Sunday, June 1, 2014

Breaking Night

Breaking Night
by Liz Murray

Genre: Memoir

Synopsis:  Liz Murray was born to loving but drug-addicted parents in the Bronx.  In school she was taunted for her dirty clothing and lice-infested hair, eventually skipping so many classes that she was put into a girls' home.  At age fifteen, Liz found herself on the streets when her family finally unraveled.  She learned to scrap by, foraging for food and riding subways all night to have a warm place to sleep.

When Liz's mother died of AIDS, she decided to take control of her own destiny and go back to high school, often completing her assignments in the hallways and subway stations where she slept.  While homeless, Liz squeezed four years of high school into two, won a new York Times scholarship, and made it into the Ivy League.  Breaking Night is an unforgettable and beautifully written story of one woman's indomitable spirit and will to survive and prevail against all odds.
From the book jacket

Review: This was such an amazing story of a girl who was always wise beyond her years.  She learned at an early age how to fend for herself.  It was such a sad story to read about this little girl who wanted to be loved, wanted attention and wanted normalcy.  But her parents were not capable of doing much for her as they were addicted to drugs.  My heart broke for this little girl quite often and I couldn't help but wonder why someone in the school didn't help her.  She was often blamed for things when in fact she was the victim of her parents' negligence.  Her story is tragic and shows us flaws that we have in our system of allowing children like this to slip through the cracks.  But yet it is amazing to see how far Liz made it once she decided that she needed to better her life.  This book is honestly and wonderfully written.

Rating: 4 stars

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