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Personal Growth (Growing Roots Series, Volume 2)


2 (2)

Willie, despite a rough start, has become immersed in the culture she should have been born into. As she grows in her own knowledge of her ancestral roots, she also grows in who she is as a person. All things are now within her reach, and all she must do is put forth a little effort. With all of this in mind, Willie has decided to dedicate herself towards her own ‘Personal Growth.’

“Our heritage might be bloody, but that’s no reason not to be proud!”
-Spike

Excerpt:

“Aunt Janie?” I asked, finding her at the kitchen table. She was looking over some papers, which I assumed by the calculator were finances. “Are you busy?”

Aunt Janie looked up. “No, no. I could use a break from this anyways. What is it, sweetie?”

“I was just thinking about a lot of things today.” I wasn’t really sure how to broach the subject of heritage or my father with her.

“Like what?”

“Well, for starters… if you’re three quarters Choctaw, was momma that much to?” Aunt Janie nodded her head to say that it did. “So what does that make me?”

“Three-eighths, I think, from our side.” Aunt Janie answered.

Nodding my head to show I understood, I said “Well… I was wondering something else.” I paused momentarily, pondering how best to ask this question. I finally decided the best way to do it was to just be out with it. “Do you know who my father was?”

Aunt Janie’s face took on a slightly pained expression as though my words caused her a small physical blow. “Your mom never told you who your father was?” I shook my head to answer no but remained silent. “Well, yes, I know who your father is.”

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Reviews:

Review 1: Written by Jem on July 10th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

This book begins shortly after the first ended and pulls you straight into the story. As the title suggests this book focuses more on personal growth, not just of Willie but of all the characters. It seems to be another period of transition but this time its for the group as a whole. How much will the group dynamics change because of this? This book goers a lot more in depth in the cultural side of things which for me was really enjoyable as I found myself discovering many things I hadn’t previously known. Once again all the characters are portrayed really well, not one single character falls flat or appears unbelievable. Its refreshing to encounter characters that have the backbone to stand up for what they believe in without being a zealot, although it may be construed that way by some it doesn’t feel like that to me, more just people being proud of their heritage without going too far. I haven’t read much on this cultural topic at all and certainly nothing that was as in depth and enjoyable as this. There are many questions left unanswered at the end of this book which I hope are answered in the next and that the wait isn’t too long. I do find myself wanting to see where the story goes next and will now be watching for it being released. Overall another enjoyable and informative read.

Review 2: Written by Audrey on July 9th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

I was honored to read ” Less Than Humble Beginnings” part one of Willie’s amazing story. I have to say part two is even better. The story is both heartfelt, intense and powerful. At times you will be in tears from the sheer emotion of this wonderful book. The book is not only insightful and at times edgy but it is also memorable and will leave a footprint on your soul. My only regret is that the book was not a little bit longer this time around. With that being said however it is well worth the money and it is a book everyone interested in Native- American culture should read!

Review 3: Written by EllieReads on April 29th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

I’ve been waiting eagerly for more of Willie’s story! Chelsea Falin’s “Personal Growth” picks up where “Less Than Humble Beginnings” left off- and if you haven’t read it, I recommend you do so. Ms. Falin’s writing is smooth and character driven; her characters have a depth and nuance that most novels for and about teenagers lack. Even the supporting characters have their own storylines and their own lives- they aren’t just there as a foil for Willie.

In “Personal Growth,” Willie learns more about herself and her heritage, and discovers that every choice has a consequence. Willie is a strong, grounded character who makes mistakes and learns from them and who has to decide between what is right and what is easy.

This book offers a glimpse into the Choctaw culture and a look at life on the reservation. It shows the flipside of American history, the history of the oppressed instead of the oppressors. Wrapped up in Willie’s story, you’ll find life lessons, history lessons, and an introduction to the Choctaw language.

I highly recommend this book and its predecessor- I’ll be waiting for the next chapter in Willie’s life!

Review 4: Written by Sanjaya on April 29th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

I was eagerly waiting to read this novel since I finished reading the first book of the series and the author has penned down a wonderful story yet again.

Willie who is now 16 years of age starts seeing the things in a whole new light. I loved the fact that she is finally settling down with a sweet family and a circle of wonderful friends. Despite all the bad times she had with her mother, now she belongs to a loving and caring crowd who always encourage her to take decisions about her future wisely.

The writing style is simple and flow of the story is smooth. However, the story is seasoned with Choctaw and facts about the American heritage making it quite special and unique. The characters are well developed. The story becomes even more lovable with the bunch of new characters introduced and the author hasn’t forgotten to add some sweet surprises too.

