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Stolen Innocence: Triumphing Over a Childhood Broken by Abuse: A Memoir
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Stolen Innocence: Triumphing Over a Childhood Broken by Abuse: A Memoir

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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  180 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Eleven-year-old Erin Merryn's life was transformed on the night she was sexually abused by her cousin, someone she loved and trusted. As the abuse continued, and as she was forced to see her abuser over and over again in social situations, she struggled with self-doubt, panic attacks, nightmares and the weight of whether or not to tell her terrible secret. It wasn't until...more
Paperback, 252 pages
Published January 1st 2005 by HCI (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 482)
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Eva Leger
May 19, 2009 Eva Leger rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: n/a
Recommended to Eva by: learned about it on here
I'm hesitant to say anything "bad" about this book even though I know that's part of a review sometimes. The author not only went through this abuse but was obviously young at the time of the book writing. I'm going to be honest however.
I thought it was just okay at best. There are many, many books and genres that I know nothing about. This isn't one of them. This is one of the few genres I do happen to know about and I've read many, many books on the subject.
This fell flat. It seemed like they...more
Hotavio
Stolen Innocence is excerpts of a diary from a girl who was molested by her cousin. While the acts are committed in the first 50 pages, her agony rages on throughout her adolescence.

The book's story was its strength. It is unfathomable that the author, Merryn, is continually subjected to her tormentor through consistent family gatherings, the extended family favoring her cousin over her by proclaiming his innocence and taking a heightened interest in his scholastics and athletics.
Erin is a bri...more
Kate
I appreciate the message Merryn was hoping to convey to her readers, and the sheer hootspah it takes to tell such a deeply personal and traumatizing story for such selfless reasons as to help other victims of abuse. In that respect, I whole-heartedly admire her.
However, getting through this novel was hard to do because of the bland diction and constant, overused sentence structure. There was not much of a variety, and as a result I have a hard time remembering much of the work other than the b...more
Gabriel Lopez
The reson i picked this book is because when i read a child called it that book was so sad and when i finish that book at the end of the book it said stolen innocence a real life book so then i began to read the back of it and became interested and began to read it so when I was reading it it became to be emotional and how he began to tough her and tryed to rape her so I want to said for the girl who out their getting rape dont be sraced to tell anyone what is happen in your life ang god bless y...more
Jackelyn
Has a great window veiw of what it is to be abused by a family member and the rejection you get from family..
Georgie
I've read all of Erin's books, and each one is good. She's telling her story. It's not easy to read, but each book is well done. It's not easy for her or anyone to share a story like this, but her triumph has turned into a passion, and she is determined to do her part to eradicate child sexual abuse. She is an advocate that lived it, and will do whatever she possibly can to help even one child, but helping one will never be enough. Erin is tough as nails and will keep going like the energizer bu...more
Julia Hickey
Great read! I admire the amazing strength it must have taken for Erin to publish this.
Jennifer
Feb 11, 2009 Jennifer added it
Shelves: non-fiction
Wonderful book. Shows the trials and triumphs when overcoming childhood sexual abuse.
Jazmyn
This was a Great book One of my Favorites
Aleyda Rodriguez
loved the ending it was a happy ennding
Orliender
no comment... so touching!
Daisy giannetta
The beginning of the book was really good and exciting(in like a creepy way). Let just start off with that this is a true story of what happened to the author, and although I respect her for writing it out and sharing her story, it started to get pretty repetitive after the first couple chapters. After all the molestations happened it was kinda just her saying the same thing over and over about her being sad and suicidal. It got really boring. Overall the first half of the book keeps you on edge...more
Kelly
By far the best book I have ever read and I have read thousands of books. This book is so moving and inspiring to see a young woman overcome what she survived and be such an inspiration for others. The letters confronting her abuser were powerful. I can't wait to read her other two books. Starting tonight!
Leslie Raddatz
A young girl was molested by her cousin, Brian. Her memories were present all the time. She also develops Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and has to learn how to cope. She cut herself in an attempt to release her pain. She was very suicidal and wrote a note to family members and at one point took a bottle of pills. She was put on antidepressants and anxiety medication to help her cope with her flashbacks and body memories. Erin went to an outpatient program at a hospital to participate in groups...more
Trina
I've felt like I've heard/read a LOT of information as of late on the dangers of sexual abuse to children. It has been a good reminder that it can be ANYONE - friend, family, stranger- that can take advantage of our children.

