An Unlikely Sisterhood

Standing Strong: The Inspiring Story of an Unlikely Sisterhood and the Court Case That Made History

By Diane Reeve with Jenna Glatzer

A triumphant true crime story in which a diverse group of women band together in a landmark legal case against the man who deceived them all. It’s Dallas Buyers Club meets Erin Brockovich.

Diane Reeve gives her reader a tough pill to swallow with her intensely gut-wrenching, true crime memoir Standing Strong: The Inspiring Story of an Unlikely Sisterhood and the Court Case that Made History (HCI Books — $15.95). Her 7th Degree black belt in martial arts background connects the concentration, the punches to the gut, the restraint, the thrill, the power and the knowledge to any reader that dares to grasp on to this hard-to-put-down book.

In her first chapter, Black Corvette, Diane Reeve accelerates into the moment her life takes a sharp turn. A day meant for sweet memories of her daughter’s wedding halts at a fork in the road of her life. Immediately, the reader has been captured to travel a hard-to-believe real life journey as Reeve unpacks the sick reality that Philippe Padieu, the love of her life, was deliberately infecting multiple women—women in their 20s through 60s, with little in common except their vulnerability and now… HIV.

Diagnosed with AIDs, Diane vowed to stop Philippe from victimizing anyone else despite her plummeting t-cell numbers and declining health. In a race against time, she tracked down as many of his conquests as possible. Against all odds, this unlikely group made legal history, successfully prosecuting Padieu and sending him to prison for assault with a deadly weapon.

It was a sisterhood none of them wanted to belong to, but it became their lifeline as they struggled with anger, the specter and stigma of an HIV diagnosis, and failing health.This fascinating case—won only through the help of new DNA science—is Diane’s story of victory and her mission to bring awareness and empowerment to others. As she explains, “Courage is doing what’s right, even when you’re afraid.”

Highlights from the book:

•    “He made me feel strong yet protected, desired and cherished.”

•    “I was never going to be able to forget this night, June 17, 2006; it would be forever linked with my daughter’s wedding.”

•    “Even though we were all in the same boat, I guess I hoped to be better and prettier than the others.”

•    “If there was anything in my life that I’d like to take back, it was the moment I hit “send” on that first e-mail.

•    “I exhaled. Things were going to be different. This was a man I could trust.”

•    “I was sure he could have just about any woman he wanted, and I was flattered that he chose me.”

•    “I have to do the best I can every day to show people what it is to be a person living with HIV—a real person who is more than just a diagnosis.”

Receiving widespread recognition by the media in 2009, this historical case is exposed once more and even further into the psyche of Diane. Brilliantly written, the reader is able to feel the frustration, depression, hope and the many other inconceivable emotions that Reeve encountered as she fought the battle to bring down a pathological perpetrator, build a sisterhood, and manage her very own health all at the same time. The reader becomes a part of her team and sympathizes yet roots for her courage.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Diane Reeve, “the new face of HIV,” has a B.S. Degree in nursing and a M.Ed. in adult education. Her true calling is teaching martial arts. She holds a 7th Degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do plus black belts in three additional styles. She has been the sole owner of Vision Martial Arts Center in Plano, Texas, for over twenty years and she has promoted over 170 of her own students to black belt. In 2008, she was inducted into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame. Diane is also broadening her efforts to be of service to others by speaking out against stigma and victim blaming. She is a popular speaker on the topics of AIDS awareness and women’s empowerment, and has become an avid advocate and activist for women.

Jenna Glatzer is the author or ghostwriter of more than 25 books. Her recent work includes The Marilyn Monroe Treasures, a Barnes & Noble bestseller; The Pregnancy Project with Gaby Rodriguez, also made into a Lifetime movie, and the authorized biography, Celine Dion: For Keeps.

Standing Strong: The Inspiring Story of an Unlikely Sisterhood
and the Court Case That Made History

By Diane Reeve with Jenna Glatzer
HCI Books / April 2016/Available wherever books are sold
Paperback / $15.95– ISBN: 9780757319020
Publishers contact info for direct orders: (800) 441-5569 or www.hcibooks.com

 

read an excerpt

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