Mirrored Image: Finding the Inner You

TJ Allen

Publisher: Xlibris Pages: 90 Price: (paperback) $15.99 ISBN: 9781543472295 Reviewed: November, 2019 Author Website: Visit »

This journal-like account spans a year in the life of the author, a ten-year veteran in the criminal justice system who works as a case manager. The story focuses on her day-to-day routine of caring for her young child, working on her cases, and interactions with people in her life.

In each of 20 chapters, the author details her daily routine. For example, in Chapter 2, she shares what she and her three-year-old daughter (who she describes as “a gorgeous blue eyed, blond haired, smiling little girl”) did at home over a long Labor Day weekend: played with their puppies, picked avocados from their backyard tree, went swimming, had a picnic, then moved into their regular routine of bath, television, and bed.

Scattered throughout the book are also glimpses into the author herself, including some past “destructive behaviors.” For example, in a phone call with a co-worker about the training on spousal abuse, child abuse, rape and incest they both were attending, she shares that she had posed nude and made porn tapes. She also notes in the narrative that she “stopped drinking” at some point.

The author has clearly discovered that journaling is cathartic. But while it takes courage to write about the skeletons of your past, she overshadows what might have been intriguing information about her personal life and troubling cases with too many details of devotion for her young daughter. As a result, the pages lack a storyline and are filled with the quotidian: the daily happenings of the author while at home and on the job. As she herself writes: “Each day to follow was typical and not unusual.”

Finally, dialogue, punctuation, and grammar issues prove distracting throughout.

The book is best described as a personal journal account of a year in the life of the author and will be appreciated as a family keepsake, rather than a book of interest to the general public.

Also available as an ebook.

Available to buy at: