If someone would have told me six weeks ago that by now I would have read and been completely absorbed by the tale of a 257 pound girl named Delores I would have told them they were out of their mind. But strange things happen when I find myself without something to read. Invariably I turn to our home library to consider reading a book that my wife purchased, or perhaps re-reading one of my old favorites. This time "She's Come Undone" caught my attention. "Mine is a story of craving; an unreliable account of lusts and troubles that began, somehow, in 1956 on the day our free television was delivered," said the back cover. "That's an interesting hook," I thought. "And the author is a man delivering a first person female narrative? Hmmmm... may have to give ole Wally a few pages of my interest."That was all Wally needed. Within just the first few pages describing Delores' perfectly natural early childhood and allusions to her future woes I was engrossed.This book is about the possibly healing affects we can have as friends and the potentially destructive power we have as family. It is about the undeniable value of positive self-image and the brutal consequences of inappropriate guilt. It is about divorce, it is about AIDS, it is about obesity, and it is about rape and abortion. It is about hope and love. It contains several hundred of the most physically painful pages that I have ever read, interrupted only intermittently with some dark joke made as Delores faces her struggles. In the space of 465 pages Wally brings to life not a classic heroine who defeats all of her foes, but a woman simply trying to survive. Even after a week I feel sympathy for this illusion created by Wally Lamb, and throughout the day I look for her. Sadly, I see her in many faces.A highly, highly recommended read for anyone who feels they have the stomach for it. While many of the topics addressed should be discussed with teenagers, I would not recommend a young reader going this one alone. There are astonishingly important lessons here. Lessons for all of us.
A sweeping novel with an unforgettable heroine...
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 17 years ago
This book was terrific! She's Come Undone is a powerful epic, an emotional journey in the life of Dolores Price. Wally Lamb's Dolores is a perfectly flawed character and easy to get attached to. Brilliant writing, a fabulous point-of-view of a female told through the hand of a male. How did he do it with such spot-on honesty?She's Come Undone begins in the year 1956 when Dolores is 4 and her family gets a brand new television. Soon, this seemingly normal life begins to unravel, leaving Dolores the product of a marriage gone wrong. While reading this book, I feel this moment of her parents' divorce became the crucial building block of Dolores's downward spiral. And while I do not want to spoil the plot for you, I will say that Dolores lives through some of the most terrible events, and desperately struggles (though at times seems indifferent) to regain the normalcy she once had.Vivid and emotional, this wild ride pulls your heartstrings and strikes your nerves, sometimes within the same sentence. Pages full of pain and sadness, but also sprinkled with a snappy attitude that had me laughing in my seat. I felt a certain kinship, an almost sisterly devotion toward Dolores, and I praise Wally Lamb for creating this wonderfully real and troubled character.
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 18 years ago
I got this book last christmas from my grandmother. I looked at it and I didn't have much of a desire to read such a big book that would interfere with my busy teenage agenda. But I sat down the nextday and started to read it. And Wally Lamb's amazing attempt at being a man writing a book through a woman's perspective, pulled me away from my reality and caused me to lock myself away in my room until' I was through with it. I kept having to remind my self that a woman didn't write it. This book remind's me much of my self and how hard it is to go through life being a overweight teenager. The charicters that made fun of her such as the two sisters that lived down the road, make me want to reach inside the book and slap them cause they remind me so much as my past and present enemies. I could feel her pain, her obessions, her anger, and I felt like I was there, I WAS HER. I do warn that this book is very adult and complicated, and I don't reconmend it for anyone who isn't mentaly mature enough to handle the grown-up language and situations that engage within this book. I am 15 years of age, but I have been raised in a home where the reality isn't locked up and hiddin away from me so I can stay shelterd from the disturbing truths. I will not tell you the story for I think that you should explore it for your self, but I wanted people know what the book did for me, now go out and read it and find out what it will do to you.
Personal triumphs and bitter realities
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 19 years ago
I received this book as a gift. I usually don't like it when other people think they know what I'll enjoy reading, but this time I'm glad I was wrong. My mother-in-law, a big Oprah fan, saw this book on her show and got it for me. I was pregnant at the time and highly emotional, but couldn't put it down anyway, despite the highly volatile nature of some of the subject matter. Dolores Price is a character that is explored in great depth. Childhood disappointments and tragedies lead to a bitter perspective on life in general for this young girl. As the reader follows her into adulthood, the series of personal changes and life events she sees are difficult to escape. Wally Lamb has written a beautiful book and his perspective on the female psyche is uncanny. This is obviously a man with a great deal of respect for women and the variety of challenges we face. Dolores Price is both a heroine and ironically, someone to be pitied at times as well. Her journey will reel you in...
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 19 years ago
Though I've been reluctant to read anything in Oprah's book club in the past (mainly because of the high and sometimes "corny" drama that are presented in those books), I recieved "She's Come Undone" as a gift and became thoroughly enthralled with it. It takes you through the psychological journey of a young girl, and although it feels almost as if her victory in the end is pyric, you can't help but be slave to the notion she does come out on top. The most startling thing, personally, was that I had to keep reminding myself that this was written by a male. As ignorant as that comment sounds, it was very true to life and to the female persona, and lacked the stereotypes that are traditionally imposed on female characters who have been conjured by male authors. Although "She's Come Undone" may initially appear as another coming of age novel (don't we have too many of those already?), it's far more then that, and I highly reccomend it to anyone of any age, and encourage anyone who's read it to read it again and explore the characters once more. You seem to recieve something different from the book every time.
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