Sunday, September 28, 2014

I can tell if you are lying in your autobiography

This past year I have started reading non-fiction books in particular autobiographies. I like true crime stories so anyone who has dabbled in crime or been a victim of it. I read Captain Phillip's book and that was interesting. I read Michelle Knight's book and all I can say is MY GOD that woman suffered through some unspeakable horrors. I don't know how she gets up every morning with a smile on her face and goes out to face the world because if I was her I think I would find just getting out of bed a struggle. The thing I think that makes autobiographies a good gripping read is when people do not shy away from the truth. In reality we all make mistakes, we are flawed human beings, and we have multiple sides to our personalities. Some of us make bad decisions and others find themselves in terrifying situations that they must find the courage to survive. I know there is a level of fiction to autobiographies. They are stories and good stories must have a beginning, a middle and an end and most importantly they must have tension, a plot, and a villain and a hero. I read one autobiography earlier this year and it was so painful to finish. There was no tension in it, there was little character development or plot, and the author wanted everyone to think that everyone in the prison she went too loved her to death and treasured her as a friend. It was so unrealistic. The author showed remorse for her actions but did not really show herself as a flawed person who made mistakes more like a person who was led astray like an innocent lamb. I found it unrealistic that she wanted us to believe that her stint in prison made her lifelong friends. I know prison life can be boring and that's exactly what this book was. It was nothing but a recount of her day to day activities like fixing toasters and putting up wall hooks and eating lunch. The story needed a villain desperately. I actually think that the more interesting story was not her stint in prison but what she did to get herself in there but she did not go into too much detail about that part of her life because she did not want to incriminate herself. No, she wanted to come across as pitiful, she wanted people to feel sorry for her being in prison. I find it hard to believe that in a women's prison that no one picked on her or flirted with her or made her life hell. Women in groups are difficult enough to deal with in regular social situations I shudder to think what it would be like to be locked up with them. I don't think we would all hold hands and sing kumbaya.

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