Book Review: Elbie Lötter – ‘It’s me, Anna’

This disturbing book is a real life account of sexual abuse through the eyes of the victim. It is translated from Afrikaans and won the Bookseller’s Choice Award last year. It is definitely not for the faint hearted and is written with honesty. Flashbacks are used to alternate between horrific events in the past to the present, where the main character is on her way to kill her abusive stepfather. It’s me, Anna is filled with shocking events and provokes anger in the reader that turns into rage by the end of the book. The most unsettling part of the book, however, is the author’s note at the back, where she links the story to her personal experience. Following that is an informative afterword, with a take on child abuse by Sharon Lewis, author of An adult’s guide to childhood trauma.

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41 Responses to Book Review: Elbie Lötter – ‘It’s me, Anna’

  1. Ilonka says:

    Life changing book. I read it through tears, impossible to put down, but still a heart moving book. Can’t say i loved it, because it was to sad to love, but still a very well written book.

  2. indiana says:

    i red this book and wanted to cry but i didnt cause im only 12 and im not sopose to read this book but i did and could not take my eyes off it

  3. Nadia- Louise Botha says:

    I read the book in less than five hours. I could feel all the anger and frustration of not being able to say anything out of fear. Pleas don’t be quiet if you are a victim too! It’s the worst thing you can do to yourself, and maybe even someone else! Thanks Elbie for an inspiring book!

  4. Jurgens says:

    Hallo Elbie

    Ek het jou boek ‘Dis ek Anna’ gelees en sal graag met jou in kontak wil tree.

    Hier is my e-mail adres.
    jurgens@metroweb.co.za

    Groete

  5. Rachel says:

    Hello my name is rachel, i am not a very big reader and when i do read it usually takes me months to complete the whole book, however “It’s me Anna” i read in three days over a total ofseven or eight hours which is amazing. This story, though totally heart-breaking is an inspiring account of what is very real for some poeple, though i have not personally experienced what ‘Anna’ went though i have experienced first hand what it does to a family. to those out there who are trapped in a world like Anna’s, speck out because though it feels imposible at the time it could not only save you but also others. Be strong, coz tho it doesn’t feel like it, it doesn’t have to be the end of your world. xoxox much love Rach.

  6. Lehandra says:

    I would really like to get in touch with the author Elbie Lötter. If anyone have any contact details would you please email me at:
    lehandravanzyl@gmail.com
    I’d really appreciate it!
    Many Thanks
    Lehandra

  7. San says:

    I would also like 2 get in contact with you! Thanku for this book! Ur amazing. Pls dnt email me jus leave ur adres on dis website. Thanku

  8. Celesté Coetzee says:

    Ek het gisteraand “dis ek, Anna” begin lees en dit nie neergeist voor ek klaar was nie. Ek het nader aan die einde gehoop sy skiet die man vrek (so iemand kan nie dood gaan nie). Ek was eintlik spyt om later te lees dat hy aan natuurlike oorsake ge”gaan” het. Sulke dinge maak goed in ‘n mens wakker wat jou vir jouself laat skrik.

    Ek weet nie wat om van “Anna” se ma te sê nie, net dat ek gedink het, ek nie ‘n goeie ma is vir my twee seuns nie (soos elke ma mos maar voel), maar dat ek weet die Here sal haar ook oordeel. dis waarin ek my berusting vind.

    Alle sterkte vir jou, Elbie vir die pyn wat jy nog elke dag moet beleef.

  9. sindy says:

    ekt die boek kla gelees en dit meer as interesant gevind dit was hartbreekend gewees het op sekere dele van die boek trane in my oë gekry eks jammer dat dit is hoe jou en jo sussie se lewe moes wees en dat n meisie soveel seer moes ervaar voor hul gelug gevind het sterkte met jo lewe vorentoe wens jo en jo sussien net geluk vorentoe

  10. Tiyon Loubser says:

    i picked up this book knowing it will be sad,.. but it was more than just sad, it actually cut through me.
    i finished it in 3 days which is amazing for me,… i read the whole thing out allowed to two of my friends. it was virtually impossible to put the book down. i have never read a book that has had such an impact on my life,.. it was by far the best book i have ever read but i hated it,.. i read it through tears and i will never forget it. there are lots of books on abuse but this stands out the most and i think, if every person, especially teens read this book, there would be alot less sexual abuse. i Would LOVE to talk to you so please e-mail me.

    tiyonloubser@live.co.za

    with love,
    tiys

  11. Tiyon Loubser says:

    o ya,… and i would also like to know, who is the girl on the cover??
    and did i mention i absolutly loved the book? (but also hated it)

  12. Angelique (Benoni, Boksburg Gauteng) says:

    Dis ongelooflik hoe n mens so sterk kon bly…..om eerlik te wees..haal ek my hoed af vir jou en jou sussie….

