Katje van Loon's Reviews > Broken Sleep

Broken Sleep by Kaimana Wolff
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really liked it

A harrowing exposé of abuse...hard to read, as someone who's lived through it. But a necessary book -- if you've ever wondered why a victim of abuse stays with their abuser, this book might shed some light on that for you.

What I liked most about this book is the abandonment of an obsession with perfectly likeable characters. Each character has their flaws, their personality points that made me recoil, but it did not stop me from rooting for them. It did not stop me from caring about them.

This is so important, especially in a world that demands female characters be perfect to receive our love. Jane is not 100% likeable, nor perfect -- she is a flawed woman -- but that does not diminish one's feelings of empathy for her, for her situation; it does not diminish one's hope that she get out of the situation in which she finds herself.

A line that hit me in the heart:

"I can’t admit to having loved a monster for thirteen years. It wasn’t always like this.
Or was it?”

That slow, dawning realization that you are trapped with someone who has no regard for your wellbeing, your personhood, is one that many survivors of abuse know all too well.

The book is not your standard novel -- the format is odd, perhaps offputting, but I found that soon I was drawn in. I could not stop reading. I stayed up all night to finish it, and when I was away from it I wondered what would happen next. Cerebral, yes; character-driven, yes. Boring? Not on your life.

Both a good first book in a series and an impressive standalone. (As I've read La Chiripa, the second book in the series, first, I feel I should note: you can read these out of order. Each book works as a standalone as well as it works as part of a series.)

Disclaimer: I've received an early, earlier-than-ARC look at this book because of my special relationship with the author. Broken Sleep is due to be released in June in paperback and ebook.
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Quotes Katje Liked

Kaimana Wolff
“Being sick successfully is not included in society’s panoply of worthy goals.”
Kaimana Wolff, Broken Sleep

Kaimana Wolff
“I was never the mythic lucky-born after all, the post-war harbinger of hope, peace and progress. That hope and faith grew in parental minds. It all fell apart when we moved to Canada. We brought the War with us, tattooed on our souls.”
Kaimana Wolff, Broken Sleep

Reading Progress

May 5, 2014 – Started Reading
May 8, 2014 – Finished Reading
May 11, 2014 – Shelved

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