Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Run, Hide, Repeat: A Memoir of a Fugitive Childhood

Author: Pauline Dakin
Genre: Memoir, Non-Fiction
Type: Trade Paperback
Pages: 324
Source: Publisher
Publisher: Viking Books
First Published: September 5, 2017
First Line: "I was running along the Upper Blandford Road this morning, watching the little islands emerge from the morning mist, when I came upon a fisherman stacking lobster traps by his shed."

Book Description from Amazon.caAn unforgettable family tale of deception and betrayal, love and forgiveness

Pauline Dakin spent her childhood on the run. Without warning, her mother twice uprooted her and her brother, moving thousands of miles away from family and friends. Disturbing events interrupt their outwardly normal life: break-ins, car thefts, even physical attacks on a family friend. Many years later, her mother finally revealed they'd been running from the Mafia and were receiving protection from a covert anti-organized crime task force.


But the truth was even more bizarre. Gradually, Dakin's fears give way to suspicion. She puts her journalistic training to work and discovers that the Mafia threat was actually an elaborate web of lies.  As she revisits her past, Dakin uncovers the human capacity for betrayal and deception, and the power of love to forgive.
Run, Hide, Repeat is a memoir of a childhood steeped in unexplained fear and menace. Gripping and suspenseful, it moves from Dakin's uneasy acceptance of her family's dire situation to bewildered anger. As compelling and twisted as a thriller, Run Hide Repeat is an unforgettable portrait of a family under threat, and the resilience of family bonds. 

My Rating: 3 stars

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Viking Books for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

My Review: This memoir looks at the life of Pauline Dakin as she, along with her brother, were whisked to different parts of Canada by their mother who feared for their lives. The book initially has a true crime feel to it but turned out to be something quite unusual and my feelings about it were all over the place.

Initially I was saddened by the life Dakin left behind to go on the run and the fear she lived with. That quickly lead to my skepticism and finally to my "Say wha!?!?" moment at the revelation as Dakin learns the truth. As I read I kept having to remind myself that this is a Non-Fiction read and that this actually happened to Dakin here in Canada because as a Fiction read it would be too far-fetched to be believable. It's sad when you think of why it happened and yet, for a book that deals with some big issues, I felt that Dakin kept her emotions and her readers at arm's length.

This wasn't a riveting read but it is a unique, strange memoir. I applaud the author for bringing the issue of mental health to her readers but felt that much of the 'on the run' story could have been whittled away. This is less of a true crime kind of read and more of a family drama filled with lies, deceit and a revealing look at mental health. 

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