- 101 in 1001
February 12, 2011
Labels: Book Reviews
Date Finished: February 8, 2011
Summary: Lucy doesn't have a normal life, even though she is trying desperately to maintain one. She has a best friend for the first time in a long time and even a budding romance with a hot guy. However, when she goes home the only thing waiting for her is piles and piles of garbage and junk that her mother refuses to let go. When a terrible tragedy happens to her mother, Lucy will go to great lengths to keep her home and her life a secret.
Likes: This was a frustrating read. I rooted for Lucy the entire way, but it was clear how her mother and her family was holding her back from just doing average things like having a sleepover at her house or even just having a normal life. It's embarrassing just to have dishes piled up in the sink and dog hair everywhere just dealing with all the stress of having roommates, I can't imagine how much more embarrassing it would be to have a whole house full of trash. The memories weaved in and out of Lucy's current situation were sad, because it wasn't always that bad. Her mother was frustrating, blaming her children for not cleaning up behind themselves instead of accepting that she had a problem. Lucy's older sister, Sara, was frustrating as well because she was going down the same destructive path. The family dynamic was troubled, but realistic given the situation. The crazy thing is that everyone believed Lucy's mother was a nice woman and given the memories about her in the hospital and the things she did for her kids before things went bad, it was true. It was a heartbreaking story, but it was so real and so honest.
Dislikes: Sometimes the message was a bit on the nose, but it was quickly undercut by Lucy's cynical attitude. I also want to know what happens afterward, I feel that Lucy's story wasn't exactly over where it was stopped.
Overall: The first thing that came to my mind was that this book is horrifying and horrendous and I mean that in a good way. I was rooting for Lucy to do something for herself and when she did, I was so happy for her. I haven't been so invested in a character in a long time. I really wanted her to succeed in doing whatever she had to do to get away from her house. When she took that step, I was so happy.
Recommended by: I read the author's blog on occasion. This story is incredibly relevant given the shows on televison about people who hoard. Even more so, I know someone who is a hoarder and from an outside point of view I can understand how frustrating it is to think you can't go inside someone's house because it's too messy. I haven't been in this person's house since middle school, so who knows how bad it could be now. In fact, it was so bad that it was almost condemned. And the interesting thing is that I can understand how Lucy was so willing to do anything to protect her secret. The thought ran through my head several times about how I can write about hoarding without giving away the identity of the person who does it. I even debated about whether I should write this little section and thought about all the people who could see it and the repercussions, so times that feeling by about 100 and I can see how bad the situation got and was cheering when Lucy took matters into her own hands.