“Not every day is supposed to be sunny, but that one day carries you through all the grey days until you get to the other sunny day.”
The author, April Kirkwood, starts off the book in Rural Liberty, Ohio which is her childhood hometown. She tells a story of her childhood; one where she witnessed her mother’s abusive relationship with her step-father. She still maintains that her childhood was beautiful.
She remembers one particular night that changed everything. Her aunt took her to see Frankie Valli who was performing at their town. When he finally came out, April’s heart stopped. She thought Frankie resembled her father, a small Italian man with sleek black hair. That was when her obsession with Frankie began.
That night, she ranted on to her mother about Frankie and the concert. Her mother said the usual prayer as she tucked April in. However, in the end, she mentioned Frankie, April and April’s aunt. This sparked more than just curiosity in April.
The following morning, she asked her mother, whom she described as the most beautiful, f***ed up person in the family, if she could have a Frankie Valli album and if they could go see him in concert again. Her mother was routinely sobbing in the kitchen as a result of the constant abuse from her husband. Before answering her daughter, she popped to pills which she did every morning to help her get through the day. Eventually, she agreed with a smile on her face as if nothing had happened. This commenced April’s pursuit of Frankie.
Since she was only 5 years old, she needed accomplices. Her grandma, aunt and mother were willing participants in her wild ride. They would drive to town, to a newspaper shop and go through all the publications in hopes of finding something about Frankie. Unfortunately, most times they came out empty. One day, they saw an announcement saying he would be playing at Sandusky, Ohio. It was as if they hit the jackpot.
What ensued after was a slew of fortune and misfortune, gains and losses. April discovered dark secrets about her family and shares how she struggled to fit in. She talks about her real father, who was small and meek. And her father family, who all hated her mother because “she was never happy.” Eventually, April meets her very own Italian boy at the age of 13. She had formed a relationship with Frankie as well. Though the number of concerts had reduced she still looked forward to seeing him.
Working My Way Back To Me carries with it lessons on self-love, family, trust and relationships. The little girl portrayed in the book goes through a series of stages in life until she gets to adulthood. She does this while struggling to find her identity and fighting to escape her family’s.
The book is well-written in a simplistic manner that’s both enjoyable and easy to read. There’s no doubt that April Kirkwood is a talented writer. The book has an interesting plot that leaves the reader yearning to know what happens next. It also captivates the reader’s emotion as the subject, April Kirkwood, goes through normal life struggles as most people do.
In the book, Working My Way Back To Me, you can expect a refreshing, enlightening and captivating story with pleasant surprises.
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