Unlike in the previous book, this story ends with a good cliffhanger. The way last story ended abruptly I expected this one to be quite predictable and much more of a teenage love story, but I’m happy that I was proved wrong. The story was as unpredictable as it could ever be and it turned out to be a much better and an interesting read as the author has really plotted the story according to the title she has given, “Personal Growth”. I really look forward to reading the next in the series and highly recommend this novel to all who are in search of a book which will make you feel like home.
Happy reading!

Review 5: Written by Michelle on March 17th, 2013 Posted on Goodreads

I had the honor of being able to read this book, after reading the first I couldn’t wait to find out what happens to Willie and her group of friends. In this book the story continues, this time Willie and her friends are going through some life changes and learning that everything at some point must change. After spending most of her time with boys Willie finds a friends at school Deanna and the two become best friends, Deanna starts to show Willie how to be a “Girl” 🙂 Willie also goes through some changes in this book she realized she wants to learn more about her culture by learning the language and also gets information about her father. (I don’t want to give anything away so I wont say anymore about it) This book is as heartwarming and passionate as the first, filled with the culture and love of the Native American people. It was like sitting down listening to a friend tell you a story it still had a “real” feel to it. I loved this book as much as I loved the first one.

Would I recommend it
Of course I would….This book is also a Novella filled with the same passion as the first!!! Give them both a read you wont be disappointed!!!

Review 6: Written by Annare on July 13th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

I Really liked this, the 2nd book in the Growing Roots series.

In this book, Willie is now 16 & life for her & her Sister Babette is so much better. She also manages to track down her father & Babettes’ father.

All the characters have developed along with the story line.

It is an easy read & full of fun, but also gets put the true message about The Native Americans, without being too political about it.

Well worth reading this series.
I eagerly await book 3

Review 7: Written by Dolores Ayotte on July 14th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

Talented Author Chelsea Falin manages to draw the reader right into the second novel in her Growing Root Series. Although I thoroughly enjoyed Volume I ~ Less Than Humble Beginnings, I must say that I enjoyed “Personal Growth” even more.

It is definitely a continuation of the familiar characters and the events that are unfolding in their lives. Willie still speaks to her reading audience in the first person which makes this fictional novel read like a true story. With my exposure to the Native American or First Nation people, much of what this author describes rings true. In this book, the author digs a little deeper into the heritage of this much misunderstood culture by describing the history of the First Thanksgiving Celebration and what it meant to them. Willie’s Great Uncle Ray shares the story of the arrival of the Pilgrims at Massachusetts Bay and how these two diverse people manage to co-exist. However, with the later arrival of the Puritans, their lives, families, and homes are literally put at risk much to their devastation and sorrow. Many brutal and unthinkable acts take place at this time. Although, Ms. Falin does not overdo this story line, it is definitely an important theme in her writing as she oftentimes describes the unfortunate plight of this long suffering people. Ms. Falin goes on to describe the Native American and how seriously they take their culture and the personal pride they have for the different tribes they were born into.

The main character, sixteen year old Willamina…better known as Willie to family and friends…discovers much more of her past. She learns of her mother’s deception and desire to keep the truth from both herself and her half-sister Babette. Much to her surprise and pleasure, she is able to locate both of their fathers who didn’t abandon them in quite the way she’s been led to believe. There is still the hint of a possible romance between Willie and Spike but..Spike is yet to make his move. I’m quite eager to see what unfolds in this department in the next installment of this great series.

Review 8: Written by Kat on July 17th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

There is soooooo MUCH more packed into the second book I couldn’t stop reading it.
Willies ( The main Character) Aunt is such a kind understanding woman, teaching Willie so many things including about her heritage, speaking with her about her mother and father, and taking in one of the friends because of that horrible occurance.
I don’t want to spoil anything but chapter 5 had my heart swelling I thought at one point it may burst.
Things were looking up for Willie!!!
There is a new person well a few introduced in this book, We will call the one you hear the most about The boy at the creek :). His character had me yearning to know more about him, why was a 20yr old so intreged with the 16yr old Willie? I knew there would be more to his story, and I CANNOT Wait to read what im hoping will be the third book. Is it out yet?
In this book Willie has grown so much within herself, I am almost proud of her in a weird this is just a book way.
I enjoyed learnig about the the different types of Native American ways!
Aunt Janie’s surprise was very much a surprise I was so giddy!!! And the trip that Willie takes and whom she takes it with will bring a smile to your face.
And in the end of the book I was sad…I DID NOT WANT THE BOOK TO BE OVER!!! And I cannot to read book three.

