Recommended for ages 16+. Includes scenes that depict drug use, self-harm, teen sexual situations, and sexual assault.
This book contains mature content and depiction of a seventeen-year-old girl's rape at the hands of another student. It is a chilling, first-hand fictional account of an incident -- the likes of which occurs across the country at parties just like the one depicted in this story - and one we wanted to feel as raw and as devastating as incidents which occur in real life. We also understand that these scenes may be difficult and uncomfortable for some. We recommend this novel for readers ages sixteen and older.
"I cried, praying for him to finish. I closed my eyes and tried to envision myself somewhere else... somewhere where I was happy. I thought of my family all piled around our tree on Christmas morning. I thought of singing with my band. I thought of Clare and me baking cookies and watching movies together. But after just a few seconds of pretending, Mike would hit me or thrust deeper, and I would be back in reality. I was being raped. I was all alone. I was a damsel in distress. And there was no one there to save me."
Seventeen-year-old Stacey Lorenzo's poor self-esteem has always consumed her. When significant weight loss leaves her still feeling powerless and with an eating disorder, she turns to partying to cope. Things go from bad ot worse when she is raped, a crushing blow to her psyche from which she may not recover. Stacey drugs, cuts, and hooks up with countless guys in an attempt to dull the pain. But if Stacey doesn't find a way to face her demons and overcome her fears, she might find herself in a hole so dark, even love won't be able to pull her out.
Barren is written by debut author Elizabeth Miceli. It is a devastating and dark account of one girl's plummet to the very bottom of the human experience and the horrific and petrifying road to recovery and self-worth.
Below are some recent resources for victims and survivors of college sexual assault.
Documentary: The Hunting Ground
PSA: Till It Happens to You with Lady Gaga
PSA: It's On Us: One Thing
Enough is Enough: New York State legislation on college campus assaults