Ash Rocketship's Reviews > Luckiest Girl Alive

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll
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it was amazing
bookshelves: 2019

I was nervous when starting this, as always with a book this hyped and also loved by people whose opinions I trust, but I fell so completely into the story I was able to let go of that pointless anxiety and the accompanying ambivalence pretty immediately.

The writing here is incredibly strong, incredibly compelling, even at the start when you think Ani might not be worth your time. I didn't know anything about the plot going in except a vague awareness of Knoll's personal essay about it -- as I've mentioned repeatedly, I don't read reviews or blurbs before reading something and I barely skim jacket summaries, usually waiting so long to actually read something I've bought that I've forgotten what I did read by then -- and for once I don't actually think that was vital to how much I loved the book because in some ways the plot is so secondary to the experience of watching Ani's life, seeing the cracks form and the truth eek out.

I complain, constantly, about how much harder it is to review a book you really loved than one you hate and this is no exception, but I will try my best: there is nothing fun about this book, the majority of it will make you feel bad in at least three to six ways at any given time depending on your personal history, the characters are mostly awful people though they are complicated and complex when it counts, the writing is phenomenal -- spare and sharp and perfectly, sometimes grotesquely detailed at the exact right moment, Ani is a compelling character and narrator even when as I was initially repulsed by her, and there is a gratifying kind of vindication to be had in the ending here, the kind very few women will ever experience in reality.

This was a genuinely great book and I can't wait to never read it again.

ETA: I am glad I didn't read this when the hype machine was in motion because there is absolutely no way that this book should have been compared to or recommended on the basis of Gone Girl or the crop of thrillers that followed. This is not a book like that... Literally not at all or in any way whatsoever except maybe the quality of writing, Flynn-wise. I don't know what marketing person got that into their poor-reading-comprehension-ed head and ran with it, but every non-stellar review based solely on this not being Gone Girl should feel like little needles all over their body every time they try to do it to another book.
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Reading Progress

April 12, 2019 – Started Reading
April 12, 2019 – Shelved
April 15, 2019 – Shelved as: 2019
April 15, 2019 – Finished Reading

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