A few years ago, I read the Lovely Bones and enjoyed it so much that I started looking around for Alice Sebold's other books. When I found this, I brought it without even looking what it was about and was quite surprised when I started reading.
The book is an account of part of Alice Sebold's life, which surprised me a little.
The start of the book is set in a tunnel, where Alice is being sexually attacked. Alice starts of by describing how this man raped her, which can be quite distressing. She writes in a first person account and it is shocking how matter of fact she is about the ordeal.
After this we join Alice on a journey, through medical examinations and police statements. If I remember rightly, we also follow her through legal proceeding to try and bring her attacker to justice.
As the ordeal 'comes to an end', with the court case finishing, Alice tried to rebuild her life and live again and it is inspiring seeing her do so.
I do not remember too much of the book and, with what I do remember, I do not want to spoil it for you.
This is one of the most inspiring books that I have read. I have read many books like this, but they are all written in such a way that makes Alice's seem completely different. I love the way that she has written this, she hasn't tried to dress anything down and has been so matter of fact with everything.
When I started reading it, before I realised it was an account of her life, I didn't understand where this story was going to go with everything happening in the first chapter, I thought it must be like the Lovely Bones. But once I got into it I realised how inspiring her story was and it was so moving to read how she overcame her attack and carried on with her life.
Written by an amazingly strong woman, I recommend this highly.
I am so glad I read this; it made sense why the author has written the books she has. After reading "The Lovely Bones" (see review for more information) I went looking for her other books, and was surprised to find out that only 2 other books have been made by Alice Sebold, which happen to be this book and another book called "The Almost Moon" (which is currently on my wish list). I found this book AMAZING and it made me understand where she got the inspiration for "The Lovely Bones" from.
Alice Sebold has had a big complicated and unfair life, in my opinion. No one in the world would ever wish someone's life to be like hers, and it shocked me what I read in this book, as this book is a kind of auto-biography on her life, and so I was fully intent on reading it, as I find that I enjoy auto-biographies more and more. I feel that Alice Sebold is a brilliant writer and this is shown with the ratings that I have given to the 2 books of hers that I have read. I hope "The Almost Moon" is just as good! And I sure hope she releases a new book sometime soon, as I'd hate to lose her as an author.
This, as I have already mentioned, follows like an auto-biography, and so therefore we follow Alice Sebold's extraordinary life, which shows the readers that she has became a strong woman, wouldn't anyone be that strong if their life turned out that way? Well we read her fully intent story-line and her very detailed description of the first few chapters where she is brutally raped. And then we follow her through her life and the reports she made to the police. This ends up with a shocking end, which may surprise some people.
Okay, so maybe I haven't personally written a great plot line, and if you look at other people's reviews on this, it may be better, but I assure you this book was really good, I fully loved the way in which the story line goes subtle at times and then out of nowhere it goes WHAM! And you are reading much quicker as something amazing has happened!
I reckon that this book has a hidden message behind it; I think it states that no matter what happens to you in life, you have to be strong and you have to know how to fight the bad things that happen in life, or some similar message. Of course some people will just read it for enjoyment, though that is pretty difficult as detailed descriptions make you feel like you are there, and are living through what Alice is going through, which just shows how much of a great author she is, as many authors find it difficult to make the audience feel like they are part of the story themselves.
This book seems to be an auto biography of Alice Sebold (the author, obviously), this therefore shows her life and what has happened in it over the few years. The thing is that I wouldn't say it is much of an auto-biography, as most auto-biographies go in order from that person's childhood to now. When this book is based around her most frightening time in her life (possibly) and what has happened in it that has influenced her first book (and maybe "The Almost Moon" though I have not read that so I am not too sure). So to be totally honest, although it is non fiction, I would put it more under the crime section as it is more of a crime novel rather than an auto-biography!
This book (as with many other books I have recently reviewed) stands out on the bookshelf, not because of the cover (which I don't really think is a good representation of the author's life) but because it seems to stand all on its own, I have never come across such a book as this. I understand that some people may think it is similar to "The Lovely Bones" which is true, however "The Lovely Bones" is a fictional story, and so therefore separates this book from that one. So, in theory, this book is like no other, or maybe no other I have come across so far.
