Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Review: The Girl Who Was Saturday Night by Heather O'Neill

Publisher: Harper Collins
Pages: 416
Received: Received a copy from Harper Collins Canada in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: April 25, 2014
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Goodreads Synopsis:

From the author of the international bestseller Lullabies for Little Criminals, a coming-of-age novel set on the seedy side of Montreal’s St. Laurent Boulevard.

Gorgeous twins Noushcka and Nicolas Tremblay live with their grandfather Loulou in a tiny, sordid apartment on St. Laurent Boulevard. They are hopelessly promiscuous, wildly funny and infectiously charming. They are also the only children of the legendary Québécois folksinger Étienne Tremblay, who was as famous for his brilliant lyrics about working-class life as he was for his philandering bon vivant lifestyle and his fall from grace. Known by the public since they were children as Little Noushcka and Little Nicolas, the two inseparable siblings have never been allowed to be ordinary. On the eve of their twentieth birthday, the twins’ self-destructive shenanigans catch up with them when Noushcka agrees to be beauty queen in the local St. Jean Baptiste Day parade. The media spotlight returns, and the attention of a relentless journalist exposes the cracks in the family’s relationships. Though Noushcka tries to leave her family behind, for better or worse, Noushcka is a Tremblay, and when tragedy strikes, home is the only place she wants to be.

With all the wit and poignancy that made Baby such a beloved character in Lullabies for Little Criminals, O’Neill writes of an unusual family and what binds them together and tears them apart. The Girl Who Was Saturday Night is classic, unforgettable Heather O’Neill.

My Review:

Okay, after hearing so much about this book I knew I needed to check it out, especially being a Canadian author. I have had Lullabies for Little Criminals on my TBR list for a while and after reading this one I will be picking it up ASAP. There is just so much to love about this book that is hard to choose a place to start.

This is a beautiful book about relationships and how the way that we are raised can really affect the future. The story mainly follows Noushcka Tremblay for about a year or so as she tries to find her place in the world. Noushcka has grown up in the spotlight because her father is a famous musician in Quebec, but it is a place that she has tried very hard to get out of, she is someone that you want to dislike because of the way she acts a lot of the time, but as you understand her more you come to sympathize with her. Her relationship with her brother is disturbing at times, and you see that what she looks for in a mate is what her father and brother are like. Each of these two have very destructive tendencies, especially when together, it is like a dark hole for Noushcka when Nicolas comes around.

I really loved how Heather O'Neill has taken a character from such a tough upbringing and elevated her in the reader's eyes (at least mine). The way Noushcka views the world is skewed and yet she slowly grows and realizes where she belongs and where her mistakes have been over time. Noushcka learns that she needs to do things for herself and she needs to learn about herself by getting away from what she has known for so long.

This story is definitely unusual and yet so beautiful, and unforgettable, everything that O'Neill writes really sticks with you, showing a family that in the worst of times can still stick together through things. I had so much fun and this book was such a great story that I will remember the characters for years to come. Heather O'Neill is definitely a strong writer, and I believe her characters will grow more, I kind of wish to see more of Noushcka's adventures, like a sequel to see more of what she has learned over time. I definitely suggest picking this one up ASAP.

1 comment:

  1. I've heard many people calling this one of the best books they've ever read. I'll need to pick it up, great review.



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