After Perfect

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Happy Father’s Day! Today, I have the pleasure of sharing some thoughts on one of my latest reads: After Perfect. I had the pleasure of hearing Christina McDowell read at Book Soup two Sundays ago, not long after which I managed to snag a copy of her debut onto L.A.’s literary scene. As JT grows, I plan to review at least one book a month for readers, starting now!

Christina’s book is an unfaltering confrontation of heartbreak and loss, driven by the need for what might seem two opposites: love and closure, as she battles with herself over where to place an irretrievable childhood.

The text describes this vividly, detailing the demise of Christina’s old self for a new one in her struggle to claim a true, albeit imperfect identity. I devoured the prose seamlessly over three days, at the end of which I found myself asking:

What can I keep, and what do I have to let go of in order to survive? How much of myself from childhood is real, and how much is just imagined? Moreover, at what point do I stop seeing a parent as a hero, but as an individual who is just as insecure and damaged as I am?

The very questions can take a lifetime to ask ourselves, but with this book, Christina accomplishes an undeniable starting point. Congratulations to McDowell on her first book, and JT looks forward to more soon!

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