Why Stuff Matters PDF/EPUB ´ Why Stuff PDF or

10 thoughts on “Why Stuff Matters

  1. Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews says:

    What happens when you take a small Texas town a precocious twelve year old a bunch of cranky senior citizens and multiple deaths?  You get this bookI enjoyed my visit to Caprock and found myself chuckling throughout especially at the senior citizens that ran booths within an antiue mall with overpriced merchandise  Jessica manages the storefront and all of the vendors which can be a challenge most days  Who's kiddingit is every day that they are a challenge  On top of that her deceased husband's first wife drops her daughter at Jessica's and just expects her to take care of Lizzie  Let's just say Nicole is uite flighty  There are times during the book that I thought Lizzie stole the scene with her antics teenage drama and just wanting to be includedThe antiue mall was a family with all the good and bad that accompanies being a part of a family  They bickered but had each other's back when the situation called for support  I'm not sure which of the seniors caught my eye but I have to say that Roxy was a pistol and knew how to play the old lady card with the detective  Jessica is a mother hen to these seniors settling their suabbles and sorting out their lives once they die  I applaud her efforts to get them to leave a will or at least what they want to happen to their belongings in their booths should the unspeakable happen  But the vendors are like most humans and do not want to address the elephant in the roomThis book has a little bit of everything and could be set in any smaller town maybe even your own  There is mystery deception romance and friendship that will test all boundariesWe give this book 4 paws up

  2. Max Knight Max Knight says:

    Jen Waldo’s latest novel Why Stuff Matters can be enjoyed on so many different levels Set in Caprock Texas the story focuses on an antiue mall where the antics of the tenants will cause readers to smile while also bringing into focus the human condition and how people deal with aging death and abandonment Both the building and the vendors are old Layers of dust literally coat the shelves and merchandise while figuratively the same can be said for the people They’re resistant to change of any kind and will lie scheme conspire and even commit murder to maintain things as they are That layer of grime not only describes their surroundings but their lives They suffer from any number of maladies with almost everyone affected by respiratory ailments because they refuse to clean their stalls or replace the rugs that are so old they’re filthy bug infested and moldy Most of them are involved in some type of nefarious activity vice selling the merchandise in their stalls In fact they so over value the items that there is little possibility that a would be buyer will not go elsewhere to make the same purchase Their connection is not to people but to inanimate objects that should long ago have been sold replaced or junked Why do they hold onto things that have no intrinsic value and forgo meaningful relationships? Perhaps because everyone eventually dies or moves on leaving them alone with the “stuff” they’ve collected the sum total of their lives They also refuse to consider what happens when they die They don’t have wills or end of life designations; they leave that for others to sort out once they’re gone Oh they’ll split the merchandise or share eually in any money left behind by someone else because that’s just the way it’s always been done but don’t ask them to consider any end of life planning for themselves That reuires an emotional attachment beyond just their possessions The person left to sort things out and deal with these cantankerous old folks is Jessica a grieving widow who has inherited the antiue mall when her mother died Her passing is only a small part of her grief Parents most certainly die eventually but the sudden death of her husband and children in an automobile accident has left her with emotions that alter her sense of normalcy and cause her to be complicit in the uestionable and criminal activity of her tenants She is no longer the caring wife mother or school teacher that she was before the tragedy That person is buried underneath overwhelming grief leaving her to normalize immorality She goes about the day to day reuirements of running the business and arbitrating the grievances of her vendors with a detached no nonsense matter of fact impatience yet not only overlooks drug sales and other unscrupulous activities that she’s aware of but helps dispose of two bodies that the pink haired gun toting Roxie has dispatched over a collection of baseball cards She’s numb to the murders and lies to the authorities with incredulous yet somehow plausible reasons for their disappearance She’s lost everything that she’s ever loved and is indifferent to life itself Can Jessica ever care for anyone or anything ever again? She’s about to find out when her husband’s ex wife unceremoniously dumps her twelve year old daughter on Jessica’s doorstep Lizzie is the last thing Jessica needs at the moment She’s been abandoned by a self absorbed mother leaving her to fend for herself at a time when she desperately needs a mother’s love and attention After all it was her father that also died in that crash Lizzie needs parental guidance; the one thing that Jessica is unwilling to offer To compensate Lizzie begins accumulating stuff of her own If it isn’t gifted by the vendors she steals what she wants She learns about sex by reading lusty pirate and cowboy romances and takes ridiculous risks to her person by sifting through debris to see if there’s anything of value under the piles of rubble She deludes herself that her mother is coming back to get her while Jessica is left to house clothe feed and protect her with nothing than a written consent to get medical treatment in an emergency Lizzie is a manipulative screwed up teenager who is crying out for inclusion and belonging She latches onto to Joe a would be suitor to Jessica and the policeman investigating the missing persons She also comes to Jessica’s aid when a threat endangers them both Is there a permanent bond between these three that is in the offing? There’s certainly an evolution to their relationships but don’t expect any definitive resolution in the end I got the sense that everything will work out but fittingly the author leaves it up to each reader to decide Jen Waldo juxtaposes tragedy and comedy with aplomb She writes with a wit that captures life’s absurdities and creates locales and characters that will remind you of other small towns and individuals you’ve known Some scenes will cause readers to suspend disbelief some will cause them to laugh some to uestion why people do what they do All will leave them thinking about the vagaries of life and what they might do under similar circumstances

