“Hurting Girls” (2014) by Kim A Mac Innis
**POTENTIAL SPOILERS AHEAD**
Justice in the hands of civilians, negative shade on how some police officers do their job (some rightly justified, some not), a LOT of telling versus little to NO showing, no descriptions of the characters, ethics, statistics about who tends to get assaulted more (gender biases) with some flavoring of disregarding male survivors.
Rape, sexual assault, bullying, homicide (specific methods), suicide (specific methods), vigilante, alcohol/substance use, glorification of dangerous acts, “crazy”, child abuse, trauma, stalking.
This fiction novel unveils a story using an often back and forth from first person anonymous identity of a vigilante who is out killing rapists for their crimes before they are placed into the judicial system and with a third person narration from a prestigious Sociology professor at a university, named Theresa Lane. Theresa lives with her husband, Jake an English professor also at the same university, and their two children, son Micah and daughter Harper.
As news breaks out and as Theresa covers in her class, more and more rapists are found to be in the area and a killer is out there taking them down one by one.
The novel covers several areas including homicidality, suicidality, vigilantism, how fucked up the American justice system is (which it is), bullying, gang rape and more. As the countdown begins for who the killer is and uncovering their identity, we are introduced to Detective Blades who later becomes an integral part of Theresa’s and her sister’s lives (a love interest in particular forming between the sister and the detective).
Along with the sub-plots of anti-bullying campaigns and information about female survivors of sexual assault, there’s a plot about a student named Emily who gets involved with an Officer Randall who is a bit of an asshole to put it lightly and we see Theresa, whom is close to Emily, get involved in doing everything in her power to keep Randall away from Emily (going to extreme lengths, even).
As more people die, the stakes run ever higher. Some of the rapists killed are teenage boys, both from the killer’s past and the killer’s present. In the end, karma comes back. It’s with the last death of the novel that the killer’s identity is revealed. And you wouldn’t guess who it was, the happiest of them all… A certain someone named —
QUOTES & COMMENTARY:
Okay, so honestly, this post is a little out of order and I’ve been procrastinating having to complete this entry since I finished the book back in July 2019. So, there’s that. Finally though, I am fed up with getting charged overdue fees and I’m ready to just jump blindly into this, having long forgotten all the intricate details of this book, attending a ‘Meet the Author’ for a different book she wrote at my local library and having over 150+ page flags in this ONE book alone. So, let’s see how this goes, shall we? I will be going backwards in writing this section first and all my commentary of it, and then writing the summary, trigger warnings, recommendation score and themes. As of this moment in this paragraph, I am writing this Oct. 9th 2019. Let’s begin!
Beginning with my notes from June 23.2019:
1. On the Acknowledgments section before the novel begins in which the character Dana Blades is inspired by a student the in real life author had who has since passed away: Tis a testament to the reach we have onto those around us.
2. The topic of this novel (rape, sexual assault, suicide, homicide etc.) is introduced RIGHT AWAY and it’s heavy and very sad. 😦
3. On p. 2 the later to become vigilante of the novel (who is going out and killing rapists) is explained as having had a sister who was raped, who killed herself a year after the rape after being severely bullied in person and online, is why they are going out and actively killing similar perpetrators of these crimes (–so think an avenging death so to speak), I wrote that it was heartbreaking and so sad, disgusting and how I really felt for her (the sister’s) character and I can see why/for what reasoning the narrator wound up avenging her death.
