I was looking through the books available at my local library (well, the digital version of my local library) and passed right by the audio version of this one. Until I saw the cover for the ebook and something made me stop and go back. I don’t even remember what the cover image was. I went back a page in the listings and borrowed the audio book. (Note to authors: covers are important even if it’s a digital edition.)
As I got started listening yesterday afternoon, I was much more excited about learning about the case the author had researched than anything having to do with her as a person. That changed somewhere along the way. I can’t even tell you exactly when, but I became more involved in her story than in Ricky’s. Not that the case and families involved weren’t interesting. They were and my heart went out to many of the people involved. But it was Marzano-Lesnevich’s life – and the sorts of events we had in common – that ended up hitting me in the gut.
The author slowly and carefully unravels her own past expertly. I didn’t even realize what was happening until I became irritated by moving from her story back to the case. I caught myself a few times wondering when the switch happened and I could never figure it out. She completely exposes herself to the reader and I couldn’t look away. This has been one of those reading experiences where I feel like I’ve made a friend of sorts with a character except this character is a real human, not a fictional one. I can’t remember the last time I had a burning desire to reach out to an author to let them know just how touched I was by reading, or in this case listening to, their words.
I’m pretty sure I won’t actually contact the author so I’ll say here, thank you. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself and your family.