“This author generously opens her life to the reader. In her direct and fast paced style, she weaves an unforgettable tale of overcoming. She does the hard work of surviving a very unfortunate childhood, great losses in her early life, and a stormy and abusive marriage. Though Mary suffers from her own neglect, she embraces motherhood times four, including a special needs child, with love and self sacrifice. Through it all, her caring Christian grandparents color her lonely world with hope. Climbing out of her circumstances by making right choices at the key crossroads in her life, Mary is an inspiration to all who struggle to find their way through a bad start, destructive relationships, and ongoing obstacles to stability and happiness. I want to buy the paperback because I want to see the photos! Keep writing, Mary.” – KathyBoBathy
I can assure you that this is a fast read and one where you can’t help but learn some truths about yourself.
“This book is a fantastic read. Could not put it down, everything inch of this book was very enlightening, relatable and helpful. If you have not read this, it will make you breath deep and relate, live within the whole story.” – Amazon Customer
“This book was a blessing to my life! I have never read a true story that reminded me so much about my own life. The struggle, the courage, and the Power to keep going and learning to Trust God with everything. There is no question that I ran into Mrs. Perez at her book signing in my local grocery store for a reason. Not only did her book Bless me, the fact that she Prayed with me and for me spoke volumes. It reminds me that only the STRONG survives, and that even my story should be told. Her book is an inspiration to me and I’m very Grateful to have read it when I’m not even a book reader! Much love and success to you Mrs. Pérez. God bless you.” – Lorie
As I read Mary’s story while wiping tears from eyes I am thankful Mary had praying grandparents to help restore her faith. Mary turns her life around through her faith to make a better life for her children. Running in Heels is an emotional yet inspirational book that shows one girl’s determination to change her life for the betterment of her children while forgiving the parents that where not there for her.” – Teresa Beasley
“If you enjoy reading books where characters overcome hardships then this is a book for you. Some stories are very heartbreaking and the reader is clear to indicate that it is her faith that has pulled her through. I read this book in one night and went to work red eyed the next day but it was totally worth it.” – Amazon Customer
“Running in Heels is a compelling memoir that explore the life of author Mary Perez as she experiences tragedy, abuse, extreme loneliness, and ultimately forgiveness.
From the moment Mary’s parents divorced, and she was sent to live with her mother, her life was set on a downward spiral. Her mother was more interested in drinking and men than in parenting and Mary often went without food and on a few occasions shelter. Her only reprieve was the time spent with her grandparents. A house full of love, laughter, and plenty to eat Mary longed to remain with them, but always found herself back with her mother. Due to lack of parenting Mary becomes a delinquent teen and ends up in juvy. Upon her release she finds her “prince charming,” or so she believes, but her prince is abusive and possessive. Mary, vows to make the relationship work and believes Donny’s empty promises which only lead to several pregnancies and lots of heartache. Will Mary ever escape the cycle and find the peace and love she deserves?
Running in Heels is a heartfelt recollection of a life filled with unimaginable struggles as well as the inspiring determination to survive which, by the grace of God, the author does. This gratifying memoir is well written and moving. I felt so many emotions as Mary suffered abuse, loss, and finally discovered the joy life has to offer.
I highly recommend picking up a copy.” – Stacie Theis
If you haven’t read this yet, do. It sticks with you.” – kapizar
Loved the honesty. Loved how she did not allowed the circumstances to make her a victim. She became a Victor. Thanks for your honesty. Peace.” – Amazon Customer
“Mary’s life story, “Running in Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace,” will inspire all readers that have experienced a broken past to remember…the past does not need to define the future. Truly a soul-stirring account of real life experiences and the determination to survive!!! – Carolyn J. Passmore
“Running in Heels is a true story told with the kind of passion that makes the reader feel as though he or she is the one experiencing the tales in the story. Mary Perez shares her life of emotional and physical pain, hanging on to hope, and the joy that comes from fully learning to trust in the Lord God. She leaves no skeletons in the closet but bares her soul in the hope that she can bring hope to women in similar situations. This is ultimately a book of encouragement for people who had troubled childhoods or troubled marriages. Just as Mary refused to give in to despair, she encourages her readers not to give up hope either.” – E. Moreno
“At What Price Love?
Running in Heels by Mary A. Perez is a fantastic read. From humble beginnings and fighting all the way through a childhood of having to look for her own self-worth, it was no wonder that Mary would emerge into one of the most destructive relationships.
For all of us who have been there in one way or another, when we start our lives without a solid basis to learn what we are made of, Mary has come out scarred and yet with her indomitable spirit has written a great book about fighting again and again until she could overcome one after another great disappointment from what should have been her greatest love and pillar.
Through her faith finally and a final act of defiance she re-discovered that she was much stronger, and smarter than she had ever given herself credit for.
