31 March 2014

Missing Girl Tour Stop!

Title: Missing Girl
Author: Piper Punches
Genre: Fiction/Crime
Publication Date: January 31, 2014

In life my name was Sophia Lucia Cruz. In death it is simply missing girls. Not even singular, but plural, as if there was never one single part of me that was unique or separate from all the other girls that were buried in that harsh Mexican dirt; victims of circumstance, irrevocable choices, and just plain bad luck. If I still had the capacity to cry, I would, because it is that sad and tragic. But when the knife slid deep into my belly and the blood gurgled at the base of my throat I knew that tears wouldn't save me and they won't change my story now.

Sophia Cruz was what many would consider an average 17-year-old girl from Mission Valley, until the day she had a knife put to her stomach and fear inserted into her heart. Some may have called it stupidity. She called it a necessary sacrifice. Why else would she leave everything behind to walk arm in arm with the devil into a world of prostitution and human imprisonment?

This is Sophia's story. She wants you to know who she was before that day. Before she became just another missing girl . . .

Missing Girl, is a powerful, provocative story that explores the depths of familial love and the horrors of the human trafficking epidemic that plagues our global community. Sophia's story is a fictional account of what so many real- life women and children experience every single moment of their lives when they are forced into sexual slavery and human imprisonment.

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Sitting beside her, I knew that I would never again experience a relationship with another human being that wasn't tainted. I knew what my captors had in store for me. I knew that even if I was able to figure out a way to break free and find my way back home that I wouldn't be whole again. I was broken like the woman sitting next to me and for one moment I wanted to feel connected to another person. An overwhelming desire filled me, not a physical desire but the type of emotional longing to share a moment with another person; to hold a secret between the two of you even if the moment is fleeting and ultimately meaningless.

This was an interesting quick read about a girl who is taken from her home, never to be seen again. Shes taken to Mexico where she is to be used as a sex slave. 

While I thought the writing style was very fluid and easy to read, I felt like parts of the story were very rushed and wished it had been a bit longer in length since the ending felt quite abrupt. 

Not my normal type story, but I would like more from this author. I'd like to know more of what happened to the characters that were mentioned in the book... and see the men who took her captive punished, but I guess I'll just have to wait and see what comes next!

About this playlist: When I write, I rarely listen to music. But I often hear songs that have a phrase or a word or even a vibe that remind me of characters or settings in my story. Missing Girl isn't very long and neither is my playlist, but sometimes it's about quality not quantity.

1. Put Your Lights On – Santana/Everlast

2. Miss Missing You – Fall Out Boy

3. Lights – Ellie Goulding

4. 10 2 10 – Big Sean

5. Rabiosa – Shakira/Pitbull

6. Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen

Piper Punches grew up in a rural Missouri town in the far west suburbs of St. Louis. As early as kindergarten, Piper began her adventure as a storyteller. It wasn't long before others caught on that her talented storytelling was actually a disguise for her tendency to be a pathological liar. Luckily, by the time high school rolled around she got her act together and began to channel her bad girl tendencies into something constructive.

By the age of 16 she had written her novel, Silent Witness; a John Grisham- like tale about the treachery and brutality of the Colombian cartel. Before ever hitting the book shelves, Silent Witness was adapted into a screenplay that was picked up by a major Hollywood studio. It was at this time that Piper learned the harsh lessons of Hollywood and the literary world. NEVER pay an agent one measly dollar until you have a contract in your hands and listen to your parents when they advise you against blindly sending $500 to have your dreams come true overnight. Sometimes parents actually know what they are talking about.

For the next several years (okay, about 20 years) Piper held onto her dream of becoming a published novelist, but decided to take up procrastination instead. It didn't pay well, but it sure felt great to get nothing accomplished and pursue other random dreams. Finally, in 2012, after an eight year period as a social worker and a seven year stint as a business owner Piper decided it was time to get back into the habit of storytelling . . . err, writing. She began freelancing and ghost writing for several popular websites, while continuing to postpone writing her original work.

Piper's mother had told her during her teenage years that writers write what they know. Of course, she didn't take her mother's advice back then and continued to write about drug cartels (because didn't you know that every 16 year old living in rural Missouri knows about drug cartels? Meth - maybe. Colombia drug runners - no). However, in true Piper fashion, after 20 years she finally took that parental advice.

In late fall of 2013, Piper debuted her first novel as a bona fide adult. The Waiting Room is a novel that started as the title of a short story collection, but quickly proved it could be so much more. It evolved into a story about the complexities of family, the invisible bonds that connect people, and the pain that can reverberate through the choices we make.

Piper Punches lives 45 minutes from downtown St. Louis with her husband and two daughters. She continues procrastinate and write on a daily basis and is excited to share her stories with new readers each and every day!

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