- Investigative reporter Julian Sher unveils a horrifying world where young girls who run away from abusive homes are picked up and sold on the streets. Pimps beat the women, trade them like slaves, make money off them, and many times escape justice. It's the girls who become criminals.
"Prostituted children remain the orphans of America's justice system," Sher writes. "They are either ignore or, when they do come in contact with law enforcement, harassed, arrested, and incarcerated while the adults who exploit them -- the pimp and their customers -- largely escape punishment."
- Sher's book tracks the stories of a teenager named Maria who has been prostituted across the U.S. It follows a former brothel madam who now works to take girls off the streets in Phoenix and women in Minnesota and New York who have left "the live" to try and save others.
- The story also tracks a police detective in Dallas, who has established a special unit to treat the young prostitutes as the victims they are. It follows the cases of a special FBI task force and a federal prosecutor in Kansas City who are trying to crack down on the Interstate traffic
of American minors.
The FBI's investigators cracked down of pimps kidnapping high school girls to sell them at truck stops, including former Wichita Northwest High School football player Bobby Prince. Jr. Prince was convicted in 2005 of taking Wichita girls to Oklahoma, where he and his father forced them into prostitution.
- Sher also reports front-line fighters such as Rachel Lloyd, a former prostitute who now runs the Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS): one of the few groups in the country who try and help take girls off the streets.
Their heartbreaking and graphic stories were portrayed in the documentary, "Very Young Girls."
An excerpt from the movie (warning: this includes graphic language and home movies of pimps and how they treat the women who work for them)
- Disclosure: After I read this book, and had already outlined this post, I noticed that Sher had included an acknowledgment to me in the back of the book, for using information in stories I had written about Bobby Prince. This did not influence my recommendation of this book and the important information if provides