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142 of 143 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A TRIUMPH OVER TRAGEDY
Like her novel The Lovely Bones - which I've also reviewed and which you must read - Lucky is a harrowing, heart-wrenching book about the worst possible thing that can happen to a woman. Alice Sebold tells the raw story of her rape ordeal and her subsequent struggle for recovery with an honesty and warmth which is compelling. Lucky reads almost like a novel itself at...
Published on 10 Oct 2002 by Kelvin MacGregor

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars difficult read
this book is not for the fainthearted, and I thought I was quite brave in that department. But to be honest I found it hard to read.
It is very gritty and disturbing, a thoroughly challenging read.
Published 13 months ago by A. Dawes


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142 of 143 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A TRIUMPH OVER TRAGEDY, 10 Oct 2002
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
Like her novel The Lovely Bones - which I've also reviewed and which you must read - Lucky is a harrowing, heart-wrenching book about the worst possible thing that can happen to a woman. Alice Sebold tells the raw story of her rape ordeal and her subsequent struggle for recovery with an honesty and warmth which is compelling. Lucky reads almost like a novel itself at times, with gripping moments of suspense, particularly during the court trial scenes.
Alice Sebold was the innocent victim of an unforgivable crime - but she doesn't ask for our sympathy or pity in these beautifully written pages. She earns our respect and admiration for the courageous way she tells how the traumatic events changed and shaped her life; how the naive college student would eventually become a hardened, determined aggressor herself in her brave fight for justice against her attacker. Sadly, this natural reaction to her personal violation came with a price - destructive behavioural damage that brought a later downward spiral into drugs. What the author didn't know at the time is that she was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder; an anxiety syndrome that emerges following a psychologically distressing traumatic event such as rape, which she battles to overcome.
Can someone really, truly, get over something so savage and brutal as rape is the numbing thought you're left with long after you put the book aside? The past can never be forgotten, but Alice Sebold has managed to crawl from the wreckage and move on with her life to a happier future that has brought her international fame and acclaim. That says something about the human spirit - and everything about this remarkable woman.
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112 of 113 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunningly real and moving, 11 Mar 2004
By 
Miss A. Griffiths "Woozle" (Calne, Wiltshire) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
Having been a victim of rape myself, I was a little unsure of whether reading this book was a good idea...drudging up old memories I'd rather forget. However, after the first page I knew this was a book I should read. Alice Sebold explains how she was raped and how she coped with it, about how other people percieve you as a rape victim and how you percieve yourself. I found this a very moving account and something which had me crying and nodding understanding all the things she said. Especially when you wonder, if i've been raped, am I still allowed to enjoy sex? This book was kind of like therapy to me. I found her first novel, The Lovely Bones, a very moving read too, however, nothing could be more moving than her brave and frank account of her own terrifying experience. It is the sort of book more people should read, whether you have been a victim of rape, know someone who was, or have had no contact with this kind of crime. In this day and age where victims still have trouble speaking out - we need a role model who can show us its ok to tell someone - you are not an outcast and anyone who thinks different is not worthy of your time. This book will not wave a magic wand and make it all go away, but it certainly helps get some things off your mind. A wonderful, moving and helpful read.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An important book, 16 July 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
I read this book partially because I read The Lovely Bones, but largely because I was abused as a child and was interested in reading another person's experience of sexual crime. I found it almost a cathartic experience as, whilst what happened to me and Alice is not exactly the same, it is so nice to read someone openly expressing themselves about this kind of crime and what effect it had on them. Too often this issue is swept under the carpet because its too uncomfortable for people to think about. Sebold's honesty in her account is refreshing. I can totally relate to much of how she feels, and seeing it expressed so freely would surely help any "victim" (I hate that word) understand their own feelings and encourage them to deal with what has happened to them. It has done so for me.

I also feel this is an important book for those who have no experience of this type of crime. It will help them understand the effect it has on those who go through it, and also the horrific way the justice system works in rape cases. Whilst of course it is the American justice system referred to hear, it has many similarities to the UK system and so is still relevant here. However, Sebold steers away from using the book as a criticism of the justice system. The events which happened to her speak far louder than any open criticism, and she lets the events speak for themselves.

Nor is the book an anti-male diatribe, which it easily could have been. Sebold makes little if any judgement on her rapist, again letting events themselves do the talking. She focuses on the events as they affected her life and her feelings and lets the reader come to their own conclusions about the justice system and her attacker. Similarly she is honest about her family and friends reactions, not sugar coating them at all despite her loyalty to them. This again is refreshing and a perspective on this crime which is not often seen.