4. We find out the sister had been drugged by her perpetrators (p. 3)
5. “The video (of the sister’s rape) remained online long enough for many people to see it. My sister was called names online (and at school). Names like slut and whore. She eventually left the high school” – p. 3
The problem I have with this portion here, and for which I had problems with THROUGHOUT the book for a number of reasons that I will later get into–is that sick thought that someone the people in her generation and above failed her to show her how the action–the CRIME–committed against her was NOT her fault. It wouldn’t be her fault if she were wearing “revealing” clothing, it wouldn’t be her fault if she were drugged (as she was in this case), it wouldn’t be her fault if she was sober, it wouldn’t be her fault even if she had otherwise “asked” for it. It wasn’t her fault, period. The sole responsibility for these crimes falls and should always fall upon the perpetrator–never the victim. It sucks. It’s horrible and awful and it’s a delicate and intricate and complicated subject matter. Just, ugh. This book made me very UGH. 😐
6. The classic question to a suicide that I without fail have (and I’m sure many others have and I’m sure which the lack of awareness on these subject matters contributes to the deaths of these people both in real life and in fiction, for warning signs aren’t as popular as could be, some people will show different signs and others none or very few if at all, and for which suicide prevention practices and the like just aren’t well documented and discussed openly. Long rant is long): Why didn’t she go to the hospital? 😦
7. P. 4 still totally feeling for the Narrator here. Brings up a lot of ethics this book does. Indeed, indeed.
8. Will we ever get a N description? (No) Is it always in first person? (No) Can feel the anger in the text. :O
9. How am I supposed to feel about this ethically? Who is the narrator? Same as in Chp 1? Someone else? Vigilante? Main character?
10. Who is Todd and what does he look like? — Me p. 9
11. “‘There are not necessarily any clear signs because as a society, we are not taught to suspect family members of abuse. Children are warned about strangers, not dads or grandpas or uncles'” — p. 9 (Our main character, Theresa Lane) TRUTH.
12. P. 9 commentary: I think this scene would have been stronger with more creative writing. More showing with body language and observations, etc. It’s a little disappointing so far.
13. 1st: Survivors not victims. 2nd: Are the statistics presented in this book accurate and true for real life? 3rd: Research done on subject? References? 4th: Is there information on sexual assault in this book? Also: telling not showing. Poor writing thus far.
14. P. 10 Do boys ever lie though? If girls don’t lie when hurt, is that to say boys do? Again, I feel this universe has some gender biases. Not everyone fits in this description.
15. Very telling section here (because the N tends to view the subject matter as an outsider), I think this is probably a male N.
16. P. 11 Was N reading the body language correctly though? (After seeing one of the perpetrators of his sister’s trauma smirking). Does N have Antisocial Personality Disorder?
17. Kinda sad how the kid dies. But also amazing–I LOVE narrator’s that are the murderers. Reminds me of “A Pleasure and A Calling” by Phil Hogan, one of my all time favorite novels. 🙂 ❤
18. End of p. 11: chilling.
19. “Violence doesn’t solve violence” — p. 12 –> This is the crux of this story.
20. Observation on p. 13: Telling not showing. Just because you can write nonfiction does NOT mean you can write fiction, as evidenced by this particular book’s existence but I’m sure is also representative in other ways. What kept me engaged in this book was giving it a chance and wanting to find out who the killer was. I really, really loved the plot of this story, it had SO MUCH potential, it was just pooooorly written. You could tell that creative writing wasn’t the author’s natural niche. I always thought that because my experience with writing was fiction/creative based from the start and that I can adapt to nonfiction pieces like essays, lab reports, etc. because I have this strong base, that the same would be true for the opposite. Apparently not. At least not in this case. I have another one of her books, and she has written others it seems since 2014, that I will review and read and give a chance to, because maybe this was just her first debut into fiction writing. Again, just too much telling and no showing. We get insight into the working characters through dialogue more than through any descriptive writing.
