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Christine Rose
One Reason to Live: A Memoir About Surviving Trauma

Adult; Memoir; (Market)

After a series of traumatic events (including the end of a 15-year marriage and multiple sexual assaults), a woman discovers she must face the reality of her life, or end it. On a scrap of paper she writes “Reasons to Live.” It stays blank for days. Then, she remembers her old dream: move to Europe. 

By pet-sitting in exchange for lodging, she makes this dream a reality, finding solace in exploring new landscapes and spending time with animals. Against a backdrop of fur-filled adventures and cultural revelations, she battles the demons of C-PTSD and grief as she attempts to rebuild her identity and her life.

One Reason to Live embodies a visceral experience of living with psychiatric injury, combined with the power of radical acceptance, sweetened by the healing quality of animal companionship and the joy of embracing self-love.

Rose (author of the Rowan of the Wood series) veers from fantasy to nonfiction in this uplifting memoir, mixing self-help with a vivid life story that charts her path from trauma to healing. In the midst of what she thought was a stable marriage, Rose discovers secrets that threaten to upend the life she and her husband Ethan have created together—secrets that kickstart a crushing domino effect the night she’s told Ethan was arrested for driving under the influence. As the dust settles, Rose uncovers years of patterns that hint at his addiction issues. That, combined with her own history of several sexual assaults, threatens to unravel the marriage they’ve carefully constructed— and leaves Rose wondering what her future holds.

Rose’s no-holds-barred, sometimes wrenching account of trauma, betrayal, and, ultimately, recovery, unfolds through flashbacks and powerful memories: Ethan’s years-ago construction accident that left him wheelchair bound, Rose’s several sexual assaults, and financial trouble for the couple all culminate in devastating life changes that leave her reeling and poignantly wondering if hope does more harm than good—“Dangerous thing, hope. Perhaps the most dangerous thing in this life.” She turns to her love of travel and animals to find answers, voyaging to London and, from there, across much of Europe, taking turns as an animal sitter and explorer in hopes of finding “the foundation on which I would rebuild my life.”

Though the ending may not be what readers expect, the journey here is intimate and heartwarming. Rose chronicles her darkest moments (some readers may be triggered by the descriptions of self-harm and suicidal ideation) in forceful prose that will resonate with anyone who’s experienced despair, but she infuses the writing with morsels of that elusive hope that foreshadow her inspirational-but still relatable-comeback. Wanderlust fills up the spaces in between, making this as gripping as it is profound.

Takeaway: Secrets that shatter a marriage lead to rebirth in this inspirational memoir.

Comparable Titles: Meredith Hall’s Without a Map, Florence Falk’s On My Own.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A

Manhattan Book Review — 5-Stars

One Reason to Live is a beautiful memoir about survival, hope, and learning to trust yourself again after experiencing incredible trauma and tragedy. So many of the memoirs written by older women that get pushed into popular culture tend to veer into territory gaudily lacking in self-awareness and often skirt straight into the realm of “upper-class problems” territory. Their blurbs offer promises of empowerment along with possible kernels of wisdom they themselves wish they had heard as their younger selves, which may have led their lives in more fulfilling directions sooner. The fact that many of their more genuinely moving experiences revolve around or even stem from the autonomy given to them by their wealth can be really frustrating for readers like myself who might not be able to relate as well to the “upended everything and traveled abroad because my life was too comfortable” narrative. We all know I’m talking about Eat, Pray, Love, and while Christine Rose likens her own story to that of Gilbert’s made-for-Hollywood drama, I would argue that she gives us something wholly her own that is raw, tender, and ultimately, far more moving than anything I’ve read in the genre before. After a traumatic brain injury dramatically alters her husband’s personality, Rose’s marriage of fifteen years, along with the life they had built together, begins to gradually deteriorate around her. Already suffering from C-PTSD due to a series of devastating sexual assaults and dealing with suicidal ideation, Rose desperately searches for a reason to keep living. After some intensely painful deep diving and a harrowing experience with Xanax, she finds it: her one reason to live. On a scrap of paper, she writes “Live in Europe”, and begins to dig herself out of the ruins her crumbled life had left her to suffocate under. There are so many reasons I found Rose’s story to be so moving, but perhaps the most poignant one is her honesty about her struggles. She speaks frankly about assault, suicide, depression, and co-dependency; how her mental struggles affected every other aspect of her life, and how trauma can be held in the body to such an extent that it physically manifests in ways you may not expect. You would think this might be a bit of a bleak writing style, but instead of candy-coating everything her every struggle is followed by pulling herself to higher ground. Not only did she find reasons to live again, but she also created her dream life, her dream community, with little more than an oversized backpack and scrap piece of paper. If you often find memoirs to be lacking in soul, give this one a try, you won’t be disappointed!

