In her debut memoir, Controlled, Neesha Arter shares the year of her life that followed a harrowing crime. When she was 14 years old, she was sexually assaulted by people she had no reason to mistrust. She tried, subsequently, to reconcile feelings of guilt and shame by searching for a means of control. In a whirlwind of legal proceedings, family conflicts, and loss of identity, Arter succumbed to anorexia as the only way to find her childhood self in an unraveling world. Ten years later, she is able to look back with healing insight about the importance of speaking uncomfortable truths.
"With hauntingly vivid detail, Neesha Arter's Controlled brings the trauma of surviving sexual assault to life. In the midst of profound pain, she finds indefatigable courage - a force so palpable it stays with you long after the final page. Fearlessly intimate and strikingly honest, it’s a gripping tale not simply of survival, but the refusal to be silenced. Her first memoir is rife with suffering and bursting at the seams with hope. I felt it in my bones - and still do." (Abby Haglage, The Daily Beast)
"Neesha Arter's honest, no holds barred account of stolen innocence is an important entry into understanding the sexual violence so many girls and women experience. Arter not only illustrates the devastating effects of her assault, the familial betrayal she faced, and her own self-harm, but also chronicles how she conquered these tremendous adversities. Controlled depicts the power of a young woman who chose to own her story." (Lane Florsheim, Marie Claire)
"Neesha Arter puts a name, a face and a riveting, rocking, shame-free and utterly gifted writing voice to an all too common female coming-of-age experience, sexual assault. Required reading for parents and educators and especially for teen boys and men who care about women and girls." (Nina Burleigh, best-selling Aathor of The Fatal Gift of Beauty: The Trials of Amanda Knox)
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- Kristy Becker