Guest Post: Kim Purcell, author of Trafficked & GIVEAWAY

As part of the Trafficked blog tour, Leslie and I are delighted to welcome author Kim Purcell today. Her guest post is titled "The Cage of Fear". Intriguing, no?

Trafficked is about a 17-year-old Moldovan girl whose parents have been killed is brought to the United States to work as a slave for a family in Los Angeles.

Take it away, Kim...

Almost ten years ago, I was reading the newspaper and a story caught my eye. It was about a girl who was kept as a modern-day domestic slave in America. The article estimated that thousands of people were kept in people’s homes as slaves in America. It happened everywhere, in over 90 cities in America. In many cases, it happened in immigrant homes because they had the connections to bring girls from their countries.

There had been a lot of talk about people being brought over and used as prostitutes, which was horrifying, but seemed so separate from my own life. It was easier to ignore. But now I thought about my own neighborhood in Hollywood. My neighbor had a young woman living with them, cleaning and taking care of the kids. How did I know she wasn’t being kept as a slave?

As I read more, I learned that the girl in the article had many chances to escape. Neighbors saw her. She could have walked up to them and asked for help, yet she didn’t. I needed to know why.

At the time, I was teaching English as a Second Language part-time while working on another novel. I loved my students and thought about how horrible it would be if one of them found themselves enslaved in someone’s home. Would they ask for help? Or would they just stay in the horrible situation, hoping it wouldn’t get any worse?

After doing more research on the topic, I found that in every case, the girls had the possibility to escape at various times and they chose not to because they were afraid. They had good reasons. In all cases, the traffickers had physically and/or sexually abused them to keep them afraid. Often, the traffickers had threatened to hurt their families back home if the girls escaped. The girls also feared America itself. They feared they’d be sent to jail for entering the country illegally. They didn’t know where they’d stay or how they’d eat if they left. They feared people would find out what had happened to them and they felt ashamed.

I saw that modern-day slaves weren’t different from any of us who fail to do something because we’re afraid. We all build boxes around ourselves, limits, and say this is as far as we can go. This concept was what eventually made me drop my other novel and work on this one. I wanted to explore the concept of fear and how one overcomes it in the context of modern-day slavery. I felt that it was a metaphor for all of us. We limit ourselves every time we don’t speak up when someone treats us cruelly, every time we say we’re not good enough to do something we want to do, every time we say, “I can’t.” I thought that maybe if I could guide a modern-day slave to find a way out, as some of them do, that maybe I could find a way for anyone to get beyond fear, including myself.

This was the beginning of TRAFFICKED.

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A big thanks to Kim for stopping by our blog today. To learn more about Kim and her books, check out her website, follow her on Twitter and friend her on Facebook.

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9 comments

  1. That's some interesting stuff there. I work at a university and we are actually having a speaker come in to talk about human trafficing. It's hard to believe it still happens. Thanks for the info. ;)

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  2. I have already added Trafficked to my wish list and can't to read. This is a subject we don't like to read nor admitt it is happening here in America. Hopefully those who read this book will get involved in some way to stop this horrific trafficking and our young girls will not have to suffer any longer.
    Thanks for the opportunity to enter giveaway.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  3. I had no idea that this was going on in America!

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  4. I know that it is going on because I have seen it on the news. Want to read this books to see what needs to be done to stop it!.

    CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

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  5. These kinds of stories always interest me because you know that it actually happens. I guess one could say I am a little obsessed with true crime and watch a million of these types of stories on tv so I am definitely going to be reading this one. Thank you for the chance at winning a copy :)

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  6. This sounds very intereting! I have seen shows on prostitution trafficking, in the US and abroad, and it makes me sick to think about how things like this could go on right down the street. I have put it in my wish list, I saw good reviews for it, and I will def be reading it. Thanks!

    Artesia at comcast dot net

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  7. Such a serious topic. It's unfortunate these things are preesent in the world we live in. I am excited for this book to be available to the population, especially teens.

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  8. I have seen this book floating around on Youtube videos and I've been dying to read it. thanks for the opportunity.

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  9. Really great giveaway!

    ~Paige @ Comfort Books
    http://paigebradish1996.blogspot.com/

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Thank you so much to stopping by today and taking the time to comment.