91 books like The Girl in the Pink Shoes

By Jessie Harrington,

Here are 91 books that The Girl in the Pink Shoes fans have personally recommended if you like The Girl in the Pink Shoes. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence--From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror

Donna Jenson Author Of Healing My Life: from Incest to Joy

From my list on pathways to healing from sexual abuse.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a writer and advocate for survivors of sexual abuse. Since 1998, I have encouraged them to find their voice and use it through my organization, Time To Tell. Being isolated is foundational to our experience, and our culture perpetuates the isolation by often refusing to address it, acknowledge it, or expose it, as well as not listening tonor believing–survivors. This forces us to remain silent. I am certain that telling is healing. I lead writing circles for survivors to experience community and get support and encouragement. I recommend all these books not only for the wisdom offered but also the direct experience of not being alone in the reading.

Donna's book list on pathways to healing from sexual abuse

Donna Jenson Why did Donna love this book?

This was by far the most essential book in supporting my healing. Reading it at age 45, eight years into my recovery, so many times Herman described the exact thing I was either going through or had to go through to recover.

Explaining that being abused in a family was like being a prisoner of war blew my mind. Like a POW, seven-year-old me couldn’t escape. She helped explain so much of my trauma, my reactions, and my struggle and gave me a mountain of hope to climb!

By Judith Lewis Herman,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Trauma and Recovery as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When Trauma and Recovery was first published in 1992, it was hailed as a ground-breaking work. In the intervening years, Herman's volume has changed the way we think about and treat traumatic events and trauma victims. In a new afterword, Herman chronicles the incredible response the book has elicited and explains how the issues surrounding the topic have shifted within the clinical community and the culture at large. Trauma and Recovery brings a new level of understanding to a set of problems usually considered individually. Herman draws on her own cutting-edge research in domestic violence as well as on the…


Book cover of The Truth: The Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth, so Help Me...

Tricia Wennell Author Of Because It Didn't Stop When It Ended

From my list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a survivor of repeated physical, psychological, and sexual abuse in childhood and have significant lived experience of the long-lasting and devastating impact of abuse. I was a social worker for 27 years and am a co-founder of The National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC). In my 27 years in social work and 20 years involvement in NAPAC I heard of many accounts from adult survivors of various types of abuse. One of the recommendations of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is to introduce Mandatory Reporting. I believe this is a must to help prevent and or reduce the risk of abuse for our children at the earliest possible stage.

Tricia's book list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor

Tricia Wennell Why did Tricia love this book?

In this well-written memoir, Peter talks about his life where abuse was commonplace and why he set up a National Charity (NAPAC) to address a significant gap in support for adults abused in childhood.

Through his efforts he earned an important media platform, was an international voice for survivors, and had a one-to-one meeting with the Pope. Everything changed when he was falsely accused and then silenced by powerful media which adds a dimension that could have destroyed a less resilient person. I know because he is my partner and we have shared our lives working for the survivor cause for 27 years.

He talks of me as a source of strength praising me as his wife several times and gives my book a glowing mention! Good enough reason for me to love and recommend his book but not why I do. It is because he finally found the courage…

By Peter E. Saunders,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Truth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Peter Saunders was raised in a devout Catholic family in London, an upbringing fraught with oppression and abuse. Unable to find support in adulthood, Peter set up a major national charity for adults abused in childhood. He battled with the Church for many years over its persistent denials and cover-ups regarding abuse throughout its ranks across the globe.

Peter made no secret of his views and was astonished to receive an invite to meet Pope Francis at the Vatican in July 2014. The meeting was amicable, and Peter was asked to join the Pope's child protection commission, but it led…


Book cover of Dehumanisation: A True Story of Organised Child Abuse

Tricia Wennell Author Of Because It Didn't Stop When It Ended

From my list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a survivor of repeated physical, psychological, and sexual abuse in childhood and have significant lived experience of the long-lasting and devastating impact of abuse. I was a social worker for 27 years and am a co-founder of The National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC). In my 27 years in social work and 20 years involvement in NAPAC I heard of many accounts from adult survivors of various types of abuse. One of the recommendations of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is to introduce Mandatory Reporting. I believe this is a must to help prevent and or reduce the risk of abuse for our children at the earliest possible stage.

Tricia's book list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor

Tricia Wennell Why did Tricia love this book?

Prepare yourself for reading this book, it's soul-destroying and gut-wrenching. I felt nauseous as I read accounts of the repeated abuse and torture of Jen and other children, their vulnerability compounded by individual and institutional racism. I personally know of unthinkable cruelty in childhood, but Jen’s story is on another level. 

