Because, explores with extraordinary literary power and sophistication the toxic power of adults who prey on the children in their care. It begins when Joshua Mensch is ten years old and meets Don, the charming director of a youth wilderness camp and a lifelong friend of his parents. What follows is a harrowing account of sexual and psychological abuse, told from the evolving perspective of a child entering adolescence. The memoir’s swift, convincing music, propelled by the powerful litany of the word “because”, builds a heartbreaking tale of power whose characters are as complex and fully realised as those in a novel.
An unflinching take on the vulnerabilities and dangers of childhood, Because succumbs neither to self-pity nor platitudes but instead finds consolation in the healing power of its own narrative act.