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on 6 May 2008
I read this over 3 days, mostly spent getting very wrinkly in the bath! I felt compelled not to stop until it was finished. I went to school with Natalia, this book has provided me with an insight into the years I did not have her as a friend. I knew her from 11 years old and I had no idea that when we met she had already suffered so much torment. Her mother Elva was always lovely to me and I am too sorry for everything she had suffered in her life. May she rest in absolute peace. I loved it and I am sure that anyone who chooses to read it will too. I ceretainly feel very grateful for everything I have in life.

Eleanor Whitby
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on 24 July 2017
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on 17 February 2015
Firstly, two things annoyed me about the book .... Not the authors fault I know. It needs a whole lot more in the way of paragraphs ...... They are huge and, as much of it is quite heavy going, makes it difficult to read and also to keep your place. Whoever did the proof-reading needs to look for a new job because I found so many mistakes in this book.

That aside, the story is very emotional, sad and at the same time draws you in to this young woman's tragic tale. I find her acceptance and love of her father quite bewildering to be honest and I am pretty sure I couldn't be so forgiving. Not only did he murder her mother but he beat his daughter very, very badly when she was young. I find it very worrying that more was not done to help her because people knew that she was being hurt and bruised.

I'm also left wondering how she could retain such fond memories of her mother, who stood by and let her be beaten up and held her hands up and said "what can I do?" I feel that she is remembering her through rose tinted spectacles because most mothers would have grabbed their kids and headed for a women's refuge as soon as it started.

It was a very nice gesture to try and remember her mother by donating a kidney to a stranger though.
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on 31 December 2012
What a great book! I first heard of Natalia Aggiano when I saw her accept her Pride of Britain award on national television. I looked her up and read some of her story online before realising that she had written a book, so downloaded it to kindle.

As an avid reader of all things true crime I am often left feeling that the author is not being entirely honest in order to sensationalise the story. This is certainly not the case with Natalia's book. She is honest to the point where the reader gets the impression that some of what she reveals she does so for the very first time.

I am reluctant to say too much as I do not wish to spoil the book for future readers. However, please be assured that this book is very well written and leaves the reader with the feeling that they have just read the story of a remarkable young woman.

Since the book, and the tragic events within it, Natalia has donated a kidney to a complete stranger, hence the Pride of Britain accolade, further enhancing my belief that she is absolutely incredible.

5 big stars from me. If you are a fan of non-fiction you will surely like this book.
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on 5 May 2008
I read this book in just over a day, i could not put it down. Natalia takes you on her journey of being a young child in a home of mental and physical abuse, the sadness of losing her much loved mother, her teenage years of being homeless and turning to drugs to escape...through to her relationship and prison visits with her father who took her mothers life and asking him Why? up to his final days before passing away. Then how she rebuilds her life and moves on to a happier future. Natalia is so honest and leaves no stone unturned when telling her story of her life. Very much worth the read, makes you realize how life is so precious and how you should cherish every moment you have with your loved ones..
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on 30 October 2012
Forgiveness is a tough subject for most people. However, if we are to make the most of our lives and our potential, it is important to forgive and leave the past where it should stay: in the past. Forgiveness is not about saying to the perpetrator of your pain 'it's ok, what you did', it's about saying that you are no longer a victim of those circumstances and you are taking responsibility for your own happiness, and also forgiving yourself, too.
This is a lesson for all of us in self-compassion. Natalia has learned this and has brought it to our attention. The reader will be able to empathise with her story and know that if she can forgive, then so can we all and move on with our lives, no matter how hard our circumstances, and make our lives more fulfilling.
This is a book everyone should read and I'm glad I did.
I have the pleasure of working with Natalia, who is now the holder of a Pride Of Britain award, proof of forgiveness leading to fulfillment.
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on 21 April 2008
I read this book in about 3 sittings, it is impossible to put down! Natalia tells you everything about her life, you feel as though you are sitting beside her taking part in the rollercoaster ride that has been her life so far.
Courage, determination, passion and strength are just a few of the words that could be used to describe all of the Aggiano Children, good luck to all of them.
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on 29 April 2008
An enthralling read in which the author gives an extremeley frank account of the tragic events that have shaped her young life.

When reading this narrative it is astonishing that it is not the work of fiction. Natalia's bravery and courage are demonstarted not only by her survival of these experiences but also in sharing them with the reader.
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on 6 February 2012
My book arrived very promptly and was a great price. It was an interesting read particularly as I'm involved in the Ice skating world but also as a mother it gives you insight to how other family relationships work.
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on 18 April 2008
I couldnt put this book down, I read it in less than a day.
It is very easy to read, I was just taken along on the journey of Natalias life.
Its very honest and sincere, to the point of heartbreaking, Natalia never pretends to be anything but who she is.
Its a book of courage and hope, and no one who reads it will be disappointed.
You cant help but reconsider your outlook on life after reading this book, society as a whole would do well to take stock from a truly inspirational woman.
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