Holding little back she takes her readers in to the cesspit of an environment with human cruelty only usually read about in history books and yes, these despicable actions are inflicted by humans. I chose Dehumanisation because Jen’s story is one that people need to read, be shocked into understanding the risks to our children and the long-lasting and devastating impact abuse has.

Don’t be fooled into thinking ‘things are different now’. The different systems in society and legislation for safeguarding and discrimination implemented over the years haven’t stopped it from happening.

By Jen Grace, Samuel Grace,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dehumanisation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Unwanted and homeless from day one: Social services found Jennie a new home. Tragically she was enslaved into a brutal regime of horrific abuse, extreme neglect, loss and degrading humiliation with foster parents.

It continued behind closed doors in a seemingly well-respected household for twenty-three years. The foster family trafficked her to other sickening perpetrators of organised abuse rings. The death of both foster parents did not stop the hideous abuse, which continued for decades as they hunted down Jennie and her son despite moving thirty-six times.

Jennie developed DID Dissociative Identity Disorder to survive after suffering such severe trauma.…


Book cover of The Orpheus Project

Tricia Wennell Author Of Because It Didn't Stop When It Ended

From my list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a survivor of repeated physical, psychological, and sexual abuse in childhood and have significant lived experience of the long-lasting and devastating impact of abuse. I was a social worker for 27 years and am a co-founder of The National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC). In my 27 years in social work and 20 years involvement in NAPAC I heard of many accounts from adult survivors of various types of abuse. One of the recommendations of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is to introduce Mandatory Reporting. I believe this is a must to help prevent and or reduce the risk of abuse for our children at the earliest possible stage.

Tricia's book list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor

Tricia Wennell Why did Tricia love this book?

I know Valerie through my voluntary work with survivors and am aware of her work at the Clinic for Dissociative Studies.

She has years of experience as a psychoanalyst and psychotherapist working with trauma, disability, dissociation, and torture so Valerie knows what she is talking about. In this book she uses her knowledge and expertise to cleverly weave a background of fact that people would find too hard to believe into a brilliant work of fiction.

Her book left me wondering, ‘Does that sort of thing really happen’? It does. Children continue to be at risk and adult survivors continue to live with the trauma of the abuse they experienced.

By Valerie Sinason,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Orpheus Project as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's Christmas Eve, and a young woman with Down's syndrome has just disclosed abuse by two men. The problem is she is a member of the British aristocracy and the men she accuses are a top politician and a rock star. How does a national health team struggle with the situation of alleged abuse by the elite and super rich? Despite a traitor in their midst, the team uncovers the appalling reality of the abusive international cult known as The Orpheus Project with its mysterious American spokesperson and powerful connections. This is the world of conspiracy theories; the Orpheus Project…


Book cover of Last Resort

E.R. Yatscoff Author Of Fire Dream

From my list on gutsy crime thrillers and exotic adventure reads.

Why am I passionate about this?

My travels have been quite adventurous, purposely or by accident. I’ve visited 32 countries, 5 of them Communist. I look below the surface. I love the jungle and even Mexican police. My young reader novels have elements of crime. I knew and know a lot of tough guys and use elements of them in my characters. Crime weaved through much of my 32-year firefighting career. Firefighter crime thrillers are rare. Firefighters do come in contact with crime: bomb threats, meth labs, child abuse, arson of all sorts, murder, assaults, drownings, and as they say ‘much, much more’. I’m glad to be retired.

E.R.'s book list on gutsy crime thrillers and exotic adventure reads

E.R. Yatscoff Why did E.R. love this book?

The novel touches on the world of human trafficking and how often people go missing without anyone realizing it.

Its dark world is a burgeoning industry where children are abducted for profit and pleasure. The dogged protagonist follows a thin trail and unearths a huge ring of pedophiles. The pace and dialogue are excellent.

I learned how deep that world is and how easily it is for overwhelmed investigators to simply give up and relegate the files into cold cases.

By Scott Pratt, J.D. Pratt,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Last Resort as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New Joe Dillard Novel.

A young girl vanishes without a trace in the dead of night.

Was her menacing absentee father involved? Or did something even more sinister occur?

