HIGH – On Love & Addiction by April Joy Bowden and Jeanie RAINBOW Bell

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highonloveandaddictionlesbianrealife

 

 

 

 

Publisher/Date:  AuthorHouse, Mar. 2010
Genre:  Lesbian True Life
Pages:  148
Website:  http://www.apriljoybowden.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Choosing between love and addiction is a difficult decision – when both lift you up and can take you crashing back down.

Whereas drugs have the ability to destroy lives and relationships, only love has the power to bring you through and fight the disease.

This struggle is depicted in HIGH – ON LOVE & ADDICTION, written by April Joy Bowden and Jeanie RAINBOW Bell. Bowden is also the author of the poetry book, The Other Side of Joy.

Jeanie and April’s relationship began like any typical love romance. Their eyes met across a dance floor, and while they didn’t seem like each other’s type, they fell in love and soon moved in.

At first glance, Jeanie was good on paper: she had a great job, owned a home, drove a nice car, had a good upbringing, kept up a neat appearance, and treated April like a queen.

But soon after moving in, strange messages were left on their voicemail. Then Jeanie pulled disappearing acts for days on end. She missed or ruined holidays. That’s when April knew when Jeanie had a drug problem.

The rest of HIGH navigates April and Jeanie’s long journey to getting Jeanie well. What should have been years spent together and creating a family were instead lost to Jeanie’s addiction, relapse and recovery. When Jeanie was sober, she and April had the best time together. When the habit took over, everything took a backseat to getting the next high or, in April’s case, finding Jeanie.

The good thing is that Jeanie and April survived. Through their entries, Jeanie learned what her addiction was doing to her lover and herself, while April endured her own recovery from love.

For those who’ve had an addict in their lives, HIGH – On Love & Addiction is a detailed account of what the struggle is like on a day-to-day basis. Their entries are frequent and slightly repetitive, but that’s the realness of dating addict. One day at a time.

Reviewed December 2012


The Other Side of Joy by April Joy Bowden

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othersideofjoyPublisher/Date:  AuthorHouse, May 2012
Genre(s): Poetry, Romance
Pages: 100
Website:  http://www.apriljoybowden.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Since elementary school, April Joy Bowden has nurtured her love of poetry. It was her release, her connection to the world, her first love.

Bowden’s long-time courtship with verses birthed THE OTHER SIDE OF JOY, a moving work of poems about the emotions and passions manifested by love.

The North Carolina resident and full-time photographer breaks her book into four sections: joy, pain, intimacy and ecstasy. With each, she supplies the rules, and the words she utilizes to describe each facet are truthful and familiar. It’s evident she’s lived it.

The glass remains shattered on the floor
Life’s little remainder that this was the last time the Storm would walk through my door
The broken pieces of my soul, my life, my heart
A subtle hint, a blatant call that we are truly apart
No time, no reason
To mend, fix or repair
Four long years to love, to laugh, to care

What’s also interesting about Joy is the storytelling found in her poems. Bowden is vivid in her depiction of desire.

I awake prior to the sunrise
As my eyes open
Behold the beautiful caramel kissed woman who lay beside me
In the moonlight
Her bosom glistens
And every curve has a story to tell
A story that because I’ve listened
I know so well

In a small amount of pages, Bowden says and expresses a lot in The Other Side of Joy. You can also check out Bowden’s co-authored memoir, High: On Love & Addiction, revealing the ordeals in loving a woman consumed by drugs, which is just as genuine and heartfelt as Joy.

Reviewed August 2012