I really wish there was a graceful way to present this book, but there isn’t. When it comes right down to it, this book is awful. Not in the way you are thinking, (mind you) but in a more dramatic, I can’t believe what I’m reading, does this shit really happen, I don’t know if I hate this or understand the author’s point — kind of awful.
To be perfectly clear about “I Wish I Would’ve”, (because Lord forbid someone purchase this on “accident” and then be subjected to months of high-priced therapy to regain a sense of self) this book is about molestation, incest, child abuse and sex slavery. (No, I didn’t “give the story away” in case you were wondering…all of these things are very obvious once you are past page 3.) And while yes…it has a very important message it’s presentation lacked the sensitivity required for it to be considered (at least to me anyways) Fiction. Instead, let’s call this a sermon in non-fiction sheep’s clothing.
I assure you that I am not a prude, and/or naive, and up until this point I (knowingly at least) have had no aversion to “harsh” literature, but I do believe there is a more “productive” way to approach it. (For example: “Invisible Tears” by Abilgail Lawrence which was in fact based on a true story, and horrifyingly graphic.)
Ashor’s approach, (though effective at getting her point across due to it’s crass writing style) read more as a slap across the face, than the lesson in morality/self-preservation that I’m sure she was striving for, (almost as if she’s impling that the human race “as a whole” is blind to what happens behind closed doors.)
To illustrate my point… I’ll give you a glimpse at how the novel starts.
A Note from Aynoit:
“As you read this story, you will notice a few things. There are not many characters that have names and most of the places/settings have vague descriptions. Many people have asked, “Why didn’t you name anyone? Why weren’t you more descriptive?” My answer is this: When you read this story, I want you to see your nieces, daughters, cousins, friends and neighbors.
This story was written for mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, aunts and nieces, uncles and nephews. This story was written for you. It was written to open your eyes and your heart.
Who comes to your mind while reading this story? Who does this family secret make you think of?
I hope you enjoy this story and yes, I hope it makes you feel a little uneasy, that lets me know that I did what I set out to do. What’s that? I wanted to make you think. I hope it makes you think of your like and your own family secrets.”
Now, I don’t know about you, but I firmly believe that if you have to preface your novel with a note like this, than your execution in the books “purpose” must not be up to par. I get her point, I do, but if you write with the intention of getting a message across, then the story should speak for itself. Readers as a whole are fairly intelligent people and should NOT have to be led to water. Tell us your story and let us gather from it its intentions.
Anyways…I digress, and…have yet to actually tell you what the story is about (other than my less than appealing spill of descriptives above.)
“Follow a daughter on her quest for the truth and a mother who wants to keep her safe by any means necessary. Who is right? Who is wrong? Who will say, I wish I would’ve? She only has loving memories of her beloved G-Pa and can’t understand why her mom calls him “”devil””. On her eighteenth birthday she goes on a quest for the truth, without her mom’s knowledge. While visiting her G-Pa she discovers her dark family secrets.”
So was there nothing I liked about this very short (72 page) book? To be honest…not much, though I will compliment Ms. Ashor on her bravery at tackling such a taboo topic.
Like I said before, I do think it addresses a serious issue, and I do think that it (ultimately) teaches a very important lesson, I just think that there was a better way to approach it, one that maintained it’s dignity while telling us “how it is!”
Read at your own risk, I am not recommending this to anyone…there are several other books out there that illustrate the same point in a better setting.
Happy Reading my fellow Kindle-ites and remember: Just because you CAN say it, doesn’t always mean that you should.
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