This book deals with the subject of child abuse and domestic abuse, which takes place at the hand of a Southern Baptist pastor who uses his religion as an excuse for mistreating his wife and daughter. The scenes depicting the abuse are graphic and may be triggering and disturbing for some readers, and one of them borders on sexual abuse (though it is stopped before it gets to that point).
This book also contains profanity, on-the-page sex scenes between a seventeen-year-old girl and a nineteen-year-old boy, and an unplanned pregnancy. The bonus epilogue contains a short scene of the baby’s birth. This book DOES fall within the consent laws in the state in which it’s set.
While there is a love story and happily ever after in this book, it’s probably the darkest book I’ve ever written. It’s NOT a dark romance. Brendan is the knight in shining armor that Darla needs. He’s fiercely protective and his love for her is intense and pure and real. But the reason she needs a knight in shining armor is written in very graphic detail. It was uncomfortable to write, it’s uncomfortable to read, and that’s the way it’s intended. Child abuse SHOULD make people uncomfortable. It should infuriate people and it should make them want to take action to stop it. If this story touches even one person and inspires them to take action, or if it helps even one survivor of child abuse to realize that they’re not alone, then I’ll have done my job.
If you’re reading this and you’re a survivor of child abuse or domestic abuse, or if you know someone who may be suffering right now, there are resources available to you. Here are just a few of them.
Crisis Text Line (For All Issues)
Text HOME to 741741
Learn more about the text line or apply to volunteer at www.crisistextline.org.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
National Domestic Abuse Hotline
Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline
(800) 422-4453 (Call or Text)
RAINN (Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network)