Written candidly and with honesty, Ms. Perez comes clean about the worst of her times and how she has overcome the worst and come through to become finally the well accomplished woman she is.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Running in Heels and if you enjoy biography’s or have in any way have overcome obstacles, this is a must read for you too.” – Fara
“This book left me crying for the little girl who just wanted to be part of a loving family. Mary Perez shares her life story in a compelling way, starting from a childhood of neglect through a marriage of abuse. Her grandparents were the solid rock in her tumultuous life and gave her a glimpse of normalcy. They shared their Christian faith with her, a faith that sustained her through many difficult years. After years of abuse and four children she found the courage to end her marriage and start anew. Unexpectedly she met a wonderful man who cared for her and her children. She has now enjoyed a loving marriage for 22 years. This book shows us the grit it takes to make it through horrible circumstances and bad decisions. It also shows us a loving God who never abandons us and always gives us the grace to make it through our trials and tribulations.” – Deborah W. Hanson
“I love when I read a book and I can feel every emotion the character is going through. I felt like I was right there with her. It was so well written and very relatable. Loved every bit of it!” – Amazon Customer
“This was a great book to enjoy. The story help renew my faith in fresh starts and showed me how different we all are. The benefits of never giving up served this author very well indeed.” – Kathe Kring
“Beautiful book about her personal journey through life was inspiring.” – Lisa Brown
“Such an amazing read!” – JWW
“There are people courageous enough to tell their story in order to help others withstand their own agony. The author of this book is one such person.
Her early life experiences are not easy to comprehend, but she details them with courage, grace and honesty. The power she has achieved through such agonizing experiences and against all odds, managing to forgive is inspirational and uplifting.
This book is for anyone that feels alone in their suffering. This book is for anyone looking for a narrative that shows how a human being can overcome even the greatest of tragedies and not only survive, but live on to inspire the lives of others.
It is a book about courage, persistence, hope and forgiveness. At a time when these four attributes seem lacking in our culture, it is refreshing to read a story such as this.”
– C. Guidry
“This was an excellent memoir and it was not only brave of Ms. Perez to bear her soul but to share it so openly and candidly. It is a must read, I read this book in 2 days, I couldn’t put it down! Great job and I look forward to your future writings!” – DeeDee Askins
“I started the book very suspiciously indeed and had my doubts whether the book would prove to be an interesting read. My doubts were vanquished within a span of first few pages. It’s a strangely captivating book and will keep you hooked right till the end. The book is quite passionate and delves deep within human eccentricities and behaviors. The central character is Mary whose portrayal is that of a woman who metamorphoses through a life full of sorrow and deprivation” – Leo Ross
“Raised with an abusive alcoholic mother and an absent father, young Mary chooses her own path to pain and heartache as she searches for a way to ease the hurt of a broken loveless home.
But when she marries the man of her dreams, she realizes all isn’t happily-ever-after in the real world. Her new husband isn’t Prince Charming, and she isn’t the beloved princess.
But Mary isn’t one to give up. Pugnacious and resilient are words that come to mind when thinking of this woman. I laughed, cheered, and ached, as we walked through the sights, sounds, and smells, of the eighties.
If you love memoirs, I think you will enjoy reading Mary’s story of loss and pain, hope and healing, and finally, peace and happiness.” – G. Johnson
“There is an act of courage within these pages that speaks directly to an audience who refuse to be victims. Read “running” only if you care about being a productive and contributing human being. However, if you wanna sit on the porch and wait for someone else to take you away from all this, don’t bother…….. this book is truly about Grit and Grace. And reading over and over will open windows you missed the first time around…” – Daniel Marti
“I found this book most inspiring. The author draws you into her personal world, breaking down the walls and becoming open and vulnerable while allowing you to see and feel the struggle and pain of her past. She reveals how her faith in God has become the backbone of life. This book kept me interested from chapter one on. I truly felt her emotions, pain, and faith throughout this journey. A great read and highly recommended!” – Ronald J. Wilhite
“I jumped at the chance when I was given an opportunity to read this memoir. Mary A. Pérez is a good writer. She has shared a tear-strewn piece of her life, when hope was only a memory. She opened her heart and revealed her soul like not many would dare. I’m happy to know that in the end, her faith, and the love of her family enabled her to have a positive outlook on life despite setbacks. Recommended.” – lovesbooks2
“Just reading the prologue inticed me to purchase the book. I wanted to keep reading to find out where this was going to take me. Excellent read, I felt like I was that child, that teenager, that young woman running….running to what and where. It kept me riveted not wanting to put it down till the very end. I highly recommend this book.” – Amazon Customer
“I’m very picky in what I read and this book, ‘Running in Heels‘ I have to say was one of those books that did not take me long to read because I had a hard time putting it down. It’s very well written and it made you feel you were right there experiencing what Mary was feeling and going through. For what she went thru and survived it all is amazing. Thanks Mary Pérez for opening up your soul to tell us we all can survive and be happy.” – TerryAnn Ross
“Every chapter demonstrates the fine art of writing. In Running in Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace, Mary A. Peréz tells her life story – a Puerto Rican girl who experiences severe poverty as a niña, teenage marriage and subsequent divorcio, single parenthood with cuatro niños, and a second marriage in which the fin proves to be satisfying. But, it’s not just the story line that makes this book alluring, it’s the way the story is told. Every word is rich and carefully selected. Every page grasps the readers’ attention. Every chapter demonstrates the fine art of writing. The dialogue, the letters, and the descriptions evoke imagery. Indeed this book reads like a movie. And, without being preachy in the slightest bit, Mary A. Peréz shows how God-given principles shape her decisions.
