Friday, May 09, 2008

Safe, by Susan Snow

Tracy can divide her life into two halves: the first half when everything was normal and the second where nothing feels safe anymore (as a result of a sexual assault). The event leaves her afraid and vulnerable, scare that her assailant could be around any corner. Agoraphobia drives her indoors and causes her to shut herself off from her friends. But she finds comfort in music and slowly pulls herself together.

While a compelling idea (to write about the healing process), this is a difficult story to tell. Healing is a subtle process and Shaw is wise to avoid any quick fixes. But in shooting for realism, she ends up with a slow and sluggish story. I admire the effort but I never felt engaged by the story. A valiant, but ultimately failing, effort.

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