GOODBYE, SWEET GIRL by Kelly Sundberg
Kelly Sundberg’s husband, Caleb, was a funny, warm, supportive man and a wonderful father to their little boy, Reed. He was also vengeful and violent. But Sundberg did not know this when she fell in love. After Caleb’s true nature was revealed, she tried to convince herself he would get better. It took a decade for her to ultimately accept that the partnership she desired could not work with such a broken man. In her remarkable book, she offers an intimate record of the joys and terrors that accompanied her difficult awakening, and presents a haunting, heartbreaking glimpse into why women remain too long in dangerous relationships.
To understand herself and her violent marriage, Sundberg looks to her childhood in Salmon, Idaho, a small, isolated mountain community known as the most redneck town in the state. Like her marriage, Salmon is a place of deep contradictions, where Mormon ranchers and hippie back-to-landers live side by side; a place of magical beauty riven by secret brutality; a place that takes pride in its individualism and rugged self-sufficiency, yet is beholden to church and communal standards at all costs.
Mesmerizing and poetic, Goodbye, Sweet Girlis a harrowing, cautionary, and ultimately redemptive tale. It brilliantly illuminates one woman’s transformation as she gradually rejects the painful reality of her violent life, begins to accept responsibility for herself, and learns to believe that she deserves better.