Monday, August 9, 2010

I Will Not Be Silent by April Maley

Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing, 2010
Pages: 173
Source: Received from author in exchange for review
Genre:  Adult Autiobiography/Memoir

This is the true story of a nine year old girl who grows up in an abusive family. By the age of nine she was practically raising her siblings. All the while she was maintaining her grades to keep from getting punished at home. Attempts to let someone know of her plight ended in more abuse. Then one day it all ended when her mother was killed by her father and her father was killed by the police. But abuse is not something that just goes away. There is a pattern to it and it is usually passed down from one generation to another. It has far reaching consequences that often the abused does not recognize or denies. Those around them often turn a blind eye or become abusers, whether it is verbally or mentally, out of frustration at the situation. This is April’s story of survival and her journey to break this cycle.

This happens more often than we would like to know. I had a girlfriend in high school that would call me and ask me to spend the night when her parents were going to a party. She needed someone to be there and to be a witness when they would come home drunk. There was never violence toward the two girls but it was a frightening time for them as they stayed locked up inside their rooms. They were lucky. We went to school with a girl who rode my church bus. We pulled up to her house one Sunday morning to a scene out of a police show. Her father had gotten up that morning and walked into the kitchen and shot her mother and then shot himself. All of this happened right in front of her. No one knew there had been problems at home. She had never told anyone. As a teacher I try to watch for signs from my students. A sudden change in behavior, signs they have not been sleeping, fighting at school may all be signs. It is hard to break the cycle of abuse. My own sister was married to three men who beat her, two of them tried to kill her. She kept going back because she thought she deserved it. It took her time to realize she wasn’t the problem. This is a book I think every woman should read. Yes, I know abuse happens to men as well, but they are more apt to leave, whereas women and children feel helpless. This is a great book with a great message of hope and healing. I am glad I was given the opportunity to read and review it.

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