Quite frankly, I did not enjoy the first half of the book where the author described the early half of her life going through puberty and early adulthood. It was charged with too much teenage angst as she lectures and rants about the pains of growing up.
What put me off the most was her use of CAPITAL LETTERS in every other paragraph that projected her screams across the page too often.
IT WAS SO UNCOMFORTABLE TO READ.
Yet as I pressed on, the second half of the book became much more enjoyable as Moran began addressing woman, rather than girl, problems, and went on to explain why they are really not. It is in her witty arguments where I found some resonance with her as someone who shares the same gender.
On growing up, Moran ruminated,
“What I did worry about, and thought I should work hard at, was what I should be, instead. I thought of all the efforts should be concentrated on being fabulous, rather than doing fabulous things.”
A wide range of topics was covered, from fashion to abortion, in which the author related to them with a great deal of frankness, liberalism and cynicism. She approached them with an entirely personal and conversational manner, adding on a touch of character to her writing and also a sense of conviction towards her beliefs.
After I got past the absolutely frightening chapter where Moran described in details about her three-day childbirth, she narrated her equally terrifying abortion experience and her reasoning behind her decision.
“Every time I sleep through the night, I am thankful for the choice I made. When the youngest graduates out of diapers, I’m relieved there isn’t a third one, following behind. When friends come round with their new babies, I am hugely, hugely grateful that I had the option not to do this again…”
The self-described ‘strident feminist’ then took on the conventional argument against abortion where ‘the essence of womanhood and maternity is to sustain life, at all costs, whatever the situation.’ In her opinion, it is more important for mothers to have a choice in deciding if she is sociologically, emotionally and practically able to care for a new life than to merely consider the intrinsic value of every life.
“If a pregnant woman has dominion over life, why should she not also have dominion over not-life?”
This book is a frank and honest account of being a modern woman though it surely was a pity the good bits are only presented in the latter half of the novel. Nonetheless, it gave me some alternative perspectives about my gender, which sounds like a sensible way to end the year.
Do share what was the last book you read in 2012 in the comment box below!