Monday, April 25, 2011

High School Pick: Scars

by Cheryl Rainfield
West Side Books
250 pages

Cutting, edgy and disturbing, Scars will resonate with young readers, and hopefully help some readers who are looking for their voice after devastating acts of cruelty from their own abusers.

Author Cheryl Rainfield deftly tells the story of Kendra, a troubled but gifted artist whose own mother has yet to see the raw honesty and beauty in her daughter's dark paintings. Kendra was sexually abused by a shadowy figure since age two. She has no recollection of his face but can remember his voice and actions. She knows he's close to her family--a friend or relative. Through therapy sessions, more and more memories are flooding in, but can Kendra handle the truth? Or will the truth destroy her? Can she avoid cutting herself? Or will she make a fatal mistake?

Just as Kendra grasps at the answer, her tormenter comes back into her life--threatening her with first a letter, then a recording. Kendra turns to Meghan, a promiscuous girl she has a crush on. Meghan is troubled, too. Her home life is no picnic, but she is able to offer Kendra the shoulder she needs to cry on. The girls are getting close to uncovering the pedophile, too close...sometimes the truth hurts more than the questions.

Scars is a no-holds barred, in-your-face, brutal read. The reader has hope that there will be closure for Kendra and thousands of other young victims who have suffered from sexual abuse.

Highly, highly recommended for high school collections. Mature theme, sexual abuse, sexual identity, cutting, abuse, alcoholism, language.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the author, and I am so glad I did. This book may be life-changing for teens who are struggling with sexual abuse, gender identity, cutting, or other issues. Rainfield offers a Resource Guide for Readers with websites, addresses and on-line articles.

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