Anyone can benefit by obtaining and reading a copy of Running in Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace. I highly recommend it.” – Aurelia McNeil, Freelance Editor
“Some people’s life stories amaze me. While I normally read fiction, this book kept my attention and kept me reading.” – quiltermom
“Emotionally gripping! I don’t know where to begin. Mary’s story kept me truning the pages and having to remind myself that this is a TRUE story!! My heart wrenched for Mary as a child struggling to grow up in a less than ideal environment and envied her in her ability to forgive as an adult. She made me want to improve on this in my life. What a wonderful and enlightening read.” – Kristal Bullard
“Life at its best: grit and grace. I give this book a 5-star rating for a couple of reasons. One, this book is very well written. Two, because it reached way down to my toes – it ‘got me’ where it matters. I absolutely love the transparency of the author. She claims to serve a perfect God, while she continues to be human. This is NOT a preachy book, but rather as down-to-earth as can be, giving credit to God and His grace.” – Thistle
” ‘A Memoir of Grit and Grace’ is an apt subtitle for this book. I found the book to be well-written memoir and a good read. Like many memoirs, it details the hard times faced and eventually overcome by the author. Running in Heels becomes an encouraging thing. Mary A. Pérez holds the reader’s attention and makes one want to root for her despite of some of her decisions.” – John Maberry
“Gripping story from the very beginning; I had to keep reminding myself that the story is real. Almost difficult to imagine overcoming many of the obstacles Mary was faced with. Beautifully narrated and thought provoking.” – PFamily
“Amazing story of perseverance and how difficult the disease and cycle of codependency is. There’s a lot I can relate to in this memoir and I’m sure so many others can as well. It’s a true testament to the power of faith, love, and tenacity.” – Amazon Customer
“This is a story of persistence, hope and forgiveness. It shows that no matter where you come from, how you grow up or what situations you may be facing, you can make changes and find your way to happiness” – Anonymous
“Gritty, determined, strength from who knows where. A story of survival and of rising above. Gives hope to those who are in “hopeless” situations.” – Patricia Wright
“Truly a story of grit. Couldn’t out it down. Cant’ wait for Mary to come to our book club meeting.” – Amazon Customer
“This book was my book club’s read this month. The cover caught my eye and I was drawn in from there. Wonderful story about determination, forgiveness, spirituality and fulfillment. I purchased two more copies as gifts.” – Amazon Customer
“This gripping, true-life story touched me to the core. Sadly, the struggles and challenges Mary faced are all too common in the lives of women today, particularly mothers and abuse victims. It’s proof that God still loves us and provides for us, even when we don’t know Him or if we’ve just put Him on the back burner. Relating to Mary’s “grit” is one thing…experiencing God’s grace in this midst of it is priceless. I hated to put the book down, even long enough to accomplish daily mandatory tasks. Always eager to return to it, I cherished each new victory and bit of wisdom. Mary’s book is exceptionally well written, never allowing for boredom! It’s a classic, must-read story of redemption for women and teenage girls who wish to avoid or recover from similar heartache. Well done, Mary Perez!” – Rhonda Tarver
“This book is a must read. Halfway through this book I thought is this real or fiction. I stopped several times to thank my husband and to reflect on my childhood and really appreciated my life. It reminded me about perseverance, being grateful, increasing my faith and like the old saying “there is a silver line at the end of the tunnel.” I was fortunate to meet the author and to see how humble and forgiving she is was priceless. This has driven me to think of ways to help battered women at the center.”