In the tenth installment of the best-selling Joe Dillard series, Joe finds himself turning 50 and on the brink of despair. His involvement in his law practice has tapered to the point of near retirement. He spends his days with his wife, Caroline, who is finally succumbing to the ravages of cancer after a decade-long battle. His son, Jack, is struggling with alcohol abuse and self-loathing after accidentally killing a…


Book cover of Faith

Christine Carbo Author Of The Wild Inside

From my list on crime that won’t have you skipping description.

Why am I passionate about this?

When my family moved from sunny Florida to the cold, rugged mountains of Montana when I was in eighth grade, I thought I would hate it. Instead, I fell in love with Montana and its arresting landscape, especially Glacier National Park, which was only about a half-hour drive from our small town. When I began writing crime novels, I considered setting before plot or character because landscape was so central to me. I decided to place my stories in and around Glacier National Park where the backdrop is stunning, stark, and sometimes haunting. The following books allow you to luxuriate in atmosphere while being propelled by dynamic characters and interesting plots.

Christine's book list on crime that won’t have you skipping description

Christine Carbo Why did Christine love this book?

Hemingway once said that a writer should “convey everything to the reader so that he remembers it not as a story he had read but something that happened to himself.” As a reader, I don’t always need to feel like the story has happened to me, but when a book is written in first-person narrative, I do enjoy feeling like it really happened to the narrator. I love it when the main character sounds authentic and the author fades to the background, making it seem like a memoir. Such a book is Faith, by Jennifer Haigh. Although Faith isn’t categorized as crime-fiction, it involves an Irish Catholic family in Boston in 2002 during the height of the church’s pedophile scandals. As the narrator navigates her family dynamics after her half-brother is accused of sexual assault, she becomes a woman caught between faith and doubt, and she explores this limbo…

By Jennifer Haigh,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Faith as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One woman's search for the truth after scandal rocks her family, and the explosive family secrets she uncovers, in this complex, moving novel from award-winning author Jennifer Haigh.

In Faith, Jennifer Haigh explores the repercussions of one family's history of silence, when a priest's sex scandal forces his family's untold past to surface. Art, Sheila, and Mike are siblings in a large extended Irish-American family from the Boston suburbs. Though their father is a non-believer, their mother is lace curtain Irish-Catholic, having raised her children to keep family secrets just that - secret - in a home where most subjects…


Book cover of Are You My New Mum?

Holly Marlow Author Of Delly Duck: Why A Little Chick Couldn't Stay With His Birth Mother

From my list on helping adoptive parents be better parents.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an adoptive parent and I often use stories to help my children to understand and process emotive topics. While we were going through the adoption process, I couldn’t find any stories that adequately explained why some children can’t stay with their birth families, so I decided to create my own! I found the waiting during the adoption process quite unbearable and put every spare minute to good use, reading books by adoptees and birth parents, so that I could understand the experiences of the people affected most by adoption. These autobiographies were a tough, emotional read at times, but they all changed me for the better. 

Holly's book list on helping adoptive parents be better parents

Holly Marlow Why did Holly love this book?

I found this short, emotional story impossible to put down. I read it in one sitting, spent the next few days thinking about it, then read it again. Astrid talks about her childhood, including the events that led to her being taken into foster care, and her fear and confusion when this happened. Astrid talks about her experiences of sibling contact in foster care and after adoption, which I found really interesting. Adoptive parents should read this, to help understand how their children may feel if they have siblings placed elsewhere.

By Astrid Peerson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Are You My New Mum? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Are you my new mum? Tells of the harrowing true story of the Peerson siblings. You'll read the disturbing words written by Astrid, of the abuse herself, and her siblings endured on a daily basis.

Unloved, abused, and neglected by their biological parents.

Astrid's father, an evil, narcissistic, pedophile, who abused his position as the head of of the household.
Astrid's mother, who sat back and allowed the abuse to go on, for many years, even sometimes joining in.

Astrid tells her story from childhood abuse, being taken to a children's home, being in a few foster homes, finding a…


Book cover of Lolita

Elisa Pezzotta Author Of The Prison of Time: Stanley Kubrick, Adrian Lyne, Michael Bay and Quentin Tarantino

From my list on timeless books about time.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a baby, I was fascinated by shadows, how they lengthened and shortened till they disappeared, and how they moved their position around me and objects. I used to play with Barbies; I invented stories that lasted for days, progressively postponing the main events in favor of their preparation. Progressively, I became accustomed to my relatives’s death and their funerals. I realized that time connected these observations and games as much as the novels and films that I loved. In my list, you can find stimulating books where Time shyly shows itself on a stage.         

Elisa's book list on timeless books about time

Elisa Pezzotta Why did Elisa love this book?

