I borrowed this book from the library, my first Kindle loan from the library. I found myself engrossed in the story of a young girl who was overlooked in a society where people tend to put themselves so many times in other people’s business. This little girl had very few people who really looked after her and cared. Born into a family where her father was in jail for drug use, a legally blind mother, whom had a drug habit as well. As long as her father was in jail, her mother seemed to do better, but then fell back into the habit, which left Liz and her sister Lisa often scrounging for food, eating toothpaste and cherry chapstick or mayonnaise sandwiches. Her sister seemed to move on and past her, never seeming to really care about the predicament her little sister was in. The things she seemed to try to do to help care of her, were really pranks, but in the end, her sister became one of her greatest supporters. Lice, filth, and rejection were the life of this young woman whom found at age 17, she was going to change things. Liz worked hard to get herself into school and discovered she enjoyed it…she faced much adversity to go there. It was not easy being homeless and going to school! “From Homeless to Harvard” is the rest of the title, and I found it so incredible. She mentions the program Backpacks for Kids that is through local food pantries at the end, encouraging people to support it as she said if there was a program like that when she was younger, she may not have gone hungry as much.
I was inspired by this story. I had just read a book called “Stealing Jake” by Pam Hillman and this story of Breaking Night reminded me of a more modern day version of the street children. My heart just broke when she was sent at 13 to a group home, and was just delighted to have books to read and showers to take everyday.
This book does have some adult content and language in it, but I felt it was worth reading for the inspiring story and what it could teach us. She is only a year older than my sister right below me. I loved how even though her parents did horrible things and made awful decisions, she says that she was going to keep going, one foot in front of the other, no matter what got thrown her way.
Breaking Night by Liz Murray is available to buy from Amazon or like I said, I borrowed my copy from my local library.