The Book

Shrapnel in the San Fernando Valley

A new voice with a dark whimsy and an unexpected perspective, Carol Es steps out of the fire with her first memoir, Shrapnel in the San Fernando Valley. At just 14 years old, she fled her dysfunctional family to live on her own after having suffered years of neglect, mental abuse, and ongoing sexual molestation. Written in a special and authentic voice, Carol lays bare the raw stories of her struggles of floating between friends’ couches, working as a pattern cutter in the garment trade, and the constant disappointments in life. Even as broken trust reoccurs with people closest to her, she is ever-determined to succeed in music as a drummer, and a painter in the contemporary art world.

In her story, she shares her personal account of how she’d been seduced into the world of a mainstream cult, and how it was possible to live in both realities, fully mind controlled, while enduring untreated bipolar disorder. As the story moves along, it feels like a conversation over coffee, as if she is letting you in as her friend, and sharing her vulnerabilities.

Shrapnel in the San Fernando Valley is not another survivor’s story about overcoming a life of hardship. It is not another “misery memoir,” either. It’s more about facing the truth about oneself within the realistic difficulties of life while wanting so badly to heal, and forgive.

The Book