Believe Like a Child
CreateSpace, Jun 22 2011, $11.99
Not long after the death of her maternal Grammy, her protector Uncle Danny sexually abuses his seven year old niece Alessa by placing his fingers into her vagina. She becomes confused and very frightened. Over the next decade, Uncle Danny visits her with impunity. She told her mother that Uncle Danny was sodomizing her, but Caterina called her a liar; while her dad might as well not have existed. The little girl assumed her brother Anthony and her two older sisters (Rosabella and Anna) knew, but did nothing to end the incestuous rapes.
When friendless Alessia turned fourteen, Rhonda in her gym class invites her to a party. When she was sixteen, Alessa was at Rhonda’s house when a visitor fires shots and kills her only buddy. Alessa’s mom bans her from the funeral. After her parents leave for the weekend, Uncle Danny informs his niece she will be friendly to his poker buddies. Instead she leaves hell house for the mean streets of Philadelphia where more Uncle Danny types stalk teens like her.
This is not an easy read as Paige Dearth does not attempt to hide or lessen the ugliness of predators like Uncle Danny and their silent by hiding in the sand supporters like her mother. Alessa is an incredible individual whose over all life from the day Uncle Danny moved in is a living hell. Her trek from hell house to the big city is filled with more ugliness. Yet Alessa lives up to her name as the Defender of Mankind when she reaches out from the darkness as a light to others like her under the bridge young “roommate” Lucy until the past returns in anger.