Book Reviews

Book Review: Sister Surrendered by Darla M. Grese

Sister Surrendered 2

Sister Surrendered

Darla M. Grese

Publication Date: April 10, 2014

3 Stars=Okay Page Turner

What do you do when you’ve lost your best friend? When this happens tell her story so she is never forgotten. Darla M. Grese does just that in Sister Surrendered. Darla shares her twin sister, Kelli’s story in hopes of helping another person going through the same struggle. Sister Surrendered tells the story of the bond between two sisters that was broken because of mental illness.

This book explains how Kelli reached out for help only to be turned away and her healthcare benefits fail her. Kelli’s health and mental state start to diminish and Darla tries to convince her sister to get help but after all is said and done it ends up being too late. Kelli is gone.

This book tugged at my heart strings but also gave me a level of frustration because I realized as I was reading that Kelli and Darla’s situation could have been avoided. I applaud this author for sharing her sister’s story because I know it caused her distress. It is a story that needed to be told and I hope it opens the eyes of healthcare providers as to the improving their management of veteran’s benefits and patient care.

This book was provided by the author for review purposes only.

Reviewed by Teresa Beasley

Book Features

Darla M. Grese, Author of Sister Surrendered

About the Author

Darla M. Grese

Darla M. Grese is a twin sister who lost her better half to side effects from prescribed medication. As a U.S. Navy Veteran, she is an advocate of Veteran X and Veteran Hope programs that address mental illness, PTSD, and unintentional addiction issues. Both programs are sponsored by the Veteran Affairs Medical Center and focus on Veteran recovery and independence. She raises money for “Team Kelli” and annually participates in the Out of the Darkness Walk at Mt. Trashmore in Virginia Beach (  While continuing to bring awareness to this cause, being a loving parent is her favorite passion and the main focus of her life. Darla’s love for the arts has been expressed as a talented actress with appearances in The F.B.I. files, The New Detectives, Diagnosis Unknown, Wicked Attraction, Discovery Channel’s The Haunting, and the movie Atlantis Down. She currently works full time as a respiratory therapist at a trauma center in Norfolk, Virginia.


Her memoir, Sister Surrendered, is her latest release.

For More Information

About the Book:

Sister Surrendered 2

When you’re a twin, loneliness is somewhat unfamiliar because you’ve always had each other. So when a twin passes, the other is left unprepared. Our loyalty was steadfast and our devotion to one another, solid. Our love was unconditional no matter what the circumstances. I’m so grateful every day for the memories of the joy and laughter that we shared together. I know the bond that Kelli and I shared is impossible for anyone to replace. This memoir has become something so much more than initially intended. It’s become a documented journey barely scratching the surface of the love between two sisters. And surprisingly, it’s also become an outlet for me to speak candidly and honestly about my struggles with the cause of Kelli’s death. This is a love story turned tragedy. An exposure of one of the greatest healthcare failures killing Veterans and civilians, and a cry for help to remedy the fiasco. I’ve stressed about who I would mention in this book, nervous that I would hurt someone’s feelings by not mentioning their names. But I’ve realized that it’s impossible to do. Kelli had so many great friends, some I’ve never even met. I need each person to know who has taken the time to reach out to me in whatever capacity that if it weren’t for your heartfelt show of support and love, I don’t know that I would be able to muster the energy to even get up each day. Kelli, we did it.

For More Information

  • Sister Surrendered is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
  • Visit the book’s Facebook page.
  • Recommend at the book’s Goodreads page.
  • Read Chapter One and Two here.

A&RBC’s Review Coming Soon!