Ratings: 4 out of 5 stars
Genre : Non-Fiction, Memoir
About this Book:
After escaping an abusive marriage, Cara Brookins had four children to provide for and no one to turn to but herself. In desperate need of a home but without the means to buy one, she did something incredible.
Equipped only with YouTube instructional videos, a small bank loan, a mile-wide stubborn streak, Cara built her own house from the foundation up with a work crew made up of her four children.
It would be the hardest thing she had ever done. With no experience nailing together anything bigger than a bookshelf, she and her kids poured concrete, framed the walls and laid bricks for their two story, five bedroom house. She had convinced herself that if they could build a house, they could rebuild their broken family.
This must-read memoir traces one family’s rise from battered victims to stronger, better versions of themselves, all through one extraordinary do-it-yourself project.
My head spins thinking of how difficult it must have been, so I picked up the book. The whole book is divided into chapters like ‘Rise’ and ‘Fall’ alternating between the present and past. Now inspiring as it was to read about her build her own house with the help of her kids, I was mostly looking forward to reading the darker parts of her past. That would be considered understandable if this was fiction and that’s one thing I struggled with. Reading those things and accepting that they really happened to her, just the thought is appalling. The writing style of Cara just made it all the more real and terrifying.
Real terror doesn’t come at you like a fist in the middle of an argument, or a thump on the back of the head after you do something stupid. You can see those things coming. Real terror is going to sleep thinking everything is fine at the end of an ordinary day, a day where you laughed over dinner and watched a late movie, and then waking up to this reminder that you don’t have to wake up. Not ever. Not if he doesn’t want you to.
The only thing that kept me contained after reading such passages was knowing that she survives this, and not only that, she thrives. I loved how all the emotions are balanced in the book and Cara adds a bit of humor to lighten the mood.
Five minutes later, he fired up his chainsaw in my bedroom. I shook my head: There’s a thing not every girl can say with a straight face.
Let’s just say that got a chuckle out of me. Reading this book, I really had thought that it would be all technical about how the house was built and would end up boring me to death. But instead it was much more than that. it was about re-building her family, finally overcoming the past that haunted them and yeah building a house too. And if it’s the house that is shown on the back cover of the book, then DAMN! Inkwell Manor is beautiful.
Rise is such an incredible, inspiring and uplifting book despite the horrors, actually because of it.