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Reviewed by Joel R. Dennstedt for Readers' Favorite
If it were not for its optimistic and redemptive ending, I Am Enough by Cheryl Miguel would simply be too agonizing to endure, much like the message of the book as revealed by the author’s telling of an agonizing life. Diagnosed with lupus early on and suffering the consequential effects associated with such a debilitating disease, Ms. Miguel spares the reader not a moment of relief. What makes her story so difficult to endure, however, is that everything happens to her as a target and is interpreted through a self-admitted victim filter, to the point of an explosive bout with self-pity as witnessed by herself.
“I lost myself in the process of keeping everybody happy. Where has it gotten me? Alone.”
And though she writes about an ongoing and intensive spiritual searching, still she seems oblivious to the fact that others clearly read her saturating negativity so well.
The true message of I Am Enough, however, comes with Cheryl Miguel’s unrelenting honesty while telling of herself, and the admittedly supernatural endurance with which she is endowed. She never gives up on herself, though she can be brutally self-denying. In the end, two things make the book a most satisfying read. First, the writing itself is – to use a clichéd reviewer’s word – absolutely compelling. Maybe it is like a train wreck, but the fact is one simply cannot turn away. It is rare that I cannot put a book down for a rest, but Cheryl Miguel’s writing gripped me from the start. Second, the book offers a redemptive ending that allows the reader not just to understand the author, but to end up liking her as well. Believe me, after so much self-inflicted pain, that is a genuine relief, and a message fit for all.