Thursday, January 18, 2018

review: hiding out by tina alexis allen

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Tina Alexis Allen had quite the childhood. The youngest of 13, she grew up with an alcoholic father who was abusive to her mother. In an incredibly candid memoir, Allen reveals she began drinking at a young age and alleges two of her brothers sexually abused her. And although Allen doesn't characterize her first sexual relationship as abuse, it was with one her middle school teachers while Allen was that teacher's student. Allen says this is her "younger self's truth" which seems to explain why she doesn't outright say that her teacher's actions were a crime and that her nights of partying with her father were inappropriate. The Allen of today may know all this, but the Allen of the time seemed to just be happy to be out as a lesbian to someone in her family. She and her father bonded not only over drinking, but regarding their sexuality. Despite a long marriage to a woman and 13 children, Allen's father was gay. And it would turn out that wasn't her father's only secret--he also had a clandestine job that Allen still hasn't completely uncovered. Hiding Out is a shocking, but powerful read.
Review copy provided by the publisher, Dey Street.

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