Joanna Connors was 30 years old when she was raped at knifepoint by a stranger. After this horrifying trauma, she became afraid of everything – flying, driving, travelling in a car while someone else drove. She had children, but hovered over them constantly, terrified about what might happen to them as well. Then, when her daughter was 16, Joanna began to confront the fear that had ruled her life ever since that day: in an act of breathtaking humanity, she went in search of the story of her own rapist, determined to find out who he was, where he came from, what his life was like – and what leads a person to do something as destructive as what he did to her.
I finished reading this book today and wrote the following review:
I heard the author being interviewed on National Radio (New Zealand) and found the brief insight into the book a powerful tale of forgiveness. I was interested in what that looked like for her in terms of her journey and was not disappointed by the detail and honesty with which the author recalled that journey.
If violent sexual exploits have at all be glamorised by 50 Shades of Grey, then I Will Find You takes all the glamour out of fan-fiction, and reports that the repercussions of sexual aggression are wide spread. Joanna Connors was haunted for decades by her rape, and this had a significant impact on the way she related to her mother, sisters; within her marriage; and with her own children. What happened in the darkness of an on-campus theatre followed her into the light of what ought to have been sources of joy (family, marriage).
A gripping read in which the explicit details of the violent acts were set in their context and stirred up in me a sense of compassion for those who have been victimised by those acts.