Our Teenage Years: Growing Up in a Small Town in the 80s (My Life #1) By T.J. Wray

Title: Our Teenage Years Growing up in a small town in the 80's
Author: T.J. Wray
Publisher: Covenant Books, Inc.
Reviewed By: Arlena Dean
Rating: Five

Our Teenage Years Growing up in a small town in the 80's by T. J. Wray

My Thoughts....

When this author as me to read his novel and I said yes I didn't really know what I would get, however, after reading Our Teenage Years Growing up in a Small Town in the 80's' I found
this one was quite a delightful read. Wow, I found TJ's life was very interesting and exciting along with what all had gone on in his life and with especially his best friend Terry. As I continued to read I quickly saw what TJ's life was all about and from the read I got all of these questions answered from.....

All the wild adventures and stories of two best friends trying to survive their teenage years. Dealing with parents and siblings, or just trying to survive high school. Remember your first girl friend? Remember your first kiss? Remember your first job? Remember your first prom? Remember your first car? Well this book is about all that, and a whole lot more. But really it's just about LIFE...
It will make you laugh, and it will make you cry.

From this read you will definitely get a little bit of it all from each of the chapters starting with his favorite TJ's teachers, his friend Terry, Patricia, fake ID's, The Alligator Story, Being a role model, Margaret and His Truck, Terry's Parents, His Motorcycle Wreck, Just Your Life [Dusty], Being Eighteen, Graduation, Growing up in a Small Town...[in Guthrie, Oklahoma], The End of the Brown Beast now this was funny!], Terry's Haw-Hauling Carrier, His House Burns Down!...Rock Concert!...The Werewolf Story[ another good story]...Baker's Lake...Best Fishing Hole Ever!...A Different World, Just the Way I's Built...Kenny...Me, Christy, and Baby Melissa...Our Trip to Atlanta and the Georgia Dome...Georgia on My Mind, It's Just a Piece of metal...Ouch!...Hodgepodge Stupid is as Stupid Does.... Kidney Stones...Like Father Like Son....Family Reunion...Don't Shoplift!...Jazzercise... Wrong High School...Just F.Y.L...Bill...Terry and His Dad...The End! Now to fully understand all of this you will have to pick up the wonderful read and see what it is all about. This is a very easy read to follow and keep up with giving you page after page of just what was going on at that time. I will say some of these stories were humorous and how well this author ties it all together in the end and that ending being about his 'LIFE.'

From all above the reader will get a autobiography of TJ's life growing up with his best friend Terry from Guthrie, Oklahoma. I loved how this author was able to deliver a story that laid out so well his life's story giving the reader all of it from the good times, bad times, teenage years, wild adventures, lessons, and family that will definitely benefit his children and even the adults. This was very well done by this author.

Even though his best friend Terry is gone TJ made a promise to write this story and he did a wonderful job in doing so about there many fun and wild adventures times. I also like the dedication TJ made to his father, his three children and two grandchildren of the read. Well done!

Thank you to the author for the gift of the read and my providing my honest opinion of the read. I liked the photos at the end of your read as well as your message you left for the readers. T.J. Wray Bringing back memories

As someone who grew up in the eighties as well this book brings back a lot of memories
I was nodding my head at parts as I read because I did a lot of things the author did.
Teenage memories are good to think about sometimes, some good some bittersweet they formed who we became today.
The author has been through a lot mentally and physically. I honestly don't know how he's still walking around with all he's been through.
This is a great book , it's inspirational and encouraging and I am so glad I got a chance to read it.
I was given a complimentary copy. Thank you.
All opinions expressed are my own. T.J. Wray This is the second edition of this book. We re-formatted it for Kindle and added 4 or 5 pages of text. I read it this second time to make sure there were no mistakes... This book is FREE right now on Kindle Unlimited and $2.99 on Kindle.. Also I just released the second half of the story, or book #2, called (The '90s: Life on the Road). Enjoy! and feel free to let me know what you guys think...TJ T.J. Wray T.J. Wray is going to tell you a story about his life as a teen and you know what? It is going to make you laugh, break your heart and have you thinking back to your own life as a teen!

