The Girl in the Garage

3 Steps To Letting Go Of Your Past

Non-Fiction - Self Help
124 Pages
Reviewed on 09/17/2019
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Sharon Hughes is a Certified Life Coach, P.O.S.T. Certified Chaplain, Critical Incident Stress Manager/Debriefer, speaker and the host of Living A Limitless Life Podcast. In her best friend over cover style, she shares God's word woven with neuroscience truths to set your mind free. Sharon is the mother of three, a lover of dogs, the beach, coffee, and resides in Southern California.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Girl in the Garage is a work of non-fiction centering on Christian themes such as self-help and psychological healing through God and was penned by author Sharon Hughes. Subtitled ‘The True Story of Radical Healing By a Radical God’, this concise guidebook takes readers through the real-life traumatic experiences of its author Sharon Hughes, who suffered years of abuse which culminated in waking up in a garage after being drugged for hours, aged just sixteen years old. Hughes explains her connection with God and the healing that such faith has provided to her, expanding from her own experiences to show how anyone with a history of darkness in their past can be brought to God’s healing light.

There are many different angles in the self-help genre when it comes to advice on recovering from abuse, and I found author Sharon Hughes’s voice to be heartfelt and compassionate on the topic. The details are neither grisly nor graphic but plainly stated and with a considerate narration that does not seek to shock or sensationalize her story. Moreover, the focus is on what followed on her journey to God, and the formation of her new identity is written with inspiring emotive narration and a true sense of hope. Hughes offers comfort and the promise of newness through her own experience, which is well organized to transition into its more general message of healing as the book goes on. Overall, The Girl in the Garage will definitely suit those seeking solace in God following trauma and is highly recommended to them.

Leiann Lynn Rose Spontaneo

In The Girl In The Garage by Sharon Hughes, the author begins by explaining that before forgiving others, we often need to say a few choice words about who hurt us. She knows firsthand as the book explains that she had been a victim of sexual abuse by almost every male in her family. You can forgive, but not have to excuse what they did. In 2013, she discovered God, saying that He had been there all along. You notice throughout the book her use of Bible verses. Hughes states that God knew that she would end up helping others with PTSD and the like, as a mentor just happened to suggest to her. The author goes on to mention that we have the free will to choose to change our lives; for example, to love ourselves, to forgive and not to forgive, who to embrace, etc. instead of believing lies about ourselves. The author says that God waited for her to trade in her ashes for beauty.

I could never understand how if God is all-powerful and all-knowing, why there is tragedy after tragedy. In the book, the topic of free will is explained, which I was never taught about. I simply believed that there were God and the devil. In this book, the devil was never addressed. I would really like to know Hughes’ take on the devil. Perhaps, another book? Hughes has shed some light for me in understanding the subject of free will, something no other church or school has done. I still wish that there would be no more pain or tragedy. But her readers are going to learn like I did that God does love them. I myself have had a rough life and Sharon Hughes’ book has taught me that it is not my fault if a person chooses to hurt. It does not seem fair, I know. The author advises readers to let go of negative behaviors. Get rid of the masks. Select a mask you admire. Practice and make a new habit. What matters is what you believe about yourself and what God says about you. Almost every hero in the Bible had a negative past. Choose the right thing. Set boundaries. Don’t give up.

Vincent Dublado

Sharon Hughes’ diligent account of her harrowing experience of multiple sexual abuses is difficult to ignore. The Girl in the Garage aims at an audience stung by the horrors of violence against women. At a time when victims are coming out to voice a long-delayed justice they rightfully deserve, this book does not necessarily flow in the same vein. Rather, Hughes is a survivor finding strength in faith. She recalls her early years growing up in a broken family and how, by situations beyond her control, she acquired familiarity with sex at a young age. Her exposure to the carnal urges of people around her that made her a vulnerable target became the core of her traumatic growing up years. She felt hopeless in seeking refuge from the very people she expected to shelter her from the demons of this world. She finds an ally in Christ and reaffirms the truth about faith moving mountains. Along with her path to healing, she gives her take on the questionable practices of ministering to the broken where counseling is often handled like a quick solution.

Years of abuse have made the author stronger and wise. Stronger, because it takes strength to overcome such abusive ordeals, to stand up and face your fears. Wiser, because it takes even greater strength to mend a broken spirit and take heart at the thought of God as a confidante and source of hope. Although Hughes has found a new identity, the scars of her past remain evident in her narrative. She chooses to leave out the graphic details of her traumatic ordeals. The Girl in the Garage is the tale of a survivor. Hughes was able to forge a new life, career, family, and friendships. Her familiarity with trauma from her first-account experience with sexual abuse lends authority to her disturbing past and inspiration to her thriving present. She succeeds in involving her readers by encouraging them to illuminate their paths.