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I Belong

Review: Little Peach by Peggy Kern

Little PeachTitle: Little Peach

Author: Peggy Kern

Genre: YA Contemporary/Realistic Fiction

Series: N/A

Publication Date: March 10, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 208 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062266950 (HarperCollins)

ISBN-13: 978-0062266958 (HarperCollins)

Reviewed by: Zed


A riveting and powerful story of a runaway girl lured into prostitution in New York City, perfect for fans of Ellen Hopkins and Patricia McCormick.

What do you do if you’re in trouble?

When Michelle runs away from her drug-addicted mother, she has just enough money to make it to New York City, where she hopes to move in with a friend. But once she arrives at the bustling Port Authority, she is confronted with the terrifying truth: She is alone and out of options.

Then she meets Devon, a good-looking, well-dressed guy who emerges from the crowd armed with a kind smile, a place for her to stay, and eyes that seem to understand exactly how she feels. But Devon is not who he seems to be, and soon Michelle finds herself engulfed in the world of child prostitution, where he becomes her “Daddy” and she is his “Little Peach.” It is a world of impossible choices, where the line between love and abuse, captor and savior, is blurred beyond recognition.

This hauntingly vivid story illustrates the human spirit’s indomitable search for home and one girl’s struggle to survive.

Quick & Dirty: A short but intense and thought provoking read.

Opening Sentence: You asked me to tell you the truth, but I’m not sure you’ll believe me, even though I’ve practically killed myself to find you.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Little Peach is just over 200 pages but what a powerful read. This book is a must read for all readers despite your interests since it covers such an important issue; prostitution and the sale of vulnerable girls as a business. It’s hard to believe that these things still happen but believe I must because it’s all true. There are young girls like Michelle who have run away from home to escape sexual abuse, only to be manipulated into a ‘better life’ by pimps like Devon.

“You only missin’ if somebody looking for you.” Kat’s words slice through the air. “Understand? We ain’t missin’, Peach. We just gone.”

‘Urgh’ is the only decent word I can use to describe Devon. How can someone stoop so low, taking advantage of damaged girls, giving them false dreams and ultimately owning these girls? The actual branding of his name on them was horrific. He abused their trust, pretending to be their friend. That’s just, urgh.

“But you try to take off? They’ll beat your ass ‘cause you’ll get us all locked up. Understand? Every single one of them. If you lose your shit and go runnin’ out the door lookin’ for fuckin’ Batman to come up in here and save your ass, you gonna get beat. And then I’m gonna get beat for not beatin’ you myself.”

Although Little Peach focuses on three girls in particular, each of them had sad histories that were described with such detail that I felt connected to them all. Of course, Michelle being the main character held most of my sympathy. We learn about her horrifying history, how her trust is abused and the things she is forced to do to survive.

“Michelle? Is your mother dead?”
I want to say yes. I want it to be true. I want to say she’s the one who died on the couch last year, who got wheeled out on a stretcher and never came back. I want it to be her.
But the wrong people die. The dead people are the good ones, the bad ones get to walk around like nothing. Like they got a right to keep breathing while the ones you need just leave their skin, waste away till there ain’t nothing left but a stupid dirty T-shirt and what you can barely remember.

However, there are thousands of girls out there that come from terrible backgrounds and end up like the main characters of this story. The worst thing is that nothing is done about it. We say we’ve come so far, developed mind blowing technology but issues such as prostitution and sexual abuse have been there for centuries and continue to remain unchanged. Little Peach makes you wonder whether such issues will ever be resolved…

Notable Scene:

I know that you will take me to a group home. I got no family. There’s no one left to love me. That’s where girls like me end up: a brick building with other kids that nobody wants. We stay there till we’re big and then they let us go too.

I’m not stupid, Kat. I know there ain’t no magic place for kids like us.


FTC Advisory: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins provided me with a copy of Little Peach. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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