She Had No Choice by Debra Burroughs is a profound story about a multi - generational family which struggles with poverty and the ensuing desperate measures which settle in.
As a child, Sofia was the youngest of several children and was cherished; life was ideal and love was everywhere. Sadly, an epidemic hit their tiny town forcing her family to flee, especially after already burying two children.
Her mother would later succumb to disease and die, forcing her further struggling father to send her away so his sister could care for her. Fighting his inner emotions, because he wanted to keep Sofia with the family but knew he wasn't able to adequately tend to her needs, he put her on a train, not imagining it would be the last time he would see her.
Sophia loved her family; she enjoyed being loved and she missed them deeply. She soon came to realize that every home wasn't one where love reigned and ruled the day. Being required to face, and appear to embrace, her own Cinderella story, Sofia entered into a world which would rob her of everything - her dignity, her pride, even her sense of security.
Yet life would continue - and what a life it was. If Sophia's father could've envisioned how his precious daughter's life would take such a drastic turn for the worse, I'm sure he would've faced whatever struggle necessary to keep her at his side, in a home filled with love where grace was present and sins were forgiven.
In today's society where it seems people always have a choice, She Had No Choice demonstrates that, sometimes, because of circumstances, there are no choices.
It's easy to judge a person's situation when we're not in it but She Had No Choice provided a glimpse of what life would've been like had the situation been reversed. I hate to admit it but, given Sophia's situation, my life would likely have been a mirror of her own.
There are a few scenes of graphic violence, but there are beautiful moments sprinkled throughout the story. I became absorbed in a world which took me into another place, another time, into the heart and soul of a painful/abusive set of circumstances, yet I had to see the story through.
I used to consider myself one of those "faint of heart" individuals. Now I have to ask myself if that remains true. Though I'll always be an emotional person who throws myself into another's situation wholeheartedly, I have to wonder if I would've been strong enough to read She Had No Choice in the past. I can only imagine the number of tears Debra Burroughs shed while writing such an emotionally gripping book.
If you would like to read this book, the Latin version of The Color Purple, please visit its page on Amazon.
In case you might be interested, I've reviewed another title by author Debra Burroughs titled, Three Days in Seattle.