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Reviewed by Jennifer Ibiam for Readers' Favorite
The war was on in the late 60s, and Katya had it rough. Katya was a Polish girl from a traditional family that didn’t value female education. She also lived in a state that suppressed women’s rights to decide what happens to their bodies. Katya was a gifted artist who wanted to go to an art institute. However, a few days before her sixteenth birthday, her parents dropped the shocking news. She would give up the dream of attending college to join her mother in cleaning offices while her brother, Piotr, continued his university studies. Her life changed forever! Katya ran away from the safety of her home and into the world without a plan. But life would teach her through the good, the bad, and the ugly on this journey in Like a Complete Unknown by Anara Guard.
Like a Complete Unknown by Anara Guard was a fantastic page-turner that broke my heart and mended it. This novel had pieces that came together to make a perfect whole. Anara wrote from the heart, giving the book depth and originality. The story was unique, realistic, relatable, and an accurate depiction of the travails of women, especially in core traditional and religious settings. Anara Guard developed flawed yet appealing characters and interpreted scenes in ways that tugged at my heartstrings. Katya was naïve yet sharp-witted, scared yet resourceful, and industrious. She could make something out of nothing. The author also showed that activists aren’t always the kindest or most decent humans in private. I couldn’t get over Harlow. Dr. Robert was my highlight of the novel, and I would appreciate a sequel that shows what became of Katya. Great job, Anara.