023 - Prince of Tides

This is a story of childhood abuse, a dysfunctional family and how the damage is carried into adulthood. The family insists that nothing wrong happened and everything in life is as it should be. It is also a story of a mother whose ambition in life is to become apart of the elite group in the community, even though this means putting aside her family’s needs. Maintaining family secrets are essential to her successful inclusion into society.

And it is a story of a sister and two brothers who bond together against these odds. Their struggles in life are stifling at times but they always have each other to carry them through. Although, their untold stories inhibits them from healing. The sister suffers from schizophrenia with her childhood revisiting her in the form of demons and hallucinations. The brother takes from life what is good and precious to him, only to be cheated of it by his mother’s pursuit of elitism. The brother (“The Prince of Tides”) loses his life in the struggle, breaking the bond that kept the three siblings strong. At this point, the remaining brother and sister begin losing their battle with life. It takes the telling of the family story by the remaining brother to allow the family to heal, where it was not possible before. The brother telling the story has felt that his past is behind him and has no impact on his current adult life. As he tells the story to save his sister, he learns it has influenced his life and the wrongs it has made in his life, thereby saving him, as well as his sister.

I felt this book was an incredible tale of tragedy and its effects on three bonded siblings. They dealt with their tragedy in different ways although none of their ways could save them. One sibling fought out and lost his life, the next gave up hers. The last sibling who had chosen to ignore it all was forced to face the issues in order to save his sister and his self.
Sometimes Christians mistakenly think that to “forgive and forget” means to put aside any ills without future consideration or assessment of its impact on our lives. To “dwell” on something means you are unwilling to forgive and thereby disobeying God. But this kind of thinking often inhibits healing. I believe God wants us to explore our true feelings, not ignore them. By working through past issues, we can move on to the future. Working through our misgivings gives us the power to truly forgive. And forgiving is not forgetting. To forget would not allow us to move forward from our problems. It would also not allow us to see the awesome things God can bring out of our tragedies. If there had been a “Prince of Tides 2”, I believe it would have been a wonderful story of the growth and freedom the brother and sister gained and the new life God gave them.

Submitted by - Kathrine Wynn

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