Grant grows up in deep Southern places with recognizable names like Selma, Mobile and Panama City. His memoir would be a fascinating Southern Gothic tale if it were fiction. Unfortunately…terrifyingly…it’s an all-too-real story.
Without any hint of victimhood, Grant takes you through the boyhood horrors he survived of being repeatedly and brutally sexually abused by his maternal grandfather, a man entrenched in the local “good ol’ boy” network who uses his connections to escape any accountability for the crimes he has perpetrated, not only against Grant but seemingly against every member of his mother’s family. The criminal has turned his beaten-down family into his tacit and complicit co-conspirators when they try to compel Grant into perpetrating their awful secret. Fortunately Grant does not give in to their dastardly persuasion.
This memoir is well-written and moves rapidly along taking you for a harrowing ride but one that ultimately proves the strength that is within us. It’s within Grant at least; along the way he is also helped by angels, usually African-American women, who do what they can over the long term or for a brief moment and it is to Grant’s generosity of spirit that he credits all of these people. It would be easy for someone who has suffered what he has to wallow in a lifetime of bitterness but he doesn’t. Grant works hard to break this cycle of abuse, including founding an organization to help parents recognize and take action to prevent this nightmare from occurring. See a A Village To Raise and read this unforgettably gripping memoir.