Sesana's Reviews > The Impostor's Daughter: A True Memoir

The Impostor's Daughter by Laurie Sandell
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's review
Nov 02, 2011

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bookshelves: comics, nonfiction, weird
Read from November 03 to 12, 2011

Laurie Sandell grew up hearing her father's stories about his time as a Green Beret in Vietnam, his medals, his PhDs, his time teaching at Stanford, and his thriving business investments. In college, she applies for a credit card, only to find out that her father had taken out multiple cards in her name, and the names of both of her sisters, and her mother's name... Digging further, she discovers that her father has no college degrees, never taught at Stanford, never got a medal in the army, and never even got above private in the army. His entire life, everything that she knew about him was built on lies.

It sounds like a really dramatic story, especially knowing that it's all true. And it is, but the structure keeps it from hitting its full potential. For some reason, it's published as a graphic novel. I'm not sure that was the best choice. Sandell's art is a little too sparse and abstract to be engaging to me. I also feel that the structure was lacking. The story is so complicated, I think it really needed a very tight structure, but it just didn't have one. Maybe this would have done better as a traditionally written memoir instead.
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