Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll.
This book is: sharp and engaging.
Other elements: school violence, rape, eating disorders, the effect that violence has on the people who experience it.
Read it: if you like meaty, gritty, well-written stories.
Overall rating: 7.75/10
I hate recommending books based on Gone Girl because I feel like that gives people very specific expectations. But it’s undeniable that the main character in Luckiest Girl Alive shared some of the characteristics that I found interesting in the femme fatale of Gone Girl. However, I found Luckiest Girl Alive‘s Ani to be a much fuller, more human character than Gone Girl‘s scheming Amy.
When you meet Ani, she’s a high-powered NYC magazine writer and bride-to-be on a hardcore diet for her wedding to a rich man. As the reader follows Ani through her life, it becomes clear that there are powerful and violent events in her past, events that have shaped the complicated person that she’s forced herself to become.
As the reader learns more about Ani’s life – why she’s being asked to appear in a documentary about her high school, why strangers sometimes recognize her name – Ani begins to question what she’d always thought was true about her past and it starts to affect the carefully constructed identity she’s living in her present.
This novel is dark, as I said – there’s sexual violence and violence involving teenagers. But I found it to be well done and fascinating from a character development standpoint. I only know one other person whose read it, and she didn’t like it as much as I did.
Has anyone out there read Luckiest Girl Alive? Talk to me. What did you think of it?
My thanks to Simon & Schuster for providing me with a copy of Luckiest Girl Alive for review consideration.
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