Available in hardback from most supermarkets costing between £7 -10
Girl A,’ she said. ‘The girl who escaped. If anyone was going to make it, it was going to be you.’
Lex Gracie doesn’t want to think about her family. She doesn’t want to think about growing up in her parents’ House of Horrors. And she doesn’t want to think about her identity as Girl A: the girl who escaped. When her mother dies in prison and leaves Lex and her siblings the family home, she can’t run from her past any longer. Together with her sister, Evie, Lex intends to turn the House of Horrors into a force for good. But first she must come to terms with her six siblings – and with the childhood they shared.
Beautifully written and incredibly powerful, Girl A is a story of redemption, of horror, and of love.
Please post below if you will be joining us to read this book in April
Please note:As I've not read this book myself either, I cannot say whether or not there will be triggers in this book and the synopsis suggests there could be. If it's likely it contains triggers for you, I would recommend you wait to be sure before reading this book.
I started today. Got the time for it while my manuscript is with the editor.
Not sure what I had expected. Since I'm listening to the audio, it's a different experience I get. Do like the one who reads it. Her male voices sound silly, but in over all her voice is pleasant to listen to. It's the actress Holliday Grainger, who reads the book. She does a fairly gook American accent, hehehe.
First impression of the story: It was a bit confusing at the beginning for me, but I did other stuff that required mild brain activity, so couldn't concentrate on the story. Was better when I was outside doing some gardening. I like the shift between past and present of Alexandra's life. It's giving me the chills of what those kids had to go through growing up.
1. How did this book make you feel? What emotions did it evoke?
Mainly annoyance and sadness. Not a jovial read by any means.
2. Were there any quotes or passages that stood out to you?
Early on in the book after Alexandra escapes and she's in the hospital reflecting on the questions not asked by the people helping her 'Why did you not leave when you had the chance?', She says, "it wasn't so bad" and then describes the good things she remembers. This stood out to me simply because I think it's so true that people can show amazing resilience in the midst of their 'normal', when others say "I can't even begin to imagine".
3. Did your opinion of this book change as you read it?
Yes, I really didn't think I was going to be able to read it all at first. Using poverty is such a stereotypical theme to use in a book about abuse and then throwing in a religiously fanatical parent to add to the cliche's just felt lazy and unnecessary. I still think this to be honest but neither ended up being the focus of the book and I was able to see past that in the end and getting to a place where I could read it without feeling annoyed.
4. If this book were to be made into a movie, who would you cast to play the grown Alexandra & Ethan Gracie.
I think Freya Allan would make a good Alex. Not really sure about a good Ethan but I think Timothee Chalamet would be awesome as Gabe.
5. What did you like most and least about the book?
I least liked the fact that the book didn't really bear any resemblance to the plot I thought I was going to be reading about regarding the opening of the community centre and the aforementioned cliches. I most liked reading about what happened to each of the Gracie siblings.
6. What did you think of Dr K's methods of psychology, particularly around the lie that was told to Alexandra regarding Evie?
I thought that lying to Alex about Evie was quite unprofessional. One thing to evade answering, but quite another to out and out lie. Having said this, at least Dr K stuck around in Alex's life for a long time and was able to deal with the fallout.
7. What character or moment prompted the strongest emotional reaction for you and why?
Charlie Gracie prompted the strongest emotion for me and it was anger when he killed himself rather than face the consequences of what he'd done. I always struggle with any plotline when my strong need to see justice isn't fulfilled.
8. What were your final thoughts about Alexandra's parents? Do you think that her Mum was a victim too?
I felt Charlie Gracie was a controlling, selfish man who clearly struggled with failure and then hid behind the bible while completely missing the point of it. I had more sympathy for Deborah Gracie who appeared to also be a victim and was maybe made a scapegoat for justice after her husband killed himself. We were not subjected to anything of the court case but given that she got a long term sentence, I imagine that we can take that to mean that she must have had ample opportunity to get help for her children and didn't take it. Given that 2 children died, she definitely has to bear a good portion of the blame.
9. What were your final thoughts about Ethan?
Initially, I just saw him a scared as the rest of the Gracie children but then as the storyline progressed and we got to learn more about him, I felt he was weak and did the least to help his siblings and kept his own neck off the block. Judging by Alex's parting shot at the wedding, it's clear that the intimation was that the apple may not have fallen too far from the tree and there was potential for him to be an abuser too.
10. Would you recommend this book?
No! Apart from the fact that I just didn't think it was 'that' good, I think it's unwise to recommend any book that deals with abuse, particularly the abuse of children.
I rather naively didn't expect the book to be so focused on how the Gracie siblings dealt with their own personal trauma of what happened to them. I thought that this would be touched upon early in the book and then the main plot would be how they came together to turn the 'house of horrors' into the community centre and the healing that might bring.
Even now, I'm not sure how I feel about reading fictional accounts of abuse. I think, having worked with and cried with people who have experienced abuse it was hard for me to react in an emotional way to fictional characters experiencing it (Hope that makes sense). I suppose I'm saying that if people really want to gain insight and understanding of the long term impact of abuse, then I would suggest reading a true life autobiography where emotional impacts will at least be more authentic.
