His abusive family tore him away from her. Would destiny be enough to bring him back?
At ten years old, Chris didn't have good looks, a caring family, or a bright future. But what he did have for three years was the love of Danielle, his beautiful neighbor on Fairhaven Street who showed him a glimpse of a life he desperately wanted.
To escape his abusive father, Chris was forced to move out of state with his mother to the icy hills of Michigan. All he could leave Danielle with was half of a heart-shaped pendant and a promise that he would one day return for her. To have any chance of getting her back, he had to end over one hundred years of abuse in his family, something his family claimed he was destined to carry on. For eight years, all he had to keep going was his half of the pendant which had tarnished heavily from his refusal to take it off.
Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street is a touching multi-award-winning memoir from author C.J. Hudson of his eight-year journey of preparation to return to the love of his life. Written to his twin sons, his story is a testament to the power of devotion and proof that the life you've always wanted is possible if you never give up.
Used to an environment of violence and lovelessness, a young boy named CJ went about his days in resignment and acceptance that this is the life he will experience until his last breath. In school, he was either bullied or ignored. At home, he and his older brother got beat up by their alcoholic father, and their mother was no exception to the treatment. When CJ’s mother decides to end the marriage, he meets the person who will change the course of his life forever, Danielle. Their blissful three years as friends-to-lovers end when the divorce of CJ’s parents leads him to Michigan, leaving Danielle with only a heart-shaped pendant, and his promise to return. With eight years between his departure and arrival back to the love of his life’s door, CJ recalls his journey and the lessons he learned along the way.Destiny Lives On Fairhaven Street is a compelling memoir of CJ’s journey from a fragile and abused boy to a strong and empowered man, all through the power of love. The author’s story tells us that we are the masters of our own fate, and no matter what world we live in, we can choose to be different. From the very start of the story, we are immersed into the harsh world the author lived in. CJ was expected to be just like his father by everyone around him, but in the end, he promised firmly to himself that he is going to break the cycle, and with the proper drive, he was able to prove it. It may look like a typical story of perseverance, but understanding CJ’s experiences and seeing how it affected him in the present, his life is very admirable. He saw the good during times of hardships and he was still able to build a life he envisioned.From the beginning, I found it endearing that he told his story in a narrative manner to his two children, because I felt that it gave the book a conversational feel. Although there are some events that are unimaginable for some readers, such as the abuse, I was able to grasp just how heavy these parts are with the way the author described it. Furthermore, this may not be the first time I read a book that features domestic violence, but the fact that these stories are publicized is crucial in our world today, and every single one of these stories must be heard.Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street is a captivating and motivating memoir that will push its readers to believe in three things —love, fate, and hope. I highly recommend this to people who are going through a lot in life and are looking for a sign to continue on, because CJ is living proof that we can be triumphant. I hope this memoir can help readers to accept that we deserve this one thing, no matter how we measure it —happiness, and that we must not be afraid to seek it.
Love is powerful enough to move mountains, but can it break the cycle of violence and bring him back to his beloved Danielle? We all have our first loves, the ones we met at a young age, the ones who got away, the ones we will never forget. But what if you were a second chance to be with your first love? What would you be willing to do to not only be with your first love but build a life and a family free from the violence you grew up with?
Destiny Lives On Fairhaven Street is a poignant, beautifully-written romantic memoir about one man's journey from a scared, abused boy to an insecure teen to a confident man ready to be with the one person who loved him unconditionally. From the beginning, my heart went out to C.J. and his terrifying childhood. To be bullied over lunch money, to live in a constant state of fear over a beating from his father, to never know the joy of being young and carefree. All that changes for our hero when he meets the girl next door and they fall in love. For three blissful years, he learns love doesn’t cost anything and doesn’t demand penance for being born, but rather, love is the outpouring of devotion and care without asking anything in return. The road our hero travels is fraught with obstacles but it’s all part of his incredible story. Inspiring, motivational, heartbreaking prose propels the plot and the reader has no choice but be moved. The author writes with naked honesty not seen in nonfiction in some time. The writing grabs the reader and they become part of the story. Part memoir, part romantic love story, Destiny Lives On Fairhaven Street is a powerful triste on love in all forms. If you only read one book this year, let it be this one. Fans of Nicholas Sparks will simply adore Destiny Lives On Fairhaven Street. Highly recommend!
Young Christopher meets Danielle when his family moves in next door. Relentlessly bullied at school and the victim of abuse at home, Chris finds solace in Danielle’s company. In her, Chris finds acceptance and peace, and his feelings of loneliness and shame seem to diminish when he is with her. The two are inseparable, and they are devastated when Chris must move away with his family. He gives her a pendant to remind her that he will come back for her one day. He spends the next eight years waiting for the day when he can return to her. Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street, written by C.J. Hudson, is a memoir about the author’s first love, written for his sons to chronicle his journey through the best and worst times of his life.
I chose to read this book because I enjoy stories about young people and thought that a piece about preteen crushes would be a light, endearing read. This book is so much more. Several subplots and many characters come together in this memoir to create a story so powerful that even the most cynical reader will walk away thinking about the book’s themes long after the last page is read. The crippling effects of childhood trauma and the inner turmoil of the protagonist are both astonishing and heartbreaking as the author narrates his story to his sons.
