Customer Review

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling and deeply depressing reading, 19 May 2013
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This review is from: Out of the Darkness (Paperback)
This book is certainly compelling and it made gripping reading material - but I'm afraid I didn't find it in any way uplifting or life affirming. The moral - if any - seems to be that there is absolutely nothing that the police or family/friends can do to save a woman who is infatuated with a violent man to the extent Tina was with Shane. I did empathise with Tina and to some extent I understood why she made some of the decisions she made (the desire to save the 'bad boy' from himself can be compelling) but - while feeling dreadfully sorry for how she ended up - I don't like the word 'brave' used to describe someone who puts themselves into a highly risky situation for no good reason and suffers the inevitable consequences - I would rather use the words 'feisty' and 'a survivor'.

It seems sad despite years of woman's rights, that so many women still feel they are inadequate unless they have a man at their side at all times - (Tina even started looking for another man on dating sites while still bruised from the first attack from Shane). I guess that while society pays lip service to the view that women should be valued for their inner qualities, virtually everything in the popular media tells us that the only thing they are really valued for is how attractive they are to men.

I also found it disturbing the role steroids and horror films played in fuelling the violent impulses of a man who was already dangerously mentally unstable and wondered if it is time for a debate about the place these increasing repellent and violent films have in modern society? No doubt given his violent history (he was in prison for an attack which left a man brain-damaged before he met Tina) Shane would have ended up doing hard time for maiming or killing someone, but he certainly seemed to pick up some inspiration for the revolting films he watched incessantly.

The only conclusion I ended up with after reading this book was the need for longer sentences for violent offenders - what's the point of encouraging people to report such crimes if the perpetrator gets off with a slap on the wrist? (It is also notable that Tina started to break away from Shane's spell once they were forcibly separated by him being in prison.)

All in all a disturbing book. I hope Tina uses the money she makes from this book to build a better life for herself and her no doubt traumatised children ...
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A. Linton
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Location: Manchester, Manchester United Kingdom

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