Reviewed by Carly L.

Many books that are self-help or motivational in nature set themselves up to fail just by the title alone. It’s easy to have high expectations when you’re buying a book that’s called Five Easy Steps to Complete Happiness or Get Rich Tomorrow Without Working Today. After all, sensational titles like those sell books, but expecting them to give you exactly what the title promises is a lot to ask.

So, I was a little wary when I picked up Giving You the WOW and the HOW: 44 Tips From the Millionaire Manicurist that will Change Your Life Now by Sharmen Lane. The chances were high that this was going to be another book full of vague tips directing the reader to just try a little harder. Luckily, this book didn’t disappoint. The author delivers everything the title promises and more.

Sharmen Lane is an author and motivational speaker who made her fortune through hard work and a handful of smart rules to live by. Although the title suggests that she made an easy million as a manicurist, she actually found success in the mortgage business, but left the field to pursue her dream of inspiring and motivating others. It’s true that there probably isn’t much in this book that other people haven’t thought of, but the author manages to persuade her readers into adopting these healthy life habits by illustrating their worth in a casual and friendly manner. It’s a lot like reading an idiot’s guide to success. You’ve heard it all before, but you never really got it until you heard it from Sharmen Lane.

I will throw a caveat or two in here. Like many books that are designed to be motivational, some of the passages in this book are distractingly peppy and chipper, so my cynical side found me rolling my eyes every now and then. There are also a few lessons that she really just beats to death. I feel like some of her points are well-made, but the three or four follow-up stories she uses to continue her illustration of that point just make you want to skip ahead to the part where she talks about something else. All in all, though, this is a solid book that’s going to have a positive impact on a lot of people. I’m just glad I’m in that group!

Carly lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and their two cats. Her favorite thing to do is to curl up by a window with a library book.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Sharmen Lane. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.