Finding Out: A Novel

Finding Out: A Novel

4.1 16
by Sheryn MacMunn
     
 

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2014 Readers' Favorite Gold Medal Winner - Fiction - Historical - Event/Era Category

2014 Writer's Digest's Self-Published Book Awards Honorable Mention Genre Fiction

Amazon's #1 Literary Fiction Best Seller, #1 Women's Fiction Friendship Best Seller, #1 Single Women Categories Best Seller, #1 in Romance and Love & Romance categories and #2 Women's Historical

Overview

2014 Readers' Favorite Gold Medal Winner - Fiction - Historical - Event/Era Category

2014 Writer's Digest's Self-Published Book Awards Honorable Mention Genre Fiction

Amazon's #1 Literary Fiction Best Seller, #1 Women's Fiction Friendship Best Seller, #1 Single Women Categories Best Seller, #1 in Romance and Love & Romance categories and #2 Women's Historical Fiction Best Seller.

Getting dumped on the sidewalk by her live-in boyfriend of seven years and realizing that he nearly emptied their savings account is the first of Sheila Davenport's problems. At thirty-six, Sheila had thought her life was on track.

But life no longer makes sense. Now she's saddled with a mortgage that's about to skyrocket, a psychotic boss, and a new employee who is unqualified and hell-bent on messing with the company's rules.

Her friends advise her to date immediately, preferably someone rich and successful, or risk being old and alone. But Sheila needs to figure out what went wrong and how she got to this place. Since Prince Charming has ruined Sheila's life, who can save her now?

Help comes unexpectedly from her elderly neighbor, Ruth Grey, who has had her own share of ups and downs. As their friendship grows, Ruth reveals her deeply moving story of survival in WWII Germany. Ruth's mesmerizing past is a powerful tale of love and revenge that provides the perspective Sheila desperately needs to put the pieces of her own life back together.

Will Sheila succeed at work or walk away? Can she save her home? And why do her friends think they have it any better?

A story of love found and lost, true friendship, and how the human spirit endures.

Amazon's #1 Literary Fiction Best Seller, #2 Women's Historical Fiction Best Seller, #1 Women's Fiction Friendship Best Seller, and #1 Single Women Categories Best Seller
, an Indie Book of the Day Award Winner, reached #2 in the Contemporary Fiction Amazon Bestseller List and #3 in the Romance Bestseller List just two months after publication.

FINDING OUT has also appeared on the Women's Fiction Friendship, Single Women, and Love & Romance Bestseller lists.

Sheryn's next novel will be coming spring 2016. When not writing, Sheryn works full time and spends time with her family.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
06/13/2016
Secrets come to light for two very different women living in very different times in this novel. Thirty-six-year-old Sheila Davenport, senior account manager for Goodliving.com in New York, appears to have it all until her live-in boyfriend of seven years dumps her. But Sheila has little time to recover as she juggles a high maintenance boss and ineffective, backstabbing coworkers. Sheila begins spending time with her neighbor, 86-year-old Ruth König, who shares stories about her experiences during World War II. Sheila and Ruth’s lives and how they deal with discoveries and obstacles are contrasted, though Ruth is the stronger protagonist. Sheila’s narrative takes a comic route with flat, hackneyed characters, whereas Ruth’s story is more inspiring and intriguing, with pithy observations and some surprising elements that show Ruth’s spunk. What Sheila learns from Ruth’s poignant stories is unclear until the final chapter and an epilogue that conveniently wraps up loose ends. (BookLife)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781470108090
Publisher:
CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date:
04/07/2012
Pages:
328
Sales rank:
563,854
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.69(d)
Age Range:
1 - 17 Years

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Sheryn MacMunn was born and raised in the Boston area, attended Simmons College School of Management, and works as a business professional in Manhattan.

She has always had a keen interest in women's issues and women's literature.

This is her first novel. Sheryn currently resides in CT with her husband and children. Her next novel will be released in spring 2016.

