The 2016 Benjamin Franklin Award winner for Best Inspirational Book!
A moment can change everything.
Kilee Brookbank was a typical sixteen-year-old, thinking about school, soccer, her friends, and her boyfriend.
But her last ordinary day erupted in an explosion that consumed her house, burning 45 percent of her body and sending her to the very brink of death.
After thirty-eight days of surgeries, skin grafts, perpetual physical therapy, and excruciating pain, she had to discover how to live again.
When Kilee returned home, she had to find a new “normal,” relearning how to tie her shoes, put on her makeup, and even turn a doorknob. In each moment of her long journey back to everyday life, she had to make choices that would define who she was and who she would become.
With unwavering support from her mom, Lori, and the rest of her family, Kilee faced her journey with determination, strength, and a positive attitude that inspired not only her community, but people around the world.
Told together by Kilee and Lori, Beautiful Scars is a story of recovery, healing, and hope, reminding us all that we’re never powerless, never alone, and that each challenge we face helps make us the people we are meant to be.
It’s what you do with each moment that defines you.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Kilee Brookbank was 16 years old when her life drastically changed. A gas leak in her house caused an explosion that burned 45% of her body and almost kill her. What follows is her journal through treatments, surgeries, and simply learning to live again. I first received Beautiful Scars last year in late 2016. This is a horrible and beautiful story at the same time. Kilee is such a strong young lady. She went through hell and yet did not let it destroy her wonderful personality and attitude. I admit that it is heart breaking to read this story at times. But it goes to show you how having the right attitude can take you so far. If you want an amazing story to read, look no further. Kilee and her mother Lori are wonderful women. They both have a great message for everyone. This is one book that has to be an addition to everyone’s shelves. I received Beautiful Scars from PR by the Books for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of both of these books.
Beautiful Scars, Beautiful Story Kilee Brookbank was sixteen when involved in a catastrophic fire that devastated her family’s home. Burned on over 45 percent of her body, Kilee only made it out alive because of a family dog who stayed at her side, barking continually when she was knocked unconscious until she woke and ran from the house. Kilee spent 38 days in the hospital and months re-learning how to do things with her hands and legs and arms – all of which were burned and required skin grafts. She went through intense pain in the grafting surgeries, infections, and daily stretching of her grafted skin. However, she also experienced the coming together of her community and support and interest from shows like the Doctors and her celebrity crush, Justin Bieber. Beautiful Scars documents her time from the day of the accident to college and the foundation she has created to give back to the hospital that helped her and other burn victims. Told in alternating voices between Kilee and her mother, Lori, Beautiful Scars is a heartwarming tale of resilience despite the obstacles Kilee and her family faced both in her recovery and in the destruction of their home. The alternating views provide insight into the way the accident affected the whole family which was interesting as it is easy to focus on the main victim, Kilee. Lori discusses the difficulty of watching her daughter go through this, but notes that now, “People always say to me ‘It’s sad…’ And I do cry sometimes still, but when I see her scars, I see life.” As another reviewer noted, it is hard to review a book like this as obviously it is a telling of a deeply personal story. I enjoyed the story and love that the purpose of the book is to help encourage other burn patients by sharing a story of someone who has been there and letting them know what to expect in the healing process. I wish it were a bit more finessed and edited as it seems to be pulled from taped conversation and the repetitions and filler words don’t translate as well in written form. Nevertheless, the book accomplishes its goal of telling a truly amazing story of a remarkable young woman’s resilience and beautiful strength in the face of incredible obstacles. Thanks to KiCam publishing for a free ARC of this story in exchange for an honest review.