“Inspirational & uplifting! This Book is so Moving! It has inspired me so very much. I learned so much about myself. I think this is one of the best true life stories written!!” ~ Barbara
“THIS BOOK IS AMAZING!! If you are going thru a painful and hard relationship in your life, please read this book. It will give you hope and it’ll help you understand that God is loving and full of grace and mercy. It’s so comforting to know that no matter what, God is always in control and so patient with us despite our rebellious human nature. Mary Ann’s book is delightful and easy to read. I loved reading her book, and I felt as if I was there with her because of all the details she gives in her writings. Reading this book would be a tremendous blessing for every woman!!” – Karla Begnaud
“I was given a copy of Running in Heels in exchange for an honest review. Mary Perez’s memoir is a heart-wrenching testament to perseverance in the face of constant physical and emotional violence. It is an honest portrait of abuse within two generations, and chronicles the author’s long and often painful journey to recover her life and her faith within a most difficult legacy.” – Rita M. Gardner
“AMAZED AT HER GRACE! I had the pleasure of teaching Mary’s daughter not having any idea about the challenges her mom was facing daily until I read her book. I am amazed at her grace, courage and not giving up when many do this daily with fewer challenges. This book is a testament of what faith in God can accomplish. If you or a friend are struggling read this book. It will help you keep on keeping on.” – Penelope Jank
“MY HUSBAND GIFTED ME WITH THIS WONDERFUL BOOK FOR CHRISTMAS! I finished it in two days, and feel as though Mary is a part of me now. Her story is told in a simple and honest way, leading the reader almost “gently” through the maze that was her life. After reading her story, and knowing the ending (beginning!) I am struck with this thought….my favorite book as a child and now to adulthood is Jane Eyre. Mary, like Jane, never let her circumstances take away the spark of love and compassion that was instilled in her heart. What a story of resilience, personal growth, compassion, faith, and love.” – Bernadette somebodylovesmeblog.wordpress.com
“FIVE THUMBS UP!!!!! Some time ago, before this book was published, I always wondered what she was typing in her home-office computer all those hours. She never let me in…
I don’t like reading, but I could not put this book down. Found myself upset towards the end, because I knew I was near the end of reading it.
First of all, it was an easy read. Secondly, I have a much more profound respect for my mother now. Learning more of the stories that were told to us kids (my siblings) in livelier detail. The hardships my mother endured and overcame. Pretty neat how she kept those letters from my great-grandma. And I could actually “hear” all the characters of the book in my mind, especially Grandpa! She captured their voices perfectly and put them in the pages. By the way y’all, I’m on page 118!!!
I’d give her five thumbs up, but I only have two… Love you Mom, this book rocked and I can’t wait to see what you have in store next!” – Anna
“I LOVED IT! I just read this book and found it to be an excellent read even if you have not had domestic violence or Alcoholism in your family or friends family. That is why I’m sharing this with you, I also like to help all women who are trying to be creative and productive in their lives. Running In Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace would make a great Xmas present. Good reading ya’ll.” – Bella
“GREAT READING AND LOOKING FORWARD TO MORE BOOKS BY AUTHOR! I recently met this author when she was in my area selling her book. I am an avid reader, but usually always tend to lean towards the murder mysteries venue. However, I purchased this book and wow…! I could not put the book down & read it in 2 days. Heart wrenching yet also uplifting, the story of a young girl growing up in impoverished times, with the exclusion of any positive role model to influence her life. Her daily experiences were overwhelmingly filled with challenges, and always filled with the hope of conquering them all. A very fast moving story, with the author bringing every character to life. Great reading and looking forward to more books by Mary A. Perez.” – Amazon Customer
“AMAZING BOOK! SO WELL WRITTEN! The moment I started reading the book, I just couldn’t stop reading. It is a book that inspires courage and teaches you how one can truly overcome even the hardest times in life. As I was reading the book, I was able to feel and see everything as if I was watching what I was reading. I recommend this book to anyone who needs a lift-me-up because they are either dealing with hardships or whoever that feels they are struggling with a tough childhood. It is a book for everyone to read even if you have no hardship in life. This book truly is a book that teaches one about survival, courage and strength. Truly a must read!” – Aura E Martinez
“GREAT READ! I couldn’t put this book down…The story is told in great detail that you could hardly wait to turn to the next page to see what is happening with Mary…This book tells a story about salvation and redemption and I would highly recommend this book to anyone!” – Rody
“LIVING OUT THE 70 TIMES 70 PRINCIPLE! In Running in Heels, Mary bravely confronts a past riddled with abuse and makes herself vulnerable in acknowledging her part in decisions that kept her trapped in a relentless cycle for years. Glimpses of our heavenly Father pursuing her relentlessly are scattered throughout this moving memoir. Ultimately, mercy triumphs over seemingly impossible circumstances with redemption and restoration through grace received and grace extended.” – Leslie
