>Blame

>I’ve been on a book-reading kick, so here come my thoughts on another book. I’m kicking myself for waiting this long to review this book. I finished it nearly two weeks ago, and I know that my thoughts about the book have become a little foggier than I’d like. It was called Blame by Michelle Huneven.

Here’s the story. A woman who has a long history of drinking finally gets herself locked up for something she did during a blackout. The only reason she knows she’s locked up for it is she wakes up in jail and is told what she did. They tell her she hit a woman and a girl with her car while driving drunk. She has no memory of the events. The whole book describes the process of her going to prison for it, and dealing with it in her own way. While in prison, she is urged by another inmate to join a program to help her stay sober. She comes out of prison, and is a model citizen. Then, she discovers something that makes her completely rethink her life and what she’s been through.

For a while, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to stick with this book. It starts off with an odd series of events in which we meet our main character in a less than flattering way. Then it jumps to the unflattering character waking up in jail, and I’m left wondering why the first scenes happened. Now I understand why, it was so we’d hate the main character or believe without a doubt that she did what they say she did. Then it moves at such a plodding pace, but for some reason that makes the main character all the more real, and although you know years aren’t passing in real life, you really feel as if they are.

I hope anyone who is in recovery from some type of addiction might read this book and tell me what they think of it. Does it feel like an honest, well-researched portrayal, or like a pile of crap? For the most part, it looked like a pretty real picture, but I’m not an expert on recovery. It’s kind of like a sighty with no blink experience reading a book about a blink and then me reading the same book. They might think it was awesome and I would go blech blech blech!

First question. Would it ever be ok for a reporter to sit in on a meeting? Like whaaat? If I read it correctly, she finished sharing her story about what made her get sober, and how the husband/father of the two people who died has forgiven her and has been involved in her life, and this chick walked up to her and was all like “Can I do a story on forgiveness and have you in it?” The implausibility bells were going nononononononono! That can’t be cool. I mean, would anyone be comfortable talking about this stuff if reporters could sit in? Has there ever been a history of reporters pretending to be in recovery to get in there and get some kind of hot scoop?

And seriously, when someone is having uber huge problems, do other people always say the same thing…”a meeting a day”? Is that like the one size fits all solution, and does it work? Please understand, I’m not trying to criticize, I’m trying to wrap my head around it. It just reminds me of that old Tracey MacDonald bit where the chick’s parents’ solution to everything was have some toast and some tea and take a bath.

And what the hell was with the ending? I dunno. It was a bit of a letdown, but I guess it fit the general plodding tone of the book. Life just goes on, no matter what happens. There is no decisive end to anything. You just get up and go on.

I guess the book squiggled its way into my dreams. I had a dream one night that I wound up in prison. I don’t know what I did, but I get the sense it was similar to how this chick felt. It involved booze, and I didn’t remember the events that led me there. I was terrified I would never learn my way around the prison, and the other inmates would take advantage of me and lead me astray, and I’d never get an O and M in here. I mean, what O and M would come into a prison? Then an inmate pretended to befriend me, and said she’d take me to a meeting where I could try and start the process of getting sober…and then she led me right into the middle of a baseball game! What the? I really have weird dreams.

So, there are my thoughts on another book, for whatever they’re worth.

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