Broken by Shy Keenan
'I was born and broken in Birkenhead. I was unwanted, beaten, sold, swapped, photographed, filmed, left for dead, corrupted, blamed, betrayed and ignored. But I was also born with a fire inside me. I call it my Phoenix Fire. I am no victim - that word only describes what happened to me. Nor am I a survivor because that implies I am over it. I am a Phoenix - a work in progress. This is my story.' Shy wasn't meant to survive her childhood. Her mother beat her so severely that Shy was deaf by her first day in school. She would have boiling water poured over her in punishment for wetting the bed. And virtually every day, from the age of four, Shy was raped by her stepfather, Stan. When she was ten she was attacked so viciously by the gang of dockworkers Stan had sold her to that she was left for dead in a field, her skull fractured. Six years ago her testimony secured the imprisonment of Stan and his associates for a catalogue of crimes against children. But it was only after a journey fraught with horror - stealing to survive on the streets of London, prison and a suicide bid. Today, Shy is the internationally admired chief advocate for Phoenix Survivors, the campaigning group she founded with Sara Payne to fight for justice for victims of child sexual abuse. They have worked tirelessly with politicians, social services, the legal system and the media for justice for victims of child sex abuse. BROKEN is the most hard-hitting memoir of overcoming abuse you will ever read. It is both a challenge and an inspiration.