21. P. 15: Still telling like it’s a shopping list. (Example: “Sometimes Theresa’s expectations were too high and unrealistic. She wanted a clean home at all times and wanted everyone to pitch in. She wanted the kids to do well in school.” — p. 14 To me it just reads like “Today I went shopping for milk. Then I got nuts and then I got candy. Then the cashier messed up my order. I said to them, G. Now I have to put away the dishes. Then I have to do the laundry. Then I’ll go to sleep and do it all over again” I don’t know it’s hard to describe other than bland and novice-level writing. I also felt that this novel read more as the author’s own truths/how she lives her life. Like, I feel the lines are blurred to how much is truth in how she relates to T–which I mean is fine because all writing has bits and pieces of the author in it, whether subtle or a lot. It was just something else I noticed. 😛
22. I wonder if T has OCD or OCPD and her view of the world is a little faulty. Not inaccurate but faulty for sure.
23. P. 15 I also, like T, wish for everyone to live a happy and healthy life, even though we know it won’t happen. It’s still relatable. Also, where will she stand with the vigilante? On the back flap it implies she secretly likes what they’re doing, and unfortunately the novel ends on the identity reveal of who the vigilante is (shocking, to me, they were so positive and sweet!!) and never on what happens next: how does it impact the other characters? What does T think? How does the society within their limited environment react? How does the family involved get split apart or do they remain together? etc. Sigh, no answers. No recovery either.
24. P. 16: For the N to call the perpetrator “the rapist” puts distance between N and the guy in question. It’s a dehumanizing tactic. To make the murder more placating and understandable, so to speak.
25. P. 19: There’s somewhat of a cruelty to take pride in another man’s death–no matter what heinous acts they’ve committed. (Personal opinion: When the Taliban rejoiced in the deaths of 9/11 I view it as just as fucked up as the rejoicing Americans after finding out Osama Bin Laden had been killed. I don’t think either way is “right”. I think both are fucked up, and it’s a slippery slope to fall down because we feel above or below another human being. It gets into some really shady situations, that’s for sure. I also think it’s like when in war we as Americans only seem to care about how many of US (the whole “us” versus “them” thing too) were killed and don’t care to know of all the other civilians from the “other side” were killed and slaughtered too. It’s cruel and selfish, I think. We should care for both sides, equally. Especially when we take into account that spawning more torture and violence only adds more incentive for homicidal individuals to have the ammunition to continue killing and finding higher kill counts (especially for how the media glorifies death, which surely doesn’t help) It’s easy to be kind to caring individuals, it’s far more telling to be kind to the ones who’ve hurt you. Buuuut…Sorry, tangent there.)
26. P. 20: Although N’s Mom didn’t know it, her peaceful smile was reinforcement for N to continue the killing
27. P. 22: “T was one of those ‘what you see is what you get’ people. She was the same person at home, at work, with her friends and with her family. That’s probably why she was such a good teacher” Commentary: Is this really healthy boundaries though? It makes sense to be different in different roles. This sounds more and more like a Mary Sue and nonfiction like it’s a masked memoir. Sigh.
28. P. 23: What gives N the right to make these judgment calls on who lives and who dies?
29. P 24: Good awareness, N! But “sociopath” and “psychopath” aren’t the terminology anymore, you’re looking for ASPD
30. P. 24: So much to unpack! Who decides who lives and dies? Who deserves to?
31. P 26: N is talking about prisoners and the prison system. Why do I feel N doesn’t consider themselves to be within this group of people? Radical viewpoints.
32. “I would never trust the system to protect us and that’s why I decided to rid society of the vermin it created” — p. 26 —> I feel like this is a dangerous point of view. Could others get ideas from the explicit nature of this book? Does that happen like with other forms of media (or do any other forms of media have this type of influence to begin with?)?
33. Who CAN be rehabilitated if anyone? This idea of rehabilitation reminds me of Loki fanfic. :3 And my all-time favorite fic “Drown” by Ordis. God, I love that fic. Also, lots and lots of “deserve” stuff here.
34. P. 27: T is a good parent and person wanting the best for her kids.
35. P. 28: Will T change her POV/perspective when the vigilante arrives and kills? The rapist has family that suffers too.
36. P. 31: N chapter again, the wife of a doctor/rapist speaks out about her daughter’s trauma. I thought it was sad, sweet and very brave of her.
