Genre: Contemporary Suspense / Thriller
Publisher: River Grove Books
Publication Date: April 10, 2018
Number of Pages: 320 pages
Pilar, an innocent young wife and mother, is abducted during a fake job interview in Mexico City and forced into sex slavery in Houston. Can she survive the horrors of a world—one which many good Americans don’t see or ignore—long enough for her brother Diego to find her?
Searching for Pilar breaks open the secretive and dangerous world of sex trafficking, while exploring human nature and our connections to each another. Diego’s guilt transforms him from a rudderless youth into a man of purpose, and courage. While he searches, Pilar finds a strength that could save herself and a young girl who needs her.
The themes of family, love, faith and the law intertwine in this action-packed tale of the Bayou City.
The first thing that comes to mind after finishing a book like Searching for Pilar, is the word disgusting. It's weird because I have never used that word in admiration, but in this scenario it could not be a bigger compliment. I would find it disgraceful if this was light and fluffy, because that would be a disservice to the subject matter.
Patricia Hunt Holmes captures a piece of our world that people are unaware of or might have blinders towards. She captures the vile nature of this topic, without going into so much detail you have to stop reading. Searching for Pilar is an intriguing story line that brings to light some serious matter, but does so in an entertaining way.
Searching for Pilar to me reads as a narrative nonfiction. This could easily represent so many young girls, that it was good to hear the victims' voices and thoughts to bring a heart and a soul to this tragedy. I have never read a book about this subject and I was beyond thrilled to find Searching for Pilar. Thank you for writing a book like this. Patricia put a lot of time and effort into this book and it shows, you become invested in the characters while becoming aware of unsettling real issues. It was a sensitive subject that was beautifully captured.
It is hard to look the other away and ignore an issue once you have been made aware of it, so to me this book is priceless. About a year ago now, I remember coming across a local phone bank event. That was my eye opening moment becoming aware of the disgust surrounding me. I went even though I am terrified to talk on the phone and me and three other women called girls who were being advertised for sex. Our goal was to let them know they matter, to pray with them, and to offer them hope and a way out if they were ready.
Since then, it makes me sick and I feel like I can never do enough to help this cause. I've joined numerous faith-based groups and participate in any and all events to promote and make others aware. I've worked with girls after they were rescued out of the industry, trying to make sure they feel self-worth and am praying for a change in the hearts of the men buying and selling theses woman consistently. I can't wait to use this book as a platform to talk about this issue and share this book with the fellow volunteers in my organizations.
If you'd like to learn ways you can help, please follow this link to my personal post about local Houston non-profits and ways you can help stop human trafficking. There are also links to the organizations that sell the below products made by sex trafficking victims as they learn work skills and are helped in transitioning out of the industry.
Patricia Hunt Holmes spent 30 years as a public finance attorney with the international law firm of Vinson & Elkins LLP. She was consistently listed in Best Lawyers in America, Texas Super Lawyers, Top Lawyers in Houston, and awarded the highest degree by her peers in Martindale Hubbell. She was a frequent speaker at national public finance and healthcare conferences. Patricia has also served on the faculty of the University of Missouri-Columbia, University of Tennessee, and University of Texas Health Science Center Houston. She has written and published in the fields of intellectual history and law.
Patricia has been a member and board member of social service organizations in Houston that focus on helping women, including the United Way of the Texas Gulf Coast Women’s Initiative, Dress for Success Houston, and the American Heart Association’s Circle of Red. She was a founding member and first board chair of Houston Justice for Our Neighbors, which provides free and low cost legal services to immigrants. For the past five years, she has been taking writing workshops with Inprint, associated with the outstanding University of Houston Creative Writing Program. She began to write Searching for Pilar in a workshop after learning that Houston is one of the biggest hubs for sex trafficking in the country.
1st & 2nd Prizes: Signed Copy of Searching for Pilar + Mexican Necklace
3rd Prize: Signed Copy of Searching for Pilar + $20 Amazon Gift Card