  3. Jenn Belden Jenn Belden says:

    I was provided a copy of the book for review purposes; all opinions are my own Why Stuff Matters by Jen Waldo is not a long book but it delivers a lot in its 212 pages I confess I read this in one sitting I couldn’t put it down and I struggled to write this review because I didn’t feel like I was capturing why it was so good in light of the disreputable characters and unlikable um activitiesWhat I will tell you is that it is a delight An outrageous messy cheeky and sometimes frustrating delightWhile some of these seniors could be simply described as colorful others are intentionally remarkable in their varying degrees of decrepitude and the whole lot are greedy manipulative and mercenary to such a degree that you can’t help but laugh Most of them are seven degrees of shady and just as paranoid and I was caught between being appalled by their behavior and laughing at the ridiculousness of it all Lawrence the owner of the Christmas themed booth is the only of them who has any redeeming ualities bless him So yes to sum it up this is a cast of characters that are as unlikeable as they are unwittingly entertainingJessica is the owner of the antiue mall which she inherited from her mother She struggles to strike a balance between making the building and business functioning while honoring her mother’s memory and practicesShe’s no angel though with her own share of flaws and with a moral compass that is than a bit uestionable Her participation in Roxy’s erm situation was at times so calm and matter of fact that it was hard to digest It becomes apparent however that much of her choices are driven by grief a grief that has made her disconnect or check out and this humanizes herWaldo does well to make me eually uncomfortable and yet protective of the spunky manipulative and emotionally messed up twelve year old Lizzie who has been dumped unceremoniously on Jessica for the summerThe author’s voice is strong; she writes with a wry wit that does well to balance the sadness just below the surface The pacing is uick and the characterization is vivid While her supporting cast is colorful and infuriating but uncomplicated her main characters of Jessica and Lizzie are spunky and tired and messy and deeply flawed They grabbed my attention from the start and held it even when I uestioned and maybe had to suspend disbelief why Jessica did what she didThe plot makes no apologies or excuses for some of the less than savory things that occur It’s a story about grief and resilience and maybe a bit of self discovery – mixed in with a lot of farce Throughout the story a recurrent theme is how the vendors mark up their goods for far than they are worth leaving much of it destined to linger on shelves coated in layers of dust There is so much dust lingering in the merchandise and thus in the building in fact that the vendors suffer freuent respiratory illnesses It shouldn’t be funny but it is And ultimately it swings back to the title of the book and why these things hold such value to them ignoring their inherent greed of courseThe reason these people gather these things display them like they’re precious and place such high prices on them is that they identify so closely with themOut of date replaced worn unclaimed underappreciated destined for the trash heapJen Waldo Why Stuff MattersWhy Stuff Matters is a book that made me think and feel as well as laugh There is a lot that is pure outrageousness from the gun wielding Roxy to the vendor who sells used cremation urns – still holding their original occupants Ultimately Jen Waldo wrangles a story and an ending out of a mess of a situation and leaves you hoping for the best

