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REVIEW: Don’t Bet Against Me by Deanna Favre

Dear Mom:

Book CoverI am going to buy this book for you for Christmas. I know you aren’t a Packer fan and that your idea of relaxation does not include anything that is sports related, but I think this is the perfect book for you. Well, okay, maybe it is more the perfect book for me since it seems to marry the love of sports that Dad imparted to me and the love of reading for which you are responsible.

However, I think you will find that you have some things in common with Deanna Favre – that all women will find something familiar in Deanna’s story despite the fact she obviously is married to a living legend. Deanna was a single mother, pregnant at the age of 19 and in community college on a basketball scholarship. She struggled on a daily basis to pay her bills, care for her child, and simply exist. Favre was in college too and making no money and neither family had an excess of funds that could ease Deanna’s way.

Faith is a big part of Deanna Favre’s life, much as it is in yours. At her lowest points in life, whether it was from her relationship with Brett or from her cancer, she was able to gain strength by drawing from her well of faith. I know that you’ve had some low points in your life, as we all have, and that faith has been your bastion.

Our lives have similarly been touched with people suffering from cancer and tumors and dying, as everyone’s has. It is always inspiring to see someone conquer those deathly cells. I will caution you though, that this book is slim on the breast cancer issues. The discovery, treatment and recovery take up only a few pages. Instead, it seems that the biggest problem in Deanna’s life was Brett Favre. She details the struggles that she went through when Brett was addicted to drugs and alcohol. She learned some hard lessons on the concept of tough love. Brett would not be the man he is today without Deanna.

In some ways, as I said previously, Deanna is like an every woman. She’s had to pinch pennies and deal with a difficult partner who made her life miserable from time to time; she’s been ill; she’s been in marital trouble; she’s suffered from terminable shyness; and had to rely on herself to make it to see the next day. She’s strong and inspirational not just because she conquered breast cancer which is almost a luck of the draw, but because she’s been able to overcome all the other challenges in her life that are so familiar to the everyday woman.

Deanna is doing alot of good, though, speaking out about the importance of early detection. Her cancer appeared at the age of 35 and was small enough to be excised through a lumpectomy. I know of several women who weren’t so fortunate. Deanna is also committed to helping obtain good and affordable health to individuals diagnosed with breast cancer who are uninsured or underinsured.

Don’t Bet against Me! is one part autobiography, one part devotional. I think, given your strong faith, that you would find this to be a uplifting book. It probably is a book most Packer fans will want to read even though we’ve heard all these stories before in the newspaper and on TV. I don’t know how inspirational it will be to breast cancer victims and survivors because those passages are so slim and Deanna seems to skimp on the the emotional and physical drain it must have been. C+

Love ya,

Jane

No ebook for this one. I had to go to the bookstore! and buy the hardcover!

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

24 Comments

  1. vanessa jaye
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 12:27:20

    Why ‘C+’? Is it because she skims over her experience with Cancer?

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  2. Jane
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 12:36:47

    Primarily. I felt like the book was sold as a breast cancer survivor book but it really wasn’t. The last chapter and a half was a compilation of scriptures as well so it really wasn’t fulfilling to me from that extent.

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  3. Meljean
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 12:45:37

    I just gotta say, I love the “Dear Mom” format. I could imagine all of the romance reviews like that:

    Dear Mom,

    Don’t read this book. If I had any idea that you were taking in and enjoying the wayhawt sexxoring, I’d have to scrub my brain with bleach.

    But you might like that they get married. Isn’t that what you kept saying would be my path to happiness, Mom, huh? Didn’t you say everything would be great once I got married!!!??? Love, your daughter.

    ….yeah, that would be fun *g*

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  4. Gina
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 13:22:50

    Thank you for revewing this book, I wanted to read it but the compiliation of scriptures thing won’t do it for me. I don’t begrudge those who find that faith guides them through the tough spots, but as I won’t force my beliefs down your throat, don’t shove them down mine at the price of a Hardcover book, no less.

    As always, love your reviews but I think I might love Meljean’s “Dear Mom” letter more than yours because for sure I would have to scrub my brain with bleach if I thought my mother was reading any of the stuff I’ve been reading lately!

    G

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  5. Jane
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 14:22:19

    My most recent “Dear Mom” letter would read

    Dear Mom:

    Remember those books that you used to find hidden underneath my bed and between the mattresses and then would throw away because they were trashy? Well, this one is worse. Way worse. Because the ones that I read when I was a teen didn’t have a lot of secks in them and this one has so much, the I wonder how the heroine can walk the next day.

    Seriously, she was going at it with two guys at once! Two guys, mom. I didn’t even know that went on. I mean, when we talked about the laying on of hands, I didn’t know that this sort of thing was what you meant. Or maybe that wasn’t what you meant.

    I can tell you, though, if you had just been forthright and told me about some of the shenanigans couples would get into, I would have been scared straight. See, in this book, the girl is a virgin like I was, but was really unhappy with her virginity so she goes and tries to get an old friend with whom she had a crush on five years ago to deflower her.

    I didn’t know virgins were so bold, Mom. And why this girl would want to humiliate herself in front of some guy she hadn’t seen in like 5 years is beyond me. I guess her school didn’t have sex education because even as sheltered as I was, I knew what it meant to be deflowered. But, I guess it’s not the same thing for this girl because she gets deflowered by two guys. It’s a double deflowering. It’s like getting the stamen ripped out and stamped down and then having that gaping hole in the middle of the flower being stabbed from both ends. Of course, in the book, though, it’s supposed to be all pretty because the guys who were doing the stabbing were all experienced and stuff.