Sebold's book is better written than her novel, her style much clearer and powerful, and it is much better paced. It is brutally honest, which I am sure some will find uncomfortable. However, rape is an uncomfortable but important subject. Please, please read this book and start to understand this subject.
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174 of 180 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A TRIUMPH OVER TRAGEDY, 11 May 2003
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
Like her wonderful novel The Lovely Bones - which I've also reviewed and which you must read - Lucky is a harrowing, heart-wrenching book about the worst possible thing that can happen to a woman. Alice Sebold tells the raw story of her rape ordeal and her subsequent struggle for recovery with an honesty and warmth which is compelling. Lucky reads almost like a novel itself at times, with gripping moments of suspense, particularly during the court trial scenes.
Alice Sebold was the innocent victim of an unforgivable crime - but she doesn't ask for our sympathy or pity in these beautifully written pages. She earns our respect and admiration for the courageous way she tells how the traumatic events changed and shaped her life; how the naive college student would eventually become a hardened, determined aggressor herself in her brave fight for justice against her attacker. The past can never be forgotten, but Alice Sebold has managed to crawl from the wreckage and move on with her life to a happier future that has brought her international fame and acclaim. That says something about the human spirit - and everything about this remarkable woman.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!, 4 May 2006
By 
RM Brown "rachmarie1611" (Northampton, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
I first discovered Alice Sebold when I read a review of The Lovely Bones, bought it, read it and fell in love with it. I then came across Lucky and decided to read it. I've never been a big fan of memoirs but Lucky changed that. Never before have I felt such respect for someone as I do Alice Sebold. In Lucky you follow her through her horrific rape and the struggle to put her life back together afterwards. The book had me gripped and I could not put it down. It's a heart-wrenching story that had me in tears at points. A definate read for anyone.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, but emotionally draining., 12 Nov 2004
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
Alice Sebold has written her true account of the brutal beating and rape she was subjected to whilst at college. This story is heart wrenching and extremely emotional, very dark in places and triumphant in others. I have to admit that I was emotionally drained after reading this, although i am very glad that i did.
The story of anyones rape would be difficult to read, and Alice thrives on the difficulty of her subject, by taking you through every minute, every feeling, every reaction of the account. By the end of the book you feel it has happened to a close friend. I have to say that I found this book hard to read, and by the end was very sad, regardless of her survival and her spirit.
Alice Sebold is a remarkable woman, there is no denying it. I read Lucky because i loved her first book The Lovely Bones so much. This is a completely different book, Alice is unbelievably honest about every part of her trauma,brutal in her honesty throughout, she spares the reader nothing, tells you everything a rape victim would usually keep to themselves - if you read it, you are in for the whole ride.
The message that has stayed with me since reading the book is this - Alice says she hears people saying they would rather die than be raped. She dismisses this as ridiculous, she says she would rather be raped over and over than be killed. The way she describes this makes me feel the fear she had for her life while being raped, and its not a nice feeling. For every person out there who has never had something truly dreadful happen to them, count your blessings, and read this book - it will make you appreciate your life.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Uncompromising, unmatchable, 17 Jun 2005
By 
OEJ - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
Yes, like many I bought Lucky having earlier read The Lovely Bones by the same author. The earlier novel deserves its high praise, while this one is quite different - even though it tackles a similar issue. I rarely enjoy true stories, especially autobiographical ones, but this consistently held my interest through to the end. The trial in particular was actually full of tension, all the more so because we know it actually happened like that. A powerful insight into the intense trauma of cross-examination of a rape victim and why so many such cases fail to lead to conviction. Ms Sebold is clearly a strong-willed woman, an exceptional writer and I will pre-order her next work without even waiting to find out the subject matter. She's that good.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!!!!!!!, 11 Jun 2004
By 
C. Lloyd "book lover" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
I'm a fifteen year old boy and this book made me cry twice! It is one of the most beautifully written books I've come across (next to The Lovely Bones) and if you haven't yet read it, you should. It should be made a compulsary read.
Please write more Alice Sebold.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phenomenal, 20 Jan 2004
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
There seems to be a theme through all the other reviews for 'Lucky' that this book stays with you. It does more than that. It opens your eyes and imagination so far that you feel that this could be your own story. It makes you stop and think and consider reactions that you were never truly sure that you had, and ultimately, it makes you question your own prejudices and opinions on rape and rape victims.
This is a book that is so painfully honest, so brutal, where nothing is hidden from the reader. Alice Sebold could never have told the story to a person face to face as well as this book is written.
I am an avid reader, and yet this is truly one of the most brilliant pieces of work that i have ever come across. This is not just an account of rape, it is one woman's battle with sexual violence and the attack on her mind rather than just her body. It is not just about the violence of rape, but the courage and determine to survive that Alice Sebold so incerdibly holds. Believe me, there will be very few books that could ever affect you as deeply as this one; so if you can only buy one book today, make sure its Alice Sebolds compelling 'Lucky'.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Going beyond victimhood, 11 Aug 2004
This review is from: Lucky (Paperback)
I read and loved the complex and in some ways chaotic LOVELY BONES before I read LUCKY. The former is about a young girl who is raped and murdered and whose body is stuffed away by her killer; the latter is about Sebold's own horrific experience of rape, the title being a declaration without irony that she is indeed to lucky to have survived and gone on to make a life for herself. Where LOVELY BONES had a beguiling and seemingly contradictory dark whimsy at its heart, LUCKY has a straightforward and brutal honesty that is compelling, insightful and deeply moving. Sebold brings a courageous and winning sense of humour to the telling too.
The books work as beautiful companion pieces that explore the aftermath of violence. Every young man and woman should read both books for moral instruction. An equally compelling and haunting book about recovery from loss and the endurance of pain is IN THE GHOST COUNTRY which is about the most honest and entertaining study of emotions by a man I have read so far.
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Lucky
Lucky by Alice Sebold (Paperback - 6 Jun 2003)
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