Book Reviews

Ache Review

TW: Dissociation, suicidal fantasies, self injury, graphic sexuality.

By Lilian Olsen

Independently Published


140 pages

$8.99 Paperback

ISBN-13 : 978-1521255049

Book reviewed by Kavita Khajuria

“I can feel my fragments throbbing and aching thousands of miles away, lost in years past and years yet, strewn through time and space”

Not for the faint of heart – somatic and symbolic descriptives initially contain visceral imagery combined with sexual and rageful fantasies. Dissociations, psychosis and suicidality occasionally convey a sense of the ethereal, or being subject to surreal vulnerability, with the sense self described as fire or dissolving. Depression with suicidal fantasies ensue with a pleading to be unseen, complicated by ravaging moods, descriptives of purging, and ominous flashbacks from childhood. Other themes include self loathing, visceral penetration by demons wherein “monsters and magic lurk ..”, and festering emotional pain “this oppressing, terrible emptiness, sprawling in the vast endless blackness.” With warnings to the inner child and split mental states, one may sense the traumas of childhood, given the self deprecation, violent fantasies of self harm, and “strange and unfamiliar” voices. Tones eventually progress to self consolation with steps towards treatment, healing and self reassurance, while acknowledging moments of anxiety. Yearning for art, movement and life evolves – yet also for structure, routine, and quiet understanding. Eventually, the reader can hear resolution and readiness for a new path and wholeness – with a softer yearning for hope and peace “we will make it through to calm waters”.