Book Reviews

Journey into the Shadow and the Sunshine | Annabel Harz | Book Review

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Balboa Press AU (3 October 2021)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Pages: 110

Book Review

Darkness and light are two opposites beautifully accentuating each other’s existence. We cannot appreciate one without acknowledging the other. One got to see the darkness before arriving at the light.

Journey into the Shadow and the Sunshine by Annabel Harz is a wonderfully crafted book of poems and illustrations steeped in myriad emotions and artistic expressions. This collection essentially encapsulates the author’s experiences of anxiety, depression, heartbreak, and their journey of wading through the darkness. It is at once haunting and beautiful to experience how words can tell what’s weighing heavy on our hearts.

Divided into 4 parts – Shadow, Survival, Space, and Sunshine – the book effortlessly guides the readers to make sustained efforts to rise out of depression. It goes step by step in uncovering the layers of depression and slowly making its way towards the sunshine. Each section in the collection breaks down the journey.

Some of the poems stress the quintessential theme of self-love to emphasise how it is so important to accept and embrace oneself. How self-love is crucial to get oneself out of the darkness. “On Time” is a poem that reflects the times the darkness in the author’s spirit almost destroyed her will to live. “Connection” is a poignant reflection on the pain felt when a trauma survivor experiences a love for which she is unprepared.

While most poems don’t follow rhythmic patterns and lack metaphorical amalgamations, others express the turmoil of the heart very poetically. But most of all, I loved the illustrations by the author. They are cryptic and rightly describe the vagueness of thoughts. From thoughts of suicide to feeling hopeful again, words and art travel together to bring a reader full circle.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time with this book. It’s always a joy to read poems and when it is all about finding oneself, valuing self-esteem, and discovering joy within, it’s more enchanting and enriching.

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3 thoughts on “Journey into the Shadow and the Sunshine | Annabel Harz | Book Review

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