    Maar een ding is verseker ….ALLES GEBEUR MET N DOEL…en ek dank die Here jou lewe het in n mooi FAIRY TAIL verander….jy is getroud en glo het die pragtigste 2 mooi kinders….en GLO GOD GAAN JOU NOG BAIE SEEN…

    STERKTE VORENTOE….
    LIEFDE
    Angelique

  13. siobhan nairne says:

    oh my word! Elbie… your book was so amazing! i really enjoyed every second.. the book, i must say, was annoyin! because i so badly wanted to hit that man for doing those things to ‘anna’ your book inspired me!! i would love to chat to you about some things:)

  14. charnelle Mckenzie says:

    The book is amazing and when I started reading I could not stop. Thank you Elbie for such a lovely book. You rock!!!!!!!!

  15. cora says:

    wow it’s all i can say.it really touched me,in many ways personally i think it’s amazing,i couldn’t even put the book down.

  16. Cornelia says:

    It is a real life changing book.Everyone wants to read it and I could not put the book down.I finished it in 2 days and I also have a child and could not believe that this could be happening and I must say that you are one strong woman and that god brought this onto you’re path, because he knew that you could handle it and will be able to help people by telling your story, because someone like me would never survive it!!!And that we don’t always get the answers we need but should just believe.Can you please send me a photo of the writer I would love to see how she looks like so that I know who it is that has changed all our lives and thank you from our hearts.You’re story was hell for you, but for others out there it is a voice saying get up and talk for yourself.Thank you

  17. Cornelia says:

    Oh yes please contact me on magdalena-smit@3at1mail.co.za with the picture and I ll love to talk to you

  18. Elbie Jordaan says:

    Hallo “Elbie”

    Ek het jou boek gelees. Ons ken mekaar nie maar is familie, jou ma Joy en my ma Emma Pieterse was sussies. Ek is Elbie en sal baie baie graag met jou kontak wil kom, ons lewens paaie het dieselfde afgeloop.

    Jou niggie Elbie
    britsaj@absamail.co.za

  19. Dommi says:

    I’m a 16 year old girl and found this book traumatising, just reading how sick people can be and people you can’t really trust. Would really love to read more books you have written… I’ve tried to look for them but can’t find any! PLEASE write another book or thousand!!!
    “Its me, Anna” was an inspiring book for girls with abusive family members or friends in their life so that they can talk out to help them or even other girls being abused.
    I am lucky enough not to have had such a horrible experience but would like to help other girls that are going through it. I have recommended this book to a few friends and it has touched them too.
    I will make a group page on Facebook against child abuse relating to the book.

    Thank you so much for writing this book.
    Question, is Anna still alive? And where could i contact her? I’d really love to meet her.

  20. Diana Wehmeyer says:

    Wat het van jou ma geword? Glo sy jou nou of nie!

  21. Helene Kruger says:

    Ek het hierdie boek gelees toe dit gepubliseer is en kon dit nie neersit voor ek klaar was nie. ek glo vandag nog alle ouers behoort dit vir hulle dogters op ‘n vroeë ouderdom al te laat lees. ek self het nie issues nie maar sou graag nou met Elbie in aanraking wil kom as sy miskien raad kan gee oor hoe om hierdie ding te verwerk. ek ken iemand na aan my wat met dieselfde probleem sit nadat haar oupa haar vanaf 6 jarige ouderdom gemolesteer het. sy is getroud met twee pragtig kindertjies maar kom nie die mas op op seksuele gebied nie. as iemand anders miskien raad het kan julle my kontak. sal dit waardeer as julle my brief onder ‘n skuilnaam kan plaas (iets soos Anna se vriendin) maar as dit nie ander kan nie is dit ook OK>

  22. Chels says:

    This book touched my heart. I have recently found out that someone very special to me has gone through this. At first when I found out I was upset that she hadn’t told me sooner but after reading this book I realised why she hadn’t. I wish I knew how to help her but I dont and I feel completely helpless. I have tried to encourage her to go to the police but she won’t. I can’t even go as she has told me if I go she will deny it. I don’t undersatnd it but this book has helped me to she things from her persepctive. I now know that all i can do for her is listen when she needs to talk and be there for her. Thank you for writing your story. You have done more than just make people aware of the problem – You have helped them undersatnd it.

  23. fudheni says:

    its quite an interstin story…….at the same time very emotional. enyway i enjoyed it,,,,,,,thanks ELBIE LOTTER

  24. Philile Gwala says:

    i read the book yesterday, and i finished it within 5 hours..it is very touching, to me it was also a kind of closure for i went through a similar thing when i was 5 years old..in betweern reading the book i would take a break and just cry, coz that was me in that book, and i felt symphathetic for ‘anna’,as if i could just reach to her an help her out of that situation.

    what also touched me, was a quote of a bible scripture…”the Lord is my rock,.. in whom i take refuge”.that was so empowering, and that is how get to see the next day, for the rest of my life. knowing that the Lord, is with me always and He will never leave me nor forsake me and that He does not Judge like the world does..and that’s the message i’d like to pass on to every other person who’s been raped. it’s gonna be okay, because God is able and He’s love for us is eternal.