37. “This woman needed to tell her story, not for herself but for all the families out there that might have an abuser in them” — p. 31 –> Selfless to try and help another family out there suffering.
38. P. 31: The concept that survivors don’t always necessarily avoid their abusers but would be kind and sweet in hopes to be spared further trauma is both sad and educational and if it’s true, it definitely provides some great insight into an otherwise unspoken predicament. I think education through creative writing is really important–especially as it relates to mental health, recovery and trauma. I aim to do this in my own writings too. What is similar? What is different?
39. P. 33: T is one moment understanding and the next it’s ‘my way or no way’. I can’t stand this writing lol.
40. P. 34: I can’t exactly pinpoint what annoys me most about her writing. Like it’s her talking and a shopping list. Foreign and with no emotion. No showing.
41. P. 34: T cannot protect her kids from life or everything out in the world. She has to build their resiliency not shelter them.
42. P. 34: T’s husband Jake sounds more like a pushover with no compromises than a ‘peacekeeper’ 😛
43. P. 35: This actually sounds wicked controlling of T to her kids and toxic. Almost like the author is reflecting herself not creating a whole new character in fiction.
44. P. 35: This is essentially the part where T became increasingly off-putting of a character and I started to dislike her. She sounds unbearably overbearing. Like, calm down. WAY too controlling. Very off putting. Always her beliefs.
45. P. 36: (Classic, did you hear about…? in T’s class–her students are speaking about the latest rapist murder) No shit, we were already there to read this. Fuck’s sake.
46. P. 36: (The class is super happy about the doctor’s/rapist’s death) Should they be though? Is this not disturbing to anyone else? I feel alone in these opinions!
47. P. 37: (Emily, a character integral to the story says that the prison system doesn’t always work and that it was likely the rapist would have gotten out and tried to be in his daughter’s life afterwards. :/) But does this give us the right to take things into our own hands?
48. P. 37: There’s some sub-plot involving Emily and an Officer Randall (some of the shade tossed here to Randall, although he is a bit of an ass) buuuut I find T overbearing and selfish, stuck up and bitchy. Also again author’s possible projection here. And for the whole Randall thing: Ew!
49. P. 39: To N, these are a lot of judgments with no potential basis in fact.
50. P. 39: Where does this person (N) see themselves in the world? High and mighty for murder? Aren’t they a part of this? (Male heavy worldview) Male or female?
51. So is this a female? Or is it a male? I assumed male before but maybe female?
52. P. 42: Observation: Typography error: Instead of I ‘ (pointed inwards to I) it’s I ‘ (pointed outwards to next letter). Also, maybe this nurse is going to be a suspect?
53. P. 47: Toddlers and Tiaras rant from N. Seems like more of a personal vendetta. Like, more projection by the author. XD Or maybe it just fits with the idea of the N?
54. P. 49: “R is controlling and a self-centered know-it-all” —> T would know because she is too. 😀
55. P. 50: The backstory between T and Emily’s relationship, how T worked at a shelter for women who’ve been abused and she took Emily and her mother into her home for a while. —> That’s some reallllly bad boundaries. Not something to be proud over. I mean, yeah it’s kind and compassionate but it’s still fucked up for a few thirty degrees or so. Just poor boundaries work. That is all.
Okay, to be fair, that’s all I’m going to do today. I got my way up to 51 pages into the novel so I think that’s a good stopping point for today. I’m going to try and do 50 more pages next time (Th) and 50+ on Fri and finish up if I can manage to, it’s a 300 p. book, on Sat. We’ll see for sure though. Thanks for reading thus far!!! ❤ ❤ ❤
Hello again! And we’re back, it’s Oct. 10th 2019 so here we go!!
