My reading goal is going pretty well; I set myself the goal of reading 7 books during the first semester and I just finished reading book number 6. The next book I will read will be my chosen AP title which is (drum roll please) The Color Purple By Alice Walker. I chose this book because I think the content will be very different from what I normally read and I wanted to push myself a little (or a lot). The last book I read was What We Saw By Aaron Hartzler.
What We Saw is a exceptional story about the thin line between guilt and innocence and how blurry the subject of rape can become. The story follows a young girl named Kate, who's life seems as if everything is coming together with her perfect friends, a perfect boyfriend who happens to be the star basketball player, and a town where she knows everyone, but one wild party causes her to question everyone and everything she believes in. When four of her "friends" are charged for raping her old best friend Stacy, Kates life is immediately turned upside down. As everyone in town points the finger towards the girl questioning if her allegations are true Kate is left conflicted on what she believes to be the truth. Rape is something that seems so black and white. Consent can seem so obvious but often isn't so clear. In the book Kate finds her self in a conversation about what happened at the party with people who believe that Stacy is either lying about what happened that night or are suggesting that because of the clothes she was wearing she should have expected it, but one girl decides to speak up by asking that "just because she's wearing skimpy clothes means that she's lying about those guys forcing themselves on her" (Hartzler 114).
I don't know if a book has ever made me think in the way this book did and for that reason I strongly recommend this book to everyone especially teenage girls. Sadly we live in a world where society often dismisses rape by saying things like "her outfit was to revealing so she was kinda asking for it" and uses that "boys will be boys" as an excuse. I think rape is a topic that everyone needs to be aware of and not just by a video you saw in an assembly during school but by reading about it, and being knowledgeable about what rape really means and what you can do to stop it. People need to understand that its not "no means no" but that its "yes means yes". Just because the person isn't conscious enough to say no doesn't mean they're saying yes. The only consent you can get is by three small but important letters y-e-s.