OUR TEENAGE YEARS: GROWING UP IN A SMALL TOWN is the story of what made T.J. Wray the father and man he is today. It’s the story of friendship, dysfunctional families and having to grow up far beyond one’s years too fast. It’s also the story of love and loss and mistakes and triumphs.

Remember your first girlfriend? Your first car? Your very best friend? How about your first taste of responsibility, your first job? T.J. Wray remembers and he wrote it all down, the good, the bad, and the ugly and he did a marvelously entertaining job of it!

Told completely in his own words, no fancy phrases, just from the heart writing, this story is sweet, heartwarming and a testament to the strength of the human spirit to overcome obstacles and pushing forward without whining or blaming the world for their lot in life.

Seriously, we read fiction to be entertained, this is our chance to read a true story filled with heart as one man exposes his very soul in an effort to entertain and give each of us a chance to look back on the life that we, too, survived and grew from!

A real hidden gem that deserves to be read from an author who puts on no airs!

I received a complimentary copy from T.J. Wray!

Publisher: Covenant Books, Inc. (November 13, 2017)
Publication Date: November 13, 2017
Genre: Memoir
Print Length: 123 pages
Available from: Amazon
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T.J. Wray I'm biased on this book, but I have recommended it to everyone I know :) T.J. Wray


Summary Our Teenage Years: Growing Up in a Small Town in the 80s (My Life #1)

This is the first book in the (My Life) series. This is an inspiring story about overcoming whatever life may throw at you. This book is about two best friends growing up in their teenage years in a small town. All the wild adventures and stories from my childhood, after my parents divorced and we went on the run for 11 years. This book includes my first job, girlfriend, prom, driver's license, first car, and many other firsts we all did in our teenage years. It's a fun-filled adventure about being a teenager, epic road trips, and best friends, but really this book is just about LIFE. It will make you laugh and it will make you cry. This is a bunch of short stories from my teenage years that everyone will relate to in one way or another. Please enjoy

This is the second edition of this book. Our Teenage Years: Growing Up in a Small Town in the 80s (My Life #1)

Review to follow tomorrow 😉

So on the face of it TJ and I have very little in common; I grew up in London, he grew up in small town America; I grew up in just one house, he lived in many whilst a child; I grew up as an only child in a stable loving family environment; he grew up in a single parent environment with his sister; I was born in the (very) late 50s, he was born in the late 60s; he grew up in a strict religious environment; me, well I grew up in a mixed religious environment, so have my own views on religion that verge from Greek Orthodox to Judaism.
Now having said all of that, many of the stories in this book were echoes of my own childhood. As a child we were able to travel around London very cheaply but also very safely, we had tremendous adventures. I also grew up in a time when houses were not nose to tail for 50 miles. We had green spaces, fields and stretches of the Thames where we could , well we could just play without worry. I used to go out in the morning on my pushbike with my best friend and return home for tea, checking my Timex to ensure I wouldn't be late.
I may not have been able to ride a motorbike that young (17 in this country) but i have ridden one ever since, and like you TJ, I have been over the bonnet of a car that pulled out in front of me. Hospital beckoned !!
TJ's adventures made me smile, made me laugh, made me sad, made me nod my head in agreement and made me wince. In fact from Page 116 for 4 pages I think, I almost felt like I was reading my own life story. I too split my head open with the flat end of an axe (unfortunately I was 53, so should have known better) I just took too big a back swing and it hit the top of my head with some force. As TJ says, there is an amazing amount of blood. For various reasons I could not visit a doctors so cleaned my head with Vodka, and made a bandage out of cotton wool and sellotape. Needless to say I still have a scar .
And to follow on, yes I have had kidney stones twice, please tell me I will not get a third. I do not know what it compares to but it is no fun believe me, and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy (well maybe I would in my darkest moments).

