Beautiful Ashes: A True Story of Murder, Betrayal, and One Woman’s Search for Peace
by Shelly Edwards Jorgensen
At age fifteen, Shelly lost her mother when their house burned down, and soon after her father when he was convicted of the arson and murder.
In this inspirational and moving memoir about rising up from the ashes, the author shows us the painful process of growing up in those tragic circumstances and the faith-based road she took toward recovery and spiritual rebirth.
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Review by Melissa Dalton Martinez
An inspirational and moving memoir about rising up from the ashes, Beautiful Ashes by Shelly Edwards Jorgensen takes us through her journey in the aftermath of extreme tragedy and hardship and eventually toward spiritual rebirth.
This is quite possibly my favorite memoir of all time because of how powerful the story itself and the writing is. The full title, Beautiful Ashes: A True Story of Murder, Betrayal, and One Woman’s Search for Peace, already paints a very strong picture in the reader’s mind, which the author fulfills with strong, vivid storytelling of real-life events. In this memoir, the author shows us the painful process of growing up in those circumstances and the faith-based road she took toward recovery.
This book is powerful in part because it is true, but the reader should be aware that it deals with several traumatic themes, including alcohol abuse and sexual assault in addition to a real murder. Ultimately, however, Shelly Edwards Jorgensen’s story uplifts through messages of faith, love, hope, and courage, which could be very beneficial to survivors of abuse and people coping with PTSD. Though especially a great read for those who have been through similar situations, I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys memoirs and inspirational stories of faith out of adversity.