21 September 2015

#Sassybooks : The Opposite of Loneliness Review


This month's Sassy Books read is coming to you super early for two reasons.  1) it is the shortest book so far and I actually finished it over a week ago and 2) I'm off to Barcelona in a few days and didn't want to miss out on getting my review up!  This month's choice is The Opposite of loneliness, the first non-fiction selection from the Sassy Books group.  It is actually a collection of writings from Marina Keegan, who tragically died in a car accident just after graduation.  After her death her essay went viral.  Described by the publishers as:

Marina Keegan's star was on the rise when she graduated from Yale in May 2012. She had a play that was to be produced at the New York International Fringe Festival and a job waiting for her at the New Yorker. Tragically, five days after graduation, Marina died in a car crash. As her family, friends and classmates, deep in grief, joined to create a memorial service for Marina, her unforgettable last essay for the Yale Daily News, 'The Opposite of Loneliness', went viral, receiving more than 1.4 million hits. She had struck a chord. Even though she was just 22 when she died, Marina left behind a rich, expansive trove of prose that, like her title essay, captures the hope, uncertainty and possibility of her generation. The Opposite of Loneliness is an assemblage of Marina's essays and stories that articulates the universal struggle we all face as we work out what we aspire to be and how we can harness our talents to make an impact on the world.

To be honest with this kind of book you are going to get a mixed bag, as it essentially a collection of short stories and essays that weren't meant for publication and this is definitely what you got.  The main essay is only 4 pages long and personally it wasn't as strong or as memorable for me as it seemed to be to other people.  The book from there is split into fiction and non-fiction.  As expected, some of them are better than others but there was definitely some great talent there.  A lot of people commented that her fiction could be pretentious at times but I actually really enjoyed it.

There is no doubt that Keegan was a great writer and could have gone on to great things, but it's something we will never really know.
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