    But still, it didn’t read very romantic and while she ends up with only one guy at the end, she sure got her education.

    Anyway, I am sorry I didn’t listen to you better because maybe if I had I wouldn’t have read this book that made my corneas weep.

    Tell Dad I love him and can’t wait to see you both soon. Can we go to IKEA when I come up? Thanks.

    Love ya,

    Jane

    ReplyReply

  6. Janine
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 15:03:53

    ROTFL!

    ReplyReply

  7. Tracy
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:32:15

    To be fair, the description at Amazon does say “Deanna's story shares the role her faith has played in her life–from her years as a single mom and her high profile marriage to Brett. . . “ So, it does let a prospective reader know that faith will be part of the book. I guess I don’t see that as shoving it down someone’s throat if it is part of the book description. The reader has a choice whether to pick it up or not.

    ReplyReply

  8. Tracy
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:39:15

    I should ask Jane though, does the book jacket mention that faith will be a part of the book? If not, I can see how it would surprise someone. I can also see how Jane would be disappointed that the breast cancer survivor aspect of it was not bigger.

    I was more responding to the comment about shoving faith down someone’s throat. If it is mentioned in the description of the book I just don’t see it that way then, that’s all.

    ReplyReply

  9. Shannon
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:42:41

    The last chapter and a half was a compilation of scriptures as well so it really wasn't fulfilling to me from that extent.

    I’d really like to read this, although for me it’s more about Brett than Deanna, being a football fan. If I wasn’t a born and bred Pats fan and could choose my own team, it would be the Packers. Although wearing cheese on my head might be a deterrent…

    I digress. I meant only to say I might still read it, if they gathered all the Scriptures into one, easily-skippable portion of the book.

    ReplyReply

  10. sherry thomas
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:43:42

    ROTFL with Janine.

    ReplyReply

  11. Jane
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:49:08

    I did not read the back cover or the inset jacket. Faith is a strong part of Deanna’s life and I could see how she could not live without it though the last chapter of devotions was over the top, in my opinion. I did watch several interviews of her during football games and on the radio and she never mentioned that it was a devotional book so it was a surprise for me.

    I think part of the problem is that it jumped around alot. It wasn’t written in any sequential manner. It was almost a stream of consciousness sort of thing where one topic would remind her of another topic which would remind her of another topic.

    My biggest disappointment though was that so little of the book dealt with her breast cancer. As most people have, I have close family members who have suffered this and chemo is so debilitating. She really glosses over it. Once sentence was devoted to the lumpectomy and her relief at getting the lumpectomy. More of her issues dealt with her losing her hair, but for the most part it seemed her bigger trauma was dealing with Brett when he was an addict.

    ReplyReply

  12. Jane
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:50:33

    Maybe I’ll write all my negative reviews to my mother instead of the authors so as to take the sting out of it.

    ReplyReply

  13. Tracy
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 16:56:43

    ah, got it Jane.

    I live in WI and am a huge GB Packer fan so I’m sure I’ll pick this up at some point! Considering that I met my hubby at Bible College I’m pretty sure the devotionals won’t bother me ;) Everyone is different, that’s what is so great about reading all the different reviews and such. Sometimes I read a review that gives something an A and I read it and go “eh”. Or I read a review of a “C” book and I think “sounds good” and I love it! You just never know. What works for some people doesn’t for others and vice versa.

    ReplyReply

  14. vanessa jaye
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 17:44:28

    “It's like getting the stamen ripped out and stamped down and then having that gaping hole in the middle of the flower being stabbed from both ends.”

    I will never read a menage scene quite the same way ever again. =:-o

    ReplyReply

  15. Meljean
    Oct 09, 2007 @ 21:29:21

    You must. Really.

    (And I think I just read another review of that book somewhere else. Must go peek at AAR.)

    ReplyReply

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  19. BetzKM
    Dec 30, 2007 @ 19:53:48

    Some of the comments on this site about Deanna’s book greatly sadden and make me sick. HAVE any of you lived the life of breast cancer? I guess until you have you will never understand. Let’s all pray to GOD that you don’t have to ever understand where Deanna Farve is coming from.

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  20. Mike Smith
    Apr 20, 2008 @ 15:43:17

    Thank you for reviewing this book. I am thinking of buying it for my fiancee. We’re huge Packer fans, and even bigger Brett Favre fans. I’ve always admired Deanna.

    I was surprised to hear the book doesn’t have much info about her fight with cancer. I assumed that would be the main focus of the book. I’m still going to buy it, though, as we would be interested in the other aspects of her life, anyway. I know she sure went through a lot with Brett. They’ve been together for a long time. I know he wouldn’t be what he is today without her. Behind every good man is a great woman!

    I admire them both very much. I think they are class acts all the way!

    Mike Smith
    http://www.Favre4Sale.com

    ReplyReply

  21. Rebekah
    Jun 02, 2008 @ 18:39:43

    i love your christian atitude and appreciate that you have that influence on fans of yours that arn’t yet christians so i wanted to thank you.

    ReplyReply

  22. Ann
    Jul 31, 2008 @ 11:07:04

    Boring. I think it’s great that she is focused on her christianity. Her brush with breast cancer is nothing like millions of women suffer through. Thank goodness I received it as a gift or I would ask for my money back.

    ReplyReply

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  24. susan
    Jun 21, 2010 @ 20:46:25

    I was not impressed. She struggled at 19 for money “Big Deal”. She had one bad break with cancer but she was fortunate to have the funds to go to the best doctors. Like millions for women who are stuck with cancer and HUGH medical bills she should consider herself lucky. SHE DOES NOT IMPRESS ME ONE BIT.

    ReplyReply

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