Book Thirteen: Autobiography of a Face

Autobiography of a Face, Lucy Grealy

This is the "companion book" to Ann Patchett's Truth & Beauty. However, it was written by Lucy Grealy before Ann Patchett probably ever conceived of her book. And while the two are so inherently linked in nature, they also feel like so very different, very separate book about very different subject matter. While Ann's book is about the nature of friendship, Lucy's book is about the struggles of identity and self-image and family and beauty.

I have to admit, I have complicated feelings about both of these books. While I was swept up in my emotional response to Ann's book, I found myself analyzing and overthinking Lucy's book. I'm not sure if that's simply because I read Ann's first, or because of something different about their writing styles. One of our book club members happened to have read them in the other order, and felt more strongly about Lucy's book, while I had a hard time connecting to this one.

And isn't it fascinating, the way we project our own "stuff' onto the books we read, and how our experiences--whether that be what books we read before or what our own life experience happened to be--play a major role in how we respond to these books.


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