Felicity's Reviews > A Year and Six Seconds: A Memoir of Stumbling from Heartbreak to Happiness

A Year and Six Seconds by Isabel Gillies
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's review
Sep 22, 2011

liked it

I can't remember the rating I gave to her first book or what my reactions were, although I seem to recall being vaguely uncomfortable with her histrionics (even if she was honest in confessing them). Maybe I'm in the mood for a more hopeful book or maybe I've mellowed as I've become older, but this was actually a surprisingly good book. I suppose I wasn't sure if she was just cashing in on the success of the first. Taken together, I think these can be read as stories/memoirs about a woman who really just wanted to be married and be a mother. Yes, she wanted a career, but being a wife and a mother was/is a really important part of her identity which explains so much of what happens in this second book. Secondly, this memoir is actually very well-written. Once again, this was something of a surprise. I suppose I was expecting something worse. And for its insights into how you gotta work New York's rent-controlled housing laws...this book can't be beat. I mean, I had heard all about it, but Gillies' estate planning is kind of macabre (given her parents are still alive!) But that's what you have got to do if you want to be afford living in New York...

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