Avid reader/reviewer and editor. I don't pull punches when I review, love it or hate it, you get what I think.
Keeping Lucy isn't normally my kind of read, but I remember the scandal that inspired this one, so it drew me in. The story absolutely broke my heart while simultaneously infuriating me to no end. I know that places like Willowridge existed. As I said, I remember the scandal, but that didn't make it any easier to read. Ginny's visit to Willowridge doesn't take up as much space on the page as I had expected, but her problems with getting Lucy well and reasonably fit do, and none of it was easy to read about. There were things that happened that bothered me - Marsha's actions and language even around children, Ab's father and his high-handed treatment of his family, that kind of thing - but the things that bothered me the most were Ab's and Ginny's actions at the beginning. I really wanted to give Ab a good shake and tell him to just man up, and it was equally hard to understand Ginny and the way she bent to Ab's wishes, or more accurately, Ab's father's wishes. And then there's Marsha. She's a little over the top in that she's almost everything we think about in a bad role model for children. So much so that she's almost caricature-like, which was the biggest drawback for me. Marsha aside, when I stopped to think about the generation of people here, I wasn't quite so upset with Ab and Ginny. I still wanted to shake Ab, but Ginny's action made a little more sense given the circumstances. The stigma surrounding children like Lucy was a huge factor in life in that time, and certain things were expected of people. That doesn't excuse any of it, but it was what it was, and I believe that stories like this one do have their place. We should always remember our history lest we repeat it. I think Keeping Lucy is going to be one of those books that you either like or you don't. I don't think there's going to be much straddling the fence on this one, especially in this day and age when we know so much more about what's good and bad for a child, or at least we think we do. In the end, I do wish there had been a little more peeling back the layers surrounding Willowridge, but the author has still written a compelling story that I found hard to put down.