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.
Violently gang-raped when she was thirteen years old, and raped three more times before the age of eighteen, Madeleine has experienced more trauma in her life than most ever will.
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. We are not defined by what knocks us down – we are defined by how we get back up.
Madeleine Black is an amazing, courageous woman and I am genuinely inspired by reading her story. She writes incredibly articulately and powerfully about her horrific experiences and I felt really emotional throughout the book. I was really interested to learn about how she got to where she is today.
Black does not hide anything from the reader and her descriptions are stark. Whilst I understand why Black decided to include this, and it definitely helps the reader to appreciate what she has been through, it was very difficult to listen to and it may be upsetting for people who have been through similar experiences.
I listened to the Audible version of Unbroken and I have so much respect for the narrator who must have found it so hard to read out loud. She reads the book with the sincerity it obviously deserves and I thought she was really successful at conveying the thoughts and feelings expressed in this book.
Unbroken is available from Amazon.