Breaking Free: True Stories of Girls Who Escaped Modern Slavery
BREAKING FREE recounts the harrowing journeys of three women who escaped unspeakable abuse as victims of sex trafficking. The first account is of Somaly Mam, a Cambodian woman who was coerced into an abusive marriage at an early age and then sold to a brothel where she suffered years of torment. Next is the story of Minh Dang, who grew up in a suburb of California and was forced by her own parents to work as a prostitute from the age of ten. The third account is of Maria Suarez, an immigrant from Mexico who became trapped as the sexual slave of a man and then wrongfully imprisoned for 20 years, accused of murdering her captor.
"This must-read book is a powerful reminder of the value of every single human life."
These three women, like many still ensnared in the sex trafficking industry, faced unimaginable horrors, but the one beautiful thing that unites them is their awe-inspiring ability to rise up and fight for freedom for themselves and other victims. Somaly, Minh and Maria all launched their own foundations and have become leading activists in the fight to end modern slavery. The recollections and feelings they share in this book provide a profound exploration of what it means to be free and how utterly tragic it is when that freedom is taken away.
In BREAKING FREE, Abby Sher writes with a raw and honest prose, capturing the agony and hope, the resignation and defiance, felt in turns by each of these three women. Interspersed throughout the narratives are heartbreaking and inspiring quotes from the women reflecting on their experiences and the struggles they continue to face each day. Included in the back matter is a comprehensive look at the sex trafficking industry with resources and suggestions for how people can help end this worldwide form of slavery. This must-read book is a powerful reminder of the value of every single human life.
Reviewed by Sabrina Abballe on June 5, 2014