  4. Mike Mike says:

    I can summarize my feelings about Why Stuff Matters into a single word empathy I’m not sure if Jen Waldo intended for a reader to completely empathize with the characters but there it is However that feeling drew me into this novel very uickly That’s one thing I really like about Jen Waldo she gets into her stories uicklyThis story is meant to be humorous I didn’t really take it that way Maybe because of the empathy? I can understand how a reader could find humor however but it would have to be dark humorOur protagonist Jessica gets slapped around pretty good throughout the story Metaphorically of course How could all this stuff happen to one person who is still reeling from a recent personal tragedy?My Empathy for Why Stuff MattersThe main character inherited an antiue mall from her mother She manages the mall but she seems to still be a little numb from the recent loss of her husband and twin girls Watching how Jessica interacts with the stallholders at the antiue mall is very entertainingAll the stallholders have a few things in common They’re all way past their prime and nearing the bottom of the proverbial hill they’re over They all like to collect things under the premise of “offering them for sale” They don’t seem to trust anyone and they’re all pretty tight with a buckI won’t bore you with the specifics of why I empathize so much with the characters except to say that my empathy made the story very personal for me I even felt empathy when things went terribly bad and frankly that was a bit unnerving for me I have no idea why I felt that wayI think this is a story that many readers can relate to particularly if they’ve spent any amount of time around seniorsTechnically SpeakingIf there were any SPAG problems in this book they were inconseuential to me Thus I have no recallThe pacing was a little on the slow side However given the nature of the story and the advanced age of most of the characters a slow pace worked well for me The build up to the climax actually begins very early in the story Something happens and you just know there are going to be conseuences in the climaxThe climax itself was rather “gentle” I’m not sure what I was expecting but it took me by surprise The story works with the climax but for some reason I thought there should have been Just like the climax the character arcs were also gentle I didn’t think the main characters profoundly changed in any way by the end of the story I suppose those characters who did not live to see the end of the story mighty disagree with thatIt may seem that I did not like the story but that’s not true I enjoyed this story I enjoy reading Jen Waldo She is a no nonsense author that calls it like she sees itI received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review

  5. Lorilei Gonzales Lorilei Gonzales says:

    As per usual I judged this book by its cover and immediately liked it There’s a longstanding family joke where 3 year old me proclaimed that my father’s favorite color was yellow it wasn’t and years later my college car was named Pichu because it was yellow Hence I really dig the color of this cover Who knew that yellow black and negative white space could be visually interesting and soothing at the same time? I like the clean lines and the artistic simplicity conveyed by the hodgepodge of items typewriter phone later discovered to be a tablet baseball cards bottles urn gun suitcase band instruments safe and bicycle My second or third thought was that either the person in this story has a strange style of decorating or it takes place in a pawnshopI was wrong but only just The main character Jessica does have a strange style of decorating but only because she doesn’t really care And there are a few pawnshops that do business within the antiue mall that Jessica inherits from her mother who passes away Bit by bit you get to know Jessica and why she acts the way she does The slow reveal reminds me of cooking a stew You can’t rush it or your protein will come out too tough You have to keep it low and slow so that everything comes out tender and full of flavor Well Jessica is still pretty tough by the end of this book but I would imagine she would be like beef jerky in a thin tomato base if she didn’t get to control the flow of thingsThis is one of those books where I didn’t necessarily like all of the characters but they were all very real to me Waldo has a no nonsense style of writing that never made me uestion her perspective on things There were no games and the mystery had low stakes but I was still eager to read on and find out what happened next While Jessica is able to predict everyone’s next move or thought I was taken by surprise many times Not huge ‘whoa what was that?’ kind of surprise but a thoughtful ‘wow I didn’t see that coming at all’ And I think that’s the true beauty of this book Nothing flashy or over the top but real people with real issues Hint Try not to obsess over right or wrong Just enjoy the ride And although the story doesn’t really travel far it’s an experience all the same I could see Wes Anderson directing the movie version of this if the author wanted a lowkey vibe on the screen If Waldo wanted a little whimsy then I would say get Greta Gerwig to direct Either way the colorful characters and understated storytelling are the perfect recipe for a cult classic It wouldn’t even reuire a Breakfast Club outro for you to realize exactly Why Stuff Matters

  6. Christena Christena says:

    “People should give people things to remember them by”I emphatically and enthusiastically applaud author Jen Waldo for crafting a story around old stuff and old people Jen nails so many things with her character writing especially of the inherited store owner Jessica The writing and the story are picture perfect with this gem of a short novelWhat did she get right? On a recent unexpected visit to an antiue store with a friend who loves these kinds of stores I immediately started sneezing Old stuff along with West Texas dust makes me sneeze Then I started remembering passages of Jen’s book Wondering if a Roxy owned this booth? If there was a guy like Pard amongst the booth owners? Prices do tell stories What people collect and love they do not really like getting rid of by the prices they put on items There are a lot of trinkets and glassware that are still hanging around waiting to find another shelf to sit on Yes – typewriters are still a thing to be sold Sadly there are some items you happen upon that brings back memoriesWhy Stuff Matters is much than just about old things It is about people – both old and young The story revolves around mainly Jessica who has recently taken over her mother’s antiue store after her own life suffered a double devastating blow Jessica becomes somewhat of a caretaker to renters who most can barely walk to a young girl dumped on her The deeper aspect of Jessica is that I can highly relate to her on many levels – especially how she evolved for instance into how she would fret weeks over end about a friend’s foul mood and now not caringMost antiue items are imbued with mortality bestowed upon them by their owners or the persons selling them Why do we keep things? Why are some things important than others?The killer genius part of the story – no pun intended – is the unexpected murders and deaths the story is woven aroundEven with my recent visit to a Slaton Texas antiue store – I realize that people need stores like that for their things to sell because people love finding bargains on old stuff But mostly I realize that I venerate Jen for giving me a story to always remember with a smile every time I visit an antiue storeThank you Jen Thank you Lone Star Blog Tours for giving me the opportunity to review Why Stuff Matters

