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Trade paperback, 216 pages, 5.5″ x 8.5″
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Title: Everything I Never Wanted to Be
Subtitle: a memoir of alcoholism and addiction, faith and family, hope and humor
Author: Dina Kucera
Publisher: Dream of Things
ISBN: 978-0-9825794-3-5

“An amazing memoir…a cross between The Liar’s Club by Mary Karr and A Million Little Pieces by James Frey.”

Everything I Never Wanted to Be by Dina Kucera is the true story of a family’s battle with alcoholism and drug addiction. Dina’s grandfather and father were alcoholics. Her grandmother was a pill addict. Dina is an alcoholic and pill addict, and all three of her daughters struggle with alcohol and drug addiction—including her youngest daughter, who started using heroin at age fourteen.

Dina’s household also includes her husband and his unemployed identical twin; a mother who has Parkinson’s Disease; a grandson who has cerebral palsy; and other people who drift in and out of the household depending on their employment situation or rehab status. On top of all that, Dina is trying to make it as a stand-up comic and author so she can quit her crummy job as a grocery store clerk. Through it all, Dina does her best to hold her family together, keep her faith, and maintain her sense of humor.

As you might imagine, a story filled with alcoholics and drug addicts includes a number of horrific events. But in the end, Everything I Never Wanted to Be is an uplifting story that contains valuable lessons for parents and teens alike, and a strong message about the need to address the epidemic of teen drug addiction in our nation. It’s a book that can change behavior and save lives—and make you laugh along the way.

13 Responses

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  1. Paul

    Everything I Never Wanted To Be is brave and powerful, educational without being preachy. Dina Kucera’s insight and wit are sharp, her story raw and real. Her honesty and humor reminds me of Anne Lamott’s writing, but Kucera definitely has her own voice–a voice that cries out to have her pain and challenges heard, yet one that also demonstrates her huge capacity for faith, gratitude, and love of life. Hers is a fresh new voice I feel fortunate to have “heard” and one which will enlighten many to the reality of a family struggling with addiction. The shocking thing is that her book had so many rejections before it landed on Mike O’Mary’s desk. I’m glad Mike had the good judgment to take on Dina Kucera’s book. What a gem!
    +1

    October 25, 2011 at 8:03 pm
    Reply
  2. Mary M. Wallace

    I’d love to read, but the book seems awfully short (barely over 200 pgs) for such a big story. It will be interesting to see how so much gets packed into it.

    Mary

    September 6, 2011 at 11:17 am
    Reply
  3. Emily Fuentes

    hello Dina. my name is Emuily Fuentes. i meet your daughter Aprilcouple months ago. she and i were bunkies at mdc here in albuquerque n.m. we talked and had great laughs together. April is a wonderful girl. she has a good heart. she mentioned your book , i told her id look it up could you please tell April i said hello, and write me sometime? thank you. God Bless you and your family. from my family to yours.Emily Fuentes.

    March 27, 2011 at 12:59 am
    Reply
  4. Joel Stein

    How come people who have experienced such trauma write so well? Everything I Never Wanted To Be is so raw and funny that it almost makes me want to have horrible things happen to me so my writing will improve. Until I can orchestrate that, I can enjoy reading about Dina Kucera’s horrible life.

    January 8, 2011 at 2:21 am
    Reply
  5. Jane Wagner

    Everything I Never Wanted To Be is brave and powerful, educational without being preachy. Dina Kucera’s insight and wit are sharp, her story raw and real. Her honesty and humor reminds me of Anne Lamott’s writing, but Kucera definitely has her own voice–a voice that cries out to have her pain and challenges heard, yet one that also demonstrates her huge capacity for faith, gratitude, and love of life. Hers is a fresh new voice I feel fortunate to have “heard” and one which will enlighten many to the reality of a family struggling with addiction. The shocking thing is that her book had so many rejections before it landed on Mike O’Mary’s desk. I’m glad Mike had the good judgment to take on Dina Kucera’s book. What a gem!

    December 9, 2010 at 2:10 pm
    Reply
  6. Alcoholism

    In SMART recovery we have drug users of all types. The meth users are always asking about this.

    November 10, 2010 at 2:41 am
    Reply
  7. Jonathan

    I have to say I read a couple books a week. This book was hands down the best book I’ve read in sometime. Absolutely brilliant. I could see this book made into a movie without question. I still have a smile on my face as i write this comment. This book made me cry and made me laugh. Wonderful and magical. If you’re a fan of a good book, this book definitely should find a place on your book shelf.

    October 1, 2010 at 11:24 am
    Reply
  8. Jonathan

    First let me say you are my hero. This book is simply amazing, heart wrenching, funny and the best book I’ve read in some time. Every book shelf in America should have it.

    August 27, 2010 at 2:01 pm
    Reply
  9. Visual Vamp

    In this day of whiny chick lit, this book is a breath of fresh air.
    You would think a story laced with so much heartache and on a serious subject matter would be a total downer, but Everything I Never Wanted To Be is the exact opposite. It is uplifting, funny, a tear jerker, and suspense filled. It reads like a novel and would make a wonderful movie. It also shows a true lesson is accepting and appreciating what life throws at you.
    I am also impressed that the author is such an excellent writer with only a ninth grade education under her belt. Her intelligence and craft as a wordsmith is admirable.

    August 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm
    Reply
  10. Ryan Hemeon

    Its funny… I wrote my first novel in highschool.. it was fiction.. However I think it is your story.. Bizarre.

    August 19, 2010 at 3:10 am
    Reply
    • Mike

      Thanks, Ryan. Several people (online and off) have said that Dina’s story hits close to home. We’re hoping that a lot of people can relate to a story of alcoholism and addiction–especially one that is at the same time honest and incredibly funny.

      August 19, 2010 at 3:17 pm
      Reply
  11. Billie Rogers

    Oh the similarities! I can’t wait to read this book!!! I don’t beleive this one will be all poofed & powdered up. I like “the real deal” books.
    I already know this is gonna be great!

    August 11, 2010 at 2:39 pm
    Reply
  12. Mike

    Thank you for the comment, Tim. I think it’s a VERY powerful book, but then again, I’m biased — and I’m very proud to be Dina’s publisher. I’m looking forward to hearing what other people think. -Mike O’Mary, Editor & Publisher, Dream of Things

    August 8, 2010 at 3:52 am
    Reply

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