Book Review: Luckiest Girl Alive
Title: Luckiest Girl Alive
Author: Jessica Knoll
Genre: Contemporary Thriller
Publication Year: 2015
I’ve had trouble with picking books in the last few years. I’d fallen into a trap–there were certain books that I held above all others as standards of excellence. If a new book didn’t meet those standards, it wouldn’t get finished. My mom handed me Luckiest Girl Alive, and (like many books she hands me) I was skeptical. That reluctance comes from a few spiritual-find-yourself-y book recommendations in my late teens that I had very little interest in. I started reading it because a) it was on my shelf, b) my internet was out and c) I was snowed into my house. It is the only reason I am grateful for the Portland snow.
I was completely fascinated by TifAni FaNelli by page 10. She’s (for lack of a better term) fucked up. I love it. I hate to say it, but she thinks the way I’ve been trained to think. I have had some of those same scathing thoughts and the same horrid experiences. Not all of them, of course, but a fair few. She is intensely relatable, likable, unlikable, snotty, fair-minded and struggling in her own way.
It was a difficult read. I had to put it down multiple times, but I still finished it in four days. It spoke to many of my personal insecurities and experiences as a child, so there were moments when it cut me to my core. No matter how many times I put it down, I couldn’t help picking it up again. It had a distinct draw; I needed to know what happened next, and let me tell you: I was not expecting the ending.
I’ve read a lot of reviews that take issue with the ending, saying that the resolution was unsatisfying and the main character wasn’t relatable. They also say that the narration rambles. The resolution was fairly unsatisfying, but I found that to be realistic. Sexual assault (which is a distinct theme in this book) is often never resolved. Decisions require sacrifices, and not everything turns out perfectly. The main character may not be relatable to many, but I understood her. She wasn’t likable as a reader, but there are tons of people who I doubt would be likable if we could listen to their thoughts. Personally, I thought the moments of rambling narration were artistically done.
I would highly recommend this book. It deals with “the fine line” of sexual assault and coping with a loved one who takes a different stance. It (kind of) deals with eating disorders and body dysmorphia. What I like most is that it deals with those topics without assuming that everything will turn out perfectly if you’re the plucky heroine. It’s honest in a way that many novels aren’t.
Stay tuned for the Universal Queen Publication!
Find this on my blog :)