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paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1954854161 B08XZMFH46
  • 368 pages
  • $17.95
Laura Davis
The Burning Light of Two Stars
Laura Davis, Author

Adult; Memoir; (Market)

This riveting memoir by Laura Davis, author of The Courage to Heal, examines the endurance of mother–daughter love, how memory protects and betrays us, and the determination it takes to fulfill a promise when ghosts from the past come knocking. When she published The Courage to Heal in 1988, Laura Davis helped more than a million women work through the trauma of childhood sexual abuse. But her decision to go public with her grandfather’s incest deepened an already painful estrangement with her mother, Temme. Over the next twenty years, from a safe distance of 3,000 miles, Laura and Temme reconciled their volatile relationship and believed that their difficult past was behind them. But when Temme moves across the country to entrust her daughter with the rest of her life, she brings a faltering mind, a fierce need for independence, and the seeds of a second war between them. As the stresses of caregiving rekindle Laura’s rage over past betrayals, they threaten her intention to finally love her mother “without reservation.” Will she learn what it means to be truly open-hearted before it’s too late?


Plot/Idea: 10 out of 10
Originality: 9 out of 10
Prose: 10 out of 10
Character/Execution: 10 out of 10
Overall: 9.75 out of 10


Idea: Written years after her bestseller that assisted thousands of women to cope with and heal from sexual abuse as children, Davis's memoir about maternal reconciliation is heartfelt, moving, introspective, and beautiful. Davis is an excellent author, bringing to life all the characters in her story through verbal exchanges, actions, and subtle nuance. Her book highlights the delicate relationship with a mother who is simultaneously loving and toxic, and the impacts this relationship has on her life and relationships. The reader can walk away from the book with new perspectives that may assist them in their own complex relationships.

Prose: Davis is a master of prose. From the very start of the memoir, she is able to fill it to the brim with metaphor, figurative language, symbolism, and general eloquence. This book reads like poetry, and is a delight - often visceral, tangible in both its pleasures and pains.

Originality: Mother/daughter relationships are conspicuous for their complexity. Two women, very alike and very different, working through their own power struggles, love, confusion, identities. This dynamic is often riddled with pain, so many books have been written regarding its hills and valleys. Davis has plummeted the reader into the midst of her own fascinating, rich, and trauma-filled life.

Character/Execution: Davis does an excellent job of writing both in first-person limited while still allowing her characters to be very much their own people who change, grow, learn, suffer, and experience joy. The interactions between her characters feel very authentic, and it is easy to follow who is talking to whom during conversations.

Date Submitted: October 01, 2021

--Katy Butler, bestselling author of Knocking on Heaven’s Door and The Art of

“Caregiving an elderly parent, especially against the backdrop of a difficult shared past, can be a bruising spiritual ordeal. We who must travel this territory don’t need any more sentimental narratives about it. What we do need is the healing medicine of truth-telling, and Laura Davis brilliantly and generously gives it to us. I literally could not put this book down.”

Carolyn Brigit Flynn, author of Communion and editor of Sisters Singing and Sacr

From the opening moment when Laura Davis is called into life by her mother, to their braided, sometimes twisted, often beautiful, long life together, The Burning Light of Two Stars takes us on a journey of two unforgettable, larger-than-life characters. We are pulled into their story and their struggles and read on to know if they will find it within themselves to make peace together.  A tour de force of indelible scenes woven together in an innovative structure, it seemed to me that the pages literally turned themselves. Laura Davis’s first book in nineteen years is a major publishing event, not to be missed.”

Karen C.L. Anderson, master-certified life coach and author of Difficult Mothers

“Laura Davis hits it out of the park with this epically honest and human memoir. I believe any woman will find value, wisdom, and relief in The Burning Light of Two Stars, but it is especially poignant for mothers and daughters who have struggled, are estranged, and/or are navigating reconciliation. Thankfully, more and more of us are learning that in revealing and speaking the truth, healing, even when it's messy and emotional, can take place. I dare say it's the messy and emotional healing that is the deepest. Thank you Laura Davis for this treasure of a book.”

Sue William Silverman, author, How to Survive Death and Other Inconveniences

“This chronicle of estrangement and reconciliation of a daughter’s slow loss of her mother to dementia and death, is really a testament to living and forgiveness. Overcoming a past fraught with misunderstandings and hostilities takes hard work—hard emotional and soul work. Davis masterfully documents this journey while giving the reader a visceral sense of the brevity of time we have in which to let compassion take root. This is a stunning book that shows how, once begun, that rootedness can be nurtured, deepened, and sustained.”

Yasmin Kerkez, Founder of Moving Beyond Family Struggles

“I was completely captivated by this story. As a reader – it was one of those books you start reading and feel as if you’ve stumbled on a treasure; a book you’re not going to want to end. Every night I found it hard to put down. I was hungry to always read more, to turn each page, and consume each paragraph. The story is brilliant. There is intrigue, emotion, life lessons, and a deep connection to real family life and relationships. I highly recommend this book to anyone wanting a good read—but especially to those living with family estrangement now or in the past.”

paperback Details
  • 11/2021
  • 978-1954854161 B08XZMFH46
  • 368 pages
  • $17.95