Exit Wounds is one of the most heartbreaking yet truthful and gritty novels I have ever read. Annie O’Neill Stein writes with such grace and a unique voice that makes the story truly one of a kind. This novel will stick with you for days to come.
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Exit Wounds by Annie O’Neill Stein takes the reader inside the mind and the life of a woman named Laura. The novel itself follows Laura from a child up through adulthood, and features insight into her struggle with drugs and promiscuous sex, as well as the relationships that she finds herself struggling with throughout her life. From the beginning of the novel, we are invited into Laura’s mind, and the reader can’t help but empathize with her.
Annie O’Neill Stein has such a unique voice as an author. I found that she could portray serious subjects with dark humor, while still highlighting the seriousness of the events. I flew through Exit Wounds because it was so easy to read, and by empathizing with Laura, I found myself reflecting on my own life. Reading Exit Wounds was cathartic, and I can’t help but feel changed upon finishing the novel.
I tend to judge novels on how strongly they make me feel, and I honestly can say that Exit Wounds swallowed me whole. The characters and storyline were so complicated and realistic, that I had a hard time reminding myself that they were fictional. Laura’s complicated life story was multidimensional and so abstract that I could read the novel multiple times and still discover new aspects of her. The best novels are those that can be read multiple times and reveal something new to the reader each time and Exit Wounds does just that.
Upon finishing the novel, I still find myself thinking about Laura and her triumphs and tribulations. The beauty of Exit Wounds is how in depth the characters and storyline were, and how deeply they embedded themselves in my psyche. This novel is one of a kind, and a beautiful piece of work that will create a unique reading experience for anyone who reads it. It is truly a work of art.