No One Crosses the Wolf: A Memoir

Brilliance Audio. Sept. 2022. 8:49 hrs. ISBN 9781713668473. $35.99. MEMOIR
In this brutally honest memoir, Nikolidakis, now a professor of creative writing, tells of her terrible upbringing by her father—“The Wolf”—who was violent and verbally and physically abusive. Nikolidakis’s deeply dysfunctional family hid the reality of their home situation, as “no one crossed The Wolf.” To navigate her daily trauma, Nikolidakis describes turning to alcohol and sex to avoid dwelling on her father, who professed remorse while making her feel guilty about his abuse. Later, her father left his family and moved in with a new girlfriend, only to die by suicide after murdering his girlfriend and her child. Narrating her own memoir, Nikolidakis describes her traumatic childhood, communicating her pain with slow and deliberate pacing. Her tone lends gravitas and intimacy to this challenging text. While her memories are horrific, she also sensitively shares her journey toward healing and acceptance.
VERDICT Nikolidakis’s story is difficult to hear, but she leaves listeners with a message of positivity and redemption. An uplifting story that speaks to her bravery while providing hope that it is possible to find strength in oneself without turning to self-destructive coping mechanisms.
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