Before Dawn by Laura Murphy


Max Abbracciaventio, a biracial young woman living in New York with her adopted family, has made some questionable choices in her life. One of them was having an affair with an abusive married man 14 years her senior.

Before Dawn catalogs the tragedy, loss, and growth Max experiences as she tries to discover who she is and heal from past and current traumas.

Max’s story is an interesting one, and I cared about her fate as she stubbornly deals with everything that comes her way. Although she was a sympathetic character who grows through the course of the novel, she deserved to have her story told with more depth. 

The writing could have been stronger in parts. It often delved into telling rather than showing the reader what Max was feeling and experiencing as she tried to find happiness. I also felt the ending could have been better. When I got to the last page, I was sure there was more, but there wasn’t – it simply stopped.

Ultimately, I felt the author took on a little too much with this book. With a little more editing and polish, this book has the potential to be amazing. In spite of these issues, I am glad I had the chance to encounter Max and experience her journey to self-discovery.

Thank you to Laura Murphy for providing a free e-review copy. This review reflects my honest opinion.

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