“MUST READ MEMOIR! My book club enjoyed reading about the author’s life and how she overcame a dysfunctional childhood through sheer determination to carve out a better life for her children. It’s a good read, and we were blessed to meet the author and get to learn more about her journey from a childhood of neglect and loss through marriage, motherhood and now a successful career as an author. Very inspiring!” – liamsdaddy
“POWERFUL TESTIMONY! RIVETING STORY! Mary’s vivid descriptions of her life made me feel like I was right there with her. She is truly a strong woman to be able to forgive on such a deep level, those who inflicted so much pain on her. God’s power to heal the deepest emotional scars and bring about forgiveness is evident in Mary’s life.” – Darryl Rodgers
“STUNNING! Riveting. Raw. The story will break open your heart with her vulnerability and strength. There are few people that could come out of the darkness like she did. The fact that this isn’t fiction is mind blowing. This is a life preserver for anyone experiencing similar circumstances.” – Boymama
“Such a GREAT BOOK!!! I could not put it down. Running in Heels is the life story of an amazing women and her trials and tribulations of growing up in a dysfunctional family.” — Kindle Customer
“This is a story of courage in the face of extreme adversity. Mary hung in there long after I would have thrown in the towel and was blessed for her efforts. If you think you have had it rough, you should read her story.” – Charisse Tyson
“WHAT A LIFE! WHAT A WOMAN! I have never met Mary A. Perez, but I feel as if I know her now that I read her memoir; Running in Heels. And what a story! Her personal journey through a life of neglect and abuse to one of a faith-filled believer makes for a captivating read. Mary’s resilience and determination not to repeat her mother’s mistakes is commendable and is a theme throughout her story. Mary has many admirable qualities as a writer. Her clear, strong voice commands the reader’s attention from the first page. In addition, I enjoyed her frank and open analysis of the part she played in her own drama. I would definitely recommend Running in Heels to anyone who wants to learn about a life transformed by faith!” – Barbara
“JUST READ IT! Running in Heels is a gut wrenching memoir from an extremely talented author. Mary was dealt a seriously bad hand of misfortune after mistreatment after tragedy and still, in the end with a hell of a lot of learning, searching and growing up, she came out of horrible circumstances to create a better, healthier life for herself and those around her. Running In Heels is a book of intense emotions and overcoming habits perpetuated by generations. It was an amazing journey.”- H. Taylor inkorkeys.com
“Running in Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace” is a memoir of trials, tribulations, forgiveness and perseverance. It is well written and it certainly illustrates the horrors and consequences of alcoholism and co-dependency. The sprinkling of Spanish words as well as the sounds and smells of Spanish food compliment this multi-genre memoir which reminds the reader that with God all things are possible and He will get you through anything. Highly recommend! – Dania Rosa Nasca.
“BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN BOOK! I received this book in a giveaway and I’m so glad I did. It’s well written and I was so immersed in the story that I read it in three days (that’s as good as I can do with watching a baby all day!), and I cried and laughed out loud a few times. I loved the Spanish words and phrases sprinkled throughout. This is a beautiful book about God’s love and care, even when we run from Him.” – Carrie Smith
“From girlhood to womanhood, Mary narrates this cunning and deeply profound tale of strength and hardship. The reader will see her pain and struggles while taking a seedy tour of America’s history. Generally well-written and soulful, Running in Heels is a raw and colorful piece of art. Although the pace was slightly offsetting, readers will still be amazed by this simple recollection and will be able to relate.” – Celia
“VERY WORTH THE READ! This was an amazing (sometimes quite painful to read) journey – Mary’s life. She opened herself up completely. Made herself vulnerable in order to share with the world a very strong message. . . the love of God, His forgiveness, His grace CAN get you through anything! And, along with that message was the powerful reminder that our own forgiveness, through that very grace He extended to us, brings forth great healing. Although so painful (due to some parallels in my own life, Thank you, Mary for being so open with us.” – Karin Lynn-Hill
“BEAUTIFUL AND INSPIRING. Being forced to grow up long before her time and when life seemed hopeless, she handled it all with grace and dignity and grew to be a woman who has provided hope and inspiration to countless people. Reading it, I was moved beyond words and transported to a world I knew little about. Her writing captured my attention and heart, intriguing me every step along the way, keeping me turning pages as fast as I could. I could not imagine living through all the trials she went through as a little girl and young adult. It tore my heart open when I experienced, through her eyes, all the sadness, abandonment, devastation and abuse she endured in her life. However, through it all she remained courageous and brave. I kept thinking while reading it, I could never be that strong. So incredible. I was in awe.” – Daphne
“WELL WRITTEN READ! This book will tear your heart out and then put it back in. The troubles that excessive alcohol use bring to a family can repeat for generations, a cautionary tale. But the grace of God can put families back together and introduce a peace that passes all understanding.” – R.L.
