Never knowingly under-sensationalized, this polemical tract is only for those who like their 'facts' to be served up in the form of tabloid headlines. (The paradox contained in its title might be the first clue.)
A happily unacademic work, Salter's 'methodology' consists of selecting the most melodramatic examples of stories gathered from her years of employment within prisons, and then somehow extrapolating these questionable anecdotes to society in general.
Her message is clearly enunciated: fear and ignorance should be our guides in approaching life. Which, unfortunately, is also likely to be the alluring nature of this book, and its tendency for mass-appeal; it repeats the same comforting fairy-tales that we so desperately *want* to believe in; that mythical world of monsters and demons, princesses and knights. These fables may be deeply comforting, and we may relish their uncomplicated familiarity, but to pretend - and under the guise of authoritative academia - that such fictions are anything other than tools for manipulation would be unconscionable.
More positively, mention must be made of the author's genuinely impressive ability not to allow her storyline to be clouded by anything resembling intellectual insight. Salter is not alone, of course, in cherry-picking those 'sources' that support her adaptation of the story, although the transparent straw-man approach to the work of genuine scholars still has the power to startle.
For those readers who honestly wish to avoid an hysterical abreaction (and who appreciate that whilst fairy-tales may be enchanting, what we actually need are *new* approaches), then Kincaid's Erotic Innocence: The Culture of Child Molesting
and Levine's Harmful to Minors
should absolutely be their first port of call.