Obviously books about rape aren’t the easiest reads in the world, but this one actually felt easier than most. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot to get angry and be horrified about in here. It’s just that the authors presented their material in a way that wasn’t gratuitous or overwhelmingly gruesome. I felt like they walked the line between letting the reader know the full picture of what happened without going overboard on crime details.
A few years ago, ProPublica and The Marshall Project jointly published An Unbelievable Story of Rape which blew up the internet for quite a while. Marie, a young woman who grew up in the foster care system reported being raped and instead of investigating the perpetrator, the police ended up investigating Marie and eventually charged her with filing a false report. It wasn’t until detectives in another state cracked another victim’s case that Marie was proven to be telling the truth all along. Looking back on stories like this, you can see how the #metoo movement we’re living in right now has been preceded by so many stories and moments garnering outrage and change.
As outrageous as Marie’s story is and how long this man got away with attacking women, I think what made this book semi-hopeful was learning about how the police in Washington owned up to their mistakes and actually addressed their serious fuck-up. It seems like a rare thing for that to happen, but maybe change is possible on a larger scale. This book should be required reading for every officer.