Thursday, September 20, 2007

Book review--The Lost Years

In the past, I'd generally stick to pure fiction in my reading material. I love to get lost in other people's imaginations, and I like that there are no constraints. But ever since I picked a memoir I'd read a review about (A Girl Named Zippy) I've been on a non-fiction kick.

Last night I finished a book called The Lost Years by Kristina Wandzilak and Constance Curry. It chronicles years of alcohol and drug abuse by a girl (Kristina) who was once an athletic, bright, and popular high school student who had the world at her feet. After Kristina's first drink of alcohol in high school, her life spirals down into an alcohol and narcotic addiction that tears her family apart and leaves Kristina herself broken and nearly dead.

Contance, Kristina's mother, whose marriage is troubled and whose husband is also an alcoholic, is at a loss as to how to help her daughter until she begins to take charge of her own life. As she grows and finds a strength she never knew she had, she realizes the only way to help Kristina is not to help her at all.

I cried several times while reading this book. It is emotionally wrenching and powerful, each scene recounted first by daughter and then by mother, in their own unique perspectives. How they lived through this ordeal, which is no doubt being played out thousands of times every day in this country, is inspirational. I recommend it if only for reaffirmation of the resiliance of the human spirit.



deseng said...

Hi Donna,

The books sounds like a very good one! I have read stories like that also. I read one by Barbara Bretton that made me cry 3 times! It is called JUST LIKE HEAVEN. It is definitely a two hanky story. Stories that touch your heart are so rewarding to read.

By the way, I loved your book, SUBURBAN SECRETS! What an interesting story line! How did you come up with that?

Michele R.

Virginia said...

I love a book that gives me a good cry. This one sound like a really good book. I think I will try to find it. Thanks for the recommendation.

Donna Birdsell said...

Hi Michele,

So glad you enjoyed SS. The storyline came from a "what if?" when I was watching the news, and there was a story about ID theft. What if a soccer mom somehow got dragged into an ID theft scam?

I will have to look up the Barbara Bretton book.


ruth said...

Books that tug at the heartstrings and give you something to think about and ponder are so wonderful. This one is definitely something to consider reading. Thanks.

RubyD said...

As I Have Loved You by Nikki Arana is one of those books that make you cry. They should come with a box of tissues for wiping away the tears.