Author: Kim Purcell
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
How Received: review copy
A 17-year-old Moldovan girl whose parents have been killed is brought to the United States to work as a slave for a family in Los Angeles.
Hannah believes she’s being brought from Moldova to Los Angeles to become a nanny for a Russian family. But her American dream quickly spirals into a nightmare. The Platonovs force Hannah to work sixteen-hour days, won’t let her leave the house, and seem to have a lot of secrets—from Hannah and from each other.
Stranded in a foreign land with false documents, no money, and nobody who can help her, Hannah must find a way to save herself from her new status as a modern-day slave or risk losing the one thing she has left: her life.
Trafficked wasn't a book I originally planned on reading when it arrived in the mail; gritty contemporaries have never been up my alley. However, I agreed to moderate a panel with Kim Purcell (and Jennifer Castle and Nova Ren Suma), so I figured -- I had the book, why not read it?
I ended up really enjoying it, in the way that one can enjoy things that skeeve you out and make your skin crawl. Purcell does a fabulous job at managing to present Hannah's situation in a way that makes you understand all of Hannah's reasoning and motivations yet, at the same time, shows the truth behind the situation and what's actually happening.
I had a hard time getting through it at first because it was making my skin crawl; the writing style helps get past that, though. For a book tackling such a serious issue, it's fast-paced and easy to read -- it's the subject matter itself that's off-putting, which is the point, I suppose.
The characters themselves are more stereotypes of what they should be than actual characters with the exception of Hannah. Considering she's the main character and it's her story, it's understandable that she'd be more fleshed out and more like a person than the rest of them, especially when this is an issue book -- more focused on the message than on the characters.
Overall Comments: A solid read and a rather informative one, but I wouldn't recommend it for the faint of heart.
Have you read Trafficked or any other issue books lately? What did you think?