read!
“Read this book. Dragons to Butterflies is the true story of a little boy who believes he caused his Mother’s death. That incorrect belief and being brought up by a family who was unable to raise kids in a safe and loving environment caused Johnnie to become a young man who continually sabotaged his own happiness and success. The story is well written and proves that one’s life can be changed when facing incredible odds against it. Johnnie shares his very personal story to encourage anyone who is facing their own “dragons”. His honesty and strong desire to help others is evident as you read about his ability to overcome and emerge as the phenomenal adult he is today.”
“Dragons to Butterflies is a heartfelt, true story about a man’s very difficult journey through life. If you believe you have had challenges in life and wonder if you can ever overcome, you must read this book. Johnnie’s life story brought tears to my eyes, made me angry at life’s injustices and yet somehow made me laugh. You will walk away knowing that you are not alone in your challenges and that there are absolute answers. His lifelong passion to give-in and give-up somehow translated into his beautiful strength to persevere. His life story delivers a vision of hope and belief that there is a way, to those that for good reason, simply cannot currently see or believe.”
“Dragons to Butterflies” is the best book I have read in a very long time, October 1, 2016
This review for; Dragons to Butterflies (Paperback)
“I am not a book reader, it really needs to catch my attention within a few pages. Hands down, “Dragons to Butterflies” is the best book I have read in a very long time. Johnnie Calloway’s-never underestimate the positive influence and impact you have had on so many lives. Your honesty, integrity and caring soul shine through every single page. You never gave up, you kept on picking yourself up and moving forward. Inspiration is the word that comes to my mind when I think of you and honored to have met you and come into my life.”
Now, what more can I say about my dear friend and fellow author that you don’t already know? Well, she has been everywhere lately! And that is just one of the events I want to share and update her Romance Reader Fans on. . . . .
Besides just releasing Book Two of her novel series; “Hidden Motives titled LARA’S JOURNAL,” she has been on a couple new podcast radio shows as well. They both are fabulous interviews and you will learn so much more about this author after you listen to each one. And of course, I just love her Brazilain accent too! so take a listen to the links here:
Her Interview with David Ralph, podcaster, coach, and entrepreneur in the UK!
Adriana will be having a couple of events. ONE DAY ONLY, her book “Behind The Door” – Ebook One of “Hidden Motives” will be on sale for only $2.99 here on Amazon Kindle Store All Day FEB 9th 2017…. To know more about the Author, Adriana Gavazzoni, check her website at http://agavazzoni.com/
“From The Author who brought us the steamy, sexy thriller “Behind The Door” has just Released Book Two of her series titled; “LARA’S JOURNAL: A Sizzling, Psychological Suspense (Hidden Motives)”
“A. Gavazzoni Author, and winner of a ‘2017 Golden Book Semi-Finalist Judges Choice Award’ for her novel “Behind The Door: Book One of the (Hidden Motives) series a Sizzling, Psychological Suspense Romance has now released Book Two of the series titled: “Lara’s Journal” Another Sizzling, Psychological Suspense of (Hidden Motives)”
Adriana is a Brazilian Lawyer by day and Former Professor of Law; she writes (novels and legal books), but she is also a voracious reader and a writer by night and currently has a law book about international contracts published in Brazil.
She speaks four languages: English, French, Portuguese and Spanish, she also studies Chinese and hopes someday she will master it (but it’s been a challenge!). Her favorite countries, no surprise, are Italy, France, and the USA. When she is not practicing law, she enjoys many interests and is a very active person.
She loves to dance (Tango) and workout, loves to travel, loves good wine, and has been studying astrology for fifteen years. She paints and loves to cook.
She has two poodles -Gaia and Juno -and loves all animals. She is an aunt of four nieces who enjoy to paint and cook alongside their aunt. She lives in Brazil and visits New York City often and is in the process of writing more books to be included in this steamy thriller series.
