Read this: One Night in Parisby Karyn L. Freedman (Freehand Books) Then that: Shop Class Hall Pass by Karin Martel (Signature Editions) Both Karyn L. Freedman’s One Night in Paris(Freehand Books) and Karin Martel’s Shop Class Hall Pass (Signature Editions) are memoirs about recovering from sexual abuse or assault.
In her memoir One Night in Paris, Freedman recounts how in just one hour, a violent sexual assault transformed her life. Her book details not only her personal recovery but also an examination of the psychological and interpersonal effects of trauma and addresses the societal need to remedy the gender inequalities that are at the root of gendered violence. A winner of the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction, this book acts as a guide for survivors of sexual abuse and assault and their family and friends, as well as an invaluable resource to mental health and trauma response practitioners.
In Martel’s Shop Class Hall Pass, the author reveals that she came to the truth of her abuse much later in life. She’d dismissed what had happened to her in Grade Nine long before, and it was only in a routine therapy appointment to deal with the effects of her job that the reality of her abuse came to light. This deeply personal book grapples with the reality that the trauma survivors carry from sexual abuse can manifest – or not – in myriad ways, and over long periods of time. Through careful self-examination and healing Martel unlearns the behaviours she’d internalized since that event, 35 years before.