The Guilty and the Innocent by Pamela Blake

After a highly abusive childhood Diana successfully completes college and finds a good job as a book keeper.  Although her parents drove away the man who loved her when she was still in college by locking her in a bedroom and boarding up her windows, Diana manages to find love in a man she meets on a lunch break.  However the story won’t end there.  Her parents will try to prevent her from leaving again and is who she running to really ready to love her?  Will Diana get a happily ever after?  You will find out in The Guilty and the Innocent by Pamela Blake.

This book is a memoir in a way although the author says that it is inspired by true events so we have no way of knowing where truth has been stretched.  It is set in Italy in the 1960’s but to me it reminded me of reading the Anne of Green Gables series.  There’s clearly conflict throughout the book and the main conflict changes as Diana grows.  Her first conflict is surviving her childhood and escaping her abusive parents.  Her second conflict revolves around what she leaves her parents house for.  Although the main conflict changes and the pace can be slow at times, the story remains captivating.  Some of it will shock you as you read through what happens to our main character Diana.

I think my favorite part of this book was the relationship Diana was able to build with her aunt, who her mother left her to care for.  This relationship probably saved Diana from some of the emotional baggage her parents saddled her with.  Her aunt was able to explain to her why her parents were as they were and make her see that her actions weren’t the cause of why they did to her what they did to her.  I think that was very important for the story.  Diana is a strong character even though at times I didn’t like what she did.  I wish the author had let us get in her head a little more.  Her actions despite the generosity of her husband’s family made me dislike her a bit although I understood why she was doing what she was doing.  I wish I could have heard her thoughts a bit more as she engaged in those activities and to have seen her struggle more with the decision to do them.  Some of her actions show she struggled but it was still lacking a bit.  However, faced with all the negative aspects she had to deal with, Diana is definitely a hero and a strong woman.

The last part of this book was the most shocking to me and although I was ready to quit reading for the night, I found I simply had to go on to find out what would happen.  Without giving away the ending, there was some sorrow and also some amazing acts of forgiveness I saw in the end.  I was sad however that Diana had to deal with more heartbreak as did her husband, but was happy with the outcome of their trials.  I hope their stories continue on in a positive way.  Readers will find themselves racing through the last few chapters of this book to find the answers to the conflicts set up.  The book is well edited and laid out as well.  Overall, this is a well done memoir following a very interesting character into adulthood as she deals with a myriad of problems with no easy solutions.


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