Then her books will on for a Book Blog Valentine Tour Feb 14th ~ 27th 2017 over on HeadTalker and By Ultimate Fantasy Books! https://hdtk.co/fOsNL or https://headtalker.com/campaigns/behind-the-door-blog-tour/
I just finished an amazing new book I feel all will enjoy. It is by my sweet new friend and fellow Author, Whitney McKendree Moore. So let’s get right to it!
(Author, Whitney McKendree Moore)
About The Book:
Whit’s End is the biography of a breakdown. It will bring hope to any Christian who is wringing their hands over a loved one’s addiction. In author Whitney Moore’s family, the problem was related to alcohol, but addiction is addiction, is addiction. This story proves that nothing is too hard for God—that when we can’t, God can.
The victory that is unfolded in these pages starts with the shock of realizing there is even such as thing as “functional alcoholism.” When the problem is finally revealed, Moore finds help in a twelve-step recovery, where people learn to discern (and do!) God’s will. In meetings, people share the miracles that, for them, have started to unfold:
• Fear turning into faith
• Bondage turning into freedom
• Mourning turning into joy
Moore’s story is full of evidence that what is impossible for man is possible with God, and that with God’s help, there is hope for the hopeless and help for the helpless. In short, God can, if only we will get out of His way.
This book is for any Christian who loves an alcoholic.
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MY BOOK REVIEW:
Bravo Whitney for shedding light on how alcoholism can take a toll on a family that by all accounts from the outside looks happy and normal, but Whitney shares in writing, behind closed doors can be a very different picture and slowly becomes real life dealing with addiction and mental illness.
Don’t let the beautiful beginning of her tribute to the fond memories of her family and childhood fool you as you delve deeper into reading her memoir. As many topics and issues start to unravel themselves that begins the part of the book’s title; “Biography of a Breakdown.” It will tug your heart strings as you learn what was actually taking place between her mother and father, and the father-daughter dynamic. I don’t like reviews that “spoil” a good book, what I can tell you, this is an exceptionally well-written read.
It will enlighten you to many serious issues that can destroy an “angelic family life.”
You also begin to see just how “faith and miracles” can intervene when all hope is lost. It sheds light on the topics of what a “functioning alcoholic and alcoholism” looks like and how a 12-Step program can make all the difference in learning how to protect yourself when thinking we can change or control what is happening around us and by whom. Nope, only God has that ability as the author shares very well of her personal experiences.
Through this book, that is exactly what Whitney testifies about and clearly shares. Many times addiction is just too big to handle on our own. As Whitney learns. She shares that even from death, grief and difficult life events, we can find blessings and lessons learned from tragic negatives and trauma. I loved when she shared; “when we can’t God CAN.” Which is very profound if you are a Christian and woman of God as the author is by reading her book. ‘Hope and Faith’ will never fail you.
This book will help you heal old wounds, makes you feel sadness, happiness, shed a few tears, laugh, cringe at times and have joy as Whitney finds triumph along with peace and serenity in her life. Addiction and mental illness are hard topics to write about. Whitney has done a service to all who are facing these same challenges. You learn how to “just give it to God and forgive.”
“Every so often an outstanding book about and for recovery that is amazing to guide and teach others how to have a well-balanced recovery. Author, David McCauley’s new book is that kind of read. He has written this book with the knowing that in recovery we need to do all the inner work inside ourselves, process old hurt, pain, and nasty habits and behaviors we learn within addiction. We need to clean the inside “SOUL & SPIRIT” besides the mind and body. This book helps you do that and so more!”
About The Book:
This book, Addiction to Recovery: Unlocking Your Potential, is an accumulation of existential realization, many resources, years of recovery, education, insights, and years working in the field of addiction, with all adepts in the goal of personal transformation from addiction to recovery. This is an integrative approach to living in wellness in recovery. I vacated my own mind through a very deep personal process, my own form of meditation and this book came about. My hope is this book unlocks the potential that advances new insight into the recovery process for each individual by reframing the process in such a way that the right interpretation by the reader will help recovery click in place.
