Sunday, October 3, 2010

CHILDREN ABUSING CHILDREN


LESSONS FROM A DEAD GIRL
By Jo Knowles
2007
215 pages

From Back Cover:
Leah Greene is dead and Laine McCarthy wished for it. She hated Leah that much. Hated her for all the times in the closet, when Leah made her do those things. They were just practicing for when they were older and had boyfriends, Leah said. But Laine knew that other girls don't do those things. Why did Leah choose her? Was she special? Or just easy to control? In the aftermath of Leah's death, Laine is left to unravel what happened all those years ago and to find meaning-and perhaps forgiveness-in the devastating lessons she learned.
My Thoughts:
Leah is the popular one. She is smart, beautiful and out going. Everyone loves her. Everyone wants to be her friend. Laine is the quiet one. The girl that blends easily and isn't noticed. Their friendship develops in the fifth grade. That's also when Leah starts to abuse Laine.
Leah and Laine's friendship is about power, guilt, secrets and shame. Leah is the abuser and Laine is the victim. But as the story unfolds we learn that it's much more complicated than that. This is a book that is painful to read....but has such an important message. A message that I think the author did a good job of telling.
I recommend this book to readers 15 and up. Be warned that there is major sexual content-the book is about sexual abuse. I would highly encourage both teens and parents to read it and then talk about it.
This book was borrowed through my local library's Inter Library Loan System.

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