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Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite
Healing from Incest: Intimate Conversations with my Therapist by Geri Henderson and Seanne Emerton is the non-fiction memoir of Henderson's life and a string of abuses, and Emerton's insight as one of the therapists who helped her come to terms with incidents that no person should ever be forced to contend with. Narrated in the past tense over a decade, Henderson recounts horrific episodes of sexual abuse, beatings, gaslighting, lies, and manipulation by her father. Her accounts are interspersed with detailed observations put to paper by Emerton. Both share their thoughts on what they have experienced, what's been said, and the things that “worked” and others that did not. While Henderson was isolated in her pain and completely let down by those who should have protected her, Emerton steps in later to assist Henderson on a journey of healing. Together, their words weave between them to provide a comprehensive and profoundly honest narrative.
From the outset, Healing from Incest is a compact book. Its page count is small and although going in we know the subject will be hefty, there is no amount of preparation one can have for the weight that descends upon a reader almost immediately. Geri Henderson puts her story out there with an intensity of courage, using her own name, no less. Seanne Emerton is equally candid, often agreeing with Henderson, but other times, not so much. I had difficulty reconciling some aspects of forgiveness, choices on interaction with other family members, and a few other places where faith intersects, but none of that matters because this is Henderson's journey. Her sharing it is what's important. Overall, this is a book that packs a massive punch and I have no doubt it will be helpful to survivors who are still hiding in the shadows.