- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (March 6, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1534414436
- ISBN-13: 978-1534414433
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 35 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #74,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hardcover – March 6, 2018
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Showing 1-8 of 35 reviews
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There is incredible courage in Chessy's openness -- her willingness to share so many details of what happened, how she felt, her interactions with the school, with the assailant, her friends, etc. She is not afraid to explain that there is no such thing as a "perfect victim." But the line that stuck with me was this: "Rape is not a punishment for poor judgment." This is so important for everyone, especially sexual assault victims, to understand.
She also reveals the organizational/systemic rot that breeds this kind of behavior in institutions, St. Paul's School, in this case. The social reward structure that encourages rape. The apathetic administration in which no one wants to be the person responsible for dealing with this epidemic (and so they all turn a blind eye). The bullying and shaming that terrorize and silence survivors of sexual assault. These are things that CAN and MUST be changed. But they will change only when those in power take responsibility for what is happening, rather turning a blind and then, when they absolutely must respond, writing another email with a subject line like, "We're shocked...SHOCKED...to learn of this isolated incident." No one is shocked. And these incidents aren't isolated. We will have made real progress when that email subject line reads "Wow. We REALLY messed up, and we are so sorry. And here's how we're going to fix this enormous problem."
The book is written by a young person and it feels very authentic. It is categorized as a Young Adults book, but I can think of a lot of Old Adults who should be reading it.
I'm so sorry that this happened to you, Chessy. It's absolutely disgusting to me how the school chose to handle (or not handle) this. They agreed to be your caretaker when you enrolled, and they did not uphold their duty to you or to any of the other young girls this has happened to.
You are so brave for going public with your identity, your story, and with the revelation of the appalling culture of sexual conquest and male privilege at SPS. Thank you for your witness and your advocacy for other abused women. Thanks for breaking the cycle.