Review: Etched on Me by Jenn Crowell

Etched on Me by Jenn Crowell
Published: February 4, 2014
Format: via NetGalley
Rating: 3.5/5

On the surface, sixteen-year-old Lesley Holloway is just another bright new student at Hawthorn Hill, a posh all-girls prep school north of London. Little do her classmates know that she recently ran away from home, where her father had spent years sexually abusing her. Nor does anyone know that she secretly cutting herself as a coping mechanism...until the day she goes too far and ends up in the hospital.

Lesley spends the next two years in and out of psychiatric facilities, where she overcomes her traumatic memories and finds the support of a surrogate family. Eventually completing university and earning her degree, she is a social services success story;until she becomes unexpectedly pregnant in her early twenties. Despite the overwhelming odds she has overcome, the same team that saved her as an adolescent will now question whether Lesley is fit to be a mother. And so she embarks upon her biggest battle yet: the fight for her unborn daughter.

My Thoughts
Etched on Me is a well written tale of Lesley who it seems life it’s taken its toll on. It’s at times a hard to read tale of rape and mental illness and it’s effect on her life. I definitely feel for Lesley and all the hardships she suffered growing up. She fought for her voice to be heard and believed when she said her father raped her. She had to deal with the after effects of that coming out and how her mother knew what was going on yet didn’t do anything to stop it. Then having to deal with mental illness and fighting for her daughter. 
Throughout the book all I kept thinking about was can't this girl catch a break? There is only so much a person can handle before they break into pieces. Mental illness is still something people don’t want to talk about, even in this day and age its taboo. People think “mental illness” equals plain crazy and it’s way more than that, it’s a disease, just like any other.

While this novel is very informative it is very raw. It pulls no punches and at times it was a tad to gritty for me. I do like that it does deal with topics that need to address and can potentially help many people who may need it. So if you want a read a story that tells it like it is and touches on social topics this maybe the one for you.


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