  7. Kevin Polman Kevin Polman says:

    GOOD STUFFJen Waldo’s WHY STUFF MATTERS is well written literary suspense with a dab of farce thrown in Uniuely built around a decaying antiues mall in an authentically described Texas setting the novel follows an intense period in the life of mall owner Jessica Jessica’s biggest challenges surprisingly are the aging proprietors of booths that offer the usual fare of such places “stuff” ranging from nearly worthless junk to incredibly valuable collector’s items Psst illegal stuff too Not wanting to reveal too much to a potential reader I’ll just say that what these old coots get up to will widen your eyes Coots can be a lot livelier than one might guessI picked up a copy of WHY STUFF MATTERS based on 1 its uniue and appealing cover which depicts different antiues mall artifacts that are mentioned in the book and 2 the jacket description that reminded me of visits over the last fifteen years to a local antiues mall where four times a year my wife and I have meals at an on site tea room then browse the “stuff” I’ve wondered before what went on behind the scenes of the place How do they stay in business? WHY STUFF MATTERS may have given me some answers Thanks Jen“‘Who gave you the right to study my life?’‘Did you think I wouldn’t find out? I’m a detective I detect’‘Stop talking right now’‘We’ve know each other since we were kids We’re friends And friends talk to each other They share and support’Share and support words I’ve come to hate”

  8. Becky Becky says:

    The cast of characters in “Why Stuff Matters” are all people that you have known at some point in your life The setting is a fictional town in the Texas Panhandle but it could have been set in any urban area The main character Jessica has been hardened by the untimely deaths of the people closest to her She inherits her mother’s antiue mall and thus all of the dealers who have space rented therein These are all elderly people who seem to have no other purpose than their relationships to each other and their collections If modern consumerism is an attempt for people to fill an empty place in their lives with possessions then the venders in this antiue mall are reflections of our future selves When the young daughter of her husband’s ex wife enters the mix Jessica reveals her own empty heart The story unfolds through several unexpected events and one has hope that Jessica may begin to find her own healing at the end “Why Stuff Matters” is an enjoyable read from beginning to end

  9. Kate Mize Kate Mize says:

    When I got asked to review this book I was super excited because the story and the author are Texan and anyone who knows me I knows I'm a little in obsessed I have to say this book made me laugh and cry I loved the absurdity and the characters The whole time all I could think about was that the antiue mall reminded me of this place near my old work on I 10 here in Houston And go figure in the acknowledgments 😂 Writing was super immersive and so tremendously real I enjoyed it immensely and appreciated the opportunity

  10. Lone Star Literary Life Lone Star Literary Life says:

    Indie Review for Lone Star Literary LifeAlso reviewed on Lone Star Book Blog Tours Lone Star Blogger Team average rating 48 Stars

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Why Stuff Matters [Download] ➸ Why Stuff Matters By Jen Waldo – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk When Jessica a grieving widow inherits an antiue mall from her mother she also inherits the stallholders an elderly amoral acuisitive and paranoid collection When one of the vendors a wily ex con name When Jessica a grieving widow inherits an antiue mall from her mother she also inherits the stallholders an elderly amoral acuisitive and paranoid collection When one of the vendors a wily ex con named Roxy shoots her ex husband she calls on Jessica to help bury the body and soon Jessica is embroiled in cover Why Stuff PDF or ups lies and misdirection Into this mix comes Lizzie Jessica's late husband's twelve year old daughter by his first marriage who's been dumped on Jessica's doorstep by the child's self absorbed mother and it soon becomes apparent that Lizzie is as obsessed with material possessions as Jessica's elderly tenants Why Stuff Matters is a compelling ode to possession why people like things and the curious lengths they will go to keep them Returning to her fictional Caprock Waldo turns her wry wit on the lives of those afraid to let go.

  • Hardcover
  • 300 pages
  • Why Stuff Matters
  • Jen Waldo
  • 21 August 2016