Winner of Mom's Choice Gold Medal in the category of Inspirational Fiction! Also the winner of the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award in Inspirational Fiction and a winner of Readers' Favorite 5 Star Review Medal! New winner of 2016 Director's Choice Winner Outstanding Human Relations Courage Indie Book and 2016 Silver Winner Realistic Human Relations Fiction Book!
Based on a true story, a new novel from Diamante Lavendar. Joan Eastman was born like any other girl. However her life would prove to be a life of great pain...Growing up, she was treated differently by family members, powerless to defend herself against their sexual and psychological abuse. Feeling she had been dealt a wicked hand by the "powers that be", she spiraled into substance abuse and troubled relationships. She became a victim of addiction and self-hatred.Not giving up, she becomes aware of a greater spiritual being that protects her and she begins to heal. Then she finds herself pregnant. She learns to understand nothing is hopeless; that with a changed view and self discovery, there is real hope in every situation, no matter how difficult.As she and her husband look forward to the birth of their child, she writes in her diary as a way of expelling all of the evil memories. On bed rest for the duration of her pregnancy, she endures tests and tribulations that at first she couldn't begin to understand. But no matter how high the hurdles in Joan's life are, she doesn't look back, and pulls the pieces of her life together...for herself and her unborn child.This inspirational story speaks of Joan's gradual self acceptance and healing of her body, mind and spirit. It speaks of the possibilities of the future and the fulfillment of the dream of love and family. And it speaks of jumping the hurdles in life without looking back, no matter how high those hurdles may be.
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Story of Hope
By Aneres on August 30, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
“Joanie Petite” takes us on an emotional journey; all captured in her diary filled with memories of the most significant events of her life. None of these events are farfetched from our own lives. Rather, you may see yourself mirrored in some of the intimate details of Joanie’s journey. Hers was not a “bed of roses” but one filled with challenges, childhood abuse, anxiety, worry and depression and even the loss of a child. Though the twist and turns of her life from as far back as when she was two years old, through her teen years and into adulthood threatened her sanity and life. And even though she stumbled and fell making bad choices along the way, Joanie Petite’s story is one of hope, strengthened by her faith in God and her expectation of the gift of another child. Even though her chances of achieving her dreams were slim, she tied a knot, garnered all the strength she could muster and held on. Definitely a story of encouragement for those who may be crumbling beneath the weight of despair , hurtful memories of the past, doubts in the present and fear of the future. Joanie’s life is a perfect example that with determination, hope and faith we can overcome the worst adversities. I highly recommend.
5.0 out of 5 starsAn Honest and Open Reflection of Pain; An Inspirational Must Read
By Valicity Garris on November 18, 2015
I’m not usually a fan of non-fiction or biographical fiction but this piece had me hooked right from the start.
The story centers on a woman named Joan Eastman who is essentially no different from any other girl except for a dark secret she’s been harboring. Joan has been sexually and psychologically abused by family members. That’s not an easy topic to tackle and I wasn’t sure how everything would play out when I began to read the novel but I’m really glad I gave it a try.
Lavendar does a great job at reeling you in. She’s careful with her words but she definitely doesn’t sugarcoat anything. The subject matter in this book is real, even though this novel is just based on the author’s life I can only imagine the real pain she must have suffered in her childhood. It’s incredibly difficult to even think about such things but this book does the victim and protagonist, Joan, justice.
Breaking the Silence shines some much needed light in a very dark area. It is sad but there are parts that are heartwarming, such as Joan’s faith and the ‘Life Lessons’ we see inserted in the book. I really enjoyed the poem at the start; it set the tone for the rest of the book and gave us just a snippet of what we were to expect from the rest of the story. The last line told us not to lose hope, I believe this is a message from the author not just to other victims of sexual abuse but also to every other person who’s ever struggled through anything in life.
The quotes given throughout the book were also great. In some of the darkest moments in the book there was a life lesson that made me genuinely smile. I felt like they fit in with the flow of the story and didn’t distract from the reading at all. I also liked the inclusion of the main character’s faith.
5.0 out of 5 starsA Great Read, Especially for Those Who Have Lived It
By Kieran Hair on September 24, 2015
Diamante Lavendar’s gut-wrenching tale of abuse and survival does not actually begin with the work itself. Instead, this book begins with a poem entitled “Please Do Not Weep.” This poem underscores the depth of the emotional journey that is to be undertaken throughout this novel. The poem speaks to the good that may come of our sorrows, the growth that we experience through hardship. Its message may not be entirely clear prior to reading the book. It may seem inappropriate for a story of someone who has been mistreated. But upon reading the novel, it becomes clear that without this poem, the story would be incomplete.
The story centers on Joan Eastman, and we begin to learn early on that her life has not been easy. We learn throughout the story of her abuse, her addiction, her miscarriage, and more. But she has been granted a new lease on life. Despite her struggles, she has been given another chance to bear a child. She no longer wants to victimize herself through substance abuse, the way she was victimized by those who were supposed to treat her with kindness in her youth. She is ready to break the cycle, and she will do anything to make it happen.
The writing style of this book is interesting. It takes the form of fictionalized diary entries, although the story itself is meant to be based on a true story. In between these diary entries are short sections, each entitled “Life Lesson.” They are only a few lines each, succinct and to the point. And while many of them seem intuitive, they are lessons of which we must all be reminded from time to time. This can be a difficult book to read at times, especially for those who have been hurt by those they loved or who have hurt themselves through substance abuse. But those who are willing to work through the pain will find this tale of inspiration to be most beneficial. Because it does not matter how much of the story has been fictionalized; every word of this story is dripping with truth.