Nonfiction Book Award Status: Gold
Carol Anderson is raised in a fundamentalist Christian home in the ’60s, at a time when being gay is in opposition to all social and religious mores and against the law in most states. Fearing the rejection of her parents, with whom she shares a loving relationship, she hides the truth and pursues false romances with men while struggling to harness her powerful attractions to women. The watershed point in Carol’s journey comes when she returns to graduate school and discovers the feminist movement, which emboldens her sense of personal power and the freedom to love whom she chooses. But this sense of self-possession comes too late for honesty with her father. His unexpected death before she can tell him the truth brings the full cost of Carol’s secret crashing in compelling her to come out to her mother before it is too late. Candid and poignant, You Can’t Buy Love Like That reveals the complex invisible dynamics that arise for gay people who are forced to hide their true selves in order to survive and celebrates the hard-won rewards of finding one’s courageous heart and achieving self-acceptance and self-love.
Carol E. Anderson is a life coach and former organizational consultant whose passions are women’s empowerment and travel photography. She holds a doctorate in spiritual studies, and master’s degrees in psychology, organizational development, and creative nonfiction. Anderson is the author of the essay “What is it About Memoir?” published in The Magic of Memoir, and coauthor of “Deeper Power,” published in Enlightened Power: How Women are Transforming the Practice of Leadership. Her essays have been published in The Huffington Post, Pop Sugar, The Advocate, Curve Magazine and Living Better. She lives with the love of her life, Archer Christian, and their sassy, lovable pup, Saxon, in a nature sanctuary in Ann Arbor, MI.