I love how the protagonist conceals the truth through his sophistication and charm. His pedophilia and rape are hidden behind an extensive network of lies about his alleged obsession with nymphets. ‘Between the age limits of nine and fourteen, there occur maidens who, to certain bewitched travelers, twice or many times older than they reveal their true nature, which is not human, but nymphic (that is, demoniac).’

With a simple two-faced name, Humbert Humbert is a narrator with many faces, one of the more complex and discussed in literary studies. He writes his story in prison, forever imprisoned ‘between the age limits of nine and fourteen,’ although his supposed autobiography breaks the walls of his time and that of his nymphets as a timeless flow of perverse mental and linguistic games.     

By Vladimir Nabokov,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked Lolita as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of my tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.'

Humbert Humbert is a middle-aged, frustrated college professor. In love with his landlady's twelve-year-old daughter Lolita, he'll do anything to possess her. Unable and unwilling to stop himself, he is prepared to commit any crime to get what he wants.

Is he in love or insane? A silver-tongued poet or a pervert? A tortured soul or a monster? Or is he all…


Book cover of In Search of Adam

Gail Aldwin Author Of This Much Huxley Knows: A Story of Innocence, Misunderstandings, and Acceptance

From my list on contemporary adult novels with young narrators.

Why am I passionate about this?

Novelist, poet and scriptwriter. My interest in young narrators stems from a desire to effectively capture the voices of children in my novels. Creative writing PhD studies with the University of South Wales encouraged me to research different strategies and techniques used by published authors and to experiment with them in my writing. The String Games my debut novel was the result of this academic and creative journey. Further novels continue to include young voices in a starring role as I get inside the heads of a range of characters. After a stint as a university lecturer, I dabbled in fiction for children and through a collaboration with illustrator Fiona Zechmeister, Pandemonium a children’s picture book was published in 2020.

Gail's book list on contemporary adult novels with young narrators

Gail Aldwin Why did Gail love this book?

Jude grows up in an abusive home following the suicide of her mother. Life is continually perplexing for Jude who tries to make sense of what’s happening in her home, school, and community life. The understanding that slips through her fingers is represented by the use of a range of typography including varied fonts and sizes, print from pale to bold, left and right justified margins. Jude’s vulnerability is juxtaposed with anger and hatred which makes for a heady mix of emotions. One can’t help but respect this young narrator for her ability to withstand.

By Caroline Smailes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In Search of Adam as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A taut and beautifully written debut novel by an exciting and accomplished new author.

Motherless, rootless and unprotected, Jude Williams' childhood is fractured by the horror and experience of sexual abuse, forcing her to exist somewhere and nowhere in-between childhood and adulthood. Caught within the limitations of her own language and trapped within a family secret, Jude becomes the consequence of her mother's tragedy. As she moves through the 1980s, Jude's life is buffeted by choice and destiny and she collects experiences that layer her personal tragedy and plunge her into the darkest of worlds.


Book cover of Invisible Girl

S.M. Stevens Author Of Horseshoes and Hand Grenades

From my list on uplifting stories of sexual abuse and harassment.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a big fan of fiction that fills a need. While recovering from a broken pelvis, I wrote a book for my animal/adventure-loving fifth-grader. A year later, while in treatment for ovarian cancer, I wrote a series for my other daughter and teens/tweens who love musical theater but can’t find books set in that world. When the Harvey Weinstein nightmare erupted, I was horrified at the parallels in how naysayers treat victims of both incest and workplace harassment. I decided the world needed a novel exploring that, and taking readers into the minds of survivors. (Thankfully, I wasn’t recovering from an injury or disease while writing that one!)

S.M.'s book list on uplifting stories of sexual abuse and harassment

S.M. Stevens Why did S.M. love this book?

The younger the victim, the more egregious the act seems. This true story is a riveting read. Dixon repressed childhood incest memories until, ironically, she became a nurse helping others with similar pasts. The book is an insightful look at how hidden pain manifests itself in our current lives regardless of what walls the mind has erected to protect us. Woven into the memoir is helpful advice for survivors, counselors, lawyers, and others working with abuse victims. I was mesmerized.

By Sandra J. Dixon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Invisible Girl as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This story breaks new frontiers in what we know about repressed memories. It is a riveting account of horrific and humorous events of living in the aftermath of childhood sexual abuse. It is based on the author's personal experience and that of hundreds of patients she treated as a mental health professional. She weaves prevention recommendations into the book to help prevent child abuse.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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