Christal Presley can't remember much of her childhood, mostly because she has blocked it out. Her father, a Vietnam veteran, suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), often locking himself in his room for days or telling Christal and her mother that he was going to the river to kill himself. She spent her childhood afraid of setting him off into a rage. As an adult, she has avoided him as much as possible.
Thirty Days with My Father: Finding Peace from Wartime PTSD is Christal's memoir of a project she took on with great fear. She decided to spend 30 days talking to her father each day about his experience in Vietnam. This is a topic she had never broached with her father; a forbidden topic during her childhood. But she was challenged to write about the thing that she most fears, and this is it.
I found Presley's memoir inspiring. At the beginning, she can't even bring herself to ask her father a question. But then he starts to open up and it was just so wonderful to follow along as their relationship grew. Presley tells about her conversations with her father, but she also shares memories of her childhood and what it was like growing up with him. It's an amazing story of how PTSD affects entire families, not just individuals.
Presley's writing style is very easy to read, yet filled with emotion. She shares not only what happened but how she felt throughout her experiences ~ both during her childhood and during her 30 day project. I would strongly recommend Thirty Days with My Father to anyone who has a loved one with PTSD and those who just love a moving memoir about family relationships.
My Rating: 5/5
Visit the publisher's website
Visit the United Children of Veterans website
Visit the other stops on the TLC book tour
This review was written based on an ebook copy of Thirty Days with My Father that I received from TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.