Give me the conclusion that I want! Hell, give me ANY conclusion. FAULT LINE is a painful read in the same way that Pieces of Us and the Storyteller were. It’s rape but tackled in a way that had me divided.
The impact of that one night goes beyond the girl and her thereafter. It’s a personal violation, yes? Even the most personal of violations there could be, right? Yet, it’s in the way things are told, how the impact of that one night and how said impact is given broader reach than expected (or wanted); so that it’s not her trauma alone to get over; it’s not her putting her life together anymore. At least that’s not what we’re privy to here. There’s just something about that that bugs me… though what that is, I’m not quite able to put in words… yet.
So FAULT LINE has us witness how the one on the sidelines deals with her as she (doesn’t) deal with it. It’s not just one person on the side either, because there are people there for him and it’s the same people who are either unaware or too aware of what’s going on that takes us a one then two more degrees away from point of impact.
It’s in stepping away from her that they both become victims in my eyes and I couldn’t wrap (still can’t) my head around that shift in perception. From the start I was all “ho-hum” about the guy because from the start I knew something bad was coming, yet for a good long while things were good; the change from good to really bad for them had everything in hyper-focus. As in me, jaw clench and feeling all these feels for her…then for him… then for them.
But the progression of him in the spotlight as opposed to on her had me stepping back. WTH?! Why him? Why his point of view? Then with each those “other” change in who she as from former free spirit to current damaged girl, well those had me taking one more, then two more steps back. Why? She felt over-simplified; and his role, felt over-emphasized… at first because there’s another realization that I wasn’t alone in feeling that way:
"Again with the common reactions to rape? Is everything a common reaction to rape?
“This all sounds like it comes out of a ‘very special episode’ of some crappy TV show. Seriously. Are you reading from a book? This is Ani. She’s not some poster girl for the damaging effects of irresponsible drinking or how rape can change your life. She’s Ani. My Ani.”
Yet, the longer I read the less I begrudged the boy telling the story his way because even if Ani were at the core of things; it’s the after that becomes the focus. How she, then he, then they change so drastically. Still, there’s the sentiment that she’s not the only one surviving that I was (still am) having a hard time with.
“This shit is bigger than you. You gotta talk to someone. You’re not gonna fix her or make her better. And honestly, who do you think you are to even try?”