Washed Away: from darkness to light by Nikki Dubose


Washed Away: From Darkness to Light is a memoir written by Nikki Dubose with James Johanson. I’m going to be giving you a brief synopsis on this book and then sharing with you my thoughts on it! I read this book a few weeks ago and have been meaning to write up a review (however I’ve read another 3 books since and just can’t seem to get my head out of a book at the minute, thus meaning I’ve not got around to writing any reviews!) So keep your eyes peeled as there will be many more book reviews to come!

Nikki Dubose is a former model who has suffered severely from mental health issues, childhood abuse, eating disorders, addiction, self-harm and so much more. Her life has been extremely tough but now she shares her story with the world… and I’m so glad that she did!

“Washed Away: From Darkness to Light is a memoir that recounts the experiences of model Nikki DuBose as she overcomes a more than seventeen-year battle with abuse, child sexual victimization, eating disorders, psychosis, alcoholism, drugs, depression, suicide attempts, body dysmorphic disorder, and various other mental health issues, all while trying to navigate through the dark side of the fashion industry.”

I found this description of Nikki’s Memoir on google however this isn’t even the half of it! Yes she’s trying to navigate her way through the dark side of the fashion industry; but she is also trying to blank out trauma from her childhood, seek love from whoever is willing to love her, blank out the termination of her unborn child due to difficult circumstances, forget about evil people who put her through hell… the list is endless. Nikki’s life was pandemonium but she has come out the other side stronger and is able to help others because of what she has been through.

“Knowing that I am a beautiful and confident woman sounds empowering – and it is – but it comes with a lot of pain and inner work.”

After reading Nikki’s memoir I was lost for words. What a remarkable woman, I thought, and oh so courageous! To openly speak out about darker times in your past is draining, difficult and so daunting (I know because I’ve also opened up about my mental health issues through the form of poetry in book form). Putting it out there, for the world to see, is absolutely terrifying. And Nikki shares so much with us. You can’t fault a word in Nikki’s memoir: It is her whole life in your hands. You can feel it. You can feel her pain, her thought process, and more importantly – her desire to be loved. Nikki desperately wanted to be loved throughout her whole life and it breaks your heart reading about her life knowing that there is nothing you can do. I wanted to reach out to this young girl and tell her she is deeply loved – if only someone had.


Nikki went through cosmetic surgery, self-harm and daily self-hating herself before she realised that she was worthy. This makes me want to cry for her. WHY does the modelling industry do this, still, in this day and age? Why aren’t people good enough the way they are? Why must we always try and change people? It’s soul-destroying.

Nikki eventually left the modelling industry and when I read that she did I felt as though a weight had been lifted from my chest (so I can’t imagine what it must have felt like for her)!

I really admire Nikki’s honesty throughout this whole book: The way she opened up about the abuse from her own mother, about the cosmetic surgery she underwent during her modelling career, about her self-harming and addictions, about having a termination and about the lifestyle that comes with a modelling career. Nikki is going to make changes in this world. She already has. She is an active advocate for abuse sufferers and regularly writes articles to raise awareness about child abuse. She is also an active public speaker and shares her story worldwide.

I have the upmost respect for Nikki Dubose. I’ve followed her across all of her social media platforms (and she has followed me back – yay!) and I regularly keep up to date with all of her wonderful work and achievements. I would urge you all to read her memoir. (click below for the link if you would like to purchase a copy)

 Washed Away: From Darkness to Light.

Thank you Nikki, for being so brave, and for fighting your way through life to become the extraordinary woman you are today.

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Email: charlenemcelhinney@icloud.com


*I received this book in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own*



  1. May 22, 2017 / 8:57 am

    I can’t wait to read this book now! It sounds like such a powerful read, Nikki certainly has been through a lot in her life and it must be so inspiring to read how she battled through it all and came out the other side! An excellent review, Charlene!

    Abbey 😘

  2. May 23, 2017 / 9:49 am

    This book sounds like such an important and worthy read, tough and harrowing at times as it sounds!!!

  3. May 24, 2017 / 7:17 am

    Oh my it breaks my heart knowing what she went through.. I’m amazed by how strong she has become now. I would love to read her book.

    skinnydecxflatte.blogspot.com xo

  4. May 26, 2017 / 8:35 am

    This sounds like such an interesting book and I wanted to read this. Great job on reviewing this book and I think I will learn a lot from it! Well done Charlene.

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