Chelsea Falin, is a very good author, I enjoy her work. Not only does she pull you into the story but she educates you along the way. I have learned more about the Native American struggles than I had every known and for that I thank her. 🙂

Review 9: Written by Daemon on July 18th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

This story actually brought tears to my eyes. It continues the story of Willie and her learning to cope after all the tragedy in her life. Her mother is dead and lied to her her entire life. Meets a father she thought never wanted her. She also has to deal with the normal teenage things. Getting her learner’s permit, friends, and drama from just living. You really root for Willie the entire novella. I can’t wait to see where this story continues. It’s a touching story that I can’t recommend highly enough.

Review 9: Written by K G on July 22nd, 2013 Posted on Amazon

In this book, we follow Millie further in her self discovery. She learns who her father is and gets to meet him, learns she has more siblings. She finds Babbette’s father as well. She also learns more of her Indian heritage, and builds even stronger relationships with her family and friends. Her best friend helps her find the girl in her, and her feelings for Spike continue to grow, not only in love but also in confusion. So much more is learned in this part of Millie’s life, and she has more to look forward to, and more to be confused about. She knows that Spike has feelings, she has feelings, and when she finally confronts him, she’s again left in tears and even more confused. She plans on her trip to visit her father for the summer and get to know her other siblings, while she prepares herself for her cousin and Spike to move away for school. A few new friends in the mix help to change things up as well.

Review 10: Written by Ella M. Goodsell on July 24th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

Chelsea Falin did a wonderful job with this follow up to Less Than Humble Beginnings !!Her writing is so smooth & flowing and there are nice surprises everywhere. In this book Willie learns to cope with the loss of her mother & the deceptions her mother left her with. She learns more about herself & her Indian heritage from her family & friends.Her relationship with Spike is developing more & more but he hasn’t made his move yet. She also finds out who her Father is and she gets to meet the man she thought didn’t want her. She finds out she has other siblings also and she gets to meet them when she goes to visit her Father. She also finds out who her sisters father is too. This book had tears forming in my eyes & was quite heartwarming.

Review 11: Written by LOVEBOOKS on July 26th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

Book two in the Growing Roots series picks up with Wille and her sister meeting cousins they barely knew and meeting and making friends along the way.Willie is .learning what family life is about and how to share her feelings with her new friends who have similar growing up problems .Without giving away any more of the story please get a copy of this book to read how this young girl accepts the life that fate has dealt her.Thank you for the great book Chelsea Falin ,waiting for the third.

Review 12: Written by Jv816 on July 28th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

This book picked up shortly after the first one ended. I really loved this book more than the first. It was really great to see Willie spread her wings and learn about her culture and make new friends. Her Aunt is really sweet. She told her about her dad that he didn’t know and was really there for her.

I really can’t wait to read the next book in this series!

Review 13: Written by Rabsaris on August 13th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

I had read the 1 book on this series and let me tell you that both books are amazing I get so drown in them that I don’t even go to sleep until late lol so I can keep reading them. The second book is amazing as the first one. I love Willie story and how she keeps growing. I can wait to read the third book hopefully is coming out soon I want to know what happen to this all amazing characters especially with Willie and spike i wonder if they ever gonna be together or go different ways. I recommend to give it a try you might enjoy it just like I did.
Happy reading

Review 14: Written by Dini P. on September 28th, 2013 Posted on Amazon

Its quite obvious for me to be truly excited about reading the second volume of the “Growing Roots” series. This was a book I was a lot anticipated for.

The story starts with Willie wondering about her options to shape up the future. Being sixteen is a big thing and she is no more a child. It’s high time she thinks more and act wise. Not just Willie, but the whole bunch of teenagers in the story has turned out to be impressive characters. They have started to be serious in their lives and much more focused, despite the fact that most of them have very uncomfortable and horrible situations with family matters.

I love the fact that all these kids are loving and caring to each other. They are helpful and concerned about the elders who are good to them. The new characters are making the story even more realistic and eventful. The revelations about the past make the story base even stronger and give us a thorough idea about the characters and its specific behavioral patterns.

I’m happy that the things are turning out better for Willie and all the others. It’s always wonderful to see good things happen with good and innocent souls, be it in real life or in a fictional story.

Thanks Chelsea, for a yet another lovely episode. For making the readers have something to be hopeful and believe in the good futures to come in everyone’s lives.

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