Rummanah Aasi
 Reggie and Me is more than a story about a girl who was raped. It is first and foremost a survivor story, of a girl rising above her emotional obstacles. Dani's resilience is inspiring and admirable. 

Description: Reggie and Me is the first book in the Dani Moore Trilogy. Dani's story is told through her diary in the wake of her rape and subsequent court case. Having moved with her mum, Dani starts year eleven at a new school, facing various challenges that bring a renewed energy to face whatever is thrown at her and carry on regardless. She realises that ‘normality’ is something that she can define herself, with the help of her dog Reggie and the people around her. 

Review: Reggie and Me offers a different kind of story in regards to the topic of sexual abuse. The focus is not on the fact that Dani was raped, but rather how Dani deals with the aftermath. I really liked how Yates treats a tricky and sensitive topic such as sexual abuse with warmth, honesty and compassion and woven into a compelling story about a girl overcoming some pretty horrendous challenges. When I think of Dani Moore long after I closed the book, the first term came to mind was not 'victim' a label which she refuses to standby, but rather a survivor who is trying to rebuild her life and figure out how to be normal again. 
  Dani's story is told in first person in a diary format. This format allows us to get a first hand look at Dani and her emotions. I would have liked to actually see what Dani goes through rather than her recounting all which happened in the story in each entry, which can be a bit tedious. One of the biggest strength of the book is that Yates doesn't make Dani's recovery unbelievable in which she succeeds and has a perfect day every day. Dani has really bad days from trying to overcome bullying from some of her female friends and when her self confidence takes a hit, which happens to all of us. Another very strong aspect of the book is displaying the relationship and parallels between Dani and her rescued dog Reggie. 
  Though Reggie and Me deals with a tough issue, it is ultimately uplifting and is helpful without ever being preachy and heavy handed. It shows us that we have a long way to go from erasing 'victims' from our vocabulary and replacing it with 'survivors'. 
Rating: 3 stars

Words of Caution: There are some derogatory slurs in the book. Recommended for Grades 8 and up.

If you like this book try: Just Listen by Sarah Dessen, Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr
4 Responses
  1. Wow. Sounds like a tough troubling read. I am not sure I am up for it.

  2. Diary format so rarely works for me, but I think it might in a story such as this. I love that it deals with the aftermath of rape with such honesty. I tend to avoid such heavy topics, but this feels different for some reason and I'm pretty sure I would appreciate (if not exactly enjoy) reading it.

  3. Candace Says:

    I like that this doesn't identify her as a victim but more of a survivor. I'm not sure about the diary format, but it sounds like a pretty important book that a lot of people could find inspiration from.

  4. Jenny Says:

    Glad that her recovery time feels realistic and believable, rape is definitely not something you just wake up okay with one day and then move on. So glad that it never gets preachy or heavy handed while dealing with a sensitive topic either:) Lovely review Rummanah!

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