Monday, March 28, 2016


Allison Huguet was raped.  Her rapist, longtime friend, Beau Donaldson, enjoyed a stellar reputation as a high school and college football hero...a hero, who, in the eyes of many, could not have committed such a terrible act.  Allison's story twists and turns through the justice system, challenging the victim's stamina and questioning her recall and intentions.  The details of the process baffle especially as Krakauer cites case after case not unlike Allison's.

This is the text from the bottom of the front cover, "Missoula, Montana is a typical college town, home to a highly regarded state university whose beloved football team inspires a passionately loyal fan base. Between January 2008 and May 2012, hundreds of students reported sexual assaults to the local police.  Few of the cases were properly handled by either the university or local authorities.  In this, Missoula is also typical."

Krakauer, noted researcher and author of Under the Banner of Heaven, uses a four year period in the social history of  Missoula University as a case study from which to draw frightening evidence of college campus rapes and the systemic dismissal of these crimes.  Although he highlights the experiences of only five young women, Krakauer's relentless digging uncovers the mortifying reality that the Missoula campus is not an anomaly.

At times I felt as if I were reading a script from Law and Order SVU, but then I had to remind myself that these true accounts scream of a scourge of disrespect, violence and dishonesty toward women.  The Anita Hill case raised the consciousness of our nation and many people, at least in voice, chose a more sensitive  way of interacting each other.  Now I wonder if those old habits - the name calling, the badgering, the belief that some people are less and deserve less than others - simply burrowed underground for a while.

Although not an easy book to read from an emotional perspective, I would suggest that any parent sending someone off to college read and discuss this book with their son or daughter.

Now back to A Man Called Ove.  I'm not enjoying it any more than I did the first time around, but I am finding much to admire about Ove.  And I'm taking notes, arming myself for our April book discussion meeting.

Thanks to Steph K. for telling me about Missoula and...
Thanks for stopping by.
LaDeDa Bev