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Finding Out: A Novel 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
CharlotteLynnsReviews More than 1 year ago
picked up Finding out on Saturday afternoon thinking I would read a couple chapters to see what this novel was all about. Many chapters later I forced myself to stop and take a break. I was hooked! Sheila Davenport came home from a stressful weekend of work and finds Joe, Her live-in boyfriend of seven years, standing on the sidewalk in front of their home waiting to break up with her. Joe not only breaks up with her but has already moved out of their apartment taking only his personal pictures and bedroom set with. While Sheila is trying to figure out her personal life, at work one of the “Big Bosses” hires a friend’s egotistical privileged daughter, Crystal. Crystal is not an easy person to work with and Sheila, a five year employee, has been put in charge of training her and helping her adjust. Ruth, Sheila’s older widow neighbor, has been keeping Sheila company and distracting her with stories of her childhood visit to Germany during Hitlers rein. The stories are told by a young Ruth as her and her siblings are hidden from the soldiers. These stories help Sheila unravel the wreck that her life has turned into. I loved how this novel mixed history and life stories. The novel moves so easily between the present time and Ruth’s Stories of her past. I’m not sure which I enjoyed more, both were page turning, stay up late, I can’t put the novel down. Everyone has people like Crystal in their work place. It was fun watching Sheila learn to work with her. By learning how to deal with her, I saw Sheila grow a stronger back bone and stand up for herself and get more respect from the people around her. It is something a lot of people need to learn how to do, but not always an easy thing to do. Finding Out is Sheryn MacManns first novel. June of 2014 cannot come soon enough for the realease of the next novel. Everyone should read this novel. My mom, sister, neighbors, and co-worker all are going to.
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite When we first meet Sheila, the main character in Sheryn MacMunn's contemporary fiction novel, Finding Out, she's enduring the public humiliation of being dumped by her live-in boyfriend, in front of her neighbors, on the street outside their co-op building. Sheila is shocked to find out that he's moved out of their co-op while she was on a business trip, taken their joint savings, and found someone else. After their 7-year relationship, she's not sure how to reestablish herself as a single. Her job has also gotten more stressful with the introduction of Crystal, a young, spoiled woman with an important father, who has been made Sheila's direct responsibility. While she's struggling to make sense of it all, she accepts an invitation to dinner with Ruth, an elderly neighbor, for Sunday evening. Ruth says that Sunday evenings are the hardest in the kind of situation that Sheila finds herself in. Along with the dinner, Ruth begins to tell Sheila stories about her life. Finding Out by Sheryn MacMunn is an impressively smooth and readable novel that weaves present and past together with deceptive ease. Sheila's business and personal problems are crazy and will seem all-too-familiar to many of those who've worked in an office and endured office politics; as well as those who've been on the receiving end of a poorly executed breakup. Where Finding Out really shines, however, is Ruth's series of stories about her childhood and coming of age in Nazi Germany. I felt like I was reading tales spun by a Scheherazade, as the beleaguered family hikes through the woods to find safety and ends up camping throughout the winter in the snow and cold. I have long been a student of WWII history and read many historical novels on the subject. Finding Out ranks up there with the best of them. Finding Out is a remarkable fusion of present and past and well worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I couldn't put this book down once I started. From Sheila's break-up to dealing wtih her co-workers, I cheered for her all the way. Her friendship with Ruth made me wish my grandmothers were still alive. It's a rare book that can make all the characters come to life and make you feel for the bad guys as well. Contrasting Sheila's story with Ruth's makes one realize how life is what you make of it. I highly recommend this book for anyone looking for a heroine that you can truly look up to.
JerseyGirlBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Thirty-six year old New York sales executive Sheila Davenport gets dumped by Joe, her boyfriend of seven years, for another woman in a very public and humiliating way, on the sidewalk in front of their Manhattan co-op. To add insult to injury, Joe has taken more than half of their assets, leaving her severely in debt and with a hefty mortgage payment. Just when she thinks her life was on track, Sheila's world has crashed down around her, and to make matters even worse, her boss from hell has put her in charge of training an obnoxious, privileged, and unqualified snot named Crystal. Unsure of what to do with her life, an unexpected friend in the form of her elderly eighty-six year old neighbor Ruth Grey reaches out to her, and as their close friendship develops, Ruth provides Sheila wisdom, guidance, and a new perspective on how to