Author Draws Back Curtain of Broken Child Protection System in Debut Novel

‘The System: Protect a Child?’ follows one family’s 10-year fight to keep their children safe and how they found peace in God’s unconditional love

ALACHUA, Fla., Jan. 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Author Katharyn Dunn has published her debut novel that depicts the brokenness of the U.S.’s child protection system through a fictionalized account of a family’s desperate battle to keep their children safe from sexual predators in their midst. In “The System: Protect a Child?”, Dunn delivers an unflinching critique of the current state of Child Protective Services agencies across the nation and examines how many social workers have their hands tied when attempting to intervene in and remove children from abusive situations.

Protagonist Robin and her 19-year-old son, Sampson McDaniel-Perez, have temporary protective custody of Sampson’s two daughters: Laurel, who is 19 months old, and Mia, who is six months old. The girls’ biological mother, Jill, had been the victim of her father, Pete Stone, since she was eight. As Robin and Sampson fight to keep the predators in Jill’s life from harming Laurel and Mia, they begin to experience extreme harassment, including repeated calls in the middle of the night and threats of violence against them. Child Protective Services is unable to intervene without proof that the children had already been harmed.

“I wanted this story to come out for the many people who are facing the same thing.,” Dunn said. “I think readers will resonate with the multiplicity of frustrations with our system. It’s not that social workers aren’t dedicated – they are. But rather, the legal hoops they must jump through to remove children from potentially abusive situations are numerous and often prohibitive.”

Ultimately, “The System” tells a story about a 10-year battle fought by its protagonists against the intentions of a misguided and narcissistic mother, two known child molesters, and an ineffective government agency. Throughout the characters’ journey, Dunn demonstrates how Robin and Samuel turned to Jesus for strength, wisdom, and endurance, and He continued to wrap His protective arms around the family until the book’s surprising ending.

“An amazing story of perseverance and commitment to protect the weak and vulnerable at all cost,” a reader wrote in a five-star review of the book on Amazon. “My takeaway from this book is that with faith we can overcome any situation no matter the circumstances as long as we stay the course!”

“The System: Protect a Child?”
By Katharyn Dunn
ISBN: 978-1-9736-8839-6 (hc)
ISBN: 978-1-9736-8840-2 (sc)
ISBN: 978-1-9736-8841-9 (e)
Available through WestBow Press, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon

About the author
Katharyn Dunn is a Registered Nurse who has been published in three national journals in the areas of education and research. Dunn has worked in the emergency room and surgery for over 30 years and has treated many children and adults who were victims of abuse. She has worked with social workers and devoted child protection teams whose hands were tied by the U.S.’s broken child protection systems. Dunn is active in her local church, plays in the Praise Band, and loves Jesus. She currently resides in northern Florida. To learn more, please visit

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