Age: 24

Pages: 76 /191; 40%
ISBN: 9781400067695

 The Reason for the Reaping: Another book read because of the Tournament of Books 2017. This one didn’t last too long in the Tournament, but I think this rather popular book would make a good close to these ToB-centric posts.

As I Lay Summarizing: Lucy Barton was in the hospital for an extended period “many years ago” for an irrelevant reason. It’s a weird jaunt reflecting on her pretty shitty childhood, and how Lucy was and is surviving. idk That sounds blasé but that’s as basic as I can get because NO SPOILERS.

 The Line That Killed Me: “This must be the way most of us maneuver through the world, half knowing, half not, visited by memories that can’t possibly be true.” (14). Death by subjective memory/life/wishes.

Best Character: Lucy

Why [As] You Like It: Strout manages to create rather simplistic plot events that are just waiting to be unpacked. She touches on privilege, homosexuality, Native American issues, and poverty in a way that is only slightly contrived (honesty is the best policy). The opportunity to not only reflect on Lucy’s life is there, but also to do it in a way that encourages cool things like intersectionality.

 Why I’m Gone, Girl: Unpopular opinion? Strout’s writing bothers me to no end. Sentences like “I asked her what she had said, and she repeated what she had said” and “The scar was healing nicely. ‘Healing nicely,’ he said” are not cute or sparse or whatever. To me, it’s straight up annoying. I can definitely see how it was the appropriate tone to strike in this story, but I ain’t having it. Sorry Elizabeth.

 Last Line, Last Chance: “…scan circle and there were some clicks and then it went….”

 Will I turn the page, or toss it into Mount Doom?

I really am sorry, but this is not holding my interest. Slightly contrived and kinda upsetting writing is not my tune. Maybe I’ll read her Pulitzer Prize winning novels instead? This one, however, goes to the fire.


One thought on “My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

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