The Sergeant’s Daughter

A Memoir

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Pub Date 11 Aug 2020 | Archive Date 03 Aug 2020

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As a little girl, Teressa’s father dotes on her and little sister, Karen, while mercilessly mocking her older sister, Debbie. Teressa thinks its Debbie’s fault—until she gets a little older and he begins tormenting her, too. Soon enough, his verbal abuse turns physical. Her sergeant father brings his military life home, meeting each of his daughters’ infractions with extreme punishment for them all. Meanwhile, their mother watches silently, never defending her daughters and never subjected to physical abuse herself. Terrified to be at home and terrified to tell anyone, Teressa seeks solace in books, music, and the family she can find outside of her home: a best friend, a kind neighbor, and a doting grandfather. At first cowed by her father’s abuse and desperate to believe that maybe, one day, things will change, Teressa ultimately grows into a young woman who understands that if she wants a better life, she’ll have to build it for herself—so she does.

As a little girl, Teressa’s father dotes on her and little sister, Karen, while mercilessly mocking her older sister, Debbie. Teressa thinks its Debbie’s fault—until she gets a little older and he...

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ISBN 9781631527210
PRICE $16.95 (USD)

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Average rating from 11 members

Featured Reviews

I read this in 2 days. It was a page turner, but so sad. The author is very honest about her feelings and tells a story of anger, guilt and resentment in an incredibly engaging way. The writing is excellent and I really wanted to know what happened to the family. I recommend it highly.

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This book was a highly personal read for me because I too was a sergeant’s daughter. My sergeant dad also had a violent temper and resorted to corporal punishment although not as frequent or brutal as the author’s father meted out to her and her sisters. So many things in The Sergeant’s Daughter were familiar to me. I lived in Anchorage as a child before it was even a state. One of my two sisters was born at Ft. Riley Kansas and the other in Wurzburg Germany where my father was stationed next. All of us military “brats” know what it means to live from house to house (some quarters better and some worse), to always be the new kid in school, and what the parental order to police up the yard means. After growing up this way you become adaptable. Home is nowhere and yet everywhere. This book was of course meaningful to me but I recommend it as a very readable story of one person’s childhood experience of growing up in the military life.

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The Sergeant’s Daughter, an honest, unflinching look at life growing up with a father in the military. Quite a sad but eye opening read that is very well written.

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Shelton's upbringing was hellacious to read. Her father was a complete SOB and an abuser. Her mother enabled his behavior although he cheated on her and verbally abused her. It was appalling to read the horrors inflicted upon Shelton and her sisters. Her mother gave away her oldest child because her second husband refused To have him. Shelton is a survivor and her memoir illustrated that although her home life was a wreck, she survived and got out. Race yourself for gritty, disturbing scenes when you read it.

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