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Monday, November 1, 2010

Exposed Review and Giveaway!

From author Ashley Weis' website:
Exposed is the story of a marriage counselor (Ally Graham) who discovers her husband’s pornography addiction, and an unloved teen (Taylor Adams) who falls into the same self-destructive industry.

I signed up to be an influencer for this book because I was hoping to find a book that I might recommend to women that might make their way into my office. I wasn't disappointed.

While I claim to have no knowledge of the porn industry, when I finished the book, my heart had bottomed out in agony for what Ally and Taylor both had experienced and had soured with joy at the redemption they each ultimately found in Christ.

On Ashley's Exposed website, she claims that Ally's story might seem melodramatic to some, but that she had loosely based Ally's story from her own painful past being married to a man who is now a former porn addict. I'll admit that as I kept turning the pages, I wondered, "How much worse can this poor wife's life get?" Infertility, parental secrets, low self-esteem, nagging insecurities...it seems that every time Ally turns around, it's to uncover something else to sink her even lower.

But isn't that what life does to all of us sometimes? Don't we wonder if God above is at all concerned with our lives because things here below just never seem to look up? While the particular challenges Ally (or Taylor) faces might not be readily identifiable by a majority of women, most every woman I know can identify with wondering if we're alone in this horrible world. We can also identify with the feeling of not measuring up, of being found somehow lacking. This book is definitely for those women.

I think the last couple of chapters of this book are especially cathartic. As I mentioned earlier, I know nothing about the porn industry. I am grateful that Ashley toned the actual industry (language, subject matters) as she researched it so that it was palatable to our Christian taste buds. But I'm a mother, and it was the most heartbreaking thing I've ever read to experience Ally's grief and utter despair toward the end of the book. (And by heartbreaking, I do mean sobbing.)

It was beautiful, how Ashley wove Taylor and Ally's life together. Just beautiful. Taylor comes to find an acceptance of her own, and I so appreciated the sowing of seeds in Taylor's life that had to occur prior to the reaping.

In short, I know that I'll have this book in my reference collection on my therapeutic shelf to recommend to women who have to go through the nightmare of discovering her partner has been unfaithful through porn. It's a devastating addiction that easily can rip the fabric of marriage apart, but doesn't have to be without hope.

Oh, I also picked up a wonderful little counseling trick from this novel! I acquired a piece of carpet that I now use in my sessions. You'll just have to read the book to find out why.

To be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment in the section below. If you are not already a follower, please click on the "Follow" button to the right, as I want to reward one of my loyal followers with this book. I'll draw a winner on Friday night and announce it Saturday along with my Free Association Results. Good luck!

Wordle: signature

12 comments:

Katie Ganshert said...

Dude - I have this book and cannot wait to read it, but I haven't been able to get to it yet!! Grrr! It's getting closer and closer to the top of my TBR pile. Great review Jeannie. :)

Karin said...

I've read similar things about this book. I'm trying to prep myself before I pick it up (make sure I have tissues and don't have to be anywhere, just in case my eyes are still puffy).

Thanks for the review! (No need to enter my name - I already have it!)

Sierra Gardner said...

This sounds wonderful. I know a fair number of people who think pornography isn't very serious. It's very insidious though - it's one of those things that gradually changes your perceptions of people, of intimacy and of love. It's great to see someone writing about the heartache involved when their spouse gets trapped in pornography.

Debbie Burns said...

Koodies to Ashley Weiss for approaching a topic that is uncomfortable and taboo in Christian circles (or maybe it's just my congregation), but is incredibly necessary to discuss and understand! I'm excited to read Exposed!

PatriciaW said...

I've heard some good things about this recent release. This is a topic that's overdue for in-depth treatment in fiction.

audrey4j said...

My current WIP (YA) could be enhanced with a dip into the subject of this book. My main character could easily dabble/deal with pornography along with stepdad abuse. I've already studied its effects in my professional work as a teacher, and I've read other novels with pornography. I so much appreciate your honest, forthright comments on many subjects, including pornography.

Ashley Weis said...

Jeannie, thanks so much for this beautiful review. :) And thank you to all of you who have commented here. :) Katie, we need to chat sometime! I miss you! Karin, thanks for everything you've done as well. :) You guys are so encouraging.

karenk said...

thanks fofr the chance to read this novel..have read many positive reviews :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Cindy said...

If its not too late, please include me in the drawing. I would love to read this book.

Thank you
Cindy
thesbgirls(at)comcast(dot)net

Liberty Speidel said...

Wow, that sounds like an incredible book (and something I could learn from--know too many women right now that are going through this struggle, including a cousin who just divorced due to it.)

I'd love to read this book. Thanks.

righter1(at)yahoo(dot)com

barbjan10 said...

This addiction is dangerous to a marriage and family;and shameful for the addicted to admit. It's more than a betrayal to the marriage bed and partner - what goes around comes around, and the addicted will be found out - then nothing good comes from it. This book is vital for many to read. Thank God, this is not one of the problems in my marriage - but it could have been. I would like to read this story. Thank you for the giveaway and the chance to win it. I hope I will. I am a GFC follower of this great blog.

Sharing Christ's Love,
Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

barbjan10 said...

I made a comment several hours ago, but it hasn't been posted on here yet. I am a GFC subscriber and would like very much to win this novel. Thanks for the giveaway and the chance to win it.

Blessings,
Barb Shelton
barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

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Both comments and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed your time on the couch today.