56. P. 54: Is T going to get involved with R and E? Is R going to hurt E? (Yes, kinda)
57. P. 55: Will something happen to T’s family where N will get involved? :O
58. P. 57: About R’s wife – sounds like R was gaslighting and manipulative. Maybe he will be killed next? 😀
59. “Blades immediately went to the nurse’s desk and asked to speak with the head of the department. The head surgeon was Dr. Kelly Lehman. She was a brilliant surgeon and spunky as hell” — p. 58 —> Honestly if this doesn’t sound like a shopping list than I don’t know what swell writing is. XD It’s just so rigid and this, then that, then this, then that. Very like brute in a way. It’s disappointing.
60. “T let R finish his brilliant analysis (sarcasm), at least he thought it was brilliant and then she said what she usually said to students when they make uninteresting statements. ‘That’s very interesting, R.’ ” — p. 63. —-> Aaagggghhh! Yeah, she’s soooo “professional”. God, she’s annoying. Again, I’m disliking her. >:[
61. P. 63: About R leaving the room angrily and T saying how she understands why police officers are called “pigs” and how she wasn’t finished screwing with R yet for what he did to E. —> This is really fucked up. Very off putting. What a bitch (T). So judgmental. Ugh.
62. P. 64: Yeah, SUPER “professional” Grrrr.
63. P. 65: Straight up cunt levels. Fuck me.
64. P. 66: T wants to fuck up R’s life for what he did to E. (E and R had sex and R’s a dick about it.) –> But it’s not up to you (T) and your personal life to make these decisions to fuck up someone else’s life. (She wants to block him from going to get a master’s at the uni she’s at and of which E is also a part of the program)
65. P. 66: This is super vindictive of T and out of line (going to the next higher up to block R from being enrolled (granted for his OWN behavior and actions)). Cunt.
66. P. 68: T tells J about R and E but leaves out how she’s getting the dean involved. Thinks he would think she’s going too far. –> Oh really? It’s probably because you are, you dumb ass. If you knew your spouse wouldn’t agree with you it’s because you’re wrong.
67. P. 69: T writes an anonymous letter to R’s police department about his transgressions. –> That is fucked up. She’s changing and not who I thought she was. It’s not their business.
68. P. 69: This retaliating behavior seems WAY too extreme.
69. P. 70: I can see where she’s turning into agreeing with the vigilante. Shit.
70. P. 72: About the doctor rapist and his daughter (he was killed by N earlier) and Detective Blades is doing his research on questioning people etc. One of the doctor’s who worked with the rapist says that his death will bring the daughter closure. —> But maybe she’ll never have closure? Because he’s dead now? But maybe it’s for the best still too because he won’t have time to fake like he didn’t do his heinous acts, etc.
71. P. 74: Sounds like paying favorites (T) because an unknown girl (as opposed to E) wouldn’t get this advantage of personally vindictive professors.
72. P. 75: About T thinking how survivors would never be the same after their traumas and they’ll be scarred for life —> I think she’s underestimating their ability to recover and get better. She’s underestimating their resiliency.
73. P. 76: For T and J’s conversation —> That is fucked up. I’ll give her that.
74. P. 77: Not to worry, our favorite killer is out there.
75. P. 79: N is having physical symptoms of their wondering why the world is so fucked up —> Kind of like T here with the physical symptoms out of emotional news. 😉
From July 1st:
76. P. 80: I mean R is not far off with T being the one to send in the anonymous letter about him. And T has good reason to dislike men. Men especially like R.
77. P. 81: R saying that E probably has the crush on him and it was her fault for exaggerating their “friendship” –> Yeah, okay there, buddy. *eye roll*
78. P. 85: Again, very vindictive and blackmailing here. Shit.
79. P. 87: N’s speech about women versus men being survivors –> Definitely an oversimplification. Also men do this too. (Get pressure from society to look a certain way, be a certain way, etc.). What the fuck? Aggravating.
80. P. 88: Finally we’re at the part where these same old tropes from N are getting old and predictable. Sigh. Also, N is a part of that culture too, dimwit.
