Friday 3 December 2010

Answer this question and win an autographed novel.

Interested in reading Someone To Blame (see my review below)? Well, all you have to do to receive a FREE SIGNED copy is:

1. Answer this question in the comments:
How is blame destructive to ourselves and others? And what are some ways we engage in blame and don’t even notice?
2. leave email address

C.S. Lakin will then read all your comments on my blog and choose the best answer. The winner will be announced on Monday 13th.

Here's the blurb:
In the wake of heartrending family tragedies, Matt and Irene Moore move with their fourteen-year-old daughter, Casey, to a small town. Their goal is to get far away from the daily reminders that leave each of them raw and guilt-ridden. Their hope is to find redemption, repair, and renewal. Instead, the threads that hold them together unravel even more. Breakers, a small community perched on the rocky coast of the Pacific Northwest, is draped with cold isolation that seems to mirror the hearts.

As they settle into their new life, old grief settles with them. Matt is always on edge and easily angered, Irene is sad and pensive, and Casey is confused and defiant. They've once more set the stage for calamity. Into this mix comes Billy Thurber, a young drifter with his own conflicts, whose life unexpectedly entangles with the Moores'. His arrival in Breakers parallels a rash of hateful and senseless crimes, and soon the whole town -- eager for someone to blame -- goes after Thurber with murderous intent.

Out of this dangerous chaos, however, the Moores find unexpected grace and healing in a most unlikely way. Author C. S. Lakin explores our need to assign reason and fix blame for the pain and grief in our lives. Though the circumstances are fictional, the emotions are real and universal, making Someone to Blame a great and inspiring read.

Here's my review:

This novel started off slow and with a lot of detail, but rightly so! Once I reached a about a third of the way through, and the plot really started to pick up and hook me in like sugar to a sweet tooth, I certainly appreciated the effort the author went to making sure each character popped. The story wouldn't have been the same if I hadn't known so much about the characters.

I heartily recommend this novel to anyone who is interested in not only a page-turning read, but in something with greater meaning. Something that might very well make you step back and question any uneducated judgements you've made about someone. It also shows that even though large groups of people sharing the same view can be persuasive, all it really takes is one person to make a difference in this world. And that is definitely something I like to believe in.

All in all, a very well-written, entertaining, and enlightening read.

If you'd like another chance to win her book, all you have to do is sign up for her monthly e-bulletin where you'll be entered into every monthly contest to win one. Just go to and click on the envelope.

So what are you waiting for? Answer the question above and leave your email address! :o)

Have a great weekend!


  1. How is blame destructive to ourselves and others? And what are some ways we engage in blame and don’t even notice?

    Blame never comes alone. Its travelling companions are usually embarrassment, shame or guilt . . . or a combination of all three. The word blame has always had negative connotations. It isn’t simply interested in who is responsible. Once you blame someone (even yourself) you have begun the judging process: it suggests culpability.

    The problem is one of perspective. Blame simply identifies the responsible party, nothing more. The problem with many people is that they are blamed (or blame themselves) for things for which they were not responsible. A classic example is the kid who did something wrong (and so is to blame for whatever he did) but assumes the breakup of his parents’ marriage is a direct consequence of what he did wrong thus blowing the whole thing out of proportion in his mind. Something like that can obviously have a detrimental effect on the rest of his life. Just as a child could do this to himself it could also be done to him, a parent or someone in a position of authority could assign blame based on circumstantial evidence and because the judgement comes from a trusted individual in time the child could assume responsibility for something he didn’t do and hence take on blame that isn’t theirs in the first place.

    We judge things all the time. You’re judging my answer just now. It’s part of the deal. I hope I win but if I don’t then there’s no one to blame other than myself. This doesn’t make me a bad person. I have no idea what my competition is going to be like or how much time they’re going to spend on this. The problem with blame is that it’s just the start, the tip of the iceberg. It encourages us to investigate and the deeper we dig the more likely we are to find something negative. Of course we could always shift the blame. It would be relatively easy for me to accuse others, my father for example, of not teaching me when I was young, of not explaining properly what blame was. That’s where blame can be most destructive when people are unwilling or incapable of handling their own accountability. So if I don’t win it’s probably because you’re a bad judge. See how easy it is to shift blame.

  2. For me, self blame is the worse. It hides behind our words, in our subconscious thoughts, and manifests itself in the way we carry ourselves. Our interaction with others is altered, inhibiting us from being who we truly are.

    The only way out of that mess is reflective forgiveness. Yeah, that can be rough and take years.

  3. Blame is useless when it comes to building healthy relationships. Blame is an excuse we use for holding on to resentment, and while such things ought to be expressed openly and honestly in order to move on, holding on to blame does not allow us to heal, nor to forgive.

    Blame, or "whose fault it is" is not something that should matter when it comes to loving and respecting one another. You can spend you entire life blaming the driver who accidentally killed your loved one, even if they are family too, but it won't ever get you any closer to finding peace or acceptance.

  4. How is blame destructive to ourselves and others? And what are some ways we engage in blame and don’t even notice?

    Blame is a finger pointing from ourselves to someone else, and nothing good can come of that. The only way we can improve what is, is to look at our own life, our own choices and actions. We cannot control others, fate, luck, or circumstances that are unfair or cruel. We can only minimize our exposure to them, handle the consequences of them, learn from them, let go of them.

