A memoir about trauma and writing yourself to a place of healing
At 15, Emily is a relatively typical teenage girl living in the Maritimes. She lives with her eccentric dad as he prepares to build a log cabin. She rides her beloved horse and spends all her free time taking in the fresh air. But things aren’t perfect, the winters are harsh and her dad’s place is cold and draughty. Enter their neighbour who sees a girl in need and offers to lend a hand. Three words: “OUR LITTLE SECRET," and Emily's fate is sealed.
Twenty five years later, Emily is adrift and depressed when she spots her neighbour again on a ferry. The events of that long-ago winter come rushing back, and she is forced to reckon with the past anew. She vows that she will bring him to justice, tell her secret, and come to terms with the wounds that defined so many years of her life. Inept lawyers, expensive therapy, and a broken justice system block Emily’s path to peace. Only when she rediscovers her youthful artistic talent by putting pen to paper does she see a way out.
Now in her fifties, Carrington has crafted a compulsively readable debut that shows a powerful command of the comics medium. Our Little Secret is a testament to survival and to the importance of telling your story your way.
"In depicting her abuse and the aftermath with rawness, realism, and a dreamlike final act—in which 'Lady Justice' is a temp who’s late to pick up her child from day care—Carrington has done a service to all who navigate trauma without tidy endings."—Publishers Weekly
"Carrington is a terrific storyteller, even if her muse is her deep deep pain. I found myself cheering for her, turning page after page of this graphic memoir hoping that it would get better, that she would get justice or revenge or both."—Newcity Lit
"Readers who have no first-hand experience with such ordeals will find her account heartbreaking and illuminating; those who find it familiar will — hopefully — feel less alone."—The Stranger
"Seeing Carrington conceptualize a way out that was not available to her childhood self is immensely valuable for all readers, particularly survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Hopefully, this book gets into the hands of anyone who needs it."—Quill and Quire
"Our Little Secret handles her dark experience with frankness, yet her book leaves the reader with hope that healing is possible."—Zoomer