81. P. 102: Hooray we’re at 100 pages now! Whoooo!! Also, this is the scene where R gets killed. It escalated very quickly. Will T be happy now? E? Others? He kinda got what he deserved though, actually. 😛
82. P. 104: T was “shocked” and says how she never wanted R to die —> Bitch please! You totally did. I have it flagged and everything. *eye roll*
83. P. 105: EXPLICIT SUICIDE METHOD WARNING. Also this suicide sounded way too similar to N’s sister so I got confused and thought we went back in time for a minute there. Also, the terminology “committed” suicide was used and we all know how much I like to correct that (people commit crimes, not suicide. Suicide is a public health emergency not a criminal one).
84. P. 106: When T has a conversation about bullying and social media and all that jazz with her kids, it reminded me of the Cyberbu//y movie and sounded a bit like a double agenda out of this book. Understandable, though.
85. “People were not born evil. They learned to be evil” — p. 108 —> Learned versus born concept. Made versus born. Was N made, too?
86. P. 110: T wasn’t happy R was dead then she was? What? Double standard. She should just admit she’s happy instead of flopping back and forth. Asshole.
87. P. 116: For the bullies having been a large factor in causing a death by suicide –> Accurate. They played a major role that wouldn’t have been present otherwise.
88. P. 117: For N and his next victim: (specific method warning) Trust me, that’s not gonna kill him unless he gets in a car accident.
89. P. 120: “‘Two wrongs don’t make a right'” bullshit coming from T. See this was her original stance but she acts opposite to it. UGH.
90. P. 121: Yeahhhh okay, they still bullied too. But whatever lie you want to tell yourselves that they did the right thing even if from the other side it didn’t feel like it.
91. P. 121: More anti-bullying agenda is being pushed here. :3 (It’s its own sub-plot)
92. P. 129: N is about as cocky as the rapist here.
93. “(T) never ignored students who were brave enough to write about their traumas. She always included a comment on their assignments that if they wanted to talk, she was available” — p. 131 —-> This is dangerous. She should point them to local resources instead of her being there for them. I speak from experience, with what happened between me and Luna. Just a bad idea overall. Attachments, issues, liabilities, etc. To name but a few.
94. P. 133: About how T’s kids would always reassure her that they were safe and okay —> This kind of reassurance seeking can be problematic, actually. Think OCD behaviors and such (where you’ll need more and more reassurance in a never ending cycle, and being reassured only further perpetuates the cycle. It’s actually best to sit in the uncomfortable emotions and the uncertainty.
95. P. 133: Again with the trope that females are more likely to be hurt (which honestly may be true) but Jesus! Women are not helpless! How many times will T say the same thing?
96. P. 140: T not trusting the criminal justice system for violence against females —> But violence against males is perfectly fine! Ughhhhh.
97. “(The kids) really believed they would make a difference in (anti-bullying campaigns) people’s attitudes. That’s all that mattered; the fact that they believed” — p. 141 —> I think that this does matter a lot ❤
98. P. 145: We have to be reminded here that this N is killing those who’ve committed crimes. They are not innocent victims.
99. P. 147: Detective Blades on how some serial killers want to be caught reminds me of the crying serial killer on 911 tapes. I forget his name but you can find it on Youtube.
100. P. 152: E isn’t the killer, right? Right?
101. P. 154: N saying they were enjoying themselves —> Oh, hot damn. That’s fucked.
Okay, I’m running a little short on time so I’m going to be finishing up and getting ready for work tonight so I’ll end this post here for today. Tomorrow I should be able to finish completely because I’m on page 160 now. 🙂 Will probably drop off another book Sat too and I have to watch a film tomorrow for review. Yep, this weekend is a long one so maybe I’ll be able to get some fanfic writing and book reading and filming/editing done. Hooray! See ya next time!
Hello! I am back again. Let’s hope I can accomplish everything I want this analysis to be about, largely the rest of the quotes/commentary and then the fill in of the rest of the sections. 🙂 It’s almost 6p on Oct. 11th so we shall see how this goes, listening to music on my iPod and maybe having some time to edit a video and upload it if not tonight than tomorrow/over the weekend. 🙂 Let’s go!!
