#BookReview: Keeping Joy by Morven-May MacCallum @MorvenMay #SatireFiction #Humour #ChronicIllness #LymeDisease #GoodReads #Kindle

Hi everyone. Today I have a book review for you by an author I first read and reviewed in November 2018, Morven-May MacCallum. Here’s my review for her sequel to Finding Joy … Keeping Joy >>>

About the Book:

Book cover for Keeping Joy by Morven May MacCallum

In this stunningly insightful and humours sequel to Finding Joy, Keeping Joy explores the long terms consequences of chronic illness. Through the eyes of Joyce, Aunt Beth and Logan we follow Joyce’s fight to regain her health and her freedom after nearly a decade of being housebound with Lyme disease.



My Review:


A darkly humorous story which explores how to regain a life while living with Lyme Disease 

Disclaimer: I received a free advance review copy of this ebook, and here is my honest review.

This novel has some wonderful one liners and phrases, and is filled with the most entertaining dark humour and a raw honesty which makes even the difficult stuff funny at times. I guarantee this book will bring tears of both sadness and laughter. 

As with the first book, spelling mistakes, missing words, and awkward sentences make a fair few appearances. With some polishing, this would, easily, be a five-star read. The story telling and character portrayals certainly earn that.

With all of that said, the story premise, plot, pacing, characters, and world building are all done so well you feel as though you are right there next to the many characters from whose point of view the tale is told. The bravery of the main character and her supporters is moving and superbly expressed. Below are some lines that stood out for me … 

‘It’s hard to know how far to push Joy, when to leave her alone because she’s not well and when to not leave her alone because she’s feeling low–the two are so closely connected that it’s not easy to tell them apart.’

And …

‘I’m not sure if I fell asleep, or maybe I passed out. Either way, scraping myself up off the floor felt a lot like trying to peel superglue off my skin.’

And …

‘I’ve stopped fighting to reclaim a life that’s unobtainable. There is no back, no pause, there is only now.’

This read moved me so much. In a great irony, 5 years ago when I read Finding Joy, I was disabled but well. Now, I also suffer a chronic illness—not Lyme—but so much of the experiences in this novel resonated with me and I found it all too easy to relate.

I highly recommend Keeping Joy by Morven-May MacCallum, which gets a strong four stars from me. On a side note, you will get a lot more from this second book if you read Finding Joy first. Go and check out both books!


NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me.

4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book.
3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it.
2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines.
1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.

For anyone interested, here is the universal Amazon link …


I’d love to hear what you think of this review. Thanks for stopping by 🙂


***I continue to have limited energy and time, and so need to continue posting reviews infrequently. Thank you for understanding and all your support. Now and then, I will post a review for any authors in my online circle, but won’t be reviewing traditionally published books. I’ll pop in from time to time with updates and teasers on my planned projects.

Those projects have stalled momentarily, but I’m determined to get them moving again soonest. Unfortunately, I caught COVID a while back and though I tested clear about a month ago, my lungs, energy, and brain haven’t received the memo 🤔, and added to the Fibro, it’s all doing a number on me.

My novella The Room at the End, which publishes on January 9th, has 19 preorders so far and I’m so excited and grateful 🎉💓🎉. For those of you who haven’t yet ordered and would like to, here are the UK and US links …

UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0CCSFMC8J

US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CCSFMC8J

Keep well. Hugs, Harmony 🤗💕😊


18 Comments on “#BookReview: Keeping Joy by Morven-May MacCallum @MorvenMay #SatireFiction #Humour #ChronicIllness #LymeDisease #GoodReads #Kindle

  1. Hi Harmony. I know you’ve had a tough year and I’m wishing you all the best for a beautiful and healthy new year, and a very Happy Christmas. I will be reading your new book as well as all in the series. And I can understand how the book your reviewed would hit home with you. I will check out the series. Holiday hugs <3 xx

    • That’s fantastic! Thank you so much, Debby, for your lovely words and support. Have a relaxed and peaceful holiday season. Hugs 🤗💕🙂

  2. Hi Harmony, I hope that you are starting to feel a bit better now. This is an interesting review. Thanks for sharing about a book I would never have known about.

    • I’m so happy to share and introduce new authors and books. I’m still finding the day-to-day difficult, with some better and some worse. I’m trying to write. Got a bit done yesterday and am going to try again now. Thanks so much, Robbie. I hope you and your family are also doing better. Love and hugs 🤗💕🙂

  3. Great and honest review, Harmony 🙂 It is hard to live with chronic issues, there are days I can almost ignore them too. Sounds like an insightful read. Xo

    • An incredibly insightful read! I’m glad you have days where you can almost ignore the issues … they sure can be few and far between 🙃

      I would love for us all to be able to say we’re having lots of good days!

      I’m glad you like the review. Thanks, Denise 💕🙂

  4. I gravitate to stories of survival, from life or chronic illness, so this is appealing (I too have chronic maladies–yuck!). Thanks for the good review.

    • This sounds right up your street then, along with book one! Thanks, Jacqui 💕🙂

  5. A wonderful review of what sounds like a very inspirational book, Harmony. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on it. And I hope you know that you have many, many friends wishing you well as you deal with your own health issues, too. I’m amazed at how much you’ve managed to accomplish in the time I’ve known you, and sending you much love and healing energy in the weeks ahead. I preordered Room at the End some time ago, and am very much looking forward to reading it as soon as it arrives on my Kindle.

    Sending you blessings at Christmas and my wishes for a wonderful Holiday Season!

    • Marcia, you are so kind and supportive! Your words mean so much, and I’m sure you’ll love The Room at the End!

      I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and that 2024 is tons kinder to us both as well as so many others. Love and hugs 🙂💕

  6. I’m so happy to have read this honest review of a book this amazing. The title alone has me nodding. Hopefully those typos will be righted soon.
    All the best to you Harmony. I hope you feel better soon. Sending you hugs and blessings. Happy Holidays, dear one. Xoxo

    • Both books are a testament to the writer’s strength in struggle and an amazing way of translating that into fiction we can all relate to. Darn … I wish I’d put that in the review!

      Thanks so much, Selma 💕🙂

  7. It sounds like an engaging read. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Harmony. I hope things get easier for you soon. I’m looking forward to reading The Room at the End!

    • An incredibly engaging read. I’m delighted you’re looking forward to The Room at the End! And your well wishes are deeply appreciated. Thanks , Priscilla 🤗💕🙂