What we need to celebrate in recovery is the self-discovery of the individual. I offer my carefully considered overviews and assessments on the best-known treatments (theories) connected to recovery. I have provided a new outlook as a guide for the unwary who had failed at recovery in the past and those just coming into recovery for the first time. I count myself among the autodidacts, the self-taught perpetual student fueled by a passion for new answers and a sense of mission.
About The Author:
President and Chairman of the Board
Over 27 years of working with Addiction and Recovery. Author and Educator of dealing with addiction in today’s world. This book and others to follow were written also for the purpose and goal as a portion of books sales go back to Oak Tree Foundation to soon help those who suffer from the effects of addiction in our communities, where I live in New Jersey, and our nation to provide help in finding treatment and resources for those unable to financially afford the necessary help needed to live a life free from addiction.
Our vision at Oak Valley is to be a place where we cultivate people’s lives through awareness, education, prevention and the necessary support needed to help individuals renew their life. Our goal at Oak Valley is to improve and renew the quality of life in each individual by renewed mind, body, soul and self. In a new positive way of thinking and living that is surrounded by a renewed self.
Addiction To Recovery: Unlocking Your Potential should be a required book to read for all who come into recovery by any means. The book, part guide, part resource, and part personal experiences, strength, and shares hope of the Author, David McCauley. It explains in words and teaches others the skills to apply in their recovery on how to interrupt the cycle of addiction, and the tools needed every day to attain long-term recovery.
Even though it is a book and guide, it reads like a memoir; the chapters and titles are laid out and easy to read. David’s writing style is unique. The goal I was looking for in this book was to learn more wellness and live a more authentic recovery life of the mind, body, and spirit. There are many paths to tapping into your spirituality, and I am not talking a 12-step higher power spiritual journey. It is not the choice as David feels and I do as well. This book is a testament to this fact. But? Whatever works for you. And it truly is a new age form of recovery by learning David’s inner self-work method that works!
I am talking the inner sense of self-spiritual power. As David shares in his book, that seed and spiritual power we all have in each of us with the ability to turn our lives around and from the depths of despair and destruction to happy, productive being. No Spoilers, but my favorite chapters I got so much out of where; “Self and Soul Chapter 6, The Resilient Self and Spiritual Path Chapter 9, and Chapter 12.” You can learn from a major relapse with more awareness before and after a binge as David did and is part of his experience.
The Prolog/Dedication is”touching,” and it is important to mention this book is also a great read for family, loved ones and friends to get an understanding of addiction and the process of recovery that their loved one needs to go through to gain longevity in recovery. “Hate the addiction, not The Addict.” Family needs insights of what an addict goes through starting the recovery process. This book covers those goals and a great family reference.
The book for me was a soul-searching journey to see the inner work that needs to be done in processing any old haunting pain and hurt in life as I feel is missing in many 12-step programs and forms of recovery.
A must read and highly suggest this book! Go Get this book people 🙂
*Presented By Cat Lyon’s Reading den and Recovery Starts Here *
This is a groundbreaking book. Throughout his infancy and childhood, the author suffered severe physical and emotional abuse. He shares his personal journey and the disciplines, treatments, and practices that enabled him to overcome the effects of severe maltreatment.
He studied as a professional each of these disciplines and treatments that helped him as a patient. Along the way Dr. St John had some life-altering insights, such as:
-“Normal” is not nearly good enough.
-We have all been wounded to some degree or other.
-Most of us can increase our ability to receive and absorb love.
-We can enjoy more life-giving love connections.
-We can improve our resilience, deal more effectively with stress, experience better health.
-We can expand our sense of who we are. -Because our bodies are mostly water, we can heal the deepest wounds to our psyche and go beyond what we can even imagine.
To make such changes we must address ourselves as a whole, which means not only our psyches, our personalities, our belief structure, our relationship capacities, but the fluids, tissues, structure and movement of our bodies as well. We are whole organisms, not just bodies with a mind.
Healing the Wounds of Childhood tells the reader where to look if she wants to grow into her full potential for good health and beautiful intimate relationships. Most self-help books focus on one area such as the brain, or communication skills. Healing the Wounds of Childhood provides the big picture.