So all in all, amazingly I could relate to 90% of this book, and to be honest it felt like I was reading a book written by a close friend. A close friend who went through an awful lot more and tougher times than I did, but still came out smiling and regardless of religion (race, colour, creed or nationality) with a proper sense of right and wrong and the understanding that treating people with respect and tolerance is the way to make the world better.
Thanks TJ for sharing that with us all, it was a blast. And now bring on the 90s. T.J. Wray Many thanks to TJ Wray for the opportunity to offer my unbiased review on his book about his formative years and the events that shaped the man he is today.
From the first few pages, he grabbed my heart. Wray may not have a fancy turn of phrase, but he’s down to earth and honest. His sadness and acceptance reach fingers from the pages to hold the reader’s hand through his journey as his parents wash out, and he makes bad choices, and he learns consequences, and he loves life. The reader needs that occasional squeeze because one never knows what’s on the next page: sorrow, pain, or joy.
I appreciated Wray’s frankness and candidness. He is completely truthful with his audience sugarcoating nothing. To have lived through what he did and still be so well-adjusted is a miracle. Thank you, Wray for the chance to get to know you. T.J. Wray My first thought after reading this book was that this is proof that no matter what someone has been through, they can overcome and continually strive to move in a positive direction. The narrator (and author), T.J., describes his adventures and misadventures in a small town in Oklahoma in the 1980's. Most of these were with his best friend Terry. The friendship and unbreakable bond he had with Terry is a gift that few people are lucky enough to experience in life.

If anyone remembers the 80's, they will certainly be able to reminisce as the author relays his anecdotes from this period in time. These were times where there were no cell phones, high schools had smoking areas, Jazzercise was the hot new workout trend, and there was no internet.

There is a common thread throughout the book based upon the life lessons that are relayed either directly or indirectly by the author through the stories. They are worth noting and were some timely reminders to me of what is really important in life. I want to thank T.J. for this as I needed these reminders in so many areas.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. However, the above review is honest and unbiased. T.J. Wray One day when we are old and grey
When memories come to mind
The ones that mean the most to us
Our dear friends left behind
These special friends will never die
They are with us every day
We simply have to realise
They are just a thought away
In my local library there are many books of memoirs on the shelves. The majority of those books are about the rich and famous. This book however contains the memoirs of a very ordinary man who was anything but ordinary. No matter what life threw at T.J he was always positive, worked hard and achieved.

In T.Js school years he met a very special friend who was always their for him. True friendship is a very rare blessing that is experienced by so few. To me that is what makes this story so very special.

This book will make you laugh and make you cry. I couldn't stop laughing at the memory of the fishing trip and the alligator. Oh my, I wonder what the farmer must have thought when he noticed the discarded fishing gear. It must have crossed his mind that he must have a very well fed alligator in his pond that day.

A few of the people sadly are not around anymore. This is why memories mean so much, especially T.Js special friend who will be probably be laughing along with the rest of us as the memories live on through T.Js stories.

Thank you for sharing your memories with everyone T.J. A very special book that I enjoyed reading. This book was sent to me for a fair and honest review and is not biased in any way.
I was here, but know I've gone.
I left my name, to turn you on.
I'll be back before you know it.
This don't rhyme, cause I'm no poet.
T.J. T.J. Wray Over the past weekend, I have been on vacation in Southern Nevada - Las Vegas and Mesquite. It seemed like every time we sat down at a slot machine, blackjack table, or were just waiting for something, a conversation would start up with people around us. Soon we were telling stories about where we were from, tales from our current vacation, legends of travels to Vegas long ago. Getting to know strangers and their stories was all a part of the experience.

Because of this, it is perfect that I had Wray's book along with me. It reads exactly like the conversations I was having. Short anecdotes about Wray's crazy adventures sounded like the response a local at the casino would tell me after one of my stories - with the lead in well, your story sounds crazy, but just wait until I tell you about this one time . . .

If you are a fan of memoirs and enjoy a casual delivery, this book is worth checking out. In the prologue, Wray apologizes for not being a wordsmith, but the conversational tone with Oklahoma charm adds a lot to each story. Also, who can complain about the words of someone brave enough to put their stories on paper?

I am impressed with the variety of stories in this book. I wonder if I could come up with enough interesting stories about my life to write a book like this. Also, as he mentions several times, it is amazing he is still alive! It seems like at least half of the stories had him in pain, near death, or involved in a vehicle being operated dangerously at some point. I am glad he is still around to tell his tales!

Thank you to T.J. Wray for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I am glad you shared with me and, please, BE CAREFUL!😉😁 T.J. Wray