Exit Wounds by Annie O’Neill Stein is the story of Laura, the middle child of parents from the opposites of life, the father of shanty Irish and the mother of Park Avenue lifestyle. At a young age, where the story starts, has her as her father’s little shadow, going with him to the favorite pub. She is the middle child of three girls. Their father has a propensity for “drink” and is often violent. In one of his rages, the girls see their father strike their mother. That puts an end to her going with her father to the pub. She now hates him. Her mother also has a drinking problem, but an illness is at the root cause of this. In the ’50s and ’60s, drinking is a secret problem, never to be spoken about. But her mother because of her illness does a lot of stumbling and slurring words. Laura and her sister just thought that it was a part of the drinking. Her mother dies when she is thirteen, which leaves Laura lonely and adrift. As she gets older, she tries out drugs and drinking to drown out he insecurities. It does not work. She married young, first marriage, and moves to California where she gets involved in the art world there. Her marriage does not work out but she ultimately meets a kind man, they marry and have a daughter. The story continues for Laura until she is in her 60s and till the end of her life from an illness that she coped with for a long time. She finds that as time goes on she is able to cope and reconcile with her thoughts and feelings about her parents. Bring closure to a lifetime of angst. She was finally able to deal with her grief and loss. I will read just about anything that has Irish in it. I enjoyed this story, read it in one sitting. It brought forth some of the things in my childhood that were not always the best. I have overcome these things and I was pleased to see that Laura did also. I read this book in one sitting I loved it, and I give it 5 stars!