Readers' Favorite — 5 Stars

After decades of ​suffering from wrongly diagnosed complex PTSD and accumulating traumas, Christine Rose finally gets the proper medication and a good job. Things are looking up for her until she discovers her marriage is undermined by lies and poor communication, which sends her spiraling down a path of disappointment and regression. Fortunately, she answers a desperate call to cling to life by following her dream to travel to Europe and work remotely. In Europe, she experiences the beauty of unique and distinctive art and culture and meets several adorable pets while pet-sitting for various clients. However, she also has to defend herself against predators as she fights the sinking feeling of loneliness and tries to make friends in her travels. Follow Christine Rose as she embarks on a daring, spontaneous adventure in Europe and fights challenging internal battles in One Reason to Live.

Unlike popular social media posts that mostly bring appealing stories to light and leave the ugly truths in the shadows, One Reason to Live reveals the daunting pressures that shaped the protagonist into the diamond she is today. Through her sincere, poignant, and courageous storytelling, we see her imperfections and deep emotional struggles. Christine Rose appears creative, resilient, and polite despite her troubling past and encounters with sexual predators. Art lovers will enjoy experiencing Michelangelo’s David, the Raphael Rooms, and other European arts through the book’s exciting and vivid descriptions. One Reason to Live is a fantastic read. It educates, entertains, motivates, and tugs at your heartstrings. It fills you with life in all its true colors. I loved it and learned that our world still has a long way to go in eradicating misogyny. ~ Foluso Falaye for Readers’ Favorite

Readers' Favorite — 5 Stars

Christine Rose's One Reason to Live: A Memoir About Surviving Trauma is a powerful and inspiring story of resilience and healing. Rose's life is shattered by a traumatic brain injury that changes her husband's personality, leaving her alone to pick up the pieces. Already dealing with C-PTSD from sexual assaults and suicidal ideation, she desperately searches for a reason to keep living. Through deep introspection and a tumultuous experience with medication, she discovers her one reason to live: Living in Europe. This spark of hope leads her on a journey of self-discovery, as she navigates new cultures and the companionship of animals. Despite her struggles with depression and feeling like a failure as an author and filmmaker, Rose finds the strength to reinvent herself and emerge from her trauma with a newfound sense of purpose. Follow her emotional journey as she shares the triumphs and challenges of her path toward healing.“In short, no one wants to step into the hell that I’ve survived, and I don’t blame them. I would step out of it, too, if I could.” The courage it takes a woman to release her anguish into the universe and share it with strangers is great. The courage it takes a woman to release continued, repetitive and crushing anguish that manifests itself over and over and over again is incalculable. And this is where One Reason to Live by Christine Rose is different. It is a profoundly honest assessment of the defeat Rose felt and how a single happy dream, a memory, or a wish, can change the trajectory of a woman's life. Rose's talent as a writer is evident as the prose is engaging and well-crafted. Writing is her job and in less skilled hands I think her memoir could have been lost in a slush pile, and what a shame that would have been for those of us fortunate enough to have come across it. As an American woman who also moved to Europe under different circumstances, I was able to relate to Rose. By the end of the book, I felt like I knew her intimately, and it is quite an honor to have the soul of resilience present itself in such an inspiring way. Very highly recommended. ~ Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite

Readers’ Favorite — 5 Stars

One Reason to Live: A Memoir About Surviving Trauma by Christine Rose is a gripping memoir of a survivor of trauma who shares her journey of overcoming immense pain and finding hope and purpose in life. The story chronicles her struggles with depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts after experiencing abuse as a child and enduring a series of traumatic events in her adulthood. Much like survivors of abuse, survivors of trauma have a hard time getting back into the groove of living life because, sadly, mental scars are much harder to fight. Through her vivid and honest storytelling, Rose describes the long and arduous process of healing and finding her way back to a fulfilling life. She takes us on a journey through her therapy sessions, her struggle with trauma recovery, and her eventual realization that she needs to make a change to overcome her past.What makes this memoir particularly compelling is Christine Rose’s ability to convey the raw emotions that come with trauma and the healing process. She does not sugarcoat the difficulties of recovery but instead offers a powerful message of hope and perseverance for anyone who has experienced trauma. The narrative becomes a little too raw at times, the emotions run high, and we are caught up in it. I barely controlled my emotions at times as Christine’s journey became quite painful. The narrative style is simple yet so powerful that it makes sure we feel connected and part of the story, rather than as casual bystanders. One Reason to Live is a prime example of the resilience of the human spirit and the power of love and support to overcome even the most devastating of circumstances. It is a must-read for anyone who needs inspiration and encouragement in their journey toward healing and self-discovery.~ Rabia Tanveer for Readers’ Favorite

