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The Second Trial

3.21  ·  Rating Details ·  247 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
Thirteen-year-old Danny never knew that his father was abusing his mother, until the day his father almost killed her. Now he finds himself in court as his mother fights to have his father kept in jail to keep the family safe. But Danny can't believe that his father is a danger to them, cannot reconcile the father he looks up to with the man who almost took his mother's li ...more
Paperback, 319 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by Second Story Press
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Mar 23, 2011 Matthew rated it did not like it
The plot is very interesting, which is the reason that I first picked up this book. However, The author had a poor writing style for this book, There are a lot of places where it was more thought of from a lawyers perspective, instead of a child's. Another problem i had with this book was it's constant jumps in emotions, one minute the child will feel one emotion, then it is yanked away into a totally different thought and feeling. I think the basis is good, but the author needs improvement. I w ...more
Thorn MotherIssues
Oct 13, 2010 Thorn MotherIssues rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2010
This is a weird and awfully didactic book. I didn't find the characters convincing and it seemed more like the kind of character sketches we got in foster parent training, but the idea of a witness protection program for victims of domestic violence was interesting.
Dec 14, 2012 Danny rated it it was amazing
The second trail is about a boy who is dealing with family problems. At the beginning Danny has no idea his farther is abusing his mother. But after he finds his mother hurt down by the stairs, he decides to dial 9-1-1. After the problem revealed, Danny is totally confused and upset about all the problems he had. After the court and living with his grandparents, Danny begins to act out and distances himself from his mother and sister. Finally Danny faces his own trial when he is arres
Jul 20, 2010 Jody rated it really liked it
Shelves: gave-away, review
Danny’s life has been turned upside down in an instant. Or so it seems to him. One night he heard his parents fighting, and when he emerged from his room he found his mother unconscious at the bottom of the stairs. He had no idea that the phone call to 9-1-1 would start a chain of events that would change everything forever. Now he and his mother and little sister are about to start a whole new life, complete with new names and new identities. Danny is furious with his mother for forcing him to ...more
Canadian Children's Book Centre
Reviewed by Arwen Rudolph

Danny had no idea that his father was abusing his mother. Now his father is in jail, his parents are getting divorced, and Danny doesn’t think his life can get any worse. Then the police convince his mother to enter a victim protection program. Leaving behind friends, family and their former identities, Danny, his mother and his sister move to a new city to start over. As he recalls his own happy memories of his father, Danny questions whether he is really as dangerous a
Oct 05, 2010 Renee rated it it was amazing
Wow, what a powerful story. Although it's a YA novel, I really think it's a good book for all ages. Domestic violence is a huge issue in our society, and The Second Trial examines the aftermath from a child's perspective. It's not graphic or preachy, it simply points out what is, what could be, and how it needs to change. I've posted a full review here I'm too lazy to write it again. What? If you don't want to check it out, then I'll say, definitely read this book. If you haven't been a victim o ...more
Jan 23, 2011 Hal rated it really liked it
Although this book's subject matter is generally something I shy away from, I found it a very well-told story that didn't just use domestic violence as a tool for shock and awe, nor to "raise awareness" by telling the most depressing story imaginable. Instead, Rosemarie tells the trials as they are and as they come, with more of a focus on the "second" part -- what comes after. It's this aspect that gives this book great strength and makes it stand out as a beacon of hope for people in such situ ...more
Nov 05, 2010 Chantale rated it really liked it
The author's background in practicing family law resonates well in the court proceedings scenes. The conflicting emotions of all the characters during the trial come across very strongly. Boll manages to share the mother, Catherine's feelings so that the reader can understand the adult perspective as well as her son Danny's emotions about the abuse in their family. I didn't know the name of Canada's Federal Government program - the Confidential Services for Victims of Abuse before reading this b ...more
Jennifer (Teen Librarian) Beiermann
A fast read. I kept wondering when and if the father would show up again in the story. I kept wondering if Danny would contact his father.
Jan 27, 2017 Kelsey rated it liked it

Danny is the oldest kid in his family and he finds out that his dad has been super abusive to his mom. He has to make a lot of changes in his life even his name ,and he has a hard time with this cause at the same time he still wants to be close with his dad

I thought the book was good it has a few relatable moments. I thought was interesting because they have to through this big process to get Dannys mom and his family safe from his dad.

First of all, the author Rosemarie Boll did a really good jo
Liz at Midnight Bloom Reads
I don't think I could ever read The Second Trial for its enjoyment, it deals with subject matter that is too serious for that. Once finishing this novel, you'll have a better understanding of how domestic abuse affects not just victims, but so many other family members and friends as well. It's not talked about so often in YA, so I appreciated Rosemarie Boll's debut novel all the more.

For Danny McMillan, it was the beginning of the end of his parent's marriage when he dialed 9-1-1 af
Audrey (holes In My brain)
Full review on my blog, holes In my brain.