The best part of the book is the development of the characters. Each and every character in this book had a purpose and contributed to the book’s themes. Throughout each chapter, the words and actions of the tertiary characters were internalized by Chris, accentuating the power that adults have on tender young spirits. A father figure does not seem to care that Chris is having his worst day. A judge sees through adult manipulation and shows compassion for a vulnerable child. A grandmother’s gift of wisdom brings affirmation and self-respect that last a lifetime. Many other examples within the pages of this book serve as a testament to the power of words and the malleable psyche of our youth.
There is nothing to dislike about the book. Its purpose is inspirational, and the emotional descriptions are profound and thought-provoking. It could use another round of editing, though, as many errors in grammar were found. For this reason only, one star is deducted from the rating, and I give this book 3 out of 4 stars.
People who are looking for an inspirational story about the power of love and resilience will really enjoy this story. Those who work with our youth will also benefit from the thoughtful insights given by the protagonist, as the psychological consequences of abuse are on full display. There is moderate profanity and some graphic descriptions of violence. People who are sensitive to detailed narrations of child abuse and domestic violence and very young readers should not read this book. For all others, I highly recommend Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street; this is a story that absolutely needs to be told.
Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street by C.J. Hudson is the author's non-fiction memoir that chronicles a life overcome with violence, fear, and longing, and the spark that kept him going against all odds. Hudson begins with an introduction that is heart-breaking, as he tries to keep his physical self safe against abuse at home and bullying in school, the latter of which resulted in even more abuse at home. When it appears Hudson is finally getting a break and the family moves to a Palm Bay home on Fairhaven Street, he sees a little girl across the way named Danielle and is quickly enamored by her. Hudson is still beaten on visitations with his father, but the time spent at Danielle's house takes away the pain of what are now two broken homes. Still, his confidence grows as his relationship with Danielle deepens. When they are forced to part ways, Hudson makes her a promise and gives her a symbolic gift of a love that will last forever.
I was fortunate enough to watch my brother marry a girl he had been desperately in love with since the age of five. She is in the bulk of our childhood photographs and was as much a sister then as she is now, so when fate plopped Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street into my lap, I took it. C.J. Hudson writes a clean and solid storyline that is good enough to read as fiction. Sadly, this is a memoir and everything in it is real, with the first half of the book reading with absolute heartache even when the silver lining of Danielle shines bright. There is a scene before Hudson is forced to move with his grandmother that is incredibly sweet, and the endearing gift of half a heart has all the innocence and hope one can muster. Watching Hudson grow into a man that remains committed to Danielle is what drives the story and being provided with a soundtrack made the whole experience even better. Very highly recommended.
Destiny lives on Fairhaven street is book one of its series. It is a nonfiction memoir written about love and how powerful it can be. It all begins with the author and his childhood. Biographies typically start this way, but what was different was how an abused boy turned into a teen and gained enough confidence to love.
You are easily invited into C.J.’s life and understand his personality and nature from early on. He falls in love when he is young and promises to come for her when he is older. I found the memoir to be written well and enjoyable to read.
What stands out here is the honesty. I believe it is vital for memoirs to present a true retelling of events not just for its authenticity but also for it to be felt, and with this book, you truly do feel.
Destiny Lives on Fairhaven Street by C.J. Hudson is a touching memoir about how author found love.
I liked this book because it feels like a very honest book as the author as not shied away from pouring out his heart. The writing is simply yet the flow of it makes reading this book effortless. The concept of this book is beautiful and the emotions are raw and sincere.
This book is an exceptional emotional read and I would definitely recommend it to all the readers of memoirs and romance genre.
Author C.J. Hudson relates a troubled childhood and troubling adulthood in this saddening memoir addressed to his sons.Hudson’s abusive, drunken father made his mother’s life miserable; later, she married another jerk, the aptly-named Dick. Hudson’s life is made bearable, however, by his feelings for a neighborhood girl, Danielle, with whom he falls deeply in love and to whom he proposes at the tender age of 13. But the two are separated when his family moves to Michigan to live with Hudson’s aunt.Hudson never forgets Danielle and continues to consider her his destined girlfriend, despite evidence to the contrary. When his rage-driven father threatens him during a custody dispute, the judge stands up for him, giving him a view of a better life ahead. Girls start liking him, but his determination to be with Danielle and attempts at self-improvement drive the story.Readers will appreciate Hudson’s difficult journey in overcoming his abusive childhood. Unfortunately, the ending of his story brings an unexpected and shocking revelation regarding his relationship to Danielle that makes readers question Hudson’s judgment when it comes to this romance.It also calls into question the author’s self-awareness overall, as do other passages in the book. For example, in one scene in high school he references a female friend’s boyfriend as “controlling,” but then calls himself her “guardian,” noting, “Any boys who wanted to date her had to be vetted by me first” with no apparent sense of irony. There are many other moments like this.Ultimately, Hudson’s story of devotion is more troubling than uplifting, undercut by a conclusion that brings an unsettling new perspective to the story overall.
Cross Genre Novel
Runner up for Unpublished Novel
Winner for Inspirational Novel
Winner for Romantic Suspense!