“A GREAT READ! Just finished reading Mary Ann Pérez book, Running in Heels. I didn’t want to put it down. She has an interesting way of writing and it keep me interested in what was going to happen next. I loved waiting to see what tidbit of my history, she would add, the history I lived.” – Susie Winn http://www.bedandbreakfastwoodville.com/
“Running in Heels, by Mary Ann Pérez, kept me turning pages with constant anticipation of what was going to happen next. Her true story of grit & grace made me wonder how anyone could ever go through what she went through unless by the supernatural strength of God! Anyone going through similar circumstances can fine the hope, encouragement & power from the Lord to persevere & be victorious against all odds!” – Manny Camunas
“A MUST READ! You cannot simply read this book, it must be gobbled. While the author puts her painful childhood on display, she also inspires those who might be doing battle with the same demons of abuse and neglect. Through her faith in God, and her single minded stubbornness to make a better life for herself, Mary A. Perez shows what can be done when the human spirit refuses to settle for the hand they’ve been dealt. This book should be required reading for high school students. Drug and alcohol abuse harms not only the addict, and the people who love them, but also the little lives they bring into the world.” – kan
“Running in Heels is a compelling memoir that explore the life of author Mary Perez as she experiences tragedy, abuse, extreme loneliness, and ultimately forgiveness. Running in Heels is a heartfelt recollection of a life filled with unimaginable struggles as well as the inspiring determination to survive which, by the grace of God, the author does. This gratifying memoir is well written and moving. I felt so many emotions as Mary suffered abuse, loss, and finally discovered the joy life has to offer. I highly recommend picking up a copy.” – Stacie Theis http://www.beachboundbooks.com/
“I loved the book from Grit to Grace is what I call it. A very well written story that keeps you engaged. A Real life story of grace, work, hope, encouragement and perseverance!” – Phillip Hatfield, author of “Carried by Angels.”
“HIDDEN TALENTS! Very good book!! I took some time to reflect on my childhood long ago and how much better my life was than Mary’s. It also caused me to wonder about the trait, seemingly mostly among women, of the lack of self esteem. Mary had excellent skill sets, but couldn’t see them until later…..a tenacious will to survive, loyalty almost to a fault, intense dedication to her family and religious convictions. Thankfully Mark recognized her self worth…….priceless!!” – William Strong
“If you enjoy reading books where characters overcome hardships then this is a book for you. Some stories are very heartbreaking and the reader is clear to indicate that it is her faith that has pulled her through. I read this book in one night and went to work red eyed the next day but it was totally worth it.” – Amazon Customer
“Running in Heels is the story of a young woman’s resolve to break the chain of poverty and abuse. This memoir is well written with good use of dialogue to bring the story to life. Italics and capitalized words help the reader visualize emotional interaction. Each chapter starts with an interesting hook that makes me want to read on. A Spanish word interspersed now and then in the dialogue reminds us that there’s another culture present and that English is someone’s second language. Running in Heels provides a better understanding of alcoholic families, and the trials of poverty and being different. This is a story of grit and grace, resolve and success. Recommended reading.” – Karen M. Wood
“Running In Heels is a story that perfectly illustrates how ADVERSE CIRCUMSTANCES DON’T HAVE TO DEFINE A PERSON. The easy read lays a tough life out in linear fashion and continues to grip the reader till the last word. I kept expecting the author to give up somewhere along the way. No. Her persistence in keeping her head above water and pushing forward made me cheer for every victory the author achieved. The writing is first rate, cohesive, and tightly woven, no gaps to leave the reader wondering. Some of the narrative was disturbing, yes, but the reader in me kept pushing on to find the end I hoped for. Mary A. Perez delivers!” – Anonymous
“Phenomenally written! The story is gripping, and the writing is superb. This book will make you grateful for the life you have as you walk through the pain and heartbreak that Mary went through. You will be moved.” – Howard Partridge
“Let me say that the Grace of God was fully manifested in the life of this woman. Very few can come out of the childhood she was exposed to,to find love and acceptance by the one that never left her during all of the pain life could throw at her. Truly a book for the day and hour we are now in. Amazing Love, Amazing Book!” – Judy Harwell
“AWESOME! Running in Heels is one of the best books I’ve read in quite a while. It is funny, sad and very inspirational! A great read!!” – Amazon Customer
“I cannot imagine the pain that Mary and her family endured during her childhood and in her early adulthood. She is courageous and her story would give people in a similar situation hope and encouragement. The last few chapters made me smile to know that the end of her story is the beginning of a beautiful love story.” LALAH
“A LIFE OF ENDURANCE! Most of Mary’s life was anarchy. She recognized that her only hope was to forgive herself and everyone who had mistreated her. She found that she was a better person because of what she had endured as a child.” -JoAn Watson Martin
