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mixed feelings

Layers of Light (46. Ascending #4) - Sherrie Cronin, S.R. Cronin

Thirteen year old Zane Zeitman fumbled with the cork of the bottle of an exotic liquor he took  from his parents liquor cabinet days before. Zane’s best friend was Bhadra who was an only child and suspicious of siblings. Bhadra sat alone in her family’s upstairs game room. She’d only been able to sneak one unopened can of beer. She and Zane needed to get this party going, Bhadra and Zane toasted and Bhadra closed her eyes and made herself swallow. As did Zane. the second and third gulps weren’t so bad. This whole party by phone thing was clever. He had to stay home with his sister, and Bhadara had to stay alone on New Year's Eve. Za huddled with her four year old twins where the borders of China, India, and burma all met. Tomorrow they were leaving with her family to a more protected valley holding her first born boy and girl close to her body. Then she heard the harsh war cry and knew they’d been discovered. Four year old teddie Zeitman was in a light sleep with an overactive imagination. Ariel was her wise eleven year old sister and her big brother was Zane. Then she heard Zane throwing up. She didn’t stand up because she didn’t have to. She floated up without thinking about it, then floated through her door and down the hall. She came to Zane’s door and floated through the wood. It tickled and made her giggle. Then it hit her she was floating in Zane’s room while her body was back in bed. Then she saw a thin green sparkly cord running from her floating self back down the hall. She headed for the pretty cord and felt herself snap back in her body, no floating required. They killed the adults but took the twins with them. The older brother said now they are ours. Teddie’s parents treated her like an adult when  she was thirteen. Teddie was to get her homework done and than make dinner also. Teddie was to stay at Shawn’s while her parents went on a canoeing trip for the weekend. Shawna had once been a friend but there are a dozen good reasons Teddie no longer wanted anything to do with her. She thought Shawna’s creepy dad was one of the reasons they grew apart. Amy Levitt liked to wear froeign looking clothes and she had a passion for wanting to help her sisters who’d suffered violence. Her fever was fueled by some internal sense of justice that was outraged from monsters she personally hadn’t encountered. Amy had a Masters degree in Social Work. At twenty six she worked for NGO dedicated to stopping human trafficking. She was being sent overseas to run an office of six people- three were volunteers. She was going to Darjeeling, india. Jampa was a young monk in training and he knew meditation was important. He slowed his breathing and slipped into a deep trance. He had been doing it as long as long as he could remember. Jumpa had little memory of living with the traveling caravan that dumped him at the monastery door. He thanked them every day for their mercy He was told he was purchased at the age of six or seven at the time. He had been purchased by the caravan to fetch water and do shores. The caravan said he was useless because he’d go into deep trances. They offered him to the monastery as a gift. The monks accepted him and made him one of their own, named him , making him a Buddist, and a citizen Of Bhutan before he was eight. For five years now, he had hidden his real secret behind his meditative abilities from the monks. Vanida curled up on her sleeping palette and hoped she'd get to see her friend tonight. She’d known him since before Pim and Noi had become her mothers and owners. Pim and Noi were strict but they fed her everyday and gave her a soft place to sleep and that was more than the man did her sold her to them. They had hurt her between her leg. Than she had to start practicing with the other girls there. They got very good at it , because those who didn’t do the exercises well didn’t get fed. She persuaded Pim and Noi to let her practice writing with her hand and practice reading to. Than she got the women to let her learn three languages- english, japanese , and French and learn them she did with a with a speed that surprised her owners. By the time she was thirteen she could read and write in Thai, English, Japanese, and French. Shawna got her  parents to agree to a sleepover at the lake camo. Shawna invited every girl in her eight grade class who drank, smoked weed, or otherwise partied , they were going to be there. The girl always joined Jumpa when he entered his trance.They never spoke, but they played together as long as he could remember. Than he arrived once naked. He snapped back to his body. The last couple of times he entered a trance she wasn’t there. Than his special body traveled to a clearing in the woods. He saw her naked and shivering, he was dressed in a light weight black robe. He saw she was crying. She’d never been crying or anything ever than happy before. He had a black robe on his hands and put the robe around her shoulders. She accepted it and pulled it tight. She knew she was of him, somehow like him . He knew he must call her sister. Amy’s organization focused on aiding former victims of human trafficking. Obvious preventing human trafficking was part of their mission. Amy got the reputation of the crazy American who charged in to save girls. Asha’s teacher encouraged her to apply for the scholarship to the English boarding school last year and her mother had her do it. Than she worked harder than she ever worked to get into the school. Usha uncle goes looking for her at school but she leaves and goes into hiding. Teddie. Michelle and haley look into Usha’s disappearance. They ask Amy to help. 

I had mixed feelings about this book. I loved how the author showed the horror of human trafficking and the mental and physical toll on the females that are forced into this. How the girls are sometimes gotten, kidnapped, how some are trained to be sold.I advise everyone to read the series in order for a smoother read. But this can be read as a standalone. I loved Amy and how she wanted to help these female victims of human trafficking.How cruel people can be is shown like Usha’s uncle after her father died. The monsters and evil people there are in this world. I also liked the paranormal aspect of this book. But this drag for me at times. And I also got confused at times and I didn’t enjoy that. It's sad how real this problem is. Education needs to be given to parents and girls especially in the target countries . But I still had mixed feelings.