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Reviewed by Gisela Dixon for Readers' Favorite
Inhale by Colleen Songs is a non-fiction memoir about Colleen’s life with her partner and her struggle for normalcy and her kids. In this book, Colleen writes a little bit about herself and her own background and what prompted her to write this story. The book is divided simply into several chapters and is written in a part-prose, part-verse style. As she leaves her home country of Canada for the United States with a man she fell in love with, her life takes a turn for the worse after actually living with someone. Having been married before and having children from her first marriage makes it even more difficult to deal with her husband's increasingly violent and erratic temper as everything she does necessarily affects the children. This is Colleen’s story as she writes about what it is like to live with someone with abusive tendencies on a daily basis, through mental illness and the separation and trauma of not being able to be there completely for her children above all.
I found the story of Inhale intriguing and it gives us a glimpse once again of what infatuation at any age can do and how it can be such a powerful instinct. Colleen writes her story in a very candid style and doesn't shy away from talking about the good, the bad, and even the ugly. The book moves at a fast pace and I appreciated that it shines a light on mental health and awareness about it so more people can hopefully get help when needed. The story itself is gripping and Colleen manages to convey a sense of what it’s like living with someone with mental illness of any kind, and the havoc it causes not only to the patient but to others around them. This is an interesting memoir, overall.