“BEAUTY WILL RISE! This is a great book! I loved it on so many levels. The transparency of the author’s ups and downs shows so much vulnerability, and she really paints vivid pictures with her words while we look through a window at her life’s events. I wish I could sit down with her grandparents and have a conversation with both of them. The occasional bi-linqual wording made it seem so much more personal. In all honesty, there were parts of this book that were difficult for me to read because of the stark reality of the desperate situations. But personal triumph over the hardest trials in her life leave the reader with great hope! How wonderful for Jesus to arrive at the scene of a woman’s tragedies and bring so much healing and fruit! Bravo, Mary! Don’t ever stop writing!” – Cat Ello
“I just finished reading Running in Heels – a terrific memoir by one of my special Blog buddies, Mary A. Perez. I must admit that I was not prepared for the multi-faceted journey that I experienced as I read this book, finding myself vacillating between tears and laughter, fear and hope as I rooted for this courageous and tenacious young girl who worked to make a life for herself and, eventually, her children. What struck me most about Mary was her determination to love and to be loved. She travailed through abandonment, neglect, lack, and a contorted view of love, only to evolve, against all odds, into a dedicated and determined mother, an endearing and graceful daughter, a faithful and loyal wife and, most importantly of all, a triumphant and powerful woman of God. As she tried to become embittered, Mary’s heart was somehow strangely open as she continually doled out forgiveness and second chances, even to her own detriment at times. If you want to learn about love, read this book. If you need hope, read this book. If you want a lesson on forgiveness, read this book. If you are a wife, a daughter, or a mother, read this book. I promise that you will be inspired!” – Tina R. Allen www.simplysaidbytina.wordpress.com/
“The fact that TRUTH IS STRANGER THAN FICTION is made evident in this memoir, which makes this book a compelling ‘page turner!’ An amazing story about a young girl starting life out under phenomenal disadvantages, a journey which lasted well into her young adult life. This is an excellent read and I promise the reader will find it difficult to lay this book down!” – Deborah J. Hulen
“AN EXCITING BOOK TO READ! I loved how Mary expresses herself in this book of her young hood journey through, teenage years & then through her marriage & family of her own. She was able to survive all her storms by the Grace of God in her life. If she can make it, so can you! Once you start reading you don’t want to put it down! I love to see some day in a movie form!” – Migdalia
“WHAT A STORY OF SURVIVAL! I am blown away by the author’s engrossing, autobiographical story-telling style. To say Mary’s life was rough is an understatement. She was knocked down so many times, but she always got up! What a life lesson for so many. I loved the letters from family members that Mary inserted as she bared her life and soul. The occasional scriptures were spot on for the moment. The love in Mary’s heart was never absent. The end of story irony blew me away. Who could be that forgiving? Mary could! From the depths to the triumphs, Mary A. Pérez had me from hello.” – Lynne Gregg
“A GREAT READ FOR ALL. This book is full of pain and hope and redemption. The power of forgiveness and moving forward is strong throughout the pages and the grace of God is clear.” – Cathy Bryson
“VERY MOVING AND HIGHLY INSPIRATIONAL. For those who grew up in a loving and stable environs, it is difficult to image what home life would be like if it were filled with drunkenness, shouting matches, and abuse. Yet the latter description captures only a portion of Perez’s dysfunctional past. Written in three parts, Mary Perez’s memoir delves into the spiritual healing of one woman who was once caught in the vicious cycle of codependency.” – Anita Lock for Story Circle Book Reviews
“A BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN TALE. The moment I started it I had echoes of The Glass Castle and I’d recommend Running in Heels to anyone who loved Walls’ memoirs as they have some strong parallels. I read the entire book in bed over several nights, though I have severe regrets about reading the last few chapters at the public pool. It’s incredibly well written and I really hope that Mary Perez goes on to write more. If you like personal memoirs you’re going to love this.” – Kath Cross
“A GRIPPING MEMOIR! Running In Heels is a story of survival. It is the story of hope and faith and an amazing godly forgiveness which is truly inspiring. I had no high expectations so I was surprised at what a page-turner it was. It is a beautifully written narrative and I could not put it down!” – TLChurcher
“A MEMORABLE MEMOIR THAT WILL STAY WITH YOU. Once I opened the first chapter to read, I couldn’t put down, “Running in Heels” by Mary Pérez . The book delivers on its promise to be a memoir of grit and grace. The author guides us through the three major sections of her childhood, growth and the woman she becomes. As a reader, my heart often ached for her misery and circumstances, yet I never felt that she tried to sensationalize her experiences as a child or teen bride. It’s an honest, open and blameless account. I credit the author’s faith for the forgiveness she demonstrates, making this book an inspirational read. “Running in Heels” is a universal tale. You’ll find this book lingering in your thoughts long after you’ve finished. I’d highly recommend this for both book groups and faith groups.” – Charli Mills
“FAITH GOES A LONG WAY. As I read Mary’s story while wiping tears from eyes I am thankful Mary had praying grandparents to help restore her faith. Mary turns her life around through her faith to make a better life for her children. Running in Heels is an emotional yet inspirational book that shows one girl’s determination to change her life for the betterment of her children while forgiving the parents that where not there for her.” – Teresa Beasley
