Grown: intense, heartbreaking and an important read!

« In my past life, I was a mermaid. I lived deep in the ocean, swimming free, eating crustaceans, and singing five-octave ballads. « 

Grown by Tiffany D Jackson
Format: 
ARC provided by HCC Frenzy
Pages: 480
Top 3 Genres: 
Contemporary,Young adult, Diverse
TW: conjugal violence, sexual assault, psychological and physical abuse, blood, kidnapping, addiction
My rating: 
Set it on fire/ If you have nothing else to read/ you need to read it/Run and buy it.
To buy the book: 
CAUS• FR• Bookdep
Add to: Goodreads


Hey everyone! Last week, I read Grown, I think in 24h max. This book was terrible, not as in bad, but as in so difficult to read because of everything it says. It is an important book, but one that is hard to read! Telling you a bit more about it below 😉

Korey Fields is dead.
When Enchanted Jones wakes with blood on her hands and zero memory of the previous night, no one—the police and Korey’s fans included—has more questions than she does. All she really knows is that this isn’t how things are supposed to be. Korey was Enchanted’s ticket to stardom.
Before there was a dead body, Enchanted was an aspiring singer, struggling with her tight knit family’s recent move to the suburbs while trying to find her place as the lone Black girl in high school. But then legendary R&B artist Korey Fields spots her at an audition. And suddenly her dream of being a professional singer takes flight.
Enchanted is dazzled by Korey’s luxurious life but soon her dream turns into a nightmare. Behind Korey’s charm and star power hides a dark side, one that wants to control her every move, with rage and consequences. Except now he’s dead and the police are at the door. Who killed Korey Fields?
All signs point to Enchanted

*Before starting my review, I wanted to link to you Ownvoices reviews and invite you to check them out:
All for the books
Sweattea and a book
Bolde Books*

This book is not really the kind of book you can simply review, it is too important for that. Through the story of Enchanted, a young Black girl hoping to have a career in music, we are exposted to all the awfulness and pain coming with conjugal violence.
From the very beginning of the story, you can see how Korey is preying on Enchanted and manipulating her, slowly but surely bringing her under his claws. Until she doubts herself, until she is all alone, until love is not enough. But isn’t it too late then to save her life?
This story showed so well how conjugal violence is pernicious, how it takes little by little what makes you you, until you do not know anymore how to define yourself without the other.
We assist, powerless, to Enchanted being destroyed by this man, to her life being torn appart. And we can’t stop reading. Because, page after page, we hope. Hope that someone will save her, that she will save herself, that she will realise she can run. Anything, to see her out of the relationship she is prisoner of. Each chapter, you ask yourself how far can Korey go (answer is far), how more terrible the situation can be, and how Enchanted will break free.

In parallel to that, we have present day. With Korey dead and Enchanted found in the room with him. What happened? Did she kill him?
In addition to having to deal with strong PTSD (again, very well written), Enchanted also has to prove her innocence. Between people not believing her, minimizing what she’s been through, or taking Korey’s defense, it is not an easy task. And we can see here, how much harder is is when you are a Black woman, when the police or your neighbours prefer to think you are insane or « asked for it ». The one good thing Enchanted had was her parents, at least one silver lining in this book! And she will need all of their support and more, to get back the life that was stolen from her.

This book tackles so many important topics, I could not list them all. It was gripping and heavy, but also so realistic and showing what too many young women face for real, as well as the loneliness and judgment coming with it. Even more when you are a Black women. It was also very well written and impossible to put down.
For me, it was really hard to read, and conjugal violence is something I am very familiar with (on a professional level, not personal), so it did not bring anything new on that level to what I already knew. But that’s really specific to my situation :p
I truly hope it will help to raise awareness on the difficulties of being in a toxic and violent relationships and if you can take it (cause it is triggering), I definitely recommend you read it!

See you for a cup

Elise

*Some useful ressources:
SOS Conjugal violence in Quebec: 1 800 363-9010
Shelter Safe Canada: https://www.sheltersafe.ca/
Canadian Resource center for Victims of crime: https://crcvc.ca/for-victims/services/*

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