Book Review: Again And Again
Goodreads Description: If sexual shenanigans disqualified candidates for Congress, the U.S. would have no government. But what if the candidate was a pro-choice Republican supported by feminist groups—and a college rapist whose secret could be exposed by a leading women’s rights advocate?
Again and Again tells the story of Deborah Borenstein—as an established women’s rights leader in 2010 Washington, DC, and as a college student, thirty years earlier, whose roommate is raped by a fellow student. The perpetrator is now a Senate candidate who has the backing of major feminist groups . . . which puts Deborah in a difficult position. Torn between her past and present, as the race goes on, Deborah finds herself tested as a wife, a mother, a feminist, and a friend.
Woah. This book was intense. It definitely was outside my normal go-to genres of historical fiction, family dramas, and memoirs. I was initially a bit put off by the idea of reading a book whose central story line focused on sexual assault since I usually like my pleasure reading to be my entertainment, but I’m so glad I read this book.
First off, the author has written a bunch and done a lot of work in the field of women’s issues and feminism, so that was a lure for me. Also, I’m always a big fan of challenging myself, so this seemed like a good opportunity to push myself beyond my normal reading limits.
I should preface my review by saying that the story does contain rape, so if that’s something you’re sensitive to, I might suggest waiting to read this book until you feel emotionally ready. It definitely was intense for me, but I think also important to read about and I think Bravo does a good job of capturing the victim’s feelings (Liddie), aftermath, and so on. It was realistic, which I appreciated since I’ve read other books where sexual assault is sort of glossed over, leaving the reader to fill in the blanks. This book does not do that and I think it made for stronger character development of Liddie because of it.
Overall, the story is about the relationship of Deborah– the feminist politico and Liddie, but also the dynamics and issues that face us as adults when faced with a moral question about standing up for what’s right, and the often messed up political system we have in the country. Despite these heavy topics, I found the book readable, yet thought-provoking. It led to several conversations with Q about “what would we do” if ever in similar circumstances. It definitely is a timely read in terms of politics and elections as we enter into the hijinks of the 2016 presidential election.
I’d definitely recommend this one!
About the Author:Ellen Bravo is the head of Family Values @ Work, a network of state coalitions advocating family-friendly policies, and an award-winning writer. Her award-winning nonfiction books include Taking on the Big Boys, or Why Feminism Is Good for Families, Business and the Nation. A Cleveland native, she makes her home in Wisconsin.Find out more about Ellen at her website and follow her on Twitter.