Unbroken by Madeleine Black #BookReview #BlogTour

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.

I'm honoured to be hosting the blog tour for Unbroken today, my grateful thanks to the author, publishers and Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for inviting me and for my ecopy of the book.
Unbroken is far from an easy read, I had tears streaming down my face for much of it. It's a story that elicits a whole range of emotions, among them deep anger because what Madeleine suffered was horrendous. Nobody should ever have to go through that sort of trauma, least of all a teenage girl. As the mother of three daughters, two of them teenagers, I found parts of this memoir very difficult to read. However, just because a book is distressing doesn't mean it should be shied away from; on the contrary, these are the books that should be read. Difficult subjects are ignored or whispered about too often but it's by talking, listening and reading that we can reduce the stigma and let survivors know that their stories matter.
Make no mistake, Madeleine is a survivor. She may have been the victim of the most heinous of crimes and while Unbroken acknowledges the dreadful damage these acts did to her, it's actually the story of her triumph. This is a book of strength and hope, it's about the power of forgiveness and the courage of a woman who refused to let life beat her. It may start with terrible attack on a young girl but it ends with the uplifting bravery of an inspirational woman. Unbroken is a reminder of the power of the written word. Harrowing it may be but we owe it to Madeleine -  and to the other survivors who need stories like this - to read this incredible memoir.

Unbroken is published by John Blake Publishing and can be purchased here.

Don't forget to follow the rest of this blog tour, details are below.

About the Author

The sharing of her story on The Forgiveness Project's website in September 2014, opened many doors for Madeleine in ways she never imagined and the invitations started to pour in. 

She has taken part in both TV and radio interviews and has been invited to share her story at conferences, events and schools.

She recognises that she was a victim of a crime that left her silent for many years, but has now found her voice and intends to use it. Not just for her, but for so many who can’t find theirs yet. 

She is married and lives in Glasgow with her husband, three daughters, her cat, Suki, and dog, Alfie.

For more info please see her website madeleineblack.co.uk or follow her on Twitter @madblack65