Have You Seen These Children?
Four young children caught between love and hate―hostages to the cruelty of revenge. A deceitful American father and a naïve decision by a Filipino mother transformed their lives forever. Valorie, Veronica, Vance, and Vincent’s perfect world turned into a nightmare one hot afternoon in 1959 in Cebu, Philippines. What was to be a quick lunch with their father turned into a flight to America, where four dreadfully long years of running from state to state, hiding, and vanishing into the night followed. Kidnapped from the only world they knew, confusion quickly set in. At nine, Valorie, the eldest, liked seeing their father after his absence for over a year. Vance, a timid six-year-old, went along with whatever Valorie did. Vincent, the baby at three, cried for his mother while clinging to Veronica for comfort. Veronica, eight, was the only one who was truly panicked by what was happening around them―and she recognized instantly that she and her siblings would have to stick together in order to survive. In that moment, her childhood ended and the warrior within her emerged. Moving from state to state and school to school, avoiding the law, looking over their shoulders at every turn, the four Slaughter children found themselves fighting not only the heartbreak of separation from their loving mother but also poverty, discrimination, and abuse. Their only weapons were their deep love for one another and an unwavering determination to survive the trials they faced―and find their way back to their mother.
I read this book in half a day. Once, I started reading, I could not stop. You could say that I was captivated by Valorie, Veronica, Vance, and Vincent story. Every step of the way from the moment that Valorie, Veronica, Vance, and Vincent were taken by their father to when they were reunited with their mother was a roller coaster ride of emotions.
The emotions are real. You could say that I became so invested in this book that my heart soared with joy when the siblings were reunited with their mother. When the bad times happened my heart broke. There were even tears shed at the end.
It takes a lot to share a personal story like this and that is why I am thankful that Veronica was willing to share her and her siblings story. I do believe that other readers who might have found themselves in this same type of situation will be able to relate. As far as memoirs are concerned; this is a really good book.