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review 2015-07-05 08:51
Sixteen, Sixty-one
Sixteen, Sixty-One - Natalie Lucas

I'm usually not really into reading memoirs but I decided to read this one out of morbid curiosity. I've never understood why people would start a relationship with someone thrice their age. I hoped this might give me some more insight.


I started reading and after a few chapters I already started thinking, how can this be interesting for a whole book. And indeed, I felt there was a lot of repetition and the story could have been a lot shorter. I find it hard to actually remark on the story itself because as a memoir it's at least supposed to be non-fiction, but sometimes I was thinking 'can you really believe this or that?'. Their relationship (she's sixteen, he sixty-one) felt extremely creepy right from the start (even before it turned into a sexual relationship).


Perhaps it's just because I don't really like memoirs, but I didn't enjoy reading it and was glad it was over.


Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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review 2013-12-14 03:06
Sadly, not or me.
Sixteen, Sixty-One - Natalie Lucas

Disclaimer: I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 


I attempted reading this book five times, and failed ever single time. It didn’t help that I struggled with trying to get the file to even load into my reader, but ultimately it wasn’t technical problems that lead me to not finish this book. I can’t say it was the direct fault of the book either. 

I think the big road block for me was the combination of writing style and premise. This is book is about real events that happened to the author, but there is a distinctive literary style to how it’s written that felt very forced to me. There’s a difference between someone reliving their past and someone telling you about them. This was very much telling over show, to the point that I felt the author was trying too hard and it kept pulling me out of the story. 


I also struggled to connect with the main character, who is a real person, to even care about what was happening. That’s a big sign that I’m going to struggle to stay engaged in a book, and that’s exactly the problem I had here. I kept setting it down, and then I’d come back to try again only to disengage again.

The hardest part to all this is that this is someone’s very personal story, a story that meant enough to them to write down and share. Sadly, I couldn’t get past the forced writing style to feel like I was reading about real people, instead of getting told a second hand story. 


In the end I feel this was a short fall on my part, and shouldn’t be held against the book. I don’t think I should attempt to read this kind of story again. It is not for me. 

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review 2013-08-06 00:00
The Yardstick By Which All Squick Will Be Measured
Sixteen, Sixty-One - Natalie Lucas
I've looked at my life and I see it clearly now; it was never for me, always for you. But something is broken between us, something more than my heart.

I feel a bit out of my element here because unless it's about someone I admire or I'm actually required to, memoirs aren't exactly my cuppa. The Doubting Thomas in me will always question at the back of my mind if the author is actually reminiscing or taking some creative license. Which makes reviewing memoirs quite a challenge as any critique I may have boils down to the author's reliability as a narrator and I really don't want to take that road. 

This book in particular takes a bit of readjustment because the nature of this story and its delivery makes my mind default back to reading it as if it's fiction. I guess I should find some comfort in the fact that I am still capable of being shocked. Enough to automatically process something so bewildering as fiction in order to be able to deal while reading it before addressing it as something that actually happened in retrospect.

So please bear in mind that whatever comment I may have refers solely on the story being told and in no way reflects my feelings towards the author, the veracity of her accounts or belittling the pain and suffering she has gone through as told in this book. 

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