A Deep Dark Secret

A Deep Dark Secret

4.2 82
by Kimberla Lawson Roby, Cherise Boothe, Tom Stechschulte
     
 

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The New York Times bestselling author returns with the moving story of a family who learns to overcome betrayal and secrets with courage and love

On the outside, twelve-year-old Jillian Maxwell is the perfect child. She's helpful with chores around the house, gets straight As in school, has plans for college, and stays out of trouble. She seems to

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Overview

The New York Times bestselling author returns with the moving story of a family who learns to overcome betrayal and secrets with courage and love

On the outside, twelve-year-old Jillian Maxwell is the perfect child. She's helpful with chores around the house, gets straight As in school, has plans for college, and stays out of trouble. She seems to have everything a girl could want: a big, beautiful new home, an adoring little sister, a mother who cares about her, and an attentive stepfather.

But inside, Jillian harbors a terrible secret.

Too frightened to tell, convinced that her friends and loved ones, especially her mother, won't understand—and worse, will blame her—Jillian endures her pain in silence, believing that things will get better. However, as time passes and her dilemma intensifies, the bright, hardworking girl becomes sullen and disinterested in her studies. Then, just when it seems she's on the verge of losing everything, Jillian discovers she has more strength than she ever imagined…and the power to change her fate.

With sensitivity and grace, Kimberla Lawson Roby addresses a very real and serious issue, while delivering the inspiring tale of one family's mission to shed light into the darkest corner of their lives.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Sexually abused for five years, studious 12-year-old Jillian Maxwell lives in terror of her pedophile stepfather, Byron James, in Roby's (The Best of Everything) powerful short novel. The nightmare begins with her stepfather's inappropriate fondling shortly after the birth of her half-sister, Layla, and gradually escalates. Byron warns her that Roxanne, Jillian's mom, won't believe her if she tells and later says he'll start abusing Layla if Jillian doesn't cooperate. When revelations about Byron's abuse of another underage girl surfaces, Roxanne kicks him out, but then takes him back. Meanwhile, Nikki, Jillian's BFF, is obsessed with promiscuous Marcus, who sees nothing wrong in “running a train” (gangbanging) on Nikki with two of his pals during a school dance. Nikki becomes a laughingstock and almost kills herself, which is the turning point for Jillian, who learns that Nikki is an abuse survivor. A heart-wrenching confrontation leads to a resolution with hopeful repercussions. An intense gem in an authentic voice. (Nov.)
Library Journal
Jillian Maxwell was only seven when her stepfather began coming to her room while her mother was out. Now, at age 12, Jillian is afraid to refuse her stepfather for fear he'll move on to her little sister. Narrated from Jillian's perspective, Roby's (Love and Lies) brief novel holds a chilling implication: it's so easy to hide sexual abuse. The author veers a little into the didactic getting the backstory out and setting up the scene, but the story picks up as Jillian shows interest in a boy from school, her stepfather's demands escalate, and her best friend gets sexually involved with the wrong boy. Readers will be cheered when the villain finally gets his comeuppance. VERDICT Adult and teen readers of Jacquelin Thomas and Victoria Christopher Murray will enjoy this African American family drama with its clear message about the insidiousness of sexual abuse and about God helping those who help themselves.—Laurie Cavanaugh, Brockton P.L., MA

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781440728907
Publisher:
Recorded Books, LLC
Publication date:
10/06/2009
Series:
The Hector Lassiter Series

Meet the Author

Kimberla Lawson Robyis the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of the Reverend Curtis Black series as well as many other novels and novellas. She lives with her husband in Rockford, Illinois.

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