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4.9 out of 5 stars
71
Rocking the Pink: Finding Myself on the Other Side of Cancer
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on August 8, 2013
Laura Roppe tells the story of a woman's lifelong love of show biz finally making it in the music industry along with her reaction of being diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer.

I'm a just-finished-chemo breast cancer survivor myself, and in an attempt to find perspective on my own journey through diagnosis and treatment, I've been reading alot of breast cancer memoirs. The part of me fascinated with how people deal with side effects in their every day lives wasn't satisfied by this particular view of breast cancer-- more than a cancer journey it is the story of woman's determination to break out of a corporate rut and return to her "heart" and love of connecting to people through the arts.

For example, you don't know until a third of the way through the book, after finding out about the cancer, how she met her love-of-her-life husband, the disappointment of failing to get any answers to headshots sent all over LA after a bit part in a Val Kilmer movie that she is the mother of two daughters.

From my own perspective, that of a mother trying to handle emotions about my own body, the legacy I may have passed down to my children, and the daily grind of keeping a family going when you hook yourself up to poison every two weeks, the focus on her earlier life as a college student, and then the culmination of her music dreams in a trip to the UK to make a music video wasn't as interesting to me as the actual parts where she talks about finding a doctor, her husband's research into the triple negative type of cancer she has, and the lovely, luscious feeling of her daughters climbing into bed with her and kissing her through a chemo-fog.

Cancer makes you all-too aware of how our everyday, confident selves are reduced to bags of aching flesh and blood in a blink of an eye-- the parts where the author writes about the emotional and physical crises of that are the most interesting to me.

Also it's hard not to hate her (just a tiny bit I promise) for the whole "becoming a rock star" as the reward for surviving her cancer treatment.

It's interesting to me that the last two breast cancer memoirs I read have the author making some hard decision right before they get their cancer diagnosis (the last one was "Breast Left Unsaid" where the author decides to divorce, and then there's this one where Laura decides to record a music album right before the cancer strikes). The cliche is, of course, that the cancer would be the turning point, but part of Laura's strength, I think, is in the way she portrays herself finding the courage to drop the lawyer job and embrace music before her cancer, and the cancer itself as helping break her open to be vulnerable enough to write from a place of truth as well as only putting a slight delay on her life dream.

We should all be that lucky.
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on April 2, 2012
A girlfriend of mine recommended this book to me. She had just completed cancer treatments very similar to Laura's and was so inspired by Rocking the Pink she wanted me to read it. Like many other reviewers, I read it from front to back unable to put it down. Simply put, Rocking the Pink is a remarkable book by a very talented woman. It is a MUST READ for anyone who wants to laugh, cry, cheer, rally, and be inspired by each page she writes.

Laura gives us an honest and transparent account of what its like to live your life in a career you felt compelled to choose, chuck it all for the dream of making it as a rock star, and then, just when you are about to hear your named called in the Best New Country Rock Artist of the Year category, you find yourself instead dealing with a life threatening diagnosis and debilitating cancer treatments. Yet through it all, Laura stays true to her spirit never losing her love, compassion, humor, wit, brutal honesty or rock godnessness while she deals with the fall out from breast cancer. Although I don't know Laura personally, I feel like I do, because she writes in such an intimate manner and shares many candid details with us about her personal, professional and family life (and husband Brad, what a God. Don't even get me started...)

Rocking the Pink is laugh out loud funny (think crazy beads), poignant, heartbreaking, real, but most of all inspiring. If she doesn't make it big as a rock star I hope she'd consider writing more books because she is a very talented, funny and creative writer. Most of all though, I hope and pray for her continued health and recovery.
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on March 9, 2012
What a great book! Soulful, wise, profound, magic, motivating, and fun---yes, FUN! Laura Roppe has so much brio, such a superabundance of cosmic prana, that she truly is a shining star. The best part? While this author has a hugely entertaining personality, her ego is negligible. She's perfected the art of laughing at---but never mocking---herself. I, too, laughed. I also cried---and marveled at her talent. I stayed up way too late because I just couldn't stop reading.

And oh, the stories! Stories to get lost in. Characters to root for. As I finished Rocking the Pink I thought, "This is why God created language--to fill us with wonder and joy."

