Rise – How a House Built a Family by Cara Brookins


Release Date: January 24, 2017  

Book Blurb from Goodreads.com:

After escaping an abusive marriage, Cara Brookins had four children to provide for and no one to turn to but herself. In desperate need of a home but without the means to buy one, she did something incredible.

Equipped only with YouTube instructional videos, a small bank loan, a mile-wide stubborn streak, Cara built her own house from the foundation up with a work crew made up of her four children.

It would be the hardest thing she had ever done. With no experience nailing together anything bigger than a bookshelf, she and her kids poured concrete, framed the walls and laid bricks for their two story, five bedroom house. She had convinced herself that if they could build a house, they could rebuild their broken family.

This must-read memoir traces one family’s rise from battered victims to stronger, better versions of themselves, all through one extraordinary do-it-yourself project.

My Review:

This memoir is about Cara Brookins who lives in Arkansas with her four children ages 17,15,11, and 2.  She works as computer programmer and freelance writer and is currently divorced.  A victim of domestic violence, Cara lives in constant fear of her ex husband, Adam.

Together with her children, Cara embarks on building a house. The idea came from her desire to reclaim her family’s life from an unsafe environment.  The family continues to be traumatized by Adam who is schizophrenic. However, working as a team the family bonds together while developing life skills that will help them forever.  This new structure is symbolic of her new found freedom and the steps she has taken to restart their life.

I found this book to be inspiring. There is an easy flow to the book and author does not write in an angry tone about her past marriages. The book alternates between the present day build of the house and past difficult situations with her ex husbands.

Cara and her family are truly survivors and tested their resilience. Unfortunately, many women in these situations do not find their way out to safety.

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