Sunday, July 10, 2011

Nevada Barr’s, Burn deals with a difficult subject, and one that generally makes people mad or at least uncomfortable – child molestation, kidnapping, and child prostitution. She digs into the pedophile trade. Who needs vampires, when you have pedophiles?

The story starts in Seattle and shifts to New Orleans. Anna Pigeon, Barr’s main protagonist and a National Park Ranger needs some well-deserved rest and relaxation. She rents a place from her friend, Geneva, a blind blues singer, who also works for the park service with the heritage musical program in the French Quarter.

Barr knows New Orleans, and she passes that knowledge along to the reader as they follow Anna through the shadier streets hunting for a pair of missing children.  The children have possibly become sex slaves.

This book is down and dirtier than Barr’s previous books. It’s a raw story, and she makes the reader feel uncomfortable. She forces the reader to experience the horror of children being forced into heinous acts and positions by the City’s powerful and elite.

This was a difficult book to read because of the content and the style. Barr used three voices in the beginning and the book did not flow. Once Anna and Jordan met the book flowed better, and the story progressed quickly. Burn’s content challenges the reader to take action on the issue of pedophilia, to scream out at the atrocities perpetrated against children in our society.

According to the Counter Pedophilia Investigative Unit, 67 percent of all victims of sexual assault reported to law enforcement agencies were under the age of 18, and 34 percent were under the age of 12. One in seven victims of sexual assault were under the age of 6 ( The CPIU site seems to have the most reliable statistics, I could not find reliable statistics regarding underage sex slaves.

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