Friday, March 31, 2023

Renee and Lisa by John Benton

From the back cover of Renee:

Renee longed for freedom.  She wanted to escape from her alcoholic mother, dilapidated home, and the drudgery of school.  Renee found brief release when smoking pot, but after she came down, the harsh reality of her life slapped her in the face once again.

When she heard that a local pusher, Greg, was fleeing town, the desperate young girl begged to go with him.  He reluctantly agreed.  Much to her horror and outrage, Greg sold her to a vicious pimp, Bruce, at a truck stop.  Renee quickly learned that if she tried to escape from Bruce he'd kill her.  Therefore, she submitted to the degradation and danger of being a prostitute.  Only the drugs enabled her to endure the humiliation.  Every day her chance for survival looked bleaker and bleaker.  Her dreams for a better life vanished in the grim reality of her nightmarish existence, but Renee had no friends to help her.  How could she ever escape from the mess she had made of her life?

Content: sexual abuse, prostitution, drug use, theft, rape, burglary

I found the early part of the book to be pretty interesting, but I partially lost interest later in the story.  I skimmed the last one-third of the book.

From the back cover of Lisa:

Although she was a 23-year-old prostitute and junkie, Lisa Tomassio still tried to keep her life under control.  However, as her drug habit grew more insatiable, it also grew more expensive.  Therefore, she reluctantly agreed to take part in high-risk crimes that yielded high profits.  She survived one murder attempt only to be threatened first by mobsters and then by a perverted neighbor who her mother believed was a "nice young man."  Lisa knew that eventually her "walk on the wild side" would lead to death.  Therefore, she responded eagerly when she heard of a detour to hope and new life.  No matter where you are today, let Lisa show you the path to deliverance and peace.

Content: prostitution, drug use, rape, human trafficking 

From page 50:

I washed off the works like the guy had said.  As I was washing off the needle, I kept thinking about who might have used it before.  One of the things junkies worry about is AIDS.  A lot of addicts have died from it.  Another disease junkies can easily get is hepatitis. 

AIDS is also mentioned on pages 55 and 135.  It took until the end of the set for AIDS to be mentioned.

I enjoyed this book.

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