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Sarah Lauren
Sarah Lauren, author
In a world where the undercurrent of sexual exploitation runs deeper than you may know, "Alchemizing Exploitation" takes you on the courageous journey of a survivor. Sarah's story begins with an exploration into the very heart of human sex trafficking in the US through her personal experience. She combines data with heart, revealing the magnitude and severity of slavery in the current age. As a survivor, Sarah explores how it happened, the way the trauma affected her behavior, and the global issue at hand. It can happen to anyone. This book answers the question: how does a survivor of sex trafficking reclaim their personal sovereignty? Sarah Lauren turned the pain she experienced and the chaos she created into a story of hope for others. Through scientific reference and her accounts of psilocybin-assisted therapy for accelerated healing, readers will get a first-hand look at what it means to stare down your past, present, and future selves to become whole. The debilitating shame of being commodified can destroy a person. But it doesn't have to. Anyone can step into their power and create a more beautiful reality. Sarah's mission is to empower survivors to heal by inspiring them to remember who they are. This book will take you into an area of our culture not often discussed, the science behind trauma, and give you new ways to think about what comes next. This book itself is alchemy.
In this concise, emphatic memoir, Lauren examines wrenching personal experiences with commendable candor and courage, offering poignant insights into the pervasive and cruel reality of sexual exploitation and answering a pressing question for survivors: “Once freedom is achieved, how do we help each other heal from what happened?” Opening with the startling statistic that 4.5 million individuals worldwide are currently victims of sexual exploitation, Lauren emphasizes under-reported cases—those occurring in seemingly ordinary circumstances, catching victims unaware, such as being tricked to "please a boyfriend" or infiltrating the children's world of the online game platform Roblox. Her own story upsets, as she exposes her mother's unsettling role in "grooming" her into drugs, blackouts, and exploitation by age 19, before escaping into a safe house and recovery program. Lauren’s reunion with her mother, who herself endured a childhood of abuse, illustrates the distressing cycle where trauma breeds further trauma.

Lauren writes touchingly of disrupting cycles of addiction and toxic thought patterns. Her devotion to her children becomes the catalyst for the determination and discipline to pursue the less-traveled road to healing. In a narrative that leans more towards catharsis than structure, Lauren discusses an array of rehabilitation techniques, including positive self-talk, acupuncture points, frequency-inducing sound therapy, plant medicine, Divine awareness, and education—which, she notes, not only raises awareness but also increases dopamine levels. A chapter on the transformative potential of psilocybin is upbeat and possibly surprising, describing the treatment as a catalyst for an "ego death" that liberated her from feeling like a victim of external forces. With newfound clarity, Lauren asserts, "My ego can drive me toward addiction and destruction if I allow it to direct my choices."

Lauren offers hope to others when she reveals how her awakened spirituality dismantles the blueprint of trauma: shame, guilt, rage, despair, and pain. She inspires readers who have faced humanity’s worst with a reminder that there are paths, however circuitous and surprising, to acceptance, forgiveness, and love.

Takeaway: Insightful, poignant story of finding a path to healing after abuse.

Comparable Titles: Louise Hay's You Can Heal Your Life, Sheila Hamilton's All the Things We Never Knew.

Production grades
Cover: B+
Design and typography: A-
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A-
Marketing copy: A-