When a baby is found barely alive in a garbage can outside an apartment complex, the last person anyone would expect is model student, soccer star, straight-laced Devon Davenport. No one – not even Devon – can believe that that baby is somehow connected with her. As Devon struggles to sift through layers of her mind’s denial, she faces the possibility of life in prison for a crime so ugly even she can’t bear to think of it.
I am so happy I stumbled upon this book. Completely random – back in June, I was doing searches on GoodReads for E authors for my A-Z Challenge, and found this book listed. Unfortunately, it wasn’t out yet, so I couldn’t use it for the challenge. When I saw it at ALA, however, I snatched it up. So happy I did.
This is an amazing book. Every moment of it. I won’t talk about it too much – I don’t want to give a single plot point away even indirectly – but I will say I was completely floored. Far more than I expected to be. Efaw somehow makes this “monster” of a narrator sympathetic, whether or not you believe her claims that she didn’t realize she was pregnant. The voice is so REAL. Again, I was floored.
I grew up in an area with a gigantic population of pregnant teens. My school had one of the highest percentages of pregnant teens and teen mothers in the nation. I knew tons of people going through pregnancy in high school. Needless to say, the subject matter strikes a bit of a chord with me. Top that off with my interest in psychology, and this book was destined to do well in my eyes, as long as it was well written. It was. Amazing.
I could keep on gushing. I could. But I won’t. I’m too close to the book to write a coherent review. There is so much that can be gained by reading this. So much knowledge. In the back, Efaw talks about all the research she did on this subject, all the statistics and such that she discovered and is helping to bring into the open. How common the phenomenon of baby-dumping is, its history, the mentality of the women who do it. In short, the story behind the sensational headlines. The story that shows that no matter how horrible this crime is, the person behind it is human. Human.
I love this book. There’s no doubt I will reread it multiple times in the future. I’m so happy that so many of these books I picked up at ALA are turning out to be real winners! After is almost definitely going to make my top 10 of 2009.
PS – the cover is beautiful. I love the contrast of the real image and the reflection. I didn’t even see the difference until it was pointed out to me.