Mallory's Reviews > Lucky

Lucky by Alice Sebold
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May 06, 12

it was ok
Read from April 27 to 29, 2012

I can't remember who recommended I read this memoir thinking that it might make me feel more favorably about The Lovely Bones, which I thought was kind of overrated. I wish I could remember who that person was so that I could tell her she was wrong.

It's not that Alice Sebold is a poor writer, because she's not. And it's not that I wasn't prepared for what it takes to read a memoir about rape and recovery, because I was. It's that Sebold's narrative, while captivating at points, is somewhat passionless and matter-of-fact. She recounts events, she doesn't describe them. While I could understand the need to do this when describing her assault, it makes the memoir feel somewhat stale as you read it.

The story of her recovery is interesting, and her bravery and strength are remarkable; however, there is a feeling throughout her narrative which makes her seem almost *too* strong and makes her recovery feel too easy. While later chapters will reveal that this wasn't the case and that there were serious demons lurking beneath the surface of her shiny veneer, this is never alluded to along the way. As a result, I found myself feeling further and further from the character of Alice as Alice presents herself. "It's all right for some," I found myself thinking, wondering if anyone writes memoirs which actually detail how difficult things are. From page one, Alice was a survivor and a champion or, at very least, strives to be; while it is inspiring to think about, it's not terribly interesting to read.
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