Title: Knee Deep
Author: Jolene Perry
Publisher: Tribute Books
Publication date: 1st May 2012
My rating: 3 stars
Shawn is the guy Ronnie Bird promised her life to at the age of fourteen. He's her soul mate. He's more uptight every day, but it's not his fault. His family life is stressful, and she's adding to it. She just needs to be more understanding, and he'll start to be the boy she fell in love with. She won’t give up on someone she’s loved for so long.
Luke is her best friend, and the guy she hangs with to watch girlie movies in her large blanketopias. He's the guy she can confide in before she even goes to her girlfriends, and the guy who she's playing opposite in Romeo and Juliet. Now her chest flutters every time he gets too close. This is new. Is Ronnie falling for him? Or is Juliet? The lines are getting blurry, but leaving one guy for another is not something that a girl like Ronnie does.
Shawn’s outbursts are starting to give her bruises, and Luke’s heart breaks as Ronnie remains torn. While her thoughts and feelings swirl around the lines between friendship and forever, she’s about to lose them both.
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I’m never keen on picking up books dealing with sensitive subject matters such as abuse, I usually have a tough time stomaching them but also the last one I read which focused on this subject didn’t work out for me. So you’re probably wondering why did I decide to pick another one up so soon? When I first came across Knee Deep I actually didn’t look at what it was about I completely fell for the cover, also my last book by Jolene Perry I’d surprisingly enjoyed so I’d really wanted to read more of her books soon.
Shawn and Ronnie have been childhood friends, Ronnie’s always felt something between her and Shawn, even when he moves away they promise to keep in touch, she knows he’s the one so when Shawn moves back, they’re immediately drawn to one another, it’s as though Shawn wasn’t even away in the first place. But then all of a sudden Shawn starts getting tense, he loses his rag quickly and his temper changes in an instant. Ronnie knows it’s because of the pressure his dad is putting on him so she tries to please him any way she can, she knows what Shawn’s wanted for a long time but she’s never been quite ready. So maybe Ronnie will have to change things quite a bit to make things alright between them.
I really feel for the individuals that find themselves in these sorts of situations. Ronnie was quite lucky as she had a strong support network, her dad was a therapist and so quite quick to pick up on the fact that something was not quite right, even though Ronnie’s mum thought the sun shone out of Shawn. Also Luke, Ronnie’s friend was awesome, he was also Shawn’s friend, but was good as he also recognised that there was something wrong with Shawn.
I also I think I preferred this book a lot more than the other book which dealt with physical abuse because, the signs of the abuse were picked up quickly early on. Ronnie tried her best to cover them all the time by wearing long sleeved tops and acting as if everything was okay, but when her friends and family soon became to realise what was happening, they tried to bring a stop to it and convince Ronnie about what the right thing was to do. Also the fact that everything came out in the open earlier on, we were able to see Ronnie dealing with the aftermath of it months afterwards. Yes it was an especially tough time, but Perry goes to show that individuals suffering from any sort of abuse shouldn’t give up, yes there’s a tough uphill struggle battle afterwards trying to get your life back on track and it’s difficult with everyone constantly gawking at you. But with the right support and direction it is possible.
I hate how abuse of any kind makes the abusee feel as if they are in the wrong. Ronnie did absolutely nothing wrong but she constantly felt paranoid, she had to over analyse everything all the time, should she wear her heels even though it made her look taller than Shawn and he hated it? She also had to pick up on Shawn’s mood changes so she wouldn’t say the wrong thing and make him even more mad. It is truly horrible to find yourself in that position. But hopefully by reading Knee Deep individuals who find themselves in similar situations will come to realise that there is always a way out.