A Bridge to the Mainland
by Veronica Knight

"Don’t be fooled by me. Don’t be fooled by the face I wear. For I wear a mask: I wear a thousand masks, and none of them are me."

Knight's work is heart-wrenching and therapeutic, painful and full of hope, a fusion of self-help and memoir. The author's strength is her vulnerability, an ability to remove any masks and be raw and authentic. In presenting her story, she paves a path for the countless women experiencing physical and emotional abuse, and who see no way out of their predicament.

From the opening paragraph, Knight reels in the reader with an observation from the airplane window showing the world below arranged to perfection, straight and narrow. She then immediately drives home her point by emphasizing that real life is anything but linear and expected. A childhood memory best sums up her tumultuous past. She describes her father telling her that "This doll is for good girls." He then states that she has not been good. Whether it is the constant unsettling feeling of being an accident, the byproduct of a mother and father who were fifteen and sixteen respectively when she was born, or being so afraid to make anyone mad that she willingly remains in a relationship that makes her miserable, Knight demonstrates a firsthand account of what it feels like to be buried by and in one's past.

Perhaps the most poignant scenes of the narrative occur when the author peels back the veil of group and individual therapy. Her experiences with Dr. Arielle Kogan help her shed the facade of everything being right and redirect her on the path to taking ownership of her own life. More importantly, what makes this book resonate with readers is her depiction of how impactful Dr. Kogan is on the author's life and well-being. Knight's tale is a ray of hope for those individuals who believe "getting help" is a taboo topic.

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