This book was released at Singapore OBCZ (Official Bookcrossing Zone) Moonriver Cafe.
So instead of reading Lovely Bones first, I read this book by Alice Sebold. I feel compelled to read Lovely Bones because everybody’s reading it (will do soon). Lucky caught my interest because it’s a true story of the author. I’m a sucker for true survival story, so I grabbed the $5 book.
From the back cover:
In a memoir hailed for its searing candour and wit, Alice Sebold reveals how her life was utterly transformed when, as an 18-year-old college freshman, she was brutally raped and beaten in a park near campus.
I struggled a little bit here and there to continue, finding the details of the story at times hard to swallow. I had problem especially remembering the side characters and their names, and following the overall timeline. The start was a bit slow too, going into details of Sebold’s family: an intellect distant father, an alcoholic depressed mother, and an introvert moody sister, who, despite their flaws, tried their best to fit in into their roles.
You know how one book can be good for one time but not so much for another time? How it really depends on when you read it at which point of your life? That’s how I felt with the book. I wasn’t really into a depressing surviving rape story at that time, so I wasn’t as enthusiastic as I thought I would. I feel a bit guilty for treating it as just that, story. Because it’s not just that. It’s a true and honest insight into Sebold’s chronicle to recovery. The details of how the law worked also introduced new things for me. From affidavit, court, to how the law sometimes works in a funny way for trying to be just and fair to all parties.
Looking back, I would say that Sebold is a fine author, and a mighty survivor. I found it interesting that she ended the book before she met her current husband. I guess I half expected that someone would “save” her at the end. So this sentence in the book could not be more profound: “You save yourself or you remain unsaved.”
Ratings: 3.5 out 5
It’s worth reading for one who’s into the subject or the author, but not exactly enjoyable nor does it stand out as a memoir/biography. Still a huge respect for Sebold for being so bold.
“Memory could save, that it had power, that it was often the only recourse of the powerless, the oppressed, or the brutalized.” ~ pg114