This alone would make this a unique book. However, the book is sprinkled with autobiographical material, lending a very human story to this holistic presentation.
About Don and Diane St John:
Don: Somatic-Relational Psychotherapy Relationship and Well-Being Tele-coaching
“I began my clinical training in 1967 and have been working since as a psychotherapist, relationship therapist and somatic therapist.
My interest over the past few years has been helping people realize how many more resources they have available within themselves, to learn to connect to those resources and strengths, plus learn to connect well with those they love. The only way to have any real idea of what I do is to invest in one session, after which you will know if it is right for you.”
Don studied Gestalt Therapy at the LA Gestalt Therapy Institute, and Neo-Reichian therapy with doctors Allan Darbonne and Jack Lee Rosenberg; the Psychology of Selves and Voice Dialogue Method with doctors Hal and Sidra Stone; Hakomi with Dr. Ron Kurtz; Coherence Therapy with Dr. Bruce Ecker; AEDP with Dr. Diana Fosha; and CIMS with Dr. Albert Sheldon and Beatriz Winstanley. I have taken immersion courses and core training in Dr. Sue Johnson’s Emotionally Focused Couple’s Therapy.
He is a Trainer Emeritus in Hellerwork Structural Integration and certified in Somatic Experiencing (SE), the trauma work of Dr. Peter Levine. For 18 years, he has been practicing and now teaching Continuum Movement, developed by Emilie Conrad.
“My doctoral dissertation focused on the consequences of, and recovery from, relational maltreatment in early childhood.”
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Diane: Wellness Counseling, Coaching, and Tele-Coaching
“In order to continue growing we need to feel safe, accepted and understood. I bring those qualities with firm, loving support. Together we access and develop your often hidden resources and strengths. The objective is to resolve words and trauma, feel less anxious or depressed and bring a greater sense of well-being into your life.
Are you looking for a body-focused and relational approach to allow the healing of past difficulties? Do you want to develop more relationship skills and capacities? Do you know you are capable of feeling more loving and feel more loved? Do you yearn to feel more spiritually connected? If your answer is yes, this work may be what you have been wanting.
I draw from many years of working with individuals and studying diverse body-oriented, movement and energetic systems. I am an authorized Continuum Movement Teacher, and I am certified in Somatic Experiencing (SE) – the trauma work of Dr. Peter Levine as well as Hellerwork Structural Integration. I am experienced in the Psychology of Selves andVoice Dialogue and AEDP (Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy).
Currently, I am using EVOX as a system to assist in helping clients shift their perceptual views and understandings.”
Both Son and Diane are big into WHOLENESS EDUCATION, so they put on workshops throughout the year to help those who attend tap into their full potential’s while receiving and bringing peace and serenity into their lives. They have one coming up soon below, so make sure you visit their website for the Full Details – March 2017 – Growing Into Wellness . . . . .
GROWING INTO WHOLENESS
Please join us for three days of coming together, learning as one, and departing with a greater understanding of our own connections. The fall workshop sold out early and before the end of Early Bird Special. Sign up now and make sure to join Don and Diane St. John in March 2017.
Now I did happen to ask Don a few questions about his book and a wee bit more about him personally and here is what he offered up for us! LOL.
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How did you decide to write a book and are you writing another? I wrote the book because I concluded that the distance I traveled from my early life (clearly on a trajectory of a miserable life and an early death) to how my life evolved and continues to evolve, was worth sharing. Especially, helping others know how I did it, what’s available to help and the subtle and not so subtle ways we are wounded in childhood, and how we are affected by those wounds in our entire organism. I am not currently planning to write another book; if I did it would be called something like The Frontiers of Well-Being. Why? Because that is what I believe my wife and I are exploring.
Did you have any writing habits like where you liked writing, a certain setting, and did you write on the computer or by hand? I wrote on a computer, and since we moved to Salt Lake City, almost five years ago, I usually wrote in the late mornings either at my kitchen counter or at my desk.