This book was extremely interesting; I wanted to know every single thing that happened in her life. Since the start is surprising and no ordinary start, I would admit that this is easy to get into and makes you fully interested in the story line. Occasionally, some people may find the normal everyday bits boring, but this is a great technique Alice Sebold has used to represent her book as a true representation of normal life, rather than trying to plummet you into tonnes of complicated but interesting story lines, she has decided to stick with what happened in her life and put it in more or less chronological order, trying to remember every step she took (literally) which emphasised our interest within the book and make it seem more real to us. I have to admit, I did like the end, but it did bring shock to me and I felt sorry for the few characters in the book. I have to be honest, I did have a lot of emotions running through me as I read the book, I did shudder at the bits which I thought was very detailed (others may think too detailed), I did feel upset at the very start with the dramatic events that unwounded in the beginning, however there was some joyous emotions, and some happy and even funny emotions that ran through me from this amazing book. It made me think about some of the traumatic events that went on in my life, and they seem really small compared to this book. And it is shocking that this happened to her. I would like to read it again if I had the time and I didn't have such a massive back-log of read. Maybe I will end up reading it again sometime soon, you never seem to know these things, but I really did enjoy it.
So who exactly will this book interest? To be honest you've probably made up your mind and don't really need me to answer this question, but just for you lot, I am going to answer this question! This book is perfect for anyone in theory. I loved it and I'm more of a horror person, who tends to dip into a variety of different types of books now and then, but horror is usually the genre for me, but I loved this book just as much! I think the people who prefer crime novels will love this more than anyone else, I also have to tell parents or family members who are thinking about this book as a present to a child in the family, I totally suggest you to think really hard about whether or not this book is for that child, as it contains a few very sexual scenes in the first few chapters, and I'm sure a child of an age that is too young for this type of book is not suited for this book. I shall not give an age restrictions as I feel it varies depending on who that child is.
I think the only annoying bit of the book, which happened to make me lose a star off this rating is the slowness and the seemingly normality of everyday life, this made it seem natural and interesting, but can be considered too slow and not rapid enough!
I think the cover is too uninteresting for what this book is about; surely they could have made the cover seem a little more interesting and make people in bookshops pick it up. The cover deserves to be eye-catching and makes it stand out.
Well that's all I sure hope I have helped you decide whether or not you want to read it or not, thank you all for reading!
This book recounts Alice Sebold's experiences after she was raped and beaten in a park when she was a teenager. Now this is not the easiest subject matter to talk but when it's you that have experienced it, I can only imagine how hard writing this book must have been.
The title, Lucky really sums up the nature of this book. It's not about self pity, it's about getting on with life and how she coped with what happened to her and the reactions of the people she met, both those close to her and those she meets in the future when getting on with her life.
The actual attack is explained in detail and it is sometimes difficult to read but it's important to get past that to be able to see the book through and find out what happens and how she goes about rebuilding her life.
As the other review mentions, this book isn't very long so it won't take too much time to get through but it's certainly worth reading. Whether this book shows you how to support someone who has gone through similar, I don't know, I believe that such situations are complicated and require the support of trained professionals.
I read Sebold's work of fiction - The Lovely Bones - many years ago and enjoyed it immensely. So I decided to follow their advice when someone suggested I read this to further my knowledge before training at rape crisis. It is a memoir of Sebold's experience of rape and her life beyond that.
The book begins in a tunnel. The facts are stark and plain in the preface and this continues to be the case as the first chapter begins. This first person account of rape is all the more shocking because of the mundanity of the some of the facts ("It was a photo ID. New York State didn't have them...Pennsylvania did"). It is this that strikes the chord of reality. There are not the fancy words or witty dialogue you may find in a great work of fiction. You are with Sebold in the moment. You feel the clarity of that moment when the world slowed right down for her and she thought she would die.
As the book continues there are descriptions of the medical, police and legal procedures Sebold goes through, peoples reactions and her reaction to them and lots of background on her life before that day that everything changed - "My life was over. My life had just began."
This is a compelling account of survival of the most brutal crime a woman can face. It tells how wrong people can get it when trying to communicate with someone who was been raped (even when they have experienced it too) and how the justice system seems to favour the criminal. It is a story of hope, though, and strength of the human spirit that endures despite horrendous pain.
I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to empathise with a woman who has suffered and survived. Sebold does not cast herself in a heroic light - her honesty is painful. Her family and friends come across as well meaning but flawed - I'm sure we can all relate to that! I felt uplifted by the end of the book which I was not expecting. At 251 pages it is not a long book but so much goes on in it that it feels like it is. I cried, I laughed and by the end of it I felt like I was a friend of Sebolds - such is the tone of the book.
ISBN no: 0-330-41836-X Published in paperback 2002 Picador. RRP £7.99 but available online for £5.99.