[SWP News] Give These Books Some Love!
Contributor
Written by
Cait Levin
August 2015
Contributor
Written by
Cait Levin
August 2015

As a young girl growing up in the Midwest, Sunny is taught to think differently. Her parents are the founders of a small Christian school that practiced Socratic Discourse and encouraged its students to question everything—a lesson Sunny embraces wholeheartedly.

As Sunny grows older, she begins to build the life she’s always wanted: she marries, buys a house, enrolls in graduate school, and soon has a baby on the way. But when she experiences the psychological phenomena of orgasmic labor, it triggers a chain of bizarre events, and she gradually descends into a world of delusion and paranoia. As Sunny struggles to separate the real from the unreal, she relies upon friends and family to ground her in truth and love—and keep her from going over the edge into madness. 

Randall Grange has been tricked into admitting herself into a treatment center and she doesn’t know why. She’s not a party hound like the others in her therapy group—but then again, she knows she can’t live without pills or booze.

Raised by an abusive father, a detached mother, and a loving aunt and uncle, Randall both loves and hates her life. She’s awkward and a misfit. Her parents introduced her to alcohol and tranquilizers at a young age, ensuring that her teenage years would be full of bad choices, and by the time she’s twenty-three years old, she’s a full-blown drug addict, well acquainted with the miraculous power chemicals have to cure just about any problem she could possibly have—and she’s in more trouble than she’s ever known was possible.

Hillary Clinton’s name is on everyone’s lips as we head into the 2016 presidential election. But as we know from the 2008 presidential campaign, and its outcome, Clinton evokes extreme and varied emotions among voters in a way no other candidate in recent memory has. But why?

Love Her, Love Her Not: The Hillary Paradox delves into the nuances of our complicated feelings about one of the most powerful women ever in American politics. In this timely collection, editor Joanne Bamberger gathers a unique and diverse group of writers of all ages, walks of life, and political affiliations, while also providing the narrative framework through which to view the history that’s led us to this moment in time—the moment when voters must decide whether they can forgive Hillary Clinton for not being the perfect candidate or the perfect woman and finally elect our first woman president. Timely and fresh, Love Her, Love Her Not will provoke new conversations and push political and cultural dialogue in the US to a new level.

When LeeAndra Chergey is told that her son, Ryan, is no longer considered “normal,” she and her family are forced into a new way of handling the outside world. Together, Chergey’s family and a team of carefully chosen therapists put in years of hard work, and eventually teach Ryan to speak and express emotions. Through it all, Chergey follows her heart—and in the process, she learns that being “normal” is not nearly as important as providing your child with a life full of joy, love, and acceptance. Tender and candid, Make A Wish For Me is a story of accepting and tackling a disability stigmatized and misunderstood by society.  

Beginning at age three, Mandy Smith’s stepfather—the man she calls “Daddy”—begins to molest her. When she finally breaks the family’s code of silence at age fourteen, she is shunned—an abandonment that leads her down a dark path. Smith wants acceptance, but she only finds more abuse.

When Smith finds herself pregnant as the result of a brutal rape, the deep love she feels for her unborn baby surprises her. She is in the midst of making plans for their new life together when her parents perform one final act of deception—a betrayal that sends Smith into a four-decades-long abyss of depression, eating disorders and PTSD.

Raw and intense, Secrets in Big Sky Country offers a disturbing portrait of the repercussions of familial sexual abuse—and an inspiring model for how survivors can rise above their shame and secrets and find a place of healing.

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