    Sometimes we think that blame and anger go together, but we can be angry without blame. Blame is directed toward another person. It tells the other person what they should have done differently. This is a waste of energy. Either they know they should have done things differently or they don't. Blame does not motivate them to see anything from your point of view. Blame builds a wall that grows taller and thicker over time.

    Blame is destructive to ourselves because it keeps the focus on "them" and not on "us." If we are not focused on our life, our choices, our future, then we cannot heal from whatever trauma causes us to blame in the first place.

    Blame is a bit sneaky. It tries to pass as "constructive criticism," "tough love," "telling the truth," and, at times, religion and discipline. We fall into it when we start a sentence with, "You never..." "Why don't you..." "Every time you..." "You make me..."

  5. Blame, Blame, Blame. I have a single friend, who had her babies with the help of a turkey baster (okay, I think it might have been a little more clinical than this, but you get the point). She is a wonderful mother, but she has some terrible challenges to deal with. I had a real awakening when it occurred to me that I blame my husband for half of the problems that I have with my kids, and I felt sorry for my friend because she DOESN'T HAVE ANYONE TO BLAME. Wow. Had to do some serious Dr. Phil work on that one!

  6. Well, I'm usually blameless. Let's get that straight up front. I think people have to take responsibility for their own actions rather than blame me or they will never grow and become a better person. On the rare occasion something is my fault I own up to it. Seriously blaming is tends to revert us to our childlike-states.

  7. I think blame is one of those human flaws that is nothing but destructive. It focuses on the negative, and sometimes avoidance, rather than forward motion. I think it can be very self-damaging because it festers.

  8. I love that cover--and the blurb sounds interesting!

    Um, blame. Wow. Blame blooms into hard feelings and unforgiveness. And carrying around that load is heavy.

  9. Sounds good!
    Blame keeps us mired in one place - we can't grow as a person and our relationships can't grow either. Sometimes this happens and we're not aware we are stuck. We either refuse to find a solution or we continue to focus on what went wrong.
    wolferock AT

  10. Blame doesn't help anything. Does the person blamed every really learn from being blamed? No, they usually get defensive and resentful. It doesn't give them any out to save face. Sure they made a mistake but they are still human and every single human wants to feel important and useful. Does the person doing the blaming get anything out of it? Maybe a sense of satisfaction but they, also, usually end with a broken relationship. The other person will have difficulties ever wanting to be themselves again around the blamer. In the long run - Everyone losses. If we collectively choose to build each other up and stopped worrying about who to blame - We would all win. :-)

  11. Blame often means we are not accepting the mistakes we have made, but are trying to make ourselves feel better by pointing the finger at others.

    It's destructive to ourselves because if we don't take personal responsibility, not only don't we grow by failure to learn from our mistakes, but not to grow is regression.

    It's destructive to others because disapproval, whether lingering in the air or an outright accusation is draining and damaging. We turn inward and fall into a loop of self-blame. If we don't accept the blame, then it causes outward strife.

    I know someone who falls into this pattern on a regular basis. Nothing is her fault - big and small things. She's stagnated. It means I wind up listening to her spewing her wrath about others. She's become a very angry person. When I gently try to point it out, I receive a hurricane in response. And when her blame was used against me... I still haven't recovered from the confrontation.

    Her behavior has made me try to avoid blaming others. We all do it, so it's not easy to look at how our actions have negative consequences and try to avoid them. Let's accept our mistakes and move on.

  12. How is blame destructive to ourselves and others?
    I think we (meaning me) often blame others (someone in specific in mind) when we don't really know the whole story. I fact I don't think there is anyway to know the whole story. Each party has his and her version of the truth, but really there is only one truth and only God knows what that was.

    And what are some ways we engage in blame and don’t even notice?

    Deep stuff for a Saturday night, girlfriend....

    I think avoidance is one way we show blame.

  13. Wow, you have some fantastic answers here! I'll keep mine short and sweet: Blame is like a cavity - it might start out small, but the more you indulge in it, the blacker, more rotten and smellier it makes you!

  14. Some great answers. Don't know if I can add much.

    Blame is learned behavior, usually first encountered in the home, and can be generational, but can be first learned at school or from others in one's environment. However, the act of blaming, including self-blame, develops from a sense of insecurity that is also learned behavior. No child is born blaming himself/herself, others, the government, or anything. Self-blame and blaming others evolve from a learned sense of insecurity, ie, the two are pretty much in tandem and can be extremely self-destructive and destructive to others as avoidance sits at the top of this pyramid.

  15. Blame keeps you yourself from growing, because instead of identifying and correcting mistakes blame is to choose to allow the mistake to occur again for the sake of pride or anger. But I only blame other people for stuff because my mom taught me to do it.

    clp 3333 (at) hotmail (dot) com

  16. When we blame someone, we're focusing on what we perceive as their short-comings and thus diverting attention from our own!

    Sounds like a fascinating book!!!


“I'm using my art to comment on what I see. You don't have to agree with it.” ~John Mellencamp

“Allowing an unimportant mistake to pass without comment is a wonderful social grace” ~Judith S. Marin

“I don't ever try to make a serious social comment.” ~Paul McCartney

“I'd make a comment at a meeting and nobody would even acknowledge me. Then some man would say the same thing and they'd all nod.” ~Charlotte Bunch

“Probably what my comment meant was that I don't care about the circumstances if I can tell the truth.” ~Sally Kirkland

“We're not going to pay attention to the silliness and the petty comments. And quite frankly, women have joined me in this effort, and so it's not about appearances. It's about effectiveness.” ~Katherine Harris