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Goodbye, Sweet Girl: A Story of Domestic Violence and Survival
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Goodbye, Sweet Girl: A Story of Domestic Violence and Survival

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4.33  ·  Rating details ·  51 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
“It is a hell of a thing to write about brutality and suffering with strength, grace, generosity and beauty. That’s precisely what Kelly Sundberg has done in her gripping memoir about marriage and domestic violence. Sundberg’s honesty is astonishing, how she laid so much of herself bare, how she did not demonize a man who deserves to be demonized. Instead, she offers a por ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by Harper
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Roxane
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It is a hell of a thing to write about brutality and suffering with strength, grace, generosity and beauty. That’s precisely what Kelly Sundberg has done in her gripping memoir about marriage and domestic violence. Sundberg’s honesty is astonishing, how she laid so much of herself bare, how she did not demonize a man who deserves to be demonized. Instead, she offers a portrait of a broken man and a broken marriage and an abiding love, what it took to set herself free from it all. In shimmering, ...more
Rebecca Thomas
Jan 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have taught Sundberg's "It Will Look Like a Sunset" in my composition classes ever since the essay came out. Every semester, the essay enables important discussions about abuse, agency, and craft. Every semester, I have students who feel empowered enough to share their story. Every semester, I have students who say that this essay changed their way of thinking. This is the power of Sundberg's work: it is both beautifully written while simultaneously holding an important conversation about viol ...more
Jane Eaton Hamilton
Feb 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes I want to let a book sit with me. I have to let it sink in deeply and observe how it feels in my tissues and bones before I write about it. First off, let me say that Kelly Sundberg is a courageous, talented, skilled and generous writer--it's why I've so admired her blog through the years. You are in good hands here, readers.

Kelly Sundberg was married to a mercurial, abusive writer who was, at the beginning, ahead of her on the success scale. As that scale tipped, and envy got hold of
...more
Renee
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: from-publisher
GOODBYE, SWEET GIRL is a vivid, beautifully composed memoir about Kelly Sundberg’s tumultuous marriage to an abusive man. The narrative evokes feelings of remorse, uncertainty, and later, empowerment. It’s a compelling read, and although the disjointed timeline proves difficult to follow at times, I finished this book with a full heart.
Barbara Senteney
Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I am not giving this book 5 stars because of the writing. The writing style is simple but surprisingly open and candid. I gave this book 5 stars because of the courage it takes to open ones whole life up to be viewed, criticized and picked part by the hungry for blood masses. To bare ones soul and admit to the shame of abuse and lay it out there before the world to step on like a rug after being walked on in life takes a special soul.It takes a survivor who wants to reach out and shake others ou ...more
Marika
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
Author Sundberg writes chillingly about being married to a violent, yet brilliant man and how she came to be with him. What is unusual is that she did not come from a dysfunctional and/or abusive family, which is the backdrop to so many of these stories of abuse. She writes clearly about how she was able to love her husband, and even protect him, as he abused her. Beautifully, yet compactly written by a woman who had had enough.

I read an advance copy and was not compensated.
Gina
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received an advanced proof of this book as part of a giveaway on behalf of Goodreads and I am so, so grateful that I was able to read this. Roxane Gay's review really nails it- this book is gripping and honest and so, so powerful. Sundberg writes from a place of understanding, for both herself and others, when she could easily write with anger and fury. Her clear, candid prose shows how difficult it is for abused partners to leave relationships and how violence becomes normalized (and almost e ...more
Kelly
Mar 05, 2018 rated it liked it
I wanted my compassion to be enough to spare him any more pain. I was a woman full of wants who wanted to love someone in a way that would heal us both.

This is a really important book, and I so admire Kelly Sundberg. This isn't some book about a waif-like woman who apologizes for everything, the perfect, blameless victim. Sundberg fights back.

Please don't read that and think Sundberg is not a victim. She is. It took her years to even consider that her relationship was anything but a little tumul
...more
Andrienne
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This memoir has so much honesty and raw emotion. It’s a difficult topic but the author doesn’t shy away from laying bare the journey that put her in a position where she went from an eager woman who wanted to love and be loved to someone who had to hide bruises. She parts the cover with finesse to report on how abuse can enter a seemingly loving relationship. She pulls apart the facets of what makes a woman, a strong woman and what makes a marriage tip over to allow domestic violence to enter. C ...more
Sarah Beth
I received an uncorrected proof copy of this book from HarperCollins.

This memoir details the author's marriage to a man full of contradictions. Caleb was a loving father and very hands' on around the house. Yet he could also fly into rages and grow violent towards his wife Kelly. In this account, in candid prose, she describes the years' long process of working to fix her marriage, laying blame on herself when the cycle continued, and ultimately her conclusion that she could not save her marria
...more
Jill
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was so thrilled to snag an ARC of this book. I've been dying to read this book since I read Sundberg's gorgeous essay "It Will Look Like a Sunset," and this book didn't disappoint. Gorgeous, finely carved prose (each word feels deliberate), and unputdownable. Although this is a book about domestic violence, the abuse itself doesn't actually take up much space on the page. The book is about so much more than that.

(But boy do I hope they edit the back cover copy--I really don't like idea that s
...more
Allison
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I could barely put the ARC down. GOODBYE, SWEET GIRL is just so well-written and well-paced, so thoroughly vivid and lyrical and engrossing. I read the last four chapters in a blur, crying and cheering Sundberg on. A memoir of strength and survival that is not to be missed.
Carly Thompson
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, memoir
Very well written memoir about surviving domestic violence.
Elizabeth
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So far - this book is phenomenal. I won this as an ARC through Goodreads and it has been hard to put down. Kelly Sundberg writes so extremely well. So excited to continue reading this!

I just finished reading - literally seconds ago. Wow. I am so utterly impressed with Kelly’s ability to confront all of the challenges of both her relationship and the perceptions of those around her. This book made me feel gutted and then free! I would recommend this to anyone who is or was struggling with an abus
...more
Ann
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-giveaways
I enjoyed this book, although it was a very difficult subject matter for me, as I was also in an abusive marriage. I found myself paying attention to all the red flags before they even happened, because I have been there. I couldn't read this book at night, as I didn't want to trigger my memory and have nightmares, so it took me a little longer to read, as I read it in stages.
Very raw and emotional book. I recommend it to anyone who is in this type of relationship or know someone who is. Very w
...more
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