Exit, Pursued by A Bear

Exit, Pursued by A Bear

Book - 2016
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At cheerleading camp, Hermione is drugged and raped, but she is not sure whether it was one of her teammates or a boy on another team--and in the aftermath she has to deal with the rumors in her small Ontario town, the often awkward reaction of her classmates, the rejection of her boyfriend, the discovery that her best friend, Polly, is gay, and above all the need to remember what happened so that the guilty boy can be brought to justice.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Dutton Books,, [2016]
Copyright Date: ©2016.
ISBN: 9781101994580
Characteristics: 242 pages ; 22 cm.

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Chapel_Hill_MarthaW May 16, 2019

I remember when this book came out a few years ago, and I constantly heard praise for it, including from people whose opinions in books I trust a lot, and yet I still couldn't bring myself to read it because of the subject matter. Now that I've finally read it, I will say: the subject matter is indeed dark (rape & teen pregnancy) but this book gave me more joy than almost anything I've read so far this year. This is unlike any other book about rape I've ever read -- and all of these books present valid, differing experiences, and they are all vital and necessary, but this one offered a perspective on it that I don't think you often see portrayed. I loved everything about this -- Hermione is such a fierce, smart, determined protagonist, and I was sad when the book was over and I didn't get to live in her head anymore. E.K. Johnston is such a gifted writer, and reading this book felt like a gift. Highly, highly recommended.

OPL_MichelleC Jan 16, 2019

Well developed plot. I appreciated the main character and her support group and the way they went about everything. They were matter of fact. Most stories involving a girl that was raped, have her falling about or center on finding the rapist. This had neither, which was strange and honestly confusing, but upon finishing and reflecting is actually refreshing. Hermione kept going, dealing with things, and striving to be herself.

Talk about tough subjects for a teen novel: rape/date rape, drugs, unwanted pregnancy, and abortion. This may not be gritty enough for some readers but you don’t necessarily need gritty to talk about serious issues.

While attending a camp in Northern Ontario, Hermione Winters was drugged and raped. The repercussions range from testing the strength of families and friendships, romantic relationships – past, present and future – to the school and small town rumours that can mark and make or break the spirit of a victim.

The author admits she was angry when she first started writing this book and that it wasn’t very cohesive but she stuck with it, creating a novel I wasn’t sure I wanted to read but I’m glad I did. It makes you realize the ‘what ifs’ of your life and the decisions that you’ve made that have put you on the path you are on – at the moment. (Submitted by RZ).

Staff Picks Nov 28, 2017

Winner of the 2017 Amy Mathers Teen Book Award.

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shayshortt
Nov 21, 2017

The book is an interesting and deliberate divergence from the commonly experienced reality of many rape victims, in that Hermione enjoys a supportive family, and is helped by police and counselors. However, she faces controversy in the community, and the wrath of her ex-boyfriend, Leo, who blames her for what happened. Although the identity of Hermione’s assailant is unknown, this is not really a who-dunnit. Rather, it is an emotional chronicle of the consequences of rape, further magnified by the fact that anytime Hermione encounters a boy who was at camp, she must face the idea that he could be her rapist. The biggest standout of this book is the strong female friendship depicted between Hermione and Polly, who echoes Shakespeare’s Paulina.

Originally posted at Required Reading: https://shayshortt.com/2017/11/21/fall-2017-fiction-mini-reviews/

0Charlie Oct 23, 2017

A delicately handled topic. I was glad that the reader was spared much of the gory details. Although I couldn't identify with the cheerleading world, I appreciated that the main character was quite self-aware and made good choices - reactions, choice of friends and supporters, remaining honest - even when dark forces swirl around her. It was also fun to recognize place names and locations as the story is set in southern Ontario. Recommended.

JCLBeckyC Oct 16, 2017

I never noticed the poetry in cheerleading until I read this tale of triumph over trauma. Hermione Winters is raped during cheerleading camp. I'm not giving away too much of the plot here, because really, this story is about what happens after the rape: How a confident, intelligent, teen girl perseveres during her senior year of high school, having survived the depths of desolation over summer break. Highly recommended to teens and adults who enjoy realistic fiction. Shakespeare buffs will appreciate the allusions to "Winter's Tale."

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amylee290
Sep 01, 2017

Not impressed. Very slow. Could have been much more exciting

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mad1232
Jul 06, 2017

This book was beyond amazing! It always kept me at the edge of the cliff. I got attached to all the characters! It was fiction that was extremely realistic. It is definitely a must read for everyone!

VaughanPLKim Apr 25, 2017

I like the fact that this book portrays a sexual assault survivor who receives a lot of support from her community: parents, friends, teachers, classmates, police. Not once does anyone question whether the assault really happened or suggest that it was somehow her fault. Unfortunately, this is not the reality for many assault survivors. I hope that this book will help others like Hermione find courage to speak out while providing an example of how sexual assault survivors should be treated.

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green_butterfly_1555 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 11 and 13

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shayshortt
Nov 21, 2017

This YA novel is a loose modern retelling of Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale. Hermione Winters and her best friend Polly are newly elected co-captains of the Palermo Heights cheer leading team, heading into their senior year, and their final summer cheer camp at Camp Manitouwabing. But all of their plans for the summer are thrown off course when Herimione is drugged, raped, and left in the lake.

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shayshortt
Nov 21, 2017

Violence: Sexual assault

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