Thursday, August 6, 2009

BTT: Recently Serious

Today's Booking Through Thursday asks this:

What’s the most serious book you’ve read recently?
(I figure it’s easier than asking your most serious book ever, because, well, it’s recent!)

Phew, that's a serious question, isn't it?

I actually had to spend some time thinking about the books I'd read recently because I couldn't remember any that were serious enough to be mentioned here. I almost gave up until I remembered about Lucky by Alice Sebold.
It's her memoir of how she got raped as a freshman in college and her quest to find the criminal responsible for changing her life and to bring him to justice. Alice Sebold is mostly known for her Lovely Bones book which, by the way, I have yet to read. Lucky had been written and published before Lovely Bones and in my opinion that's the order the books should be read. Her novel was influenced by her real life experiences and I have a feeling that having now known these awful events and how Ms. Sebold dealt with it all and moved on, I will look at Lovely Bones in a different, more meaningful light.
Lucky is very real, the rape scene described in vivid details down to the whole dialogue. One may wonder how can a person remember anything so well but in this case that memory was what helped Ms. Sebold get the justice she was seeking. The whole book however is not even so much about the rape itself, as about Alice's life afterward. It's a beautiful memoir, one written by a very brave woman and a very skilled writer. It's a story of great loss, of strong and unwavering purpose, and most importantly a story that really happened.
If you're up for some serious reading one of these days, I'd definitely recommend Lucky. Especially because it's a perfect example of when serious doesn't equal boring or difficult to get through. I read it in one sitting and finished it feeling like I was holding one long breath all the time and was allowed to exhale only after it was done.