10 Books You Should Read During Sexual Assault Awareness Month

By Kaitlin Graham

 

This month is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and WeTalkRadio Network is focusing on telling survivors stories and sharing resources to help those experience sexual and domestic violence. Written word is a medium often used by survivors to tell their story and relate to others who are going through similar things. Here is a list of 10 books written by and about survivors that you may want to add to your reading list.

 

  1. Blackout Girl: Tracing My Scars from Addiction and Sexual Assault; With New and Updated Content for the #MeToo Era by Jennifer Storm
    1. Jennifer Storm was first assaulted at the age of 12, and turned to alcohol to help numb the pain. In this book, she tells her touching story in the hopes of helping others learn how to use their pain as an instrument to heal through advocating for themselves and others.
  2. SOSA - Survivors of Sexual Assault: 14-Day Devotional by Tina Wilson
    1. This book was written by Tina Wilson as an aid for victims of sexual violence to transition from victim to survivor. Tina Wilson is a former victim of rape and sexual assault, and her goal is to use what she learned from her experience transitioning from victim to surivor to help others. She writes positive monologues to help encourage survivors throughout their difficult transition.
  3. The Survivor Memoirs: Childhood Sexual Abuse by Joanne Kimberly
    1. This book is a collection of memoirs personally written by childhood sexual abuse survivors. Complied by Joanne Kimberly, these extraordinary stories are written by people with great strength and perseverance. This book is a great option for those who want to connect with others that have similar stories, as well as those who are  interested in learning about what they can do to help victims of childhood sexual abuse.
  4. I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor's Story of Sexual Assault, Justice, and Hope by Chessy Prout and Jenn Abelson
    1. Published in 2018, this book was a poignant addition to the Me Too Movement. As a freshman in high school, Chessy Prout was sexually assaulted by a senior boy. She bravely reported what happened to her, but instead of being supported by her school community, she received unexpected backlash.  She fought for justice, and in telling her story she provides solutions to end the rape culture that is so prevalent in our society today.
  5. Purple Speaks: Poetry by Sexual Assault Survivors by Stephanie Y. Evans and Sharnell D. Myles (editors)
    1. Barnes and Noble provides an overview for this book that reads, “Purples Sparks - A collection of poems by sexual assault survivors is a riveting collection of human voices that brings awareness, advocacy, and power to the issue of sexual assault.
  6. How to Respond When Someone Tells You About Sexual Assault: Lessons from a Sexual Assault Survivor by Amanda Rivers
    1. This book serves as an excellent source for people looking to learn how to help people in their lives who have experience sexual assault. Amanda Rivers is a survivor, and her goal is to educate non-survivors on best practices in response to hearing someone’s sexual assault story.
  7. We Are the Murder Victims Who Lived: A Survivor's Truth on Sexual Assault by S. K. Menelle
    1. This book depicts a courageous survivor’s first hand experience with sexual assault. It may be hard to read at times because it doesn’t hold anything back. However, it can serve as a source of hope and comfort for current and past victims of sexual abuse. It also can help those whose loved ones have been abused sexually by aiding in the navigation of the unknown territory that the transition from victim to survivor can bring.
  8. Rid of My Disgrace: Hope and Healing for Victims of Sexual Assault by Justin S. Holcomb and Lindsey A. Holcomb
    1. The authors of this book speak on the pain and dejection that many survivors feel after they have been assaulted. Justin and Lindsey Holcomb counsel victims of sexual assault. They help lead victims towards the path of hope and healing in a physical, spiritual, emotional, and psychological sense. They wrote this in hopes of reaching more survivors and helping them begin or continue the healing process.
  9. We Believe You: Survivors of Campus Sexual Assault Speak Out  by Annie E. Clark and Andrea L. Pino
    1. Sadly college campuses are riddled with sexual assaults. In this anthology, real survivors of campus sexual assault boldy come forward to share their stories. People from all backgrounds are featured and tell their stories of everyday activism.
  10. Shattering Silences: Strategies to Prevent Sexual Assault, Heal Survivors, and Bring Assailants to Justice by Christopher Johnson
    1. This book tells about the roles of police, prosecutors, nurses, and rape crisis professionals in helping victims after they have been raped or sexually assaulted. It covers new-age approaches to dealing with the aftermath of an assault, including the treatment of victims and the pursuit and prosecution of perpetrators.