Tanya's Reviews > The Story of Beautiful Girl

The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon
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's review
Jun 03, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: 2011-book-list, audio-unabridged, audiobooks, audio-cd
Read from June 02 to 10, 2011 — I own a copy

** spoiler alert ** I'm kind of disappointed. I book has to sound pretty special for me to pay full price. And this book was one of those. Just a simple description, and I was like "ohmigod, I HAVE TO read that". So I bought it. And all I've got to say is "meh".

What we have is a 40 year spanning love story.. kinda.
Actually what you have is 70% of a book that covers the first 5 months after a "runaway" disabled woman gives birth to a baby, and before she is captured and returned to her "school", she gives the baby to an old woman and says "hide her".

After those first 5 months, the story checks in with Lynnie (the disabled woman), Martha (the old woman), Homan (Lynnie's "husband"), and Kate (Lynnie's "therapist" I guess you could say - the only one that realized that Lynnie gave birth during her escape). The baby, Julia shows up as an afterthought, and really, you only see her at age 5 (precocious who loves to spell), 14 (angsty shoplifter who is being bad because she doesn't know her parents), and 43 (the end).

I think I was expecting the story to be more about the baby, but eventually I came to the realization that Homan refers to Lynnie as Beautiful Girl, and that's who the story's about. There are vast gaps in the story. Basically the next chapter will start with a year - which is 5, 15, 25, 40 years after the beginning of the story. I dunno, there are some really good parts. Things that make you think, but overall I was underwhelmed. 2.5 stars.
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Reading Progress

40.0% "Okay the back of the book says it will cover 40 years. I'm 40% done with the book, and the baby is like 5 months old..."
60.0% "Okay now she's like 5.... 40 years huh? Interesting."
70.0% "1983 - 15 years."
80.0% "It's now 1993 - 25 years down - there's been no mention of Julia since 83-ish. By this point you know Martha must be gone - interesting that the author chose to make her 70 at the beginning of the story. She could easily have been a decade younger and retired."
89.0% "1995 - It's now been 27 years. No mention of Julia still, but we're now finding out whats going on with Homan. Unimaginable to have lived so long with essentially no communication. Not being understood, and usually not able to understand others."

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