3 out of 4 stars
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Why She Has to Die by Shirley Scott is a novel based on the true events of a domestic violence dispute.
Alex and Stephanie have been together for twelve years. Things have gone downhill after several difficult events. Stephanie feels she has been contributing more than her share to the relationship by holding down several jobs, paying and caring for two houses and several rescued animals. Alex’s participation includes remodeling the cabin, doing yard and fieldwork, and helping out with the feeding of the animals. Pent-up feelings soon give way to unkind and harsh words. Everything culminates in a violent encounter involving shouting, pushing, guns, and police.
The setting is rural Oregon. The troubled couple lives in a cabin in the woods. They live an isolated life and are an hour’s drive away from the nearest town. The author uses conversations to portray the emotional state and thinking process of the couple.
After the authorities become involved, the relationship is further stressed by a slow moving justice system. There are so many rules and restrictions that must be followed. The author shows how many of these augment the emotional struggle and pain of the couple.
Many of the chapters are actually paired. First you will hear one side of the story and then the other person will explain their perspective of what happened. As each one tells their story, the author allows the reader to be the jury. We see how both struggle to find what it was that led to this outcome of what was a loving and companionable living situation. Just when you have been convinced by the arguments of one person, the other begins to tell his version. Now you must decide whom you believe.
Scott does an excellent job of presenting both sides of a painful and stress-filled situation. The pacing may seem slow at times, but actually the author is showing how the justice system really works. I found this to be a very moving and compelling story of a life-changing situation experienced by many in our society .
I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. Scott has a masterful way of telling a story. I was intrigued right up to the unexpected ending. Unfortunately, there are numerous grammar and spelling errors. I would recommend this book to people who study human relationships. Counselors and therapists would enjoy this book. If you have been a victim of domestic violence this book would be disturbing as the author writes in a very realistic way.
Why She has to Die
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