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Mia’s Odyssey

Mia’s Odyssey: Taking Back My Soul by Mia Odeh is an insightful memoir that offers a journey into a woman’s intricate and complicated life. Mia was born in Palestine, the place where she spent most of her childhood. She was joyful and wanted nothing more than to be with her family and see the sunset from the rooftop of her house. However, her beautiful and innocent reality was quickly broken as her family decided to sell her off to an older, unknown man.

At only sixteen and still feeling like a child, Mia experiences a series of events that wake her up to the cruel reality that comes with some people. Right away, she’s forced to move to America, far away from her family, an unknown place with a language that she couldn’t even begin to understand. Her husband, who everyone believes to be her father, doesn’t support her and quickly shows the monster hidden beneath.

Mia’s story is heartbreaking, focused mainly on a traumatic past filled with sexual and domestic abuse. Yet, despite this, her outlook on things and her resilience to survive and to save not only herself but her children will remain as the silver lining of this book, showing how bravery and determination can take a person out of the depths of the most miserable situations.

The emotional book is incredibly written. Fast-paced and concise, this memoir offers every detail that a reader needs to know to understand Mia’s situation and exposes the cruel reality of so many young girls and women out there, a reality that’s often hidden behind closed doors. However, given the nature of the subject at hand, the book was hard to read. It was simply distressing realizing what this young girl had to endure every day in her own home, being trapped in her own personal hell. Seen as nothing but a servant and a breeding animal, Mia eventually plans her way out of this lifestyle for her and her own children’s sake. She is looking to find a new way to live without the continuous torture, humiliation, and trauma she had to endure.

Mia’s Odyssey: Taking Back My Soul by Mia Odeh and Mike Ball is an unforgettable memoir that will open the eyes of many people. It will make you think more compassionately about the people you may encounter in your daily life. These people might be experiencing unspeakable things without no one even noticing. This is a feminist story and, above all, a story of overcoming that will inspire the fights of many.

Pages: 232 | ASIN : B0B46V571M

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Lessons from the Frogs I’ve Kissed

Lessons from the Frogs I've Kissed: I have made all the mistakes in the book so you wont have to by [Kolnik, Krystal]

If you can imagine it, Krystal has experienced it. If you’ve ever wondered what an abusive relationship truly feels like, Krystal can tell you. If you’re curious as to what a true survivor looks like, take a good long look at Krystal–her life is a testament of dedication, overcoming the worst of the worst in relationships, and learning from one’s mistakes. When Krystal finds Pete, she believes she has found forever. She could never have foreseen that the world into which she would bring her children would be one in which their father would make their lives a living hell.

Krystal Kolnik’s Lessons From Frogs I’ve Kissed is one of the most heart-wrenching stories of love and loss I have ever read. The strength it takes Krystal to simply live from day to day in the presence of such a dismissive and disloyal husband is completely stunning. As I read page after page filled with descriptions of her husband’s indiscretions and manic outbursts, my heart ached and I was filled with a rage of my own.

Krystal’s willingness to open her heart and spill her experiences for the world to read is beyond admirable. More than that, her story resonates with both men and women across the globe. Abusive relationships of one type or another are, sadly, a common occurrence. Readers who are desperately seeking validation will see themselves mirrored in the way Krystal is drawn back to Pete time and time again as his hollow promises are broken one after another–so goes the life of a victim of domestic abuse.

From Krystal’s own struggle to believe or not to believe Pete to her family and friends’ choice to conceal their own knowledge of Pete’s ongoing affairs, the author details each and every crushing blow before calmly describing the ease with which Pete is able to slide from his duties as a father and husband into the life he prefers as a sleazy cheater and abusive sociopath. Without having to present him as an actual character, Krystal succeeds in giving readers an antagonist worthy of all the hatred they can muster.

Krystal details the day-to-day struggles of being a single parent wanting to date in today’s world. Her descriptions of her young daughter’s vision of her father are almost too much to bear. Her recollections of his tantrums and abuse make my stomach turn. Krystal and her children have lived through more than their share of hard days and deserve all the good times life now has to offer.

Relationship after relationship, Krystal lays it all out on the line and goes for broke. Time after time, she is met with adversity. She does a wonderful job of making readers feel her pain and frustration–her descriptions of online dating are relatable in every way.

This is easily one of the most engaging stories I have read in years. Krystal’s mistakes become her lessons and, in turn, become the reader’s as well. Were it not for authors like Krystal, many of us would continue to feel alone in our frustration and misery. Krystal opens the door for communication. For that, I am grateful.

Pages: 342 | ASIN: B07NP6FNXC

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