I’m back/Book review #3

So, this was meant to be a blog where I reviewed books and television, but life got in the way. Now I am back with a vengeance!

Book review 3: Learning Not to Drown  by Anna Shinoda

This book was good, but haunting, like eerily haunting. I thought it was a very interesting and well-written premise about a family dealing with a son and brother who is an addict and whose addiction causes him to be in and out of jail.

Clare’s memories of older brother Luke are romanticized in a way. She only remembers the good and believes Luke will change, but then something happens that forces the truth about Luke to come out and Clare is faced head on with how she feels about Luke and how she’ll subsequently deal with the fallout.

Clare’s parents – her mother more so than her father – were difficult to sympathize with and really the part that made me want to throw my kindle against the wall. And that’s not a criticism of the author. Quite the opposite. It elicited such an emotional response because it’s so easy to understand how when one of your children is ‘broken’ according to societal standards, you become stagnant in denial land and your other children fall through the cracks; however, Clare’s mother’s stance of protecting Luke makes her very emotionally and verbally abusive to her other children, especially Clare, which was hard to read.

I agree when others say this is an emotional roller coaster of a book. Still, it’s a book I thoroughly enjoyed despite the uncomfortable parts.


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