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Against My Will
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Against My Will

4.7 4
by Benjamin Berkley
 
Danielle Landau knows she should feel lucky, but she can't feel anything but dread. Not only did she pass the New York Bar, but she married the man her father says is just right for her and lives in a fashionable new loft in Queens. But the man who seems like the perfect catch is a perfect nightmare at home. Jacob tries to control her career, her daily routine, and

Overview

Danielle Landau knows she should feel lucky, but she can't feel anything but dread. Not only did she pass the New York Bar, but she married the man her father says is just right for her and lives in a fashionable new loft in Queens. But the man who seems like the perfect catch is a perfect nightmare at home. Jacob tries to control her career, her daily routine, and even when she eats. He ignores her desires and belittles her every chance he gets. Soon, Danielle doesn't recognize her husband or herself, and she struggles to find a way out. One night, Jacob pushes her too far, and now Danielle has to escape. With the help of her beloved Nana, Danielle moves across the country and starts to rebuild her life. But will she be able to escape her past? And when one of her clients finds herself in the same terrible situation, will Danielle have the strength to help her? As we follow Danielle on her journey of terror and recovery, we see her story intersect with the diary entries of a young girl from more than fifty years ago, and the full weight of the family's secrets becomes clear. This is a story of survival, self-discovery, justice, and ultimately about love.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Benjamin Berkley masterfully confronts the unimaginable bringing awareness to a subject that is too often unreported."
--Denise Brown, Co-Founder and President, Nicole Brown Foundation

"Benjamine Berkley has broken new ground in his intricate novel about an abuse victim’s journey. Key character’s lives become intertwined in unexpected ways in this poignant and satisfying novel."
--Jill Rathus, PhD Professor of Psychology, Long Island University

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780883912799
Publisher:
Fell, Frederick Publishers, Incorporated
Publication date:
09/01/2012
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Benjamin Berkley, J.D., has practiced law for over 34 years with the courtroom often substituting as his second home. In addition to representing the famous and not so infamous, it was a soft spoken, older woman with white hair and her amazing story that become the inspiration for this debut novel. Berkley also writes a blog for the Huffington Post and lives in Southern California with his wife Phyllis and their cat Riley He has two grown children and is always bragging about both his grandson and granddaughter.

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Against My Will 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
ruthhill74 More than 1 year ago
So how do you rate a book that almost mirrors your life? Okay, not really, but trust me, there are similarities--I will get to that. Let's get the "negatives" out of the way. There is some profanity in the book, and the sex scenes are rather descriptive. The profanity wasn't too prevalent, and the sex scenes were necessary--due to the entire message of the book. But do approach this book with the knowledge that this is an adult book. The cover alone is hauntingly beautiful. Even my students today found it pretty and commented on it. And my response was that I agreed, but it was sad. And it is. I had no idea until I read this book that marital rape was even considered a crime. I guess that is a piece of information that I will tuck away for a later time. As I read about Danielle's marriage, I understood. It was hard to read. I was married for ten years to a controlling husband, and I divorced him before he became violent. Let me blunt here. He raped me once, and I let it happen. I remember it very clearly even to this date. I submitted so that I could go see a movie--talk about feeling like a prostitute. And I remained in the marriage for several years after that and even brought my beautiful daughter into the world. I was glad that my ex was nicer than Jacob, but there were still enough similarities that portions of the book were rather emotionally charged for me. This book is expertly written, and it is hard to believe that it is written by a man. I am always amazed when men can create convincing female protagonists in books, and even in first person! This is Benjamin Berkley's first novel, but I hope it won't be his last. I think I need to look up his non-fiction based on this book alone. It is clear that he is quite an expert on this topic. I found it absolutely genius on the author's part to tie a Holocaust survivor's story to the current story of the book. This added just the right amount of intrigue, and of course, the ending of the book is quite powerful in this "side story." I would have even liked this portion of the book to be developed in more detail. I believe that any woman who feels they can handle the subject and content of this book should read this book. I can also recommend it to men, too, as it is not some "chick book." Oh, and by the way, there is some romance in this book--for all those romance lovers out there! I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.
MarissaA More than 1 year ago
Against My Will, was such a good story. There were a lot of interesting and hard real life situations that were issued here, including being in an abusive relationship. The story mainly revolves around Danielle, and she is the one that is in a horrible marriage, but she shows strength, by getting away, and how she does that, was great. She's one that was obedient, doing what she was told, but finally she stands up for herself, and moves away from her husband, her family, to the West Coast, and builds a new life, and finds a love, that just shines the rest of the story. Alongside Danielle's story, we also read journal entries from her great-grandmother, Rose, entries from decades before, and her story is great as well, and those two stories intertwined was written really well, and for me, the story ended on a really wonderful note :) My Rating: 4/5Mildly R-Rated (17-18+) 
Celticlady1953 More than 1 year ago
Against My Will is a story about a young Jewish woman, Danielle, who lives with her father, just passed the bar exam and comes home one day to have the local matchmaker in her living room with her father. With them is a young man, Jacob, whom her father thinks would be a perfect husband. Against her better judgement she agrees to date him. Then she agrees to marry him and then it all goes downhill from there. She finally finds the courage to leave Jacob when he rapes her. A tough subject matter for sure where a lot of people would argue that a husband isn't raping his wife if he takes her by force.  A parallel story is about her grandmother Rose who survived the Holocaust and kept a journal about it. Rose is the only one who seems to understand how Danielle feels. As a lawyer, Danielle will find herself defending a woman who charges that her husband raped her. The author intertwines these stories into a very poignant story of women who are finally able to stand up for what they feel is right. I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it.
nle1 More than 1 year ago
Daniella Landau was a lovely Jewish girl in New York who is adored by her father and Nana, loved by her sister and friends but clueless when it comes to romance. Family keeps bringing over “such a nice boy” for her to meet but she was far more into passing the Bar than dating. Then her father met a “matchmaker”. In walks Jacob Liebowitz whom her father insists is “the perfect man. He has a good job, a new loft apartment and prospects. Marriage follows and Danielle quickly realizes the mistake she has made. She gives marriage her all but nothing satisfies Jacob. He must be in control. Danielle tries to talk to her father about her unhappiness but he tells her to go home and be a good wife. Nothing changes until, one night, Jacob really crosses the line and Danielle goes to her grandmother. She gets enough money to leave and, leave she does. Intertwined with Danielle’s heartbreak is the story of another young Jewish girl named Rose. Rose lived in Austria in WWII and became a resident of the Mauthausen Concentration Camp. She is chosen to work in the Commandant’s kitchen and is thus saved from fate. However, Rose is subjected to a fate of her own, one she would not have picked for anything. This is Berkley’s first novel. He has written four previous books including Before You Say I Do Again: A Buyer’s Beware Guide to Remarriage.” It is very well done with characters perfectly written for their parts. Nana is the grandmother everyone wants to have. Mr. Landau is trying to do right for his daughter but ultimately his culture causes him to make a huge error. The concentration camp environment was quite well written and I felt Rose’ fear when the family was taken. A great story told well and one I’m sure you would enjoy!