Tag Archives: nonfiction relationships

Heartbroken: Field Notes on a Constant Condition by Laura Pratt Review

I received a free copy of this book In exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

Author and journalist Laura Pratt goes on a personal journey to understand the psychological and emotional impact of heartbreak and how it affects us all in her book “Heartbroken: Field Notes on a Constant Condition”.

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The Synopsis

In this definitive treatise on romantic loss, journalist Laura Pratt exposes the subject of heartbreak with a deep dive into the experience. Her reports chronicle her journey from grief to gratitude, and to perspective and meaning at last.

Heartbroken charts a hard terrain we all know–pocked with rejection, slick with sorrow–but it also offers some light and a map. And hope for arriving–changed, broadened, grateful–on the other side.

When Laura Pratt’s long-distance partner of six years tells her “it’s over” at a busy downtown train station, she is sent reeling, the breakup having come out of the blue. Her partner, meanwhile, closes himself off, refusing to acknowledge Laura and her requests for explanation.

In the following days, months, and then years, Laura struggles to make sense of this loss, alone and filled with questions. She mourns him and takes comfort in whatever reassurances she imagines the universe is sending her, and in identifying value for her ordeal under every rock she flips.

Here, Laura bares her soul as she brings alive the ups and downs of heartbreak–the recalled highs of when the relationship was in full, mutual bloom, and the long-time lows of her solitary vigil for Sam.

Seeking to understand this freefall and how so many before her survived it, she draws on forces across time and form and uncovers literary, philosophical, scientific, and psychological accounts of how we human beings fall in love in the first place, and why, when it ends, some of us take longer to get over it, or never do.

Effortlessly, Laura Pratt weaves this background of cultural history with her own bracing story of heartbreak and loss, and offers the heartbroken some solace in the common experience.

Imbued with Laura’s longing, erudition, and hard-earned wisdom, Heartbroken dares to delve into this most universal of mortal ordeals–perhaps the one that makes us the most human of all.

The Review

What struck me immediately upon reading this book was the profound sense of personal experience that somehow still felt all too relatable and engaging to the reader. The balance the author found in this memoir and relationship-driven book between her own personal heartbreak and the study of heartbreak, in general, was great to see. The pain and tragedy of the author’s experiences help to connect readers to the subject matter, as the emotions that influenced her mentality in those early days of the breakup showcased the power that a strong connection and its sudden loss can have, not unlike the sense of loss that comes with losing a loved one in life.

The artistry and almost poetic way the author wrote this book really became the heart of the story here. The insightful and free-flowing research into the subject and history of heartbreak, romance, and love as a whole in regard to the relationships we form was remarkable to watch unfold on the page, and looking at how history has shown the evolution of our thoughts and feelings on love as a people was incredible to read about. 

The Verdict

Heartfelt, emotional, and memorable, author Laura Pratt’s “Heartbroken” is a must-read book of nonfiction memoir and relationship storytelling. The way the author is able to share how love and relationships can influence how we respond to and appreciate things like music and memories as a whole was great to see come to life in the author’s writing, and the cultural and historical research that went into the author’s exploration of her own heartbreak made this a truly compelling read. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!


Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

LAURA PRATT is a long-time journalist, writer and editor. She writes for Canadian magazines and edits books. Her first memoir, The Fleeting Years, was published in 2004. She lives in Toronto with whichever of her kids and dogs she can corral to join her. She’s a 2020 graduate of the University of King’s College’s creative nonfiction MFA. She won an honourable mention in Prairie Fire’s 2020 CNF contest and was shortlisted for The Fiddlehead’s 2019 CNF contest. She has served as a judge at the National Magazine Awards for several years.

http://www.laurapratt.ca/

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0B5K9DDQP/ref=x_gr_w_glide_sin?caller=Goodreads&callerLink=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.goodreads.com%2Fbook%2Fshow%2F61389212-heartbroken%3Fac%3D1%26from_search%3Dtrue%26qid%3DBFdCXa0sJJ%26rank%3D1&tag=x_gr_w_glide_sin-20

GOOD DICK BAD DICK: How to spot a loser before you date or marry him by Hal Free (Illustrated by Jon Klassen) Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

Author Hal Free takes readers on a journey to showcase the toxic behavior of men and how they mistreat women through a series of humorous yet thoughtful illustrations and commentary in the book “GOOD DICK BAD DICK: How to spot a loser before you date or marry him”.

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The Synopsis

GOOD DICK BAD DICK is a totally unique book that uses illustration and outrageous humor to drive home the serious problem of how men mistreat and objectify women. The cartoon presenter is probably the last you’d expect to demonstrate men’s bad behavior, but he’s the ultimate symbol of all men. Each page presents different examples of the selfish, self-absorbed male mindset. a “pee-in-your-pants” collection of watchouts for women — and a way for men to see themselves as they too often are.

The Review

One of the things that has become so much more apparent in recent years with the accountability that social media brings in this day and age is the horrid way that men grow up believing how to treat the women in their lives and those they encounter throughout their days. The toxicity and mistreatment that is constantly brushed aside or excused as “boys will be boys” has been an issue that has faced mankind for centuries, and in the author’s book, this issue is finally blasted for all to read. 

The mixture of lighthearted tone and humor with the seriousness of men’s behavior and attitude is illustrated in such a way that instantly connected the reader to the subject matter. I think this was a book that spoke to everyone, men and women included. For men, this was a wake-up call to showcase how they are constantly twisting the truth and abusing women around them for their own immediate gratification or genuine pleasure, and the only way to build a better world is to teach future generations how not to act. For women, this book feels validating, as if the hardships and struggles that they are forced to endure on a daily basis are finally given life in these hilarious yet powerful cartoons that speak to the heart of this matter.

The Verdict

Thought-provoking, inspiring, and engaging, author Hal Free’s “GOOD DICK BAD DICK: How to spot a loser before you date or marry him” is a must-read nonfiction book that meets illustrated work. The commentary on relationships and behaviors related to gender, specifically how men treat women in life from their adolescence to their adult years, will not only help women readers to feel heard and seen in their own struggles but allow male readers to see a part of themselves they may ignore or not realize is there. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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