4 out of 4 stars
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At an early age, Kathy saw her mother lash out at her meek father. She thought her father was weak for not fighting back. Growing up, her mother never forgot to remind her how unlovable she was. She wanted to prove that her mother was wrong. She had relationships with different men. Everything was beautiful at the start of each relationship. However, it did not take long before the relationship turned sour. Her partners turned out to be controlling and abusive. Kathy could not help but think that her mother was right after all.
Soft Underbelly by Kat Powell is an inspiring story of a woman who struggled to beat the odds to find the love she deserved. Written in third person point-of-view, the novel is based on a true-to-life story. However, some of the names were altered to protect the privacy of individuals.
Kathy was a relatable protagonist. It was easy to sympathize with Kathy’s circumstances. Her different relationships with men made her feel more unlovable. She wanted help, but she knew she could only rely on herself. In the end, Kathy stood strong and fought for what she deserved.
It was evident that the author was a great storyteller. She put emphasis on her main points. One of these was that Kathy was unlovable. The reiteration was enough to let the readers understand how Kathy felt. Although there were times that she knew her mother was wrong, her failures pushed her to think otherwise. It was a constant battle in her head, and it was a long time before Kathy overcame it. Ms. Powell also employed sufficient foreshadowing. She gave enough hints for the readers to know that something was about to happen to the characters.
I could only see one drawback in the novel. There were too many characters introduced in the story. Many secondary characters were only slightly introduced. Some of these were Kathy’s friends such as Ramona and Mandy. They were mentioned once or twice in the story and they never appeared again. It did not confuse me or hinder my reading pace. I only felt that these characters were not given enough time to build a persona.
This novel is one of the best inspirational novels I have read in a long time. It has its own charms that draw in its readers. For that, I give Soft Underbelly by Kat Powell 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend it to anyone who loves to read true-to-life stories. Anyone who is in a rough and abusive relationship may find Kathy’s story an inspiration.
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