Mouthing the Words
Thelma is six years old. Life at home is unsettling and disturbing; her father's games are not enjoyable and her mother dotes on Willy, the favoured child. When her parents move to Canada, Thelma smuggles her imaginary friends with her in her suitcase.
By turns harrowing and wonderfully funny, Mouthing the Words tells Thelma's story of sexual abuse, anorexia, borderline m
The subject of sexual abuse and mental sickness are very close to me, and I was surprised at the intensity of both.
I felt like there was 100 different stories about the same person, all melded into one. I guess it kind of highlights all the different characters within the main character, her multiple personalities. It makes it very hard to revi ...more
I enjoyed it. The best thing about the book is Thelma, spiky and funny and traum ...more
He was a monster. But her mother was the Karla Homolka of the story, without being formally acknowledged as such.
It is no wonder that Thelma went off the rails. Convincingly, unsurprisingly, and luckily for me, as a reader, she also survived and rediscovered life, from a new perspective.
The help, both professional and personal, she had recovering lightened the dark h ...more
I particularly appreciated the fragmented and darkly chaotic passages describing Thelma's experiences with her father and with her subsequent illness as a young woman. The style of ...more
But I can't really review this book. This is the first French title I read in eight years, so I don't yet feel qualified to comment on its translation due to my eroded French. It's not that I didn't get it, as I'm still quite fluent. It's just those ...more
Heartbreaking, eloquent, too easy to read really. An enigma.
I have always taken comfort in thoughts like these, all the childlike thoughts you have to make sense of your place in the world. In the thought that the real you ...more
I was disturbed and most of the times felt uncomfortable reading this book because it just didn't feel right for a child to endure so much- but then such things do happen and Camilla Gibb uses words to show how awful such things are and also how one can rise above them.
Though I read it so long ago it has always held me. Check out anything else by Gibb.
The Petty Details of So and So's Life is also great especially for capturing a complex and heart full brother and sister relationship.
It's a very well executed description of a journey from an abusive childhood, though a fractured mental state, self harm, anorexia and multiple personality disorder. All with a very dry wit that allows these subjects to be explored without becoming depressing.
1) Sweetness in the Belly
2) Petty Details of So-and-So's Life
3) The Beauty of Humanity Movement
4) Mouthing the Words
Love you long time, Camilla Gibb.
The characters felt a bit stocked sometimes, but there was excellent momentum at the end of the story.
"Camilla Gibb, born in 1968, is the author of three novels, Mouthing the Words, The Petty Details of So-and-so's Life and Sweetness in the Belly, as well as numerous short stories, articles and reviews.
She was the winner of the Trillium Book Award in 2006, a Scotiabank Giller Prize short list nominee in 2005, winner of the City of Toronto Book Award in 2000 and the reci ...more