Hope Stories from a Women’s Refuge by Rosy Stewart – Book Review

Hope: Stories from a Women’s Refuge by Rosy Stewart – Book Review


Stories from a Women’s Refuge

Author – Rosy Stewart
Publisher – Cricket International
Pages – 130
Release Date – 5th February 2016
Format – ebook, paperback
Reviewer – Selina

I received a free copy of this book

synopsis of a witch

Sue Barlow is the manager of a women’s refuge in London. A brutal attack on Liz, one of the ex-residents, brings home the failure of a system that should protect women. She joins forces with Jade a young police sergeant, and Nina a reclusive Russian I.T. expert. Together they track down and tackle abusers.

Very soon they learn that to succeed they must support each other to break the rules. This forces them to examine their own personal agendas to a depth they hadn’t bargained for.

Each chapter centres around a different person that the team tries to help. These include a prostitute being terrorised by a gang; a wealthy woman imprisoned in a mansion by her servants; an abused woman with an identity crisis; an elderly woman found in the snow; a Nigerian woman trying to protect her daughter from a witch hunter; a young girl trapped in a religious cult; a woman trapped in a bogus refuge; a woman stalked by someone seeking revenge.

The book follows the progress of ex-resident Liz in hospital and the hunt by Sue, Jade and Nina for Viktor, her abuser. The final chapter climaxes with a showdown with Viktor.

Review of a witch

‘Hope’ is a collection of stories from a Women’s Refuge Centre. The story mainly centres around Sue Barlow who is the manager of the centre, which is in London.

Having been a victim of domestic abuse herself, Sue has first hand experience of how and what a person can go through. She tries to offer a home to as many women as she can, and comes across as a very caring and down to earth person.

Helped by her friend Jade, who is a police officer and Nina, a Russian Tech Specialist, they do all that they can to help these women escape from the torment of domestic abuse and violence.

We meet Liz, who has called upon Sue’s help more than once. After going back to her abuser Viktor, and then trying to leave him again, she ends up in a coma. We learn of a connection between Liz and Nina that might just save a life!

Although this is not a nice subject to read about, it was very captivating and I felt myself being pulled into these stories. There was a good mixture and balance of the characters personal journeys.

The book highlight the abuse that does take place sometimes in peoples lives, and I have no doubt that many victims don’t get a happy ending.

This is a well thought out collection of stories which shows there is a light at the end of the tunnel with just a bit of love, care and compassion.

Book Reviewed by Selina

Purchase Links

Amazon.co.uk link

amazon.com buy link


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month in the USA – Advice for seeking help by Open Educators for those in America.

3 Types of Resources for Domestic Violence Victims

One out of every four women will experience severe physical violence from a partner in her lifetime. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, you are not alone. In the U.S., three women are murdered by a current or former male partner each day. Statistics make it clear that more women have died by the hand of a partner than soldiers at war between 2001 and 2012. In fact, twice as many women have been lost to violent male partners when compared to casualties of war.

This problem is rampant and largely unchecked within the United States. However, that does not mean there are not resources to help those in need. If you or someone you care about is currently experiencing domestic violence, consider the valuable resources to escape abuse and regain control over your life that we share below.

Hotlines Can Be Very Helpful For Desperate Times

There is a multitude of hotlines that relate to domestic violence and human trafficking. The best option for domestic violence would be the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. The advocates on the other end are highly trained professionals available 24/7 to help callers.

There also is a Dating Abuse Hotline at 1-866-331-9474. They have an option for online chatting, phone calls, or texting “LOVEIS” to 22522.

If you are overseas, there is a domestic violence crisis center for American women with a toll-free international line at 1-866-879-6636 and website. It also can be very beneficial for those in same-sex relationships in countries without LGBT-friendly resources to use this domestic violence resource.

Domestic Violence Shelters Offer a Fresh Start

There are shelters scattered across the U.S. meant solely for victims of domestic violence. Some of these shelters will have confidential locations, meaning your abuser will not be able to find you on any map or database. These are great places to get the start you need to escape and start your life anew. The National Domestic Violence Hotline is one of the most effective ways to find a confidential shelter near you.
Unfortunately, not all of these shelters will take LGBT victims. Call the hotline and be sure to get information on LGBT-friendly shelters if you are in need of one.

Counseling Will Likely Be Necessary

After a trauma like domestic violence, it can be very easy for a victim to develop a mental disorder, addiction, or both as a result. Substance abuse often occurs when victims attempt to cope with the circumstances, while mental illnesses such as PTSD, depression, and anxiety often develop after a traumatic experience. Even if you do not believe you have a mental health concern, see a counselor. Going untreated can lead to a string of life-altering problems; on the other hand, a short trip to a free free counselor costs only your time.

Escaping domestic violence is not easy. It requires support from professionals, friends, and family members. If you are being abused, call a hotline, find a shelter, and get help. The longer you wait, the more trauma you will experience, and the longer it will take to overcome. You are not alone in this fight, and there are people out there waiting to help. All you need to do is ask.

Advice from www.openeducators.org.

This is some wonderful advice for people from all countries suffering at the hands of a loved one. Remember both male and females can be victims.


If you, or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, then please check out the websites below, who can help.

www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk (UK)
Refuge (UK)
www.thehotline.org (USA)
www.au.reachout.com/domestic-violence-support (Aus)
www.hotpeachpages.net (CAN)

I’m sorry but I can’t list all countries domestic violence helplines, but if you google them you will easily find one near you – remember if at risk of your search history being read, turn on the ‘Private viewing’ on your computer, or use a public computer – help is out there.


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2 Responses

  1. Rosy Stewart says:

    Hi and thank you Open Educator. You’re dead right that this is a major society problem, and I like that you are optimistic in pointing to help in the long term.
    People are often so pessimistic about this whole area that they think that it is a difficult thing to talk about. However, as my book points out, there are many happy endings here when human hearts can be resolved.