Ugly by Margaret McHeyzer

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If I were dead, I wouldn’t be able to see.
If I were dead, I wouldn’t be able to feel.
If I were dead, he’d never raise his hand to me again.
If I were dead, his words wouldn’t cut as deep as they do.
If I were dead, I’d be beautiful and I wouldn’t be so…ugly.
I’m not dead…but I wish I was

I read this book in one sitting after I got home from work. It was… depressing, frustrating and at the same time full of strong hope. You know how books are structured so that around halfway through the book something big happens, and then just before end, this something big will have another impact. I knew to expect for things to kick off but Margaret managed to inject a bit of hope, that- Hey, maybe not. Maybe not in this book. And then, bam!

I cannot say much about this storyline because that would just be giving away too much. The general gist is- Lily, the main character, will have a full journey. This book is about domestic abuse and I just could not believe the unfortunate situation Lily found herself more than once. I found myself thinking- oh, for the love of all holy, can a person get a break?

I think this book is a pretty good example at how fragile a human mind can really be, yet at the same time how strong. I always found it fascinating what with my interest in Stanford Prison Experiment, the happenings in Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, Russian Sleep Experiment, and the countless psychopaths that walk or have walked this planet amongst everyone else (Richard Kuklinski aka Iceman for example.)

In Ugly I would have liked to have read more about where and how Lily drew her strength from. It’s not only the case of – “I don’t know anything else, so this shit deal is a normal me”… There was a breaking point and even though there was some good around her, I would have like to have read about her very personal thoughts that ultimately helped her break the boundaries.

I don’t know whether to suggest this book, or not… I’ll say this- if you are highly empathic and get easily depressed, then give this one a pass. If you want to read something motivational, maybe to get out from a bad place, then try it. It might give a boost of motivation.

*This is a dark YA/NA stand-alone, full-length novel, which comes with a warning for triggers. Please do not read if abuse of any kind disturbs you.

Thanks to Margaret McHeyzer, NetGalley

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