It's the beginning of the summer in a small town in Ireland. Emma O'Donovan is eighteen years old, beautiful, happy, confident. One night, there's a party. Everyone is there. All eyes are on Emma.
The next morning, she wakes on the front porch of her house. She can't remember what happened, she doesn't know how she got there. She doesn't know why she's in pain. But everyone else does.
Photographs taken at the party show, in explicit detail, what happened to Emma that night. But sometimes people don't want to believe what is right in front of them, especially when the truth concerns the town's heroes... (Goodreads)
I've been meaning to read Asking for It ever since I heard it was coming out. I remember discussing the synopsis with my friends and talking about how we wanted to read it but knowing it would probably make us mad. So, I picked up a copy from YALC and now I've read it, rather than being mad, i'm just sad. Asking for It isn't an easy book - which it shouldn't be.
Emma was the perfect main character for the novel, because she really tested your opinions. Was she a nice person? No. Was she a good friend? No. Did she deserve what happened to her? NO. Was what happened to her her fault? No. Louise could've wrote a rape story about a girl who didn't have a lot of sexual partners or like to get drunk but that's not what she wanted to make a point about. I'm so glad she wrote it the way she did because the opinion that it's the woman's fault for being raped if she's drunk or dresses provocatively or just looked at a man suggestively (that shes asking for it) NEEDS to end.
It's my first novel I've read by Louise and I enjoyed her writing style. You need some skill to write such a hard-hitting story and make it really hit you and she has it. The only thing I wasn't a fan of is how some of the flash backs were inserted. Often there'd be no warning of a jump forwards or back and it could be confusing.
The ending Louise wrote was exactly the right ending the book needed. We all wanted it to end with justice for Emma, but then it wouldn't have been as true to life and the nightmare that rape victims can face every day. It also makes you angry that people still suffer through this every day and want to do something to change it.
Asking for It should be read by everyone. It needs to be discussed.