Book Review, Fiction, Review, Women's Fiction

Book Review: ‘In The Context of Love’, by Linda K. Sienkiewicz

5.00 avg. rating (99% score) - 1 vote

About the author:

Reviews 2016 03 31 Book Review In The Context of Love Linda K. SienkiewiczLinda K. Sienkiewicz is a published poet and fiction writer, cynical optimist, fan of corgis, tea drinker, and wine lover from Michigan. Her poetry, short stories, and art have been published in more than fifty literary journals, including Prairie Schooner, Clackamas Literary Review, Spoon River, and Permafrost.

She received a poetry chapbook award from Bottom Dog Press, and an MFA from the University of Southern Maine. Linda lives with her husband in southeast Michigan, where they spoil their grandchildren and then send them back home.

About the book:

Reviews 2016 03 31 Book Review In The Context of Love CoverWhat makes us step back to examine the events and people that have shaped our lives? And what happens when what we discover leads to more questions?

Angelica Schirrick wonders how her life could have gotten so far off-track. With two children in tow, she begins a journey of self-discovery that leads her back home to Ohio. It pains her to remember the promise her future once held and the shattering revelations that derailed her life.

Can she face the failures and secrets of her past and move forward? Somehow she must learn to accept the violence of her beginning before she can be open to life, and a second chance at love.

My thoughts:

Angelica’s story is heart-breaking, but in a time and age where families are falling apart, it is so important to read about what happens to those of us unlucky enough not to have a strong fortress of well-being in the form of our parents to grow up in.

In the Context of Love is a well-written and well-paced book.  It delves into the story of Angelica’s series of bad mistakes following a discovery that shatters her sense of self-worth, sending her into a spiral of self-destruction.

One thing I liked about Sienkiewicz’ style is that she balances well explaining what is going on in Angelica’s mind enough for readers to understand her logic, despite the fact that it is a faulty one.  We are welcomed into Angelica’s thought process just enough to not be overwhelmed or bogged down.

One thing I didn’t like though is the emphasis on sex, which long-time Sahar’s Blog readers will no doubt not be surprised to read.  I think that the way Angelica degraded herself through various sexual acts, as well as the intensity of sex with her first love—all the more that she met him in her teen years—was a necessary and inevitable part of the story, but there was a lot of unnecessary description that I skipped without losing anything to the story.

Not quite as difficult to read as Heather O’Neill’s heart shattering Lullabies for Little Criminals, In the Context of Love is the kind of book those of us trying to understand the current conditions of the society we live in need to read.  It will no doubt help us understand that there are realities completely different from our own and enable us keep an mind open to possible ways of building a world in which no one has to go through what either Angelica or Baby went through.


Yes.  Although you might also want to skip some of the, erm, more descriptive pages.

Thank you to iReads Book Tours for providing
a copy of this book for me to review!

5.00 avg. rating (99% score) - 1 vote

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