Asking For It - Louise O'Neill | | book review

September 05, 2016

"She has no face. She is just a body, a life-size doll to play with."

Reserving this book from the library, I knew Asking For It would be a tough read, prior to my reading the recognition and reputation it has gathered with its themes and messages looking at society from a social perspective. 

Asking For It targets rape culture, brutally, truthfully and emotionally. 

It discusses sexual consent, a major topic spoken about everywhere from social media, to news articles to real life situations. 

The story follows 18 year old Emma O'Donovan, my first impressions of her were rude, selfish, nasty and shallow, however by the end of the book I wanted to hug her, I wanted to wrap her in a blanket and provide a safety bubble to protect her. 

Emma is beautiful, she gathers attentions from everyone, meaning she gathers a lot of male attention too and she likes it, she lives in, she is confident in herself and she knows girls are jealousy and she knows boys will do anything to get a little peak at what's underneath. 

She likes to enjoy herself, like most young adults, she likes socialising, dressing up and partying. She's the 'IT' girl. But when a night out in her small Irish town goes terribly wrong, her life is turned upside down and she is vulnerable, scared, a victim of rape. 

Asking For It made me feel too many emotions. I shook with anger. I cried. I felt nervous. I hoped for a better outcome for Emma after her ordeal. After she was violently sexually assaulted by her male friends and extremely revealing photos are uploaded to the public eye. 

It's humiliating, horrifying and unfortunately, something that happens often.

A heartbreaking book I'm considering reading again because it's so real, as it comes from personal experiences of sexual assault. These things actually happen! It is a shocking read, but one you will never forget.

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