1. How did this book make you feel? What emotions did it evoke? Anxiety and depressed and other feelings that I can't quite describe.
2. Were there any quotes or passages that stood out to you? Not really. Not sure if it's because I heard the audiobook and didn't read it.
3. Did your opinion of this book change as you read it? Not really. Think it takes a certain mood to read/listen to this book. It really puts you in a hole and it's hard to come up. (I haven't finished the book, I couldn't keep on going)
4. If this book were to be made into a movie, who would you cast to play the grown Alexandra & Ethan Gracie. Gosh, normally I can picture a character pretty well, but here I have no clue.
5. What did you like most and least about the book? I like the fact that it can wake so intense feelings in me. Again I'm evaluating from the audiobook, so the feeling might be different if I read it. What I like about the book is also what I like least. I don't mind depressing and dark parts in a book, as long there are hints of something good coming, and I'm just not getting that with this one.
6. What did you think of Dr K's methods of psychology, particularly around the lie that was told to Alexandra regarding Evie? Don't think I got to that, before I had to stop.
7. What character or moment prompted the strongest emotional reaction for you and why? That's a tough one. It's probably Lexi, probably because we're seeing it through her eyes.
8. What were your final thoughts about Alexandra's parents? Do you think that her Mum was a victim too? It's hard to say. I would like to say yes, but no too. Gives a good reason to blame it on society. If she had a place to turn to, maybe she could have gotten out. But on the other hand, she might have well been so deep into the whole family dynamic and her husband's controlling behaviour that she couldn't see clearly any longer.
9. What were your final thoughts about Ethan? Didn't finish the book, so wouldn't know.
10. Would you recommend this book? Not sure. In a way I liked it, but still I couldn't quite go through with it. I would like to compare it to a car crash, where you want to look away, but can't.
Any other thoughts or comments? The book really made me depressed, which was why I had to stop halfway through.
The Book Nook Cafe - Grab a cuppa and let us know you're around!
Susanne: Oh wait think there is one on the 18th of June but that's it
May 31, 2021 16:57:56 GMT
Hippiejo: Morning everyone. Hope you have a good day today
Jun 8, 2021 7:11:58 GMT
Susanne: The evening I decide I want to watch Denmark's opening match at the European Championship and one of the Danish players falls to the ground and needs CPR. Never seen something so horrible on live television.
Jun 12, 2021 20:20:16 GMT
Deleted: I don't watch football, but saw the news about it online. Just terrible. I hope everyone is having a beautiful and quiet Sunday !!
Jun 13, 2021 7:35:34 GMT
Susanne: The Danish team will undergo therapy the next couple of days to process what happened plus the people at the stadium is urged to seek help if they feel the need for it.
Jun 13, 2021 8:43:34 GMT
Hippiejo: It was awful. The captain did a wonderful job of caring for him. Is there any update on how he's doing now Susanne?
Jun 14, 2021 20:42:01 GMT
Susanne: He's still in hospital undergoing various tests, but he is doing fine under the circumstances. A couple of his team mates visited him yesterday at the hospital. The captain was one of them and the goal keeper as they are close friends with him as well.
Jun 15, 2021 14:05:32 GMT
Susanne: So far tests have been fine and haven't showed anything wrong.
Jun 15, 2021 14:05:59 GMT
Susanne: The hospital he's at is the best in the country when it comes to heart deceases so if there is anything he will be in capable hands.
Jun 15, 2021 14:08:10 GMT
Hippiejo: Aah that's good to hear!
Jun 15, 2021 22:28:58 GMT
Susanne: Latest news. Christian Eriksen will get a pacemaker. A Dutch player who's at the European Championship has had the same procedure, so there is a chance for the Dane to get back on the field.
Jun 17, 2021 8:49:26 GMT
Susanne: And he's now had his operation and released from hospital.
Jun 18, 2021 18:55:02 GMT
Hippiejo: that's good news Susanne!
Jun 24, 2021 8:28:23 GMT
Hippiejo: hellooo anybody about?
Jun 27, 2021 9:33:45 GMT
Susanne: What a glorious morning. Denmark is in the semi-finals at the Euro Championship. Wednesday will be nerve wrecking, but I have hope
Jul 4, 2021 8:04:31 GMT
Hippiejo: hello all, hope you're all doing well. Sorry I've been away a few days, I've been busy in the garden and got absolutely sicked into the book club book at the weekend.
Jul 13, 2021 9:45:39 GMT
Hippiejo: ::785f7907-d695-4c66-952b-16efe91e85d6:: Happy Birthday to you... happy birthday to you... happy birthday dear Susanne... happy birthday to you!!! ::26d2c36e-9e62-487a-99c9-39543945f4a1::
Jul 30, 2021 10:05:38 GMT
Susanne: Just dropping in to say I'm still alive. Work is killing me and on the mends from a bad cold as well. The book is currently being transformed into book form, so waiting for it so I can give it the last approval before it goes into mass production.
Aug 30, 2021 17:46:56 GMT