Born in the Caribbean, Philomena Jones is abandoned by her mother and left to the mercy of her grandmother, who, after raising eight children and grandchildren, is not capable of dedicating herself to another child. Love-starved, Philomena is easy prey for the island’s new pastor. She leaves home for America, hoping to find her mother, but ends up drifting and battling mental illness.
Relocated to a supportive housing facility, Philomena meets a diverse cast of women who, despite their wildly differing backgrounds and difficulties, share one common bond; their history of abuse. In this most unexpected of places, will Philomena finally find the family she has been longing for?
Philomena (Unloved) is mostly disturbing, but it is also encouraging and does have some humorous sections. Though it deals with very dark issues including sexual abuse, mental health, and suicide, in the end it presents a sense of hope and provides a definition of resilience that would otherwise be difficult to convey...Highly Recommended.
This is a thought-provoking narrative that underscores the many ways people can undergo trauma and highlights the importance of mental health care...A good addition to most YA shelves.
In her second novel, Philomena (Unloved), Christene A. Browne pushes the conversation around sexual violence and #MeToo forward to include vulnerable women who've not yet had their voices heard.