July, 1993, a young, single mother became the target of a sadistic rapist. Her world was instantly turned upside down as she was viciously assaulted and left for dead in front of her young children. This story takes you from a broken, shattered life and details how she was able to rebuild her world, while dealing with nightmares and flashbacks, mind-numbing fear, pain, the burning, boiling anger and an intense hatred. This book portrays living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, attempted suicides, and finally, the steps taken and the therapy that saved an entire family. When Angels Die was originally written as a form of self-help therapy. And now, it is dedicated to those who need help and guidance in making the emotional transition from being a Crime Victim to being a Survivor. The time is now to let go of your fears and to regain control of your lives.
The difficult transition from being a crime victim to a survivor is vividly detailed in this engrossing story of a woman brutalized by a sadistic rapist in front of her young children. In chilling detail the author describes the prolonged scene of the vicious assault and all the trauma in dealing with medical and police follow-ups. Similarly, the stages of the recovering process are painstakingly captured. Good use of interior monologue helps in revealing the thoughts of the author as she strives to overcome nightmares and flashbacks. Post traumatic stress disorder, attempted suicides, and therapy also poignantly enter the difficult recovery steps. The final ability and resilience of the author and her family-especially her children-to reclaim their lives is touching. The dialogue is credible and helps to envision the characters. The court scene, sentencing the criminal to 50 years, is well done. Strongly-written letters to the Texas Department of Justice against parole of the rapist are very effective in showing all the emotions involved in the original case and prospects for more rapes if the prisoner is released. The first-person writing is candid and unsparing, while also providing pointers to readers on how to avoid such terrible experiences. It would be worthwhile to insert a table of contents and give a name to the chapters. The title of the book, and the cover image, are both intriguing.and create curiosity. But consider a subtitle that reflects the book’s theme.
– Judge’s Commentary, Writer’s Digest Annual Conference 2014, Honorable Mention
The Strength of Voice. When Angels Die is a journey of recovery, grace and strength to the freedom and limitless nature of soul. It is a light that shines on all darkness, giving permission and freedom to find and connect with one’s true self. Caroline Baggaley has woven a life of courage, gratitude and joy through her example of owning her power and voice. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting her in real life; to see her strength and beauty shine in all that she does, from walks at the ocean with friends and family to public presentations. Her healing light reaches out through the pages of When Angels Die to let others know they are not alone and that all of us have the power within to define for ourselves who we are.
by on May 7, 2015
A Very Powerful Book. This book is very powerful. Riveting, fast moving, horrifying and yes, even amusing at times! Once I started reading, I was unable to put it down until I had finished it.
It shows the human spirit in it’s highest form depicting an innocent mother’s extreme courage, selfless love and devotion for her children and their love for her while undergoing brutality beyond belief – and surviving to help other people in a similar predicament. To this day, they must still work to protect themselves from these “people”.
In my opinion, this is contrasted by the personification of evil and human filth in the form of the rapist and his cohorts. On a practical level, I do believe that society would have been better served had they all been hanged in public rather than the rapist serving time in jail with cable television and internet at taxpayer expense. On a spiritual level, I am sure there’s a special place in hell for them and the laws of karma will not be defeated.
This book is a must-read for all. Bravo, Caroline Baggaley for your admirable courage and strength in exposing a very painful situation in order to help other people.
By Nancy M on August 4, 2012
a book you can’t put down. This author has a gift for expression and clarity. She goes beyond the external manifestations of anger and shows us how to deal with the internal source of rage and fear. We live through her experience and truly understand that bad things do happen to innocent people. We understand post traumatic stress disorder in a new light and how it sets a path for a life of pain if left untreated. I found my heart very moved toward the end of the book. This book gives us hope and courage as we watch a family work to unleash the demons that had moved into their lives. I want to read more of this author and feel this could be the first in a series of books about the work and insights that happened in their recovery. Ultimately this is a book of hope. it is also a great title. and very befitting.
Judith Garrett on July 17, 2012
Heartbreaking & riveting. Wow! This book was given to me as a gift. I started reading it one night, and could not put it down until I finished reading it in the wee hours the following morning. The book describes a brutal attack, – it’s amazing she and her children even survived – what life was like after the attack for her and her children, and how she put the pieces back together. I don’t think things ever go back to normal again, but it’s amazing to know you can pick up enough of the pieces to create a “new normal” for yourself and your family.
I’m disgusted at how broken the justice system is because nobody who survives something like this should have to spend the rest of their lives campaigning to keep this kind of monster behind bars.
I think this book is also about hope, because without hope how would she and her family have been able to cope and thrive after this brutal attack. I hope to read more from this author!!!
Heidi on July 17, 2012
Courage and survival. What an excellent, heart felt, powerfully written story of survival. The author takes you through a detailed process of the physical and emotional pain encountered by rape and violence. How ONE incident changes you forever!! The strength, love, loyalty and commitment to healing from such a horrendous crime, the author engages us in the step by step emotional process. A highly recommended read! Not to just survivors of rape, but to anyone who needs encouragement to over come what ever battle their facing. We all have one.
on August 25, 2015