Rev. Candace Nadine Breen
Independently Published (2018)
Reviewed by Jennifer Wilson for Reader Views (11/18)
“After the Darkness” is a succinct re-telling of one woman’s terrible abuse and neglect at the hands of the very people who were trusted to love and nurture her.
Rev. Candace Nadine Breen suffered enough heartbreak for a lifetime by the time she made it to high school. Born into a confusing and large family of half-siblings, she was later abandoned by her mother and left to be raised by her disabled father. Her father, a man with a third-grade education, does not value his daughter or her desire to better herself. Her father controls every aspect of her life and tries to make sure she is so far down on herself that she will always have to be there for him. His needs, wants, and desires are all that matter.
I was touched by the way Candace always seemed to love others, even when most people would agree that hatred would be justified, maybe even deserved. Her will to not only survive, but to thrive after each set-back is inspiring. I finished this book in a weekend because I just had to know how this brave woman’s life turned out. The story pulled me in and held my attention. I loved the addition of song lyrics and poetry that seemed to be written with her story in mind.
That being said, I felt as though the book could definitely use some more fine-tuning. The story is there and very powerful, but the writing was sometimes choppy. I also found a few typographical errors that I would suggest being corrected to make this book flow more smoothly. I cannot imagine what a huge undertaking writing a book is, much less self-publishing. I just feel like this could be a much bigger success with a little more editing.
“After the Darkness” by Rev. Candace Nadine Breen really made me go back through my memory and think about some of the classmates I have had throughout the years. What kind of life did they have at home? It reminded me that we aren’t all blessed with parents who know how to love and protect us. That not all children are allowed to simply be children, and this world can be a cold and cruel place. But, as Candace has proven, faith in God can help you overcome that which seems hopeless.