102. P. 159: About how the principal of a school didn’t listen to a survivor and was absent in doing anything to stop the bullying that was happening to her. —> To be fair, he probably didn’t know what to do. Ignorance doesn’t excuse a lack of mandated reporting though.
103. P. 161: Legit though, they’re (rapists) dropping like flies!
104. P. 161: About how T doesn’t want to encourage this type of vigilante justice —> But she does like it deep down? Like in what’s been said in previous sections? Why is she so fickle?
105. P. 162: T wishing the news focused more on campaigns and advocacy against bullying and making positive changes in the world –> Very true, I wish she would say more on this.
106. P. 163: About how the media should focus on problems within society and not glorifying and glamorizing violence —> Accurate, but isn’t this book doing the same thing?
107. P. 167: About how J and T’s son recognized a rapist boy on TV from the school assembly when they presented about anti-bullying —> I love how they did nothing with this information. Fuck.
108. P. 171: About how a teacher was having sex with a teenage boy and did nothing to stop the bullying of his rape survivor, still thinking the boy was in love with her and they were meant to be together —> Yeah, that was messed up. Damn.
109. P. 177: Detective Blades on not appreciating vigilantism –> Yep! I can understand this POV.
110. P. 179: On Harper (the daughter of T and J) wondering why the survivors don’t speak out/up, and T telling her that they probably blame themselves and are afraid of being bullied to death –> Educational and very sad. Reminds me a little of my fic “Distorted and Disordered”
111. P. 180: About how rape survivors are dissected and the judicial system is unfair to their stories —> Is this the best message to send with the power of a book? What if this makes other survivors out there not wish to share their trauma and have their perpetrators face “justice”? Is twisted justice still justice or should survivors find other ways of advocating and speaking out?
112. P. 181: About how the next (gang rape) rapists bragged about the girl’s rape and how she had “offed” herself —> That’s fucked up. Kill away, N!
113. P. 185: About how the teacher supposedly knew about the gang rape and did nothing to help the survivor before she ended her life –> Yeah that (being silent) doesn’t look so good for the teacher. Would she get in trouble, too?
114. P. 187: Especially since the teacher really DID know, I’d like to know too!
115. P. 194: There’s an argument here that after reading through the entire book is very, very telling. I found it to be unexpected. The clues were there all along, I just didn’t want to see it! Or I didn’t think it would be what I thought. ❤
116. P. 197: The N hears one of the gang rapers brag that the victim got everything she wanted and that it was “too bad” she wouldn’t remember how she had sex for the first time. 😦 —> Kill him, N, kill him now.
117. P. 203: How the rapist would never change and N was about to kill him –> Nice description, first off then yessss, he’s an asshole. Kill him! Kill him!
118. There are some jokes/laughs I’ve had throughout this book. This one detail on p. 204 made me wonder if N was a kid/teenager themselves.
119. P. 206: On how T flip flops again with her opinion saying that some people don’t deserve to live and that the girl’s parents could get some peace now. And how ‘whoever’ killed the rapist did the family a favor —> Maybe T is really the killer? It’s so annoying how she changes her stance every other page. Her words and her actions do not line up at all. Ugh. -__-
120. P. 217: About how one of the gang rapists confesses to the crime and asks to be punished for his part —> I think that’s pretty remarkable that he confessed, yes, late, like very late, and he still repented for his sins and that’s more than what the others did for theirs.
121. P. 218: N believes (as do I) that the boy’s admission was genuine and he was remorseful about his actions (and inactions)
122. “Jake agreed that there were awful things going on (in the world) but there were good things, too. There were kind people in the world. There were people trying to make a difference” — p. 220 —> Oh, sigh. Heavy, heavy sigh. I do agree though. There’s a lot of shit in the world AND there is still good, still innocents and still loving, caring, empathetic individuals out there. ❤ 🙂
123. The last gang rapist takes full responsibility for his actions without making excuses, which I find amazing in and of itself.