I bought multiple copies of this book. If you know anyone who needs a boost, Rocking the Pink will make a great gift. Life slaps us all around sooner or later. Laura shows us how to slap back.
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on March 31, 2012
Even though I am a breast cancer survivor, this book is for everyone. Laura makes you see it is possible to go after your dreams and succeed. I cried and I laughed many times as I was reading this book. I couldn't help smiling as she detailed her first movie experience as an extra in The Doors. She was so young and naive and thought she was going to be a star. Unfortunately reality set in, and she pursued her law degree. As the years go by, she dreams of the career that had eluded all the while loathing her law career. However, she is married to her loving and supportive HS sweetheart and is the mother of two precious girls so she resigns herself to her law career. As she starts to dabble in a singing career (more a hobby than a career at this point), she is stricken with an agressive type of breast cancer. Laura's life is turned upside down as she struggles through her treatment which leaves her so sick she can't move from her bed for days at a time. Eventually, her treatment is through, and she emerges from the black cloud and resolves to quit her law career for good and pursue her singing. I cheered for Laura! I am a breast cancer survivor myself, and I also have a career in the legal field which has always been more of a means to pay my bills rather than my passion. If you want to read a book that will bring out just about every emotion and leave you cheering and smiling, read Rocking the Pink!
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on March 6, 2012
This book was a terrific read. Once I started reading, I did not want to put it down. It was inspiring, humorous, terrifying, real, captivating and compelling. Laura's ability to allow her readers into her life and share her fears, joys, triumphs, heartache, struggles, and tender moments was awesome. The way she was able to share her struggle with cancer, acknowledging her fears and weaknesses, sharing her agonizing treatment routines, sharing little peeks into her everyday life while facing this overwhleming battle is truly inspirational. Perhaps even more inspirational is her passion for her family and for life and her ability to transform her life experiences into beautiful songs for all to enjoy. Despite her raw pain and suffering, she was able to dig deep into herself and find her true self and flourish as someone reborn. She inspires us to seize the day and realize our dreams, no matter what those dreams may be. Despite the trials and tribulations of a cancer diagnosis in the prime of her life, she made the decision to live her life to the fullest and actively pursue all life has in store for her. This woman's journey will be an inspiration to all who have the pleasure of reading her book. Her humor, her heartfelt admissions, her beautiful spirit are out there to uplift us all. Rock on Laura Roppe!
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on March 5, 2012
This book is both entertaining and inspiring. It is primarily a book about one woman's experiences fighting (and triumphing over) breast cancer, but it is actually a lot more than that. It is a poignant memoir of someone who found themselves in the middle of their life, looking for something more than just doing what was expected and what needed to be done. I am sure many of us can identify with that.

It is not one of those preachy, self-help bibles that gives you somebody's simplistic solution to all of life's problems. It's the tale of one person who had the courage to realize her dream, in spite of the hurdles life threw in her way. It is written with warmth and humor as Laura shares the details of her path to self-discovery. You will fall in love with her family and friends who she portrays with obvious pride and thankfulness.

I read it cover to cover in one sitting (in between juggling work, husband, child, and pets). When I finished this book I thought to myself, I can totally identify with Laura's "before" picture. Now I need to figure out what MY "after" picture looks like. Whatever that picture is, this book inspired me to go out there and make it happen. Life's too short.

And oh yes, she can sing too!
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on April 5, 2012
I'm always a little skeptical whenever I hear that people have read an entire book in one sitting. Maybe I'm just a slow reader (I'm a mother of three active boys, and whenever I find the time to read, I find myself falling asleep - even with really good books.) I received this book from a friend, and decided it might make for a good pool-side read over spring break. And doggonit if I didn't finish this entire book on the drive from Denver to Phoenix (don't worry - I wasn't driving!)

Laura does a remarkable job of plunking the reader right into the middle of her world. You feel like you are right beside her on the beach as she falls hard for the love of her life, on stage performing for adoring crowds, or sitting in her living room as her family members emotionally help her shave her head. Laura's story-telling stylings truly made me feel like my college roommate was visiting for the weekend and we were staying up all night to giggle and tell stories. Her humor and candor make this book one of the most touching and inspiring reads I ever encountered. It is a wonderful reminder to fill each day with everything you love! Read this - and then get a copy for your friends.
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on February 3, 2013
As I walked with ( although this woman is a spitfire!) with Laura on her very personal journey - before and after cancer - her writing style / her voice let me in graciously. I felt like I had known her all my life. Why? Because we are sisters. As a breast cancer survivor, I travelled a similar path as Laura. Her ambition, determination, persistence...her pure strength even during unimaginable challenges...is universal to many of us. The secret is most of us never know our full strength until we need to use it. And quite frankly most of us still don't know we used it until we are way on the other side of the struggle. The last chapter says it all...we just have to persist through our challenges before we can learn a lesson or a little bit more about ourselves to see the value of the challenge. Trust the journey and trust yourself. Oh, and never ever give up on your dreams. rock on Laura! I want to see and read a lot more from you! :)
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on March 16, 2012
It's a fact, everyone will be touched in someway by cancer in their lifetime! Laura Roppe opens her mind, body and soul with her 1st book "Rocking the Pink". Using her gift with words you come to know her before, during and after her fight with breast cancer. A cancer diagnosis is devastating. Laura's approach to writing her story is real and honest and with humor. This is a must read for anyone, either themselves or a loved one. Laura has worn many "hats" in her life Woman, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Valued Family member, Friend, professional work and Singer/Songwriter! Thanks, Laura for so freely and openly sharing your life and that "blip" in your road, cancer. With this book you will help countless others who are about to go through the fight of their lives. And let's hope that a cure for all cancers is found soon! Oh, and Laura keep singing and writing your incredible songs!!! Catch them on the internet, on a CD, Itunes or in concert! Write more books too! You Rock, Laura Roppe!
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on March 6, 2012
As an 11 year breast cancer survivor I have read many books on the subject of breast cancer. Some clinical, some not so clinical but the stories I love the most are the ones like Laura's. Being told you have breast cancer is one hell of a journey and at once you are part of this "sisterhood" for life. I purchased this book after recently being diagnosed with a recurrence. Laura's story was THE BEST MEDICINE for me at this time! I laughed, I cried, I felt "connected" with Laura and I could not put the book down until I had finished every last word. Her story is triumphant, well written and a joy to read! When you face the dreaded cancer demon you need this sense of community, understanding and most important of all, LOVE. Laura Roppe has done such a wonderful job of fulfilling this request for those that need it most. Her story gave me inspiration and hope, and it reminded me to "live life to the fullest in the here and now"; which of course is all we can do! Thank You Laura; YOU ROCK!
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