By Erin Healy
Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko
In the burnt-out hollow, a house of dark secrets and an eerie beauty beckon.
Serena Diaz’s life is imploding. A troubled student has accused the young biology teacher of sexual misconduct, cutting off her promising career just as it was starting to blossom. But that’s just the beginning of Serena’s problems.
When a therapeutic walk in the woods leads her to a ruined house overtaken by criminals, Serena is assaulted and finds herself witness to the senseless murder of the one man who tries to help her.
Hurled into a world of false accusations and hounded by the press, Serena must confront evil itself to unravel the mysterious visions—and terrifying danger—that pursue her. But she can’t ignore the most haunting question: Why would a mysterious stranger give his life to save hers?
The answer, if she can find it, will point the way to her freedom from evil men in a lascivious trade.
Wow. I have read several books on the topic of human trafficking and many of them cover different facets of it, and Erin Healy covers a different facet of human trafficking than I could think of.
She brings it close to home, personal and attacks the thoughts in your mind, so you see it. These girls become your sisters, your mother, and your next door neighbor.
I think the thing that struck me the most was when the young men part of the organization went around to warn families of the danger to their girls, the reaction they got. One foster/group home mother laughed cynically, basically felt like there was no use in even trying to warn them. The next house, the dad threatened them, accusing them of being the perverts and didn’t want to hear it about his precious girl, while the third, shrugged and said if they wanted her, they could have her, it would be one less person asking for her money.
When I read this book, I realized something. We are a nation of cell phones, computers, communication devices, yet we lack at care and communication. In this way, we leave our young people open to danger. We are busy, busy with our own things and lack time to actually care and communicate with them.
This leaves them open to evil, who will come in, ask them how they are, build their trust, talk to them, listen and in time lure them away and they will be lost to us.
Have we listened to our neighbors? Our sons and daughter’s? Their friends? Are we listening? Are we their friends? Can they ask us for advice? We can help with human trafficking by changing this. We can be active parents that care and listen. We can be a part of their lives, and not just assume they are fine in school. We can be the one that is the embarrassing parent as we always present, an active participant in their lives.
Does this warranty that they will not get into trouble? No. Nothing does. But it sure can cut back on them!
All that to say, this book really got me thinking. It was the perfect suspense novel, with beautiful pictures of love and sacrifice portrayed in the Christopher, while alternatively evil personified portrayed in Phil and Roman. If you want a good read, that will get you thinking, pick this book up!!!