Black boxes is compelling reading.
I expect readers who are not familiar with Caroline's writing will think that the topic is used to allay one's fear of the situation but as usual she does no such thing. Instead, she bravely examines each nuance of this emotive topic, detailing the root cause and perpetuating factors, following the path of destruction that unrecognised postnatal depression can become.
Although this is not an academic work, it accomplishes what no textbook will ever do and I strongly recommend it as reading for Health and Social Care students. I admire Caroline hugely for writing this book and know that each person who reads it will develop a greater understanding of some very sensitive issues that are very much a part of many people's lives.
Postnatal depression is the main issue but emotional abuse, neglect, bullying, love and hate are also seamlessly blended in this book written from the mother Ana's and daughter Pip's perspective. Pip's voice also speaks for her brother Davie. Ana speaks with imperfect and egocentric hindsight, Pip cries out from the harsh, damaging reality of the present time.
The parallels are sharp, perfectly honed, gleaming. There is white hot pain contained within the pages of this book.
Pip and Davie need a hiding tree, a place to escape the tsunami like destruction of their parent's madness's. Their pain rings out like the tones that can be coaxed from the rim of wet crystal and I found myself reading with the certainty that one of their songs was going to stop.
I challenge you to read Pip's closing words without a tear in your eye...