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Jill's Prose & Cons: Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

“Cutting is a fence you build upon your own body to keep people out but then you cry to be touched. But the fence is barbed. What then?”



Kathleen Glasgow's Girl in Pieces is a book that demands discussion. Crafted with a raw intensity, this narrative grips the core of the human spirit with an unflinching hand. It is a novel that delves into a multitude of profound and resonant themes, each as significant as the next, woven seamlessly into its powerful storytelling.


Glasgow's protagonist, Charlie, is a portrait of brokenness and resilience. Her struggles with mental health, self-harm, and the pursuit of healing are depicted with an honesty that is both harrowing and heart-rending. Yet, it is Glasgow's tender portrayal of Charlie’s inner battles that elevates this novel from a mere tale of suffering to a testament of survival.


The prose is accessible—and relatable, painting each scene with a depth of emotion that is almost tangible. Glasgow doesn’t just tell us about Charlie’s pain; she skillfully guides us through it, ensuring we feel every setback and every small victory as our own. This immersive experience is what sets Girl in Pieces apart.


If you’re unfamiliar with Girl in Pieces, like I was when I added it to my mounding TBR pile earlier this year, you’ll find a rare and thoughtful treatment of the often misunderstood realms of self-harm. The author navigates these topics without resorting to preaching or perpetuating clichés, avoiding the traps of oversimplification or romanticization.


Her writing illuminates these dark corners with an empowering light, inviting readers to engage with the story through a lens of empathy and to hold onto hope, even when faced with the depths of despair.


The novel served as a poignant mirror, revealing the missteps I made and the things I wish I had understood then. I found myself rooting for the protagonist while also confronting my own parental choices. This book is a profound resource for any parent and a beacon of understanding to read alongside a child in distress. It offers layers of healing and understanding.


The narrative of Charlie is a profound testament to the resilience required to surmount life's daunting challenges. Her story is not just about survival; it's a powerful illustration of the indomitable nature of the human spirit, a spirit that refuses to be quelled by adversity.


Girl in Pieces is more than just a beautifully woven tale; it's an ode to the human spirit. Kathleen Glasgow has masterfully reminded us that, even amidst the rubble of our shattered selves, the potential for mending and becoming whole again is possible. Glasgow lends a voice to those who have been silenced by their struggles, elevating Girl in Pieces to an essential read and an unequivocal 5 STAR triumph.


My favorite quote from Girl in Pieces:

“Cutting is a fence you build upon your own body to keep people out but then you cry to be touched. But the fence is barbed. What then?”

~Kathleen Glasgow

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