My Thoughts

There was quite a bit going on with the novel, there were the two trials, family tension, and Danny’s internal and external conflicts, but I thought most of this worked well together.

The pacing and the plot was a bit off for my tastes, I thought the “first trial” (the father’s conviction) was both a bit preachy and a bit slow. It took forever to get to the predictable verdict, and the jargon used could be odd at times. I think it was designed
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for

Danny McMillan loves his dad, so coming to terms with the fact that the man is on trial for physically and emotionally abusing Danny's mom is taking its toll. Danny's mom thinks it is important for Danny to attend the sentencing hearing in hopes that he can come to terms with the reality of this horrible situation.

As Danny sits in court and listens to details of his life he never knew existed, anger and fear begin to build. Although
Second Story Press
In The Second Trial, readers are exposed to the painful reality of a fictional family that has found protection through an underground network dedicated to helping mothers and children escape abusers.
In this young adult novel, thirteen-year-old Danny McMillan finds himself in a situation he never imagined - in a courtroom with his parents on opposite sides. Danny watches as his mother fights to have his father kept in jail to keep the family safe. But when the limits of the justice system allow
Nov 24, 2015 Merida rated it it was ok
The premise of the plot would appear to be interesting but this book fell short of what I had expected. The writing is sub-par and the dialogue at times appears either too formal or too forced to sound informal. The characters aren't very realistically written.
Changes happen so quickly in the story that you can't grasp exactly what happened to cause it. Danny keeps switching emotions in an instant from hating his mother to wanting to be nice to her. Danny continues to act in a selfish manner rig
Alene Sen
May 02, 2013 Alene Sen rated it liked it
The book is about domestic abuse and the relocation (undisclosed to the father) of a family after a judge rules in the mother's favor. The second trial is a metaphor for the trial of life after relocation. I'm torn between liking this book and not liking it. I liked it for the intuitiveness of how Danny was feeling being separated from his father and starting a new life without his consent. I didn't like the dragging on of the story. It felt so drawn out, that I was beginning to lose patience an ...more
Rinoa Malapaya
Feb 10, 2016 Rinoa Malapaya rated it it was ok
Actually if I didn't need to read this for English i would have already given up on this book. When i was at page 50 and i was ready to throw this book out of the window, Danny, the main character made this book really hard and painful to read as he was just so frustrating. However the ending was ok, it was better than expected, he learned to finally let go and his relationship with his sister and mother improved immensely.
Sep 22, 2010 Judy added it
What do you do when your father becomes the enemy of your family? A thirteen year-old boy must leave his home, his school, and everything he knows when he goes into hiding with his mother and sister to escape an abusive father. Thirteen-year-old Danny never knew that his father was abusing his mother, until the day his father almost killed her. Now he finds himself
FIC Boll 334309 EVE
Jane Shaffer
Jan 28, 2013 Jane Shaffer rated it it was amazing
This books gets my vote for the Young Readers' Choice Award for 2013!! This was a gripping story about domestic abuse and the effect on the children in the family. The only time I could put this book down was when I was so angry at the main character that I had to put the book down!
Jayna Johnston
Jan 10, 2017 Jayna Johnston rated it it was amazing
I loved this book a 5 start rating. It was about an young boy who had a abusive father towards his mother and didnt realize. They went to court and he heard everything his father doing. HE moved and litterally had to restart his life.
Rosemarie Boll
The Second Trial was nominated for the 2013 Young Reader's Choice Award.
Brielle Schmieder
May 13, 2014 Brielle Schmieder rated it really liked it
4.5 pretty good book better than what excepted! Usually I hate reading but this book I could not put down
Rosemarie Boll
Jul 21, 2011 Rosemarie Boll added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Now available as an iBook
Dec 15, 2012 Kristen rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult, 2012
Intense young adult novel about the fall out in a family trying to escape an abusive past. Definately a top contender for my YRCA vote.
Dec 16, 2013 pretty_reads rated it did not like it
This book is actually really boring. At the beginning it was good but then after that, I couldn't take it any more. I stopped.
Dec 03, 2010 Denisa marked it as did-not-finish
Shelves: books-4-school
Going to try to read again; Reading for White Pine
Natasha Deen
May 31, 2011 Natasha Deen rated it really liked it
Powerful, insightful, and realistic. A can't miss kind of book.
Carisa rated it it was ok
Dec 10, 2011
Santiago rated it it was amazing
May 20, 2015
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Rosemarie Boll has been practicing family law for 25 years. She has written extensively on the legal system and how it affects families. She is committed to educating the public about the complex network of laws which govern our everyday lives, and explaining what the justice system can and cannot do. She has published over sixty columns, articles, and book reviews for LawNow magazine. Rosemarie i ...more
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