Darnell's Reviews > History of a Suicide: My Sister's Unfinished Life

History of a Suicide by Jill Bialosky
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Mar 07, 2011

did not like it
Read from March 07 to April 10, 2011

This book wasn't really a forensic psychology study as hinted in its description and simply the author's cathartic release. Bialosky spends more time speculating than researching. Instead of finding old friends of her sister or her boyfriend, who killed himself a couple years later (a fact we learn as an afterthought), she spends a LOT of time filling in the blanks by starting paragraphs with statements like "I imagine she felt..." This is just an attempt to paint a picture of a damaging relationship that the author had not been able to observe first-hand because she was, understandably, an adult starting her own life.

Then there's the poems. Yikes. The author is a poet by trade, but that doesn't excuse posting several poems written by herself, her sister and even Plath. They provided no insight and drove the narrative straight into the ground.

HISTORY OF A SUICIDE covers a tragic event indeed, but as Bialosky provides more information about Kim, including an absentee father, abusive boyfriend, drug abuse and expressions of hopelessness in her sister's diary and poetry going back to her teen years, one doesn't need to be a forensic psychologist to answer the question of "why." It's sounds callous, but unfortunately this lacked any kind of new insight into suicide.
1 like · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read History of a Suicide.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.