Author: Jon Krakauer
Narrated By: Mozhan Marnò
Publication Date: April 21, 2015
Duration: 11 hrs 58 minutes
My Rating: 9/10
Overview: According to the DOJ, in the United States, rapes mostly occur to victims aged between 18-24. Also, approximately 80% of rapes are committed by a non-stranger. Therefore, it's no secret college campuses are a breeding ground for sexual assault.
Missoula tackles the controversial topic of rape committed by athletes in collegiate towns, specifically on the University of Montana's campus.
What I loved: If I had to pick any author to take on such an important topic, it would absolutely be Jon Krakauer. I've read a few of his other books including Into the Wild and Under the Banner of Heaven and I knew Missoula would be just as impressive and informative.
I honestly don't even know where to begin with this review, because this book is incredible and also extremely disturbing. I learned way more about rape than I thought I would and after finishing, my heart felt much heavier then before.
For instance, I never thoroughly thought about the entire chain of events which follow a rape and how if mishandled, a rape complaint would never even see the inside of the court room. There are so many dominoes which can affect the outcome, of which lead to a better understanding as to why most rapists will never be caught and/or prosecuted. For example, if a police officer mishandles a situation, evidence can be compromised. If the prosecutor decides not to pursue the case whether due to lack of evidence or internal pressure, the victim will not receive justice. If the defense lawyers try to persuade the jury by tarnishing the victim, the rapist may never be punished. There are so many defining factors, that if one aspect is not handled correctly, the entire trial, if there is one, could be thrown.
Due to the copious amount of facts, interviews and information provided, there is NO doubt in my mind Krakauer researched the topic inside-out. He followed the highlighted victims and without bias, told their stories when they couldn't. He gave these women a voice when they were afraid to speak against their "hometown heroes".
I often had to brush away tears while listening to the victims' accounts. Not only did they endure being sexually assaulted, they had to deal with being victimized all over again when people of their own community harassed them for coming forward. And not to mention, they had to re-live the whole ordeal over and over in court.
One of the most important aspects of this book is the fact that these rapes were committed by well-known athletes in the community and despite the heinous acts they had committed, the people of Missoula STILL supported them.
Krakauer details the "culture of entitlement" when it comes to athletes especially those of the collegiate status and why some of them think they could get away with such a horrible act. It's no secret, most of them think they are untouchable because they are treated as heroes and held up on an untouchable pedestal.
Missoula may be known for their Grizzly Football Program at the University of Montana, but they are also known as a small town with a BIG propensity for sexual assault.
This book is a must-read for anyone and everyone. Read, listen, do whatever it takes to learn the facts and help prevent rape on college campuses.
What I didn't: Missoula is jam-packed with stats regarding rape and sexual assaults on college campuses. Although Krakauer did include some stats comparing Missoula to other schools, I would have liked to learn more about comparable schools and how other schools in our nation have handled rape on campus. I understand the book is about Missoula, Montana, but this is also a country-wide epidemic.
The content is deeply disturbing and sensitive, discretion is advised.
What I loved about listening: I thoroughly enjoyed Mozhan Marnò's narration of this title. She was serious, somber, yet extremely professional sounding considering the sensitive subject matter.
She also excelled with the annunciation of key points. Even though I am a visual person, I was able to retain important facts of the book because of Marnò's voice and in the way she delivered such facts.
What I didn't love about listening: I thoroughly enjoyed Marnò's narration and there isn't one negative thing I have to say about her performance.