How long did the first book take to write and why the topic of sharing your childhood? I wrote my dissertation in 2004 on the topic of recovery from childhood trauma. I decided to convert it to a book, thinking it would take a couple of years. I soon realized that it was going to require starting from the beginning. Living in Seattle until 2012 where I had a full practice, plus teaching, plus many other commitments, it was a very slow process. When we moved in 2012 to SLC, I was able to complete it in three years.
You live in Salt Lake, UT, where were you born and raised? I was born and raised a short distance from New York City.
Are you in recovery from addiction? In my twenties, I couldn’t make it through the evening without alcohol. I was on my way to being a serious problem drinker. Then, I discovered grass and switched immediately. In a way, I was addicted to misery. Marriages came and went! Then through a wide variety of healing practices—psychotherapy, structural body work, movement work, seminars, spiritual practices, workshops (more than I could possibly name), the trajectory changed. I describe these in my book.
Do you have grown children and do you have grandkids? I have a grown step-daughter and two beautiful grandchildren ages 8 and 12.
Favorite food? Lobster cooked in a tomato sauce; seared ahi salads; sushi.
What is your favorite book?My all time favorite novel is Les Miserables by Victor Hugo.
What are some hobbies and interests you enjoy when not working or teaching?Four years ago at age 69, I took up golf for the first time. You might say it’s an addiction. It’s not an easy game to play, especially when one starts at the age I did. Early this year my wife and I began taking ballroom dance lessons. Now we are studying salsa.
Lastly, what is one thing about you the public won’t find or read about you that may surprise them? LOL.Given the fact that my work is about open-hearted connections and fluid movement, they might be surprised to learn that between the ages of 9 and 15 my dream was to be a professional prizefighter.
Seventeen-year-old Melanie Easton grew up in a lonely loveless home and accepted that she was facing an empty life. Unable to reach out to other children that she attended elementary and High School with, her quiet existence seemed to be her lot in life. One morning fate dropped a new friend into her life. As unexpected as it was that she made this friend, she noticed that changes started taking place in her life. After making a new friend, she finds that changes are occurring in her life. Will they be wonderful changes?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama. Sojourner McConnell continued to live in Pleasant Grove while raising her three children until 2000. At that time Sojourner moved to Phoenix, Arizona. She thrived in Phoenix, finding creativity and independence.
In 2010 she moved back East to be closer to her children and grandchildren. She lives in Winchester, Kentucky with one of her daughters and three of her thirteen grandchildren. She has six grandchildren in Alabama and four that live in Michigan.
The Path of the Child is Sojourner’s first book. She is currently completing a second book at this time. This book is expected to be released in 2016. When not writing, she is busy entertaining her Australian Shepherd, Beau. Beau gets jealous when she spends too much time working on the computer.
Note: My dear friend Sojourner is not only a fantastic writer and author, but many know her as a passionate reader and book reviewer on her fabulous blog: The Page Turner – Vickie Goodwin. https://vickgoodwin.wordpress.com/ Make sure you stop by and say hello!
BOOK REVIEW: 5-STARS!
“I Could Relate To This Coming of Age Story Personally”
Where do I begin? Even though this a piece of fiction, you learn right away that this story is one of many young girls journies and path in life. Starting from childhood to about 17, Melanie has faced abuse, abandonment, non-existent parental love as the list goes on. I could actually “feel” many of the same feelings Melanie felt. I to had a rough childhood. As I, and Melanie, just wanting to be heard or acknowledged from your parents would have been a sliver of hope for unconditional love.
I don’t like to spoil a good book, so what I will tell you is that the author did an exceptional job in writing this storyline as it shares many topics through her characters that brought meaning.
And when a writer can make you feel what she is writing with a tear shed, a smile with a laugh, a girl longing to find some truth, the power of friendship and feeling her character has ‘Triumphed’ by the end of the story?
Now that’s what makes a book a great read like this one!
And that is exactly what you get when reading “The Path of the Child.” It leaves you feeling inspired, learning the power of love, and shows we all have a “seed” within us to overcome anything in our lives through Melanie…. I will be waiting for book 2.