Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham

019

Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham

I have wanted to read this book for like…ever. So when I saw it in my local supermarket in paperback I practically ran to the till with it.

Lena Dunham has changed the face of comedy, TV and female-thinking. What she says is real, truthful and best of all she is comfortable with herself.

Broken down into five sections Not That Kind of Girl is part autobiography, part life advice. Thankfully it’s not one of those autobiographies which is chronological, with every section so in-depth you feel as though you’ve been in surgery with the author. Dunham discusses numerous remarkable events in her life which have shaped who she is. Some are not very in depth and others are a whole chapter but you still feel as though she hasn’t revealed all of herself. She’s not pouring her heart out to us or bitching about ex-lovers, it’s a real female bible for the 21st century. She’s not ashamed to discuss her fears of illness of dying nor is she ashamed of her body or what she thinks.

018

So here’s some of what Dunham discusses:

Section One – Love and Sex

  • She used to invite guys to sleep in her bed. Just sleep, no sex.
  • Completely smitten with her boyfriend Jack, she refuses to disclose that much about him. So refreshing in this Kardashian-era celebrity world.

016

Section Two – Body

  • Dunham was quite comfortable with her Girls – sex scenes and even makes jokes about it.
  • She reveals her diet in her journal entries which is rather odd to say the least.

Section Three – Friendship

  • She has had obsessions and sexual encounters with females.
  • Her love and her description of her sister Grace is beautiful and hilarious.

020

Section Four – Work

  • She worked in a baby store for nine months, selling over-priced clothes to housewives.
  • She hated school and was moved to an art and performance school. She became best friends with one of the teachers at her primary school, before he began making inappropriate suggestions.

Section Five – Big Picture

  • She had to have therapy and still does. From a young age she was unable to sleep for fear she may die. She still as these irrational fears and also worries about illness.

Dunham is my girl crush. She is such a complex individual and her life is so far removed from how I grew up that at times I found her slightly odd. But then aren’t all geniuses and forward- thinkers rather strange?!

Advertisements

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey

027

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey has been EVERYWHERE. Reviewed in every magazine and newspaper you can think of, in every bookshop window and advertised on every wall possible. So obviously I thought I would see what all the fuss is about.

Maud is forgetful, she may forget that she already has 50 + cans of peaches in her cupboard, she may forget that she no longer volunteers at the charity shop and she may forget who her daughter is but she knows her friend Elizabeth is missing. She doesn’t know how or why, all she knows is that she hasn’t seen her in a long time.

Running parallel to this is the story of Maud’s childhood. Her sister Sukey went missing and was never found. Her shifty drunk of a husband is the prime candidate to know her whereabouts but he never admits to anything leaving Maud and her family desperately searching for answers.

Whilst it’s never said, Maud clearly has dementia. She has a carer who comes in daily to see to her needs however it’s evident that this is not enough as Maud often ventures out to not necessarily the safest of places and more often than not ends up in the police station to report Elizabeth is missing. Maud’s daughter Helen tells her daily that Elizabeth is not missing and Maud has numerous sticky notes shoved in her pocket to remind her of things which have been said. However dementia is a cruel disease and there were numerous times when I felt like screaming at Helen that more needed to be done to help her mother. Towards the end of the book Helen realises that there is no other option but for her mother to come and live with her.

028

Elizabeth is Missing is a cleverly written book connecting the past and present. Elizabeth’s disapperance actually holds the key to the whereabouts of Maud’s sister. The story is told from Maud’s point of view so we understand her confusion and the impact it has on her life. However I don’t feel that there was enough to keep me entertained – it was a slow moving plot and I felt nothing actually ‘happened’. So sadly it has not lived up to the hype.

029