San Francisco Book Review

“Not for the faint of heart, Christine Rose’s memoir, One Reason to Live, describes her strength and willingness to build her life back into a state of well-being after multiple traumas including sexual violence, an ending marriage, and some very confusing relationships. Poignant, yet hopeful, this book will evoke many emotions in its readers. Christine’s wonderful travel stories, complete with a cast of adorable pets she takes care of, will have readers laughing, crying, and cheering.” ~Kristi Elizabeth, San Francisco Book Review

The Book Commentary — 5 Stars

Christine Rose's One Reason to Live: A Memoir About Surviving Trauma opens with a moment of crisis in the author's life. She already considers herself a failed author and filmmaker. But failing as an author is far less than what Ms. Rose has experienced in life. She has suffered from multiple traumatic events, including sexual assault and divorce after fifteen years of marriage, and it is more painful because he didn't make the choice to leave her husband. Her life has been characterized by depression and suicidal thoughts, and having hit rock bottom, she wakes up with a strong desire to reinvent herself. On a scrap of paper, she writes the words: ''Reasons to Live.'' After a few days, she remembers her dream of traveling to Europe. She knows what to do to change her life and heal. Follow her on a journey that evolves against the backdrop of new landscapes, new cultures, and the company of animals.

The opening pages of this memoir document a tragic incident involving the author's husband, Ethan Rose, with poignancy, and the reader's connection with the author is immediate. Her desperation and sense of despair are captured in descriptions that are vivid and in prose that is clear. Her personality is wonderfully sculpted and as readers follow her journey from page to page, they become acquainted with the darkness that invades her soul. It is a tale of healing, but also one of self-discovery. The author unveils a lot of learning through her therapy sessions but what makes this memoir a winner is the compelling message that when broken individuals make the decision to face their past, they begin to create a life of purpose and significance. One Reason to Live: A Memoir About Surviving Trauma is an irresistible story about surviving trauma and life-changing decisions. It is a moving story that is seasoned with the author's literary intelligence, and while the pathos rubs off on the readers, they can't fail to note the many lessons on the connection between choice and healing. 

One Reason to Live - One Woman's Journey to Europe and the Healing Power of Anim

Christine Rose is pleased to announce the release of her new memoir, "One Reason to Live." Released on April 15, 2023, by Blue Moose Press, the book has been receiving high praises from readers and critics alike, including a five-star review from Manhattan Book Review.

Follow the story of a woman who becomes nomadic, traveling to different countries and pet-sitting in exchange for lodging.

In "One Reason to Live," the author recounts how she coped with the end of a 15-year marriage and multiple sexual assaults. Struggling with C-PTSD and grief, Christine must come to terms with her life's reality and find at least one reason to keep living. On a whim, she writes "Reasons to Live" on a piece of paper, but the paper remains blank for days. Then, she remembers her old dream: moving to Europe.

Christine's story embodies a visceral experience of living with psychiatric injury, combined with the power of radical acceptance. She finds solace in the companionship of animals, battles her demons, and learns to embrace self-love. Against a backdrop of fur-filled adventures and cultural revelations, the woman rebuilds her identity and her life.

It is a powerful and inspiring story that will touch the hearts of many.

"One Reason to Live" is a must-read for anyone who has ever struggled with mental health or experienced trauma. It is a powerful reminder that healing is possible, and that sometimes, the journey itself is the destination.

Christine Rose is an award-winning author, tech nomad, and pet-sitter. Between October 2015 and January 2018, she traveled the world petsitting in the UK, EU, and USA, while working remotely. She loves to go horseback riding in the English Lake District, snowshoeing in The Alps, hiking in the Scottish Highlands, and sea kayaking in the Hebrides. She now spends half the year abroad and the other half in Portland, Oregon.

For more information, please visit Christine Rose's website or contact her directly at christineroseauthor….gmail

"One Reason to Live" is available for purchase on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, and wherever books are sold.