While I thought I knew what to expect, it the end it was more about forgiveness and not harboring anger than it was about the abuse. I liked her message, but didn't find myself too drawn to her writing style. I had to keep reminding myself how young she is, especially when...more
Lizz Hernandez
This book was sad, it wasn't what I expected but if u think about it, it was by a 12 year old, it was her journal of the events that occurred to her.
Even tho she didn't get justice after all the years and her family pretending nothing happened she still survived at the end.
Krista, Ambassador of Shimmy
Read 2007

This courageous young author and child abuse survivor spoke at our local college. I was so moved by her story and her "breaking the cycle" I had to run out and grab the book right away.

Child abuse happens every day, and more often than we ever think. It's not always the families who look like they have problems...sometimes it's the "clean" ones.

This memoir offers a glimpse into the true life of the abused and what you can do to help.

I wasn't disappointed with this read, and neither will...more
Mika
sexual abuse victim's journey to recovery and healing.

After reading this book, there will be no doubt in the reader's mind what Erin went through. The author writes about her feelings in detail and does so repeatedly. It's a sad account of a little girl's childhood irreparably broken at the hands of a family member. The book could have been better edited as there are a lot of mistakes. Of course, anyone can read this book but the writing style is that of an adolescent and would be a great read e...more
Dianne
Most memoirs that I have read are the truly horrible cases a child abuse ("A Child Called It"). So it is good to read a memoir of abuse that has happened to many, but is not often discussed. In the book, Erin has to continuously see her abuser at family gatherings because her extended family doubts her claim of abuse. Erin's mother even admits to her own past abuse. Erin is not a writer and the book is written as her diary, so at points in the book it failed to capture me. Still, a good read fro...more
Tracy
Jul 23, 2012 Tracy added it
At first, it was a little boring. You could tell a child was writing, but then things started picking up. I'm not going to lie, I wanted to read it because I went to school with the author and heard so much about it. After I was done reading it, I was in shock, speechless. Just to know that something that horrible happened to someone I knew, and she was able to forgive the perpetrator, was unbelievable. It definitely brought up memories from my freshman year of high school, but it was a good rea...more
Marnie
Okay, I have had my fill of nonfiction abuse reading. This is a way too depressing subject that breaks my heart to no end. This is a very good book, not nearly as outstanding as Dave Pelzer. On the other hand, this is a book that opens up the other ends of effects abuse has on the victims, families, and the system even today. This book is a more current up to date book of todays laws. And yes, we still have a big hole that needs to be filled.
Colleen Ray
I realize this is supposed to be the diary of an eleven year old (which i don't completely buy --- how many eleven year olds use words like "whom?"), but it was just so.....boring. I gave up about half way through.
Heather
I dont know that I truly believe this is this girls diary but I do like some aspects of sexual abuse that this book is reporting. I definetely would recommend it to someone trying to overcome a similar experience. However it does have a little bit of a god overtone to it and at times I wanted to hit her, but I truly sympathize with her as well.
Lindsay
I had to keep reminding myself that this book was published when the author was in high school and is based on her childhood journals. I am interested to read her other books to see how her life and her writing has progressed.
Tammy
AMAZING BOOK! Very intense and sad story but a must read for ANYONE! Courageous and brave story of a girl who had to grow up very quickly and had quite an intense struggle. Definitely would recommend it!
Ashley
This is a wonderful true story of the author and her experience with sexual abuse. It is her account waht she experienced before, during, and after being sexually abused in diary form.
Carla
Interesting. Written from a child's point of view from the diary she kept as a child. A good read for those in the child care, teaching and children's services fields.
Maria
A good book, but i don't believe she really forgave him in the end :s
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Visit Erin Merryn's website to learn more.
More about Erin Merryn...
Living for Today: From Incest and Molestation to Fearlessness and Forgiveness An Unimaginable Act: Overcoming and Preventing Child Abuse Through Erin's Law

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