124. “(The girl’s) parents wanted to stay angry but they couldn’t anymore. The anger and hatred was killing them. [Shelley] wouldn’t want them to live like that anymore” — p. 224 –> This is still so sad, emotional, sweet and heartbreaking all in one moment.
125. “[Shelley’s mother] hugged the two boys who confessed their part in the rape and their parents wept for them. The parents wept for their sons, for Shelley’s parents and for Shelley. Shelley’s mother told the boys they would be okay. She touched their cheeks” — p. 224 —> This honestly made me cry! Very emotional and the show of kindness even when undeserved was very heartwarming. ❤
126. “T felt no sorrow for the boys. She would never hug a rapist. She would never forgive a rapist” — p. 225 —> T has a stick up her ass. And it’s very interesting what happened after this novel itself ended, I wish there was a further conclusion to it. If this ever happened to her she would never recover. Of course, something else happened to her but we never find out what happens next.
127. About how J worried T would be a mess once the kids flew from the next —> Yes, she has to prepare for this reality.
128. “When I kill people, I don’t blink an eye. It’s like business to me. I am completing necessary chores.” — p. 240 –> This personally reminds me of the look I get when I’ve been suicidal. Interesting parallels.
129. “I think both sides (within N) are completely balanced. The good side really is good and leads its own life. It volunteers, it gives and is kind. The bad side isn’t bad; it is determined. The bad side ironically thinks it is doing some good” — p. 240 —> I felt this was a very good and interesting insight into the N character.
130. P. 245: Another example here of how controlling T is in her household (her emotions run the house and no one else’s does).
131. “T felt responsible for taking care of the family. She didn’t like the job but she wouldn’t let anyone else do it” — p. 246 –> So why complain? Ugh.
132. P. 250 The idea that the system is only reactive rather than protective/preventative is pretty darn accurate
133. P. 253: There’s some romance budding between T’s sister and Detective Blades. It’s too bad we don’t see more of it come into play.
134. P. 256: T presents on the subject of sexual assault and it is said how her presentation was powerful —> I would have liked to determine how powerful it was myself but unfortunately we are not shown the speech. -_- (Or, descriptive of it, as it were). Of course.
135. P. 264: How a character was so nice, optimistic and kind. It’s chilling.
136. Ohhhhh shiiiiiiiit. Shit hits the fan! The detective uncovers who is the vigilante and I thought the sister reference from how the beginning of the book began was really important and a nice touch. I couldn’t believe who it turned out to be the killer.
137. I really, really wanted to know what happened after. How did they react? Everyone else? Wow.
MY FINAL THOUGHTS:
I think ultimately that if telling versus showing is a book you’d like to read than this is the book for you. It is VERY heavy material and once I got into it I kinda liked it but as you saw throughout the commentary portion, if you read that portion, it was very off putting and way too controlling and ugh, anger making than I would have liked it to be. I had a lot to say about it and it really ground my gears–hard.
I’m glad I finally got through this analysis though. Now I can wipe my hands clean of it and try to get back into another book, hopefully better written and better equipped to toil with all of my emotions, ahaha.
Overall, thanks so much for reading!!! I hope that it was enjoyable and I’m only lightly combing back through it before I upload it as I have a few other things I want to try and do next.
See you in the next one!! 🙂 ❤ ❤ ❤ xxx
PS I know very little about abuse, sexual assault, rape and the like and have no personal experience with it. So, I apologize if anything is a little off or I seem to be portraying myself as a rape apologist or the like (for not rejoicing at first with the idea of killing off rapists and other bad people). I don’t think rape is okay in any way. I know that vigilantism is a difficult and complicated topic. My thoughts on this BOOK is for the moment where I stand with these topics. That’s not to say they won’t change in the future as I become more educated and understanding of these complex issues.