“AN INSPIRING MEMOIR that illustrates God’s hand on our lives despite the circumstances we see around us. Mary shares a simply told account of her journey that was by no means simple to live out.” – Mary Hare
“Running in Heels was the first memoir I’ve read in a while. As I read through the pages, I couldn’t believe this was a non-fiction. Some of the events were incredible that I thought, no one could POSSIBLY live through this and be real. And yet, the author’s faith shines through like a beacon of light. All in all, this was a very good book and I learned a lot from it.” – Green Fire
“HEART BREAKING STORY, WELL WORTH THE READ. Well worth the read. Wow. I’m just speechless. Disclosure; I was given a free copy of this book for an honest review. When I first began reading I want too interested. The book even seemed to drag a bit. Too long. But as I got further into the book, Mary’s story took hold of me. Truly worth reading. “- Sonja Carroll
“A GREAT READ! Running in Heels, A Memoir of Grit & Grace is an compelling story of how neglect and tragedy can be turned to grace and forgiveness.” – Michelle
“LOVELY BOOK! Stayed up till 2 am, reading Ms. Perez’s “Running in Heels“. I found her true life story riveting and heart breaking in the abuse and trauma she has walked through. This is really a book about Hope! It will bring the reader to join her in a new life of joy. She has overcome and brings encouragement to wounded souls.” – Cynthia Watts
“THIS IS A POWERFUL READ about overcoming trials and tribulations. Once you pick it up you can’t seem to put it down, a motivational read. One that inspired me, and remembered me that there’s a rainbow waiting for you at the end of your stormy days, weeks, months or even years! This was my first read by Ms. Pérez, but it will definitely won’t be my last.” – S.E. Felida
“This is a book about a woman’s COURAGE in the face of poverty, alcoholism, racism and violence. For anyone who is going through or has gone through a painful past, this memoir is a testament that love along with hope, faith and forgiveness conquers all. Simply Red’s Holding Back the Years came to mind while reading this memoir.” – Carol Balawyder
“A MUST READ!!!! I absolutely enjoyed this book, I didn’t want to put it down down once I started reading it. I found this book to be very inspiring and motivating feeling that I too can persevere regardless of my own circumstances. I would absolutely recommend this book!!!!” – A. Zaragoza
“I bought this book after reading the sample in one sitting. I just couldn’t stop reading it. One part of the story made me put down the book so I could cry and reflect. I’m definitely learning life lessons through the author’s honest narrative of her life – AN UNEXPECTED BONUS.” – Mikee
“A FANTASTIC RECIPE for overcoming the bad cards Life has dealt you. Don’t miss this inspirational story!” – Roger Paulding
“AGAINST ALL ODDS! I honestly believed Nicholas Sparks was the only author who would make me cry with his novels, made up love stories, struggles & thrillers…but along came “Running in Heels” that within a few pages had tears running down my cheeks…I literally devoured her book!” – Silvia Martinez
“A GREAT BOOK, about a VERY strong woman. The beauty of a story like this is how God can bring such healing in even the most terrible circumstances. I’m fortunate to see first hand the love that this family has for each other. And I’m in awe…..” – Liz Pelletier
“THE WORDS HAVE LIFE! The words are moving, gripping, heart wrenching, and inspiring.” MsT
“VERY READABLE AND ENGAGING – hard to put down. I admire her grit, courage and faith which have served her well – and left me wondering what I would have done if ‘running in her heels’.” – Amazon user
“FANTABULOUS! I could not put it down. The writing was excellent and I was really drawn into the story. My hats off to Mary that she was able walk through this and still retained her sanity. It was a wonderful book.” – Connie Parks
‘Running in Heels: A Memoir of Grit and Grace’ is an exercise in truth and bravery, written By Mary Perez. This book represents the triumph of the female spirit over the phantom of abuse and instability that follows those of us who are unfortunate enough not to have the benefits of an “idyllic childhood”. -linrich
“It’s amazing how far your faith can take you, especially when that’s all you have left! A wonderful book on overcoming obstacles from childhood to adulthood, and the ability to forgive. Good read from start to finish.”- Missy
“A GREAT BOOK. Awesome story about going through trials in your life” – Bacon Man
“Mary’s story of overcoming repeated sufferings will inspire those who have also endured hunger, abandonment, prejudice, and heartbreak and will motivate us all to keep believing that there is hope for good to enter our lives at last.” – LFaneca
“A TRUE INSPIRATION. This story should inspire anyone who has suffered abuse and neglect or lived with alcoholism. As well as anyone who has lost their way and feels their faith floundering. I could not stop reading.” – Dorrie Dobbs
“LOVED the book. She has made her mess her message. A must read.” – Vickie Haislup
“Get ready to be moved. Keep tissue handy. Great book for a book reading club.” – Grace Ashton
“COULD NOT PUT THIS BOOK DOWN. It was well written. Had me crying, sad and happy at times.” – Kathleen Molloy
“AN AMAZING STORY, truly of grit and grace. It grabs you from page one and will not let you go.” – Susen Bookwater
“From the moment you begin reading you are enthralled. I found myself staying up late into the night because I just had to know what the next page would bring. This is a truly beautiful story of ‘grit and grace.’ Heartache and happy tears will follow you through every page of the book! You feel connected to the author regardless of whether or not you have been in that exact situation. You feel the heartbreak of a little girl, the turmoil of a troubled young woman, and the peace and beauty of the woman she grows into.” – LoveBug1987