Jessica at Book Sake's Reviews > Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls are Not for Sale, an Activist Finds Her Calling and Heals Herself

Girls Like Us by Rachel Lloyd
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's review
Apr 05, 2011

really liked it

This memoir focuses mainly on Rachel Lloyd’s life experiences as a commercial sexually exploited teenage girl (her verbiage, not mine – I would’ve just said prostitute). Aside from all the creative labels given to pimps and prostitutes, Lloyd doesn’t sugarcoat anything. She describes, in more detail than I was able to handle at times, the abuse that these sexually exploited girls endure at the hands of so many different men. It’s truly an eye-opener and brings to light the biases surrounding prostitution, such as law enforcement and judicial system prejudices towards teenage girls trying to escape “the life”.

Lloyd is now an advocate for sexually exploited girls and is the founder of the non-profit organization GEMS – Girls Educational and Mentoring Services in Harlem. In the first chapter of her book, she describes the sacrifices she has made to keep these girls safe and the lack of gratitude she receives for it. I think that bit encompasses my biggest annoyance about the book – for a woman who is potentially saving lives, she seems far too concerned with missing The Soup and being appreciated for missing The Soup. I would think the real satisfaction comes from providing sexually exploited girls with a safe environment where they are not beaten, forced to have sex and use drugs, but I guess Joel McHale is pretty important too.

Despite the smidge of pretension in Lloyd’s memoir, Girls Like Us is very well-written, informative, and heartbreakingly honest. I wouldn’t be surprised if it became a required read in high schools, as it’s something we all ought to be more aware of.

Reviewer: Brittany for Book Sake -

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