Jenny rushes in; stops and turns pale at the sight of my scaffolded neck. This isn’t what she expected to see – and for a moment Jenny, sunny, effervescent, ever-optimistic Jenny, stares at me and can’t speak.
‘They made a mistake – I broke my neck after all.’
Anna is on the way to the top. She’s won another karate competition, and this year she’ll go for her back belt. And she’s just shared her first kiss with Hayden, who could well be the love of her life. But Anna’s life is shattered when she and Hayden are in a car accident. He’s fine, but she’s in hospital with multiple injuries, including a broken neck, and a long road to recovery ahead of her.
As Anna deals with the pain of her injuries and the reality that her life will never be the same again, she discovers that there is no such thing as ‘normal’. Things that once seemed so normal no longer matter to her; things which never concerned her now matter a lot. And her friendships and relationship are changing, too. Anna wonders if she’ll ever put herself back together again.
Peeling the Onion is an absorbing first-person account of Anna’s journey through the healing process – both physical and emotional. Anna is a likeable character and the use of first person narration allows the reader to see her strengths, her weaknesses and her insecurities in an intimate way.
This is the fifteenth time this book has been reprinted since its first release in 1996, a testament to its appeal.
Peeling the Onion, by Wendy Orr
Allen & Unwin, 1996, this edition 2006
You can buy this book online at Fishpond.