Australian Women Writers Challenge Complete Post: Book's Review and Summary

Australian Women Writers Challenge – Book Review 2 | Multimodal Me

Australian Women Writers Challenge – Book Review 2

Today, we are going to delve into the world of Australian literature and explore a magnificent book that I believe should be on every reader’s list. The book in question is The Erratics, written by Vicki Laveau-Harvie.

The Erratics is a memoir that tells the story of a family torn apart by the actions of a manipulative and abusive mother. Vicki Laveau-Harvie takes us through her journey of reconnecting with her estranged parents, after twelve years of no contact, only to uncover the truth behind her mother’s actions and the devastating effects they had on her entire family.

Now that you have a brief introduction as to what this book is about and who the author is, let us explore the themes and ideas presented in The Erratics.

Main Themes and Ideas

The main theme explored in this book is the impact of abuse on individuals and families, and how it can change the course of their lives. Through her personal experience, Laveau-Harvie gives readers a glimpse into the reality of living with an abusive parent and the long-lasting effects it can have on one’s mental health.

The book also deals with the theme of mental illness and the stigma attached to it. Lavaeu-Harvie’s mother is portrayed as a woman struggling with mental illness, and the author herself describes the difficulties she faced in coming to terms with her mother’s illness, and how it impacted the lives of everyone in the family.

These themes are complex and profound, and Laveau-Harvie handles them with elegance and sensitivity. Her writing offers a unique insight into the emotional turmoil that accompanied her journey of healing and self-discovery.

Writing Style and Message

The writing style in The Erratics is descriptive and emotive. Laveau-Harvie has a way of capturing emotions through her writing that makes it easy for the reader to connect with her story. Her vivid descriptions of the Canadian prairies, where the book is set, serve to accentuate the emotional intensity of the memoir.

Laveau-Harvie’s message is clear and impactful; she is not afraid to speak out about the abuse, manipulation, and gaslighting that she and her family suffered at the hands of her mother. And while some of the events recounted in the book are harrowing, the author never loses sight of the importance of hope and healing.

Strengths and Weaknesses

One of the strengths of The Erratics is its unflinching honesty. The author does not sugarcoat her experiences, nor does she try to downplay the abuse and manipulation she experienced as a child. This honesty makes the book all the more powerful and impactful.

A potential weakness of the book could be that it may be too triggering for readers who have experienced abuse themselves. While Laveau-Harvie’s story is ultimately one of hope and healing, some readers may find the more harrowing aspects of the memoir difficult to read.

In Comparison to Other Works in its Genre

The Erratics stands out in its genre for its unique perspective on trauma and healing. While there are many memoirs which deal with the topic of abuse, few offer the same level of insight as this book does. Its exploration of the complexities of mental illness and family dynamics make it a one-of-a-kind memoir.

Overall Impression and Recommendation

My overall impression of The Erratics is that it is an incredibly powerful and moving book. Vicki Laveau-Harvie’s storytelling is masterful, and her ability to convey complex emotions is unparalleled.

I would highly recommend The Erratics to anyone who is interested in memoirs, particularly those which explore the themes of family, trauma, and healing. This book is a must-read for those looking for a honest and enlightening look into the complexities of the human experience.


What is the genre of this book?

The Erratics is a memoir.

Is this book suitable for readers who have experienced abuse themselves?

While the book does deal with some difficult themes, ultimately it is a book of hope and healing. However, readers who have experienced abuse themselves may find parts of the memoir triggering.

What is the writing style like?

The writing style is emotive and descriptive, with a focus on capturing emotions and sensations.

What is the main theme of the book?

The main theme is the impact of abuse on individuals and families, and how it can change the course of their lives.

What sets this book apart from other memoirs about abuse?

The Erratics offers a unique perspective on trauma and healing. Its exploration of the complexities of mental illness and family dynamics makes it stand out from other memoirs about abuse.

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