Review : Living Dead Girl

Living Dead Girl by Elizabeth Scott
Pages : 170
Genre : YA
My Rating : 

This review is about as difficult to write as it was to read the book in the first place.

In a nutshell, the story :

Five years ago, while visiting the aquarium with her friends, Alice was taken by Ray, a man she had never seen before. Ever since, she has been forced to endure a life verbal, physical and sexual violence. Now, Alice is fifteen and getting a little too grown up for Ray’s taste, and she knows something will happen soon. Like the Alice before her, she’ll probably be killed and replaced – or else…

This was a terrible book. Not the writing or the story telling ; the author does, in fact, an amazing job with Alice’s voice, which wasn’t an easy task I’m sure. But the story itself, is so scary and horrible that it cuts your breath until you get, finally, to the end. I read the whole thing frowning, turning my eyes away from the page, completely uncomfortable. It’s that well written; the author chose not to go easy on the reader, and it worked perfectly on me.

It’s not a book you can love. Alice’s story is every mother, every woman’s nightmare. What it does is confronting you with the horror that is Alice’s life. Sure, you can turn your eyes away and not finish reading the book; but then, you’ll only be like those people Alice sees everyday, who know something wrong is going on with her, and yet voluntarily ignore her pain. So you have to read until the end where, hopefully, she’ll be free – and so will you.

Living Dead Girl was powerful, gripping, scary, and oh so many things I can’t find the words for right now! For me, it reveals Scott’s genius as a writer. Her descriptions of the sexual aggressions were almost empty of sexual words, and yet, they were some of the most violent scenes I have read in my life.

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget this book. I can’t recommend it and tell you that you’ll have a great time; you won’t. But although Alice’s story is fictional, it’s still a story that needs to be read, for all those little girls and women who have been through similar nightmares.

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11 responses to “Review : Living Dead Girl”

  1. justicejenniferreads says :

    I’m sure that this review must have been difficult to write. What do you say about a book that has such a heavy plot line – something that is difficult to read but still important to understand. Still, I think that you did a good job. Although I know that reading this book can’t be fun or easy, I feel like it’s something that I want to read just because it seems important and poignant on so many levels.

  2. Ceri says :

    Wow, this sounds … I don’t know. It certainly sounds like it *would* be a difficult read. It reminds me of a book I read a few years ago, ‘I Choose to Live’ by Sabine Dardenne in which she writes about her time as a child when she was kidnapped, sexually molested, and kept prisoner in the basement of Marc Dutroux’s house. Scary stuff. Really frightening and horrifying.

  3. Amanda says :

    I can see why you say “This was a terrible book” and still give it 4 stars. I don’t know that I could stomach this. Every parent’s worst nightmare. Good for you for getting through it.

  4. Juju says :

    O my heart can’t handle these stories. I was one of those sissys that honestly couldn’t finish The Lovely Bones.

  5. Bella says :

    As a mother I don’t think I could ever read this. It was good to read your perspective on it tho.

  6. Megan says :

    Oh my! Like Amanda, I’m not sure I could stomach this, either. Juju mentioned The Lovely Bones above and I’ve never been able to forget that book… it really shook me to the core. In fact, looking back, I have no idea why I read it — it’s completely out of the norm for me!

    Definitely appreciate your strong, honest review — I’ve heard good things about Scott, but I’m going to start elsewhere!

  7. Lenore says :

    I had not seen that cover before…Not sure I like it too much.

  8. Nicole says :

    I like the other cover better, too. ;]

    And I disagree. You can love this book. You can love the fantastic writing, how it captured the raw essence of Alice’s spirit and all she went through, step by step, page by page. It’s not the book you hate – it’s the story. The story is what you hate, what you never want anybody to go through.

    The story = hate.
    The book = love.

  9. Kailana says :

    I can’t decide if this book is for me or not. I find people have a hard time putting their review into words which makes me think I should give it a try, though!

  10. Staci says :

    Well put Kay…I felt the exact same way when I read it.

  11. Joanne says :

    It’s been awhile since I read this, but now I can say that I do love this book. It’s the brilliance of the writing, and the authors ability to use words in such a way that makes an utterly ugly story so enthralling. It was never fun, never happy, but I was unable to put this book down once I started reading.

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