FeaturedWomen's Fiction

What We Never Say


Loved it! 😍

An important topic dealt with in a compassionate way that will leave readers both heartbroken and hopeful for the future.

Rebecca and Kyle are seemingly doing great until a magazine publishes a picture from Kyle's modeling days and he finally has to reveal his traumatic past to Rebecca. Dealing with Kyle's assault and getting him the help he needs isn't the only thing on their plates though; Rebecca runs a blog that helps women learn to have pleasurable sex. That blog suddenly gets attention from the same magazine that published Kyle's photo, the same magazine where Kyle's abuser works. Rebecca is asked to write for the company and despite Kyle's warning, agrees to do so. Although Rebecca enjoys helping women, she's unknowingly opened herself and Kyle up to his abuser's influence once again. As things get increasingly worse, the couple has to decide what they will do. Will Kyle come out with his story? Will Rebecca be exposed and lose her job?

I enjoyed this book despite the serious topic. I found that Stout was able to handle writing about the sexual violence men face in a respectful and impactful way. This is a story we don't often hear, but it's an important one to get out there. I appreciated the relationship dynamic between Kyle and Rebecca. They were extremely supportive of each other: Kyle supported Rebecca with her sexual struggles and Rebecca supported him with the abuse he faced as a young man. We often don't see stories about men who are victims of sexual violence and more often don't see them in our lives. As someone who knows multiple men who were victims of sexual violence perpetrated by women, I am very appreciative of this story. I think Kyle's journey to finally admitting what happened, seeing a therapist, and eventually coming out with the truth is one that can help survivors like him. Many survivors are unable to get justice and I believe this book will be cathartic for them. The depictions of healthy friendships and relationships were also an important balance in this book. It's good to see survivors who are able to continue to connect with other people and live successful lives as the ones in this book did.

I would recommend this book to readers who are interested in women's issues, sexual violence against men, and similar issues. This book does contain heavy content so that is something to be aware of before reading. Content warnings include but are not limited to descriptions of sexual violence, manipulation, blackmail, on-page unwanted sexual content, discussions of orgasms and other sexual content, and consensual sexual relations. Please ensure you are prepared to read this kind of content before consumption. I think this is an important book to read and highly recommend it.

Reviewed by

I am a current library science grad student. I review books on TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, my personal blog, and Youtube. I enjoy reading and pride myself on writing honest reviews of the books I read.

About the author

Paulette Stout is the fearless author of fast paced and empowering contemporary women’s fiction tackling social issues often ignored. With Paulette’s books, readers get bingeable prose, relatable characters and compelling stories that keep pages turning. view profile

Published on November 01, 2022

90000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Genre: Women's Fiction

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