  25. Nerina says:

    It’s me Anna……..(Nerina) dis aaklig om te sien / lees van iemand wat dieselfde ervaaring deur is. Soos ek die boek gelees het, wou ek net huil, skree & glo my ook vermoor. Jou boek het seer wonde oop gekrap, maar weer ook met dieselfde tyd beter laat voel. Ek kan my ma verewig dankbaar wees dat sy my met die 1ste keer geglo het & bygestaan het. As ek net jou epos adres kan kry, wil ek vir jou ‘n skrywe stuur wat ek vir n ondersteunings groep gestuur het. Als waardeur jy is, kan ek sê, ek ken die gevoel. Nou as volwasse vrou sukkel ek oor die vark se goed wat hy aan my gedoen het.

    Ek kan net nie verstaan hoekom so iets met ons moet gebeur nie, en as mens wel daar oor praat, kyk mense jou aan asof jy die duiwel is of 1 of ander oor draagbare siekte het. Maar diep binne wil jy net ontslae raak van die pyn, die skaaf merke wat nooit sal heel word nie. Anna (selfs elke dogtertjie, vrou of ma) wat deur die hel gegaan het, weet daar is mense wat jou pyn ken, maar ook so bang is om te praat.

  26. tafadzwa says:

    a very touching book and its heartbreaking that any child has to go through that…anna nd carli are true survivors..i read it in the one afternoon nd i cudnt stop crying more should be done to stop abuse especially in young girlz

  27. rashida says:

    Dankie vir ‘n wonderlike lees-stuk….and an inspirational lesson. Thank you and God bless xxxxx

  28. michelle says:

    Very good book. Could not put it down,was reading all night thru it was my grandmothers book but soon I wil buy myself one and read it again,more books like this should be out there people will speak out more. Loooved it!!!

  29. quincy says:

    a heartbreakin book indeed,i was also sexually abused about a year a go.im turning fifteen this year and still told my parents..through out the book iv found anna,s life similar to mine,losing interst in what you most love to do..changing for the worst thing it would help losing friends and people most close to your heart men are nothing but dogs

  30. you know at primary our teacher always use to tellus about this book and she told us not to read it while in primary so when i went to high school it was the first thinh i did look for it in the library i read this book for two days i was 15 then itz really sad how people can be that cruel i read that book with tears… neva would i wish anything like that for anyone that man deserves anything bad that will come his way

  31. oh ja you guys should aswll read the book the boy called dave itz about a boy abused by his mom very sad as well wonders shall never end

  32. Chantal says:

    Hey my naam is chantal en ek het altwee jou boeke gelees moet se het dit glad nie geniet om te weet dat iemand deer so iets moet gaan nie jammer daar oor maar ek is bly dat jy so sterk mens gebly het geniet jou lewe verder jy verdien dit xxxxx mwah

    van chantal

  33. mientjie says:

    Sjoe, ek is nou besig om die eerste boek te lees en ek het gisteraand huilende gaan slaap, uit dankbaarheid vir my liefdevolle ouers en my man. Ek kan nie glo daar is sulke aaklige mense in die wêreld nie, hulle sal hulle straf kry.

    Mientjie

  34. Zenobia says:

    Ek het die boek gelees en my hart was so seer dat iemand dit aan n kind kan doen en weg kom daarmee en hoe slaap so in die aand hoekom is daar sulke mense in die weleld en wat dit nog erger maak ek ken so man.

  35. maggie says:

    eka lees nou die boek en die eerste 62 blaie het m al klaar geraak het klaar n paar keer gehuil anna jy was n bja bja sterk mens eka sou dit nie kon doen nie m pa en ma is ook geskei mar my stief pa is rerig n ongelooflike mens seker omdat hy 51 is

  36. Ben Loubser says:

    Kyk al geruime tyd so skeef na die 2 boeke anna en die opvolg, ek is ‘Herder van Jesus in ‘n gemeente, op Oosrand Stereo radio en ook Kruiskyk, en glo my daar is BAIE BAIE Anna’s
    Daarom is ek te BANG om te lees, dis reeds met my min kennis moeilik om nie te wil moor nie, die boek anna klink na te veel detail
    Anna ek bid regtig vir jou en sussie
    Ben Loubser

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  39. Marcelle says:

    Hi.
    I’m Marcelle. I’m 14 years old and started reading your book on the 20 March 2015 and finished it the following morning at exactly 00:40.
    My mom read the book and advised it to me.
    I could not put the book down and just kept on reading and reading. I was so touched by it that I broke down so much that I thought my eyes would dry up or I would become dehydrated.
    I had to read the second book so I immediately did that the following day.
    I actually have a lot of questions for you, Anchien. I would like to get in touch with you. I tried getting your email adress but failed.
    But heres my mom’s email: marcix67@ovi.com .
    Thank you.

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