The Night Blooming

A Journey of Teen Twin Champions Overcoming Racism, Rejection & Abuse, To Find Their Identity & Purpose In Life

Non-Fiction - Memoir
247 Pages
Reviewed on 02/17/2024
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite

In The Night Blooming, twin siblings Sally and Jonah Ismael share their heartbreaking story of rejection and abuse and how they overcame fear, self-doubt, and other challenges on their journey to attain black belts in Taekwondo. Born to Arab parents from Israel, Sally and Jonah shared a love for sporting activities from a young age. But bigotry, racism, and prejudice from peers and adults alike forced them to leave team sports and choose Taekwondo as their primary sporting outlet. They started their journey in 2012. However, years of mental and emotional abuse from their Master eventually forced them to train on their own in their garage. Still, Sally and Jonah would go on to win medals and accolades, represent national teams, and participate in European and world championships.

Bullying and abuse can hamper a child's progress and development in different ways. The Night Blooming is an inspiring memoir of two teenage siblings and their battle to overcome self-doubt and conquer fear. For years, Sally and Jonah Ismael faced rejection and discrimination by their former Master and even other prominent coaches in the Taekwondo community, and it left them with chronic PTSD. However, they never lost their dignity and respect and always strived to navigate these challenges with willpower, courage, and resilience. In this memoir, the authors give an unflinching account of their experiences. The writing has an emotional resonance that makes you relate to Sally and Jonah's story. Although heartbreaking at times, this book inspires and motivates you to rise above pain, fear, and self-doubt and empowers you to believe in your abilities and pursue your dreams with self-confidence and determination. Highly recommended.