Laila had it all---love, wealth, family, faith---but suddenly her world fell apart. Destitute, she becomes a Chicago call girl. When she kills a client in self-defense, she thinks nobody knows---until she's hounded by an otherworldly stranger. Will God protect her from this demon or is her plea for salvation too late? 272 pages, softcover from Faithwords.
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Laila has the money and the means to live any kind of life she wants. But when she makes a bad choice, she believes she is beyond redemption and becomes a call girl in Chicago. When a client becomes dangerous, she shoots him to protect herself. Six months later, she is full of guilt and self-recrimination, and every shadow is a piece of her past trying to get her. Haunted by the things she's done and all the things she never will get to do, Laila can only run so far from herself.
When a complete stranger approaches her claiming he knows what she's done, Laila first instinct is to run. How can anyone know the truths of her past she has been so careful to hide - even from herself? Convinced that no one could possibly have discovered the secrets she has never voiced aloud, she begins to see the man she killed even as she runs away from the truth of every evil thing she's ever done. As she tries to run from herself, will her plea for grace come too late? Or has the past truly caught up to her and the time of redemption long gone?
Thrasher's novels always makes me contemplate the deeper meaning of life. This one is no different. I try to fill my life with one activity or another, trying to pass the time, trying not to face about the things I've done. But he forces me to stop and reconsider the way I live, and what is in my heart. Laila has made some bad choices. But the heavy questions of redemption and grace, and whether it's ever truly too late to change who you are gives you cause to question your life and re-evaluate where you stand in anticipation of eternity. A though provoking novel that caused me to wonder how broken I am willing to be before I surrender to the one One who can heal any kind of broken life, heart or soul.
Broken by Travis Thrasher is another profound and disturbing novel by an author who is quickly becoming known for works like this. Laila Torres has spent the last several years of her life running from something, and her flight became vital six months ago when she killed a man. Now she's on the run and hunted by several men, all who want something different from her, but she's seeing and hearing things that make her feel like she's losing her mind. What do you do when there's nowhere left to run? Broken starts out in short, disconnected pieces that slowly come together into a haunting story that creates the illusion that the reader is in a nightmare where no image is to be trusted and nothing is exactly what it seems. Thrasher juggles the almost surrealistic setting at times with the harsh realities of a woman who is suffering deep soul pain with no idea about where to find relief. He isn't afraid to push the character right up and over the edge. I was stunned several times by Laila's actions, but Thrasher's characterization is so deep, that every move always feels completely authentic. Ultimately, the story is about hope; that broken place inside of us when hope is completely shattered and the choices we make from that point on, constantly reacting to life from a place of pain and heartbreak. Even the antagonists, in the midst of their most vile acts, are still seeking hope, because that is the human condition. Thrasher has written the rare suspense novel that truly has a deeper message of faith and hope.
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Review 3 for Broken
Date:May 13, 2010
Laila Torres is a beautiful young women who is trying to settle down in Greenville, South Carolina. What others don't know is that Laila killed a man in self-defense as an escort in Chicago. When Laila is approached by a man claiming to be the brother of the man she killed, Laila feels like she has no choice but to run and hide somewhere else. No matter what Laila does, she feels like her past is coming back to haunt her. With her brother and a coworker trying to help Laila out, she tries to overcome the issues of her past and find peace.Travis Thrasher has really grown in his recent books and this one is no different. He really does a great job in his characterization, especially with Laila. Like all of us, Laila is broken and wants to find love and acceptance. She has made mistakes but the thing she needs the most is forgiveness. This story is quite dark at times, but there is a strong message of hope for us all. Highly recommended.