by Talia Carner
Category: Fiction / Crime
259 pages; ISBN: 1-930252-98-6
Rating: 8/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Denise M. Clark
By Talia Carner
Mecox Hudson – Nov. 2002
259 pps. $13.95
Reviewed by Denise M. Clark 1/03
Denise’s Pieces Author Site & Book Reviews
Sometimes the result of an unimaginable, horrifying situation has the power to bring many to their knees in defeat. And while many succumb to the belief that one person alone cannot make a difference, there are others who put that belief to the test. And with that determination comes hope and the ability to make changes, not only in personal lives, but in society. A new author has attempted to do just that with her tale of a fallible justice system and the unforgivable crime of sexual child abuse. As the reviews are gathered, one can say that this author, alone, has the power to make just such a difference.
Puppet Child is author Talia Carner’s first novel; a unique and daring venture into the world of the criminal justice system and the sexual and emotional abuse of children.
The story revolves around Rachael Belmore, her daughter Ellie, and her surgeon husband, Wesley. For some reason, ever since little Ellie was an infant, Rachael has experienced feelings of disquiet whenever her husband is with Ellie alone. She has nothing to base her gut instinct on, she’s never caught him doing anything, and it’s just a nagging concern. A year later, when her daughter is nearly two years old, Rachael is shocked and horrified to discover that her instincts were correct when she walk in on her husband abusing the child
What follows is a nightmare of accusations, flight, injustice and outrage. Rachael vows to protect Ellie at all costs despite the judges, lawyers and psychologists she must contend with every step of the way.
While the theme of child abuse is extremely disturbing and at times difficult to read, especially in regard to vivid descriptions rendered in painful detail by the author, Ms. Carner has written a book that encourages a sense of outrage and a demand for justice for her tiny victim. Excellent narrative blends with compelling dialog to create a thoroughly professional tale for this new author. Puppet Child is an intensely disturbing read. It is also a must read.