Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Rape: A Love Story by Joyce Carol Oates

June 16th, 2009 by Debbie's World of Books


Description: Teena Maguire should not have tried to shortcut her way home that Fourth of July. Not after midnight, not through Rocky Point Park. Not the way she was dressed: tank top, denim cut-offs, high-heeled sandals. Not with her twelve-year-old daughter, Bethie. Not with packs of local guys running loose on hormones, rage, and alcohol. A victim of gang rape, left for dead in the park boathouse, the once vital and sexy Teena Maguire can now only regret that she has survived. And Bethie can barely remember a childhood uncolored by fear. For they’re not even a neighborhood away, the men that she identified for the Niagara Falls Police Department: the wide-browed, sandy-haired Pick brothers; the sneering Jimmy DeLucca; Fritz Haaber with his moustache and stubbled jaw. They’ve killed her grandmother’s longhaired orange cat. At a relentless, compelling pace punctuated by lonely cries in the night and the whisper of terror in the afternoon, National Book Award-winner Joyce Carol Oates unfolds the story of Teena and Bethie, their assailants, and their unexpected, silent champion, a man who knows the meaning of justice. And love.

I read this story because I heard such good things about it but I have to say it is not really my type of books.  I did not care for the way the book is written as if addressing Bethie although it was written in a way that made it quick to read.  The story is pretty horrifying as these men who beat and raped Teena and beat Bethie plead non-guilty and paint Teena as some how asking for what happened to her.  It’s a harsh reality check that this story is probably not uncommon and one of the reasons many rape victims may be hesitant to tell others what happened to them or press charges against their attackers.  It was a well written book but you will probably need a pick me up after reading it.

Posted in Books, General Fiction

5 Responses

  1. Lisette

    So it’s basically a depressing book then. Hmm it still sounds interesting even thought it also sounds well, equally depressing and just plain sad.

  2. dsuzuki

    LOL. I found it a little depressing although it does end on a positive note.

  3. Liyana

    I dislike this type of books, because it kind of beats the purpose of me reading: which is to escape into another, different world. Reading about the harsh realities of life… nah.

  4. dsuzuki

    Liyana-I know what you mean. I need to be in a certain mood for this type of book and I could not really get too into the characters. I think that was the difference between this one and say The Chosen One which I thought was great.

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