The Pursuit of Light: An Extraordinary Journey
by Sandy Brewer
Peach Tree House

"No true change is going to happen without choice. And no true choice is going to be implemented without will, heavily laced with more than a little courage."

Pursuit Of Light, winner of the Eric Hoffer Award, is an unusual book in the abuse memoir genre. Unlike the majority of books of this type, it is not presented as a straight, chronological narrative, wherein the author describes their experiences and, often, then their personal healing process. To the contrary, Brewer presents philosophical musings and personal experiences about the nature of surviving and healing intermingled with anecdotes of abuse from her childhood, with the book culminating in some anecdotes about her adult life and people she has treated as a therapist.

The anecdotes often seem almost incidental to this book, and those that have difficulty reading others' abuse stories due to sensitivity because of their own traumatic past may be able to simply skip them altogether and glean what they can from the rest of the book. People who have experienced abuse will likely find this book particularly rewarding to read, with much to glean from the author's contemplations, and therapists that work with abuse survivors will probably also find it especially interesting. What Brewer presents is not just a story of healing from a traumatic past, but different ways of thinking about traumatic pasts than the way most people in American culture frame them. Brewer aims to help other survivors move past thinking of themselves as "survivors" and on to a life where their past is just one component of who they are as people.

Return to USR Home