Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Book Review: Morning in this Broken World

By Melissa Amster

Grieving but feisty widow Vivian Laurent is at a late-in-life crossroads. The man she loved is gone. Their only daughter is estranged and missing. And the assisted-living facility where her husband died is going into quarantine. Living in lockdown with only heartache and memories is something Vivian can’t bear. Then comes a saving grace.

Luna, a compassionate nursing assistant and newly separated mother, is facing eviction. Vivian has a plan that could turn their lives around: return to her old home and invite Luna and her two children to move in with her. With the exuberant eleven-year-old Wren in her hot-pink motorized wheelchair and Wren’s troubled older brother, Cooper, the new housemates make for an unlikely pandemic pack, weathering the coming storm together.

Now it’s time to heal old wounds, make peace with the past, find hope and joy, and discover that the strongest bonds can get anyone through the worst of times. (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)

I think what I said on my Bookstagram sums it up best: OMG. This. Book!!! Seriously, do yourself a favor and read Morning in This Broken World. It's everything I love in a book and more. So. So. SO incredible!!!  I loved all the characters and the narrative was just...*chef's kiss*.

The story touches on a lot of different topics: grief, LGBTQ+, disability, poverty, Alzheimer's, and, of course, Covid. It takes place at the beginning of the pandemic, when it was still such a scary time for everyone and toilet paper was scarce. Most of it takes place in the spring and summer and I could actually feel the heat on the hottest days. The descriptions brought everything to life so well without taking away from the narrative. Everything and everyone just felt so real.

I just loved the relationships between the characters and how it took a while to build trust, but how rewarding it felt when that trust was achieved. There's just so much heart to the story and I loved seeing the perspectives of Vivian, Luna, Wren, and Cooper. They each had distinct voices and I cared so much about all four of them. Cooper even reminded me a bit of Kenny from Don't Tell Mom The Babysitter's Dead

All I can say to sum this up is...just go read it!!! I still can't stop thinking about it and I have a feeling it will stick with me for a long time.

Movie casting suggestions:

Thanks to Katrina Kittle for the book in exchange for a honest review.

(Trigger warnings at the bottom of the post.)

More by Katrina Kittle:

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TW: suicidal ideation, cancer, addiction

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