Thursday, November 8, 2012

Book in Review: Scars by Cheryl Rainfield

Scars by Cheryl Rainfield
Published by Westside Books
Kendra, fifteen, hasn't felt safe since she began to recall devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse, especially because she still can't remember the most important detail-- her abuser's identity. Frightened, Kendra believes someone is always watching and following her, leaving menacing messages only she understands. If she lets her guard down even for a minute, it could cost Kendra her life. To relieve the pressure, Kendra cuts; aside from her brilliantly expressive artwork, it's her only way of coping. Since her own mother is too self-absorbed to hear her cries for help, Kendra finds support in others instead: from her therapist and her art teacher, from Sandy, the close family friend who encourages her artwork, and from Meghan, the classmate who's becoming a friend and maybe more. But the truth about Kendra's abuse is just waiting to explode, with startling unforeseen consequences. Scars is the unforgettable story of one girl's frightening path to the truth.

Why I Read This:

 I feel like I barely know anything about cutting and heard great things about this book so thought I'd give it a try.


I read Hunted by Cheryl Rainfield earlier in the year and loved it so much. When I heard about this book I knew I had to read it too. Cheryl's writing is fabulous, engaging, and easy to read which makes we want to turn the pages faster and faster. This book was no exception.

Scars is the tale of a girl who was sexually abused when she was younger. The memories are too much for her to cope with so she turns to cutting as a form of release. For her, it's something else to focus on when the emotional pain gets too much to deal with. Kendra also has issues with her parents, especially her mother who is very judgemental and overbearing.

I felt like Kendra's story was one that has an important place in young adult literature. Not only does Cheryl Rainfield tackle issues of cutting, but rape as well. Kendra is also a lesbian, and so there is that as well - people treating her differently.

I liked Kendra but I felt like some of the other characters needed a bit more "air time" to really flesh out their motivations and help to understand the way they were. I also didn't understand why Kendra forgot who raped her, especially at the end when we find out who it is and how long it happened for. I understand memories can be repressed but I really wanted to know more about that and how it could happen.

This book is really well written, and tackles some serious issues. At the same time I know it could have been better. It's certainly one to pick up if you are interested in the issue of cutting.  

My Rating:

Disclaimer: I received a copy from JKS Communications through Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

post signature


  1. Great review! Cheryl is going to be at the Belleville Chapters this weekend, so I ended up downloading a sample of this to get a feel for her writing. I got sucked into the story so much that I have it coming from Amazon and it should arrive tomorrow.

    Off to check out your review of Hunted. I must say, I have high hopes for it. :)

  2. Great Blog Erika, congratulations from: