Hidden in the Dark by RaShell Lashbrook – A Book Review
Hidden in the Dark by RaShell Lashbrook Book Review
The harrowing story of a family crushed under the weight of one abusive man.
After a lifetime spent too frightened to strike back, Genny finally summons the strength to leave her destructive husband. Needing the help of the three grown daughters whom she to failed to protect from her husband’s hands, Genny tries to reenter to society. Is she ready to face the world on her own after years isolation and being beaten into submission?
Some wounds never heal.
Three daughters. Each have found their own way to cope. There’s Lilly, the eldest, who tried to bury the past by reinventing herself in the marriage of wealthy man. But can she keep up this facade? Or does the past have a way haunting you?
Randi, her father’s favorite, hides her shame in a turbulent, dangerous underworld of sex and drugs. Estranged from her family for years, will Randi find a way to make the best of her circumstances and start a new life?
The youngest, Raine, was left to deal with her father’s abuse alone. Unable to cope with the strain, her mind creates an alternate personality, Shanti. Raine’s mental health spirals into disarray after she is forced to bear the weight of their mother’s reentry into society. Missing time, stressing at work, and struggling to find her footing in a tumultuous time, Shanti returns to deal with the burdens of their shared past. And Shanti does not play nice.
Thoughts on plot, writing style, and character development
The author, Rashell Lashbrook, has thoughtfully evoked the complicated dynamics of a family wracked with abuse. A mother who lost herself in the iron grip of a terrible man. Three daughters who transformed in order to survive. All four struggle to leave past horrors behind. The reader must face harsh truths along with these four women and will find a gritty portrayal of mental illness, painful repercussions, and disturbing flashbacks within these pages.
Lashbrook is gifted with an incredibly rare understanding of plot dynamics. So much happens in this novel’s 268 pages. This book could have been stretched into a series, if the author so chose. Instead, she opted for a more efficient writing style which offers an enjoyable reading pace and makes this little book an irresistible page turner.
At the same time, I had hoped for more demonstrative character development as the novel progressed. It is here the already very talented Lashbrook could have expanded her scope of work. This aside, Rashell Lashbrook is an author to watch. I look forward to her future work. I am extremely curious to see how she continues to improve upon an already well defined writing talent.
Due to the nature of the physical and sexual abuse portrayed in this novel, certain passages are graphic and not recommended for more sensitive readers.
Reading Time: 2 Days
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- Talented use of plot
- Efficient writing style
- Handles dark subject matter with the necessary grit
- An author to watch
- Lackluster character development as the novel progressed
- Efficient writing style is perhaps too efficient