by Nicole Curtis
Part celebrity memoir and part self-help book, Better Than New goes behind the scenes with an entrepreneurial single mom who worked her way from waitress/real estate agent to home renovation expert, preservationist, and television star. With eight chapters in the book—eight lessons told through her life story and through several of the homes she has remodeled—readers will get to see another side of Nicole Curtis, including the private and personal struggles that are not seen on TV. Working in Detroit and Minneapolis, Curtis has opened her fans’ eyes to the beauty of older homes and the value of reclaiming and reusing authentic original materials rather than sending dumpster loads to the local landfill. Curtis applies the same principles to her personal life—valuing old friends, rescuing dogs, and advocating for the wounded, the elderly, and the disadvantaged. Readers will find inspiration to apply to their own lives supplemented with never-before-seen photos of Curtis and the homes she renovates.
The house had to be lifted off its rotted foundation and have a whole new foundation done underneath it, then be set back on the new foundation. In her own life at that time, she was having to rebuild her life and reputation from the ground up. She had to prove that she could stand on her own and do it all, without a partner to help her. She plans and reacts and gets the job done standing on her own two feet.
Nicole writes as if she were simply sitting down talking to you about theses things. She pulls no punches. When things went wrong and it was her fault, she says it was her fault. When it's someone else's fault, she lets you know that. When it's no one's fault and just an accident, she doesn't try to place blame on someone, she just says it was an accident and life happens.
She's a very creative person and has an upbeat outlook on life. So reading this was really great. She doesn't get bogged down when things don't go smoothly, she looks for solutions. This is why I called it partly a self-help book. There is much to be learned from the way Nicole deals with setbacks. She just doesn't allow them to hold her back. She looks around and figures out a way to get the job done. I found myself really wanting to sit down and have coffee with her and talk and talk and talk. She'd make such a great friend!
So pick up a copy of this book and read all about these rehabs and how this amazing woman found solutions to some of the strangest problems a person's ever had to solve. Due in bookstores December 16, 2016. A great Christmas present for your favorite DIY-er.
I was provided with a digital copy of this book without any of the photographs by Artisan and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I cannot speak to the photographs, just to the text of the book. I am not being compensated in any way. All opinions are fully my own.
~ Judi E. Easley