Wednesday 29 November 2017

Unbroken: One Woman's Journey to Rebuild a Life Shattered by Violence. A True Story of Survival and Hope by Madeleine Black

Unbroken: One Woman's Journey to Rebuild a Life Shattered by Violence. A True Story of Survival and HopeUnbroken: One Woman's Journey to Rebuild a Life Shattered by Violence. A True Story of Survival and Hope by Madeleine Black
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - read in one sitting

Pages - 288

Publisher - John Blake

Source - Review copy

Blurb from Goodreads

"For many years after that night, my memories of what happened after he held the blade to my throat and threatened my life were fragmented . . . difficult to piece together. It was too extreme, too violent for me to understand."

Living in a state of shock and self-loathing, it took her years of struggle to confront the buried memories of that first attack and begin to undo the damage it wrought, as men continued to take advantage of her fragility in the worst possible way. Yet, after growing up with a burden no teenager should ever have to shoulder, she found the heart to carry out the best revenge plan of all: leading a fulfilling and happy life. But the road to piecing her life back together was long and painful. For Madeleine, forgiveness was the key. True forgiveness takes genuine effort. It takes a real desire to understand those who have done us so much harm. It is the ultimate act of courage. In Unbroken, Madeleine tells her deeply moving and empowering story, as she discovers that life is about how a person chooses to recover from adversity.

My Review

Madeleine was brutally raped at a very young age, changing her life and everything she knew or felt about herself. Madeleine went on to be attacked again and again, and struggled behind a wall of silence and self loathing. As Madeleine got older she followed many paths that eventually led her to a path of self discover, personal growth, understanding, love and amazingly of all - forgiveness.

I need to warn all readers that this is a brutally honest book and accounts of horrendous sexual and violent abuse are discussed in graphic detail. It makes for hard and very emotive reading, I think any reader will be move to tears, anger and rage for the innocent child that was failed by so many.

The book follows Madeleine on a journey of a downward spiral into some very dark episodes to eventually turning it around and dealing with the traumas, abuse and uses it to help others. It takes a very brave person to survive what she did, to then use it to help others is truly an inspiring and amazing act. I think this book will speak to so many individuals and maybe bring comfort to other survivors, knowing they are not alone. There is a spiritual aspect of the book that I am going to further look into, I found it really interesting and want to know more about it. I think anything that helps to bring inner peace/coping mechanisms will be beneficial to many readers, if they are interested in it and how it can positively impact your life. Despite being harrowing in places the book is also very uplifting when you see the whole journey. I picked this up to read one chapter before bed, I stayed up to 5am until I finished it, 5/5 for me this time. I would love to hug the author, for what she survived, for putting herself out there and for offering hope and a voice to so many, a brave and inspiring human, thank you!

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  1. Sounds a lot like Elizabeth Smart's book...hard to read at times, but surprisingly uplifting, too. Great review! :)

  2. Great community on this book.

    We seem to have both read some dark narratives lately. What the author went through sounds horrendous. I am glad to hear that she eventually found peace.

  3. Excellent review, Lainy. This sounds like a difficult and very intense memoir which ends on a hopeful note.

  4. Hi Lainy, great review. The book sounds like it will be a help to many. The author is honest, sparing no details and showing readers how she survived. Inspiring.


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