pick up the pieces and rebuild her life. Finding Out is a poignant story of two women who form an unlikely and heartwarming intergenerational friendship based on wisdom, inspiration, strength and courage to learn how to survive and overcome life's challenges, and gain a new perspective on what matters most in life. In her debut novel, author Sheryn MacMunn weaves a captivating tale written in the third person narrative, with alternating timelines between the present day New York City and flashbacks to 1938 WWII Germany. The seamless intertwining of Sheila and Ruth's lives is a compelling and emotional tale of love, loss, hope, survival and redemption. The author effortlessly moves the story from the present day struggles that Sheila and Ruth have in their lives, to Ruth's stories sharing her past history and her family's life and death struggle living in Germany during WWII, and back to the present. You can't help but get drawn into these two women's lives, but for me it is Ruth that simply captured my heart with her inspirational telling of her life story. Ruth's survival during WWII and her ability to follow her dreams inspires Sheila and empowers her to rebuild her life. As Ruth says, "miracles are waiting but you have to find them and make them your own." That my friends is simply the most inspirational and empowering message that can lift a person up from despair, give them hope and new perspective on life, and what matters the most. Finding Out is an inspirational and heartwarming story of two women from different generations in life, who through self-discovery learn what true happiness in life is really all about. This story is a must read, it is an amazing story that is thought provoking, and will resonate with you long after the last words have been read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
5 Stars! Absolutely loved this book. The characters are funny and really come to life. I love Sheila and how she gains strength throughout the book and gains wisdom from Ruth. Loved Ruth's stories. Could not put this book down. Looking forward to Sheryn's next book.
Chrissy_W More than 1 year ago
I read every free chance I had! Did I enjoy this book: I really enjoyed this book. I wasn't that into it at the beginning, but man, I could not put this book down once I got about half way through. I read every free chance I had. At first, I wasn't sure about this book. I was expecting a light-hearted chick lit book. This was not that and I am so glad that is wasn't. There was a lot of emotion in this book. I wasn't sure how all of the characters fit together in this story. By the end, it made sense. (And, yes, I know, most books do make sense at the end. I'm just saying that really stood out to me.) Sheila wasn't your "normal" leading lady. She had some issues of her own. There were quite a few times that I wanted to yell at Sheila to grow up, move on, and take charge. There were other times I did feel bad for her. I was impressed that she befriended her elderly neighbor...not to get anything from it but to make a connection. That connection was just what she needed. I was amazed at Ruth's story. So often, we read about the Jews during World War II and all the horrific things they went through. We do not hear that often about what the Germans who didn't necessarily agree with the Reich went through. It was amazing. I could feel, see, hear, experience it all through Ruth's story. I was captivated.  Then, the stuff going down at the office where Sheila worked. Kind of figured, but still surprised at the extent. I wanted more about Alessandra. I wanted more about some of the other workers. I wanted a bit more about how all of these things were connected.  I agree with Ms. MacMunn when I asked her about why we should read her book in the interview below. She responded: "Because in a time of seemingly endless change and turmoil, we need to remember that previous generations have endured must worse and triumphed." Would I recommend it: I would recommend this book. In fact, I will be recommending this book to my book group! Will I read it again: I just may.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed the stories of ruth and shiela loved tbe story and hope there will be more from this author
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nice mix of historical and contemporary. Easy, fun read. Unable to put down! Hoping a sequel is planned, although it finished beautifully.
Anonymous 9 months ago
This book was written as if the reader had a short attention span.
Anonymous 9 months ago
This book was written as if the reader had a short attention span.
Anonymous 11 months ago
This was like reading an overlong short story. Sure, it's 286 pages, but a really good novel fills your mind with the details. This one told two stories without really developing the characters. This book has a good premise. The story of Ruth during the war and a short period in New York after the war, contrasting with the messed up life of a modern young woman sales exeutive. But their stories, while interesting, were told with just the basic facts, and not very well fleshed out. Rather like a Reader's Digest Condensed Book.
SK25 More than 1 year ago
Wonderful story!! Could not put it down!! Hoping for a book two!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read it in one day -- too engrossing at so many levels to let it languish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago