Lucky Us

Lucky Us

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Lucky Us 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
CandyNY More than 1 year ago
Funny, ironic , tongue-in-cheek, sad,--all these can be used to describe the story of Eva who is constantly the victim of circumstances created by the people she loves and trusts . The narrator changes frequently and this adds to the interest of the 40's setting and moves the plot along. Eva goes from a little girl left on her father's doorstep to a self reliant woman who takes charge of her life. I found this to be a very good read--will try this author again.
betsyjulia More than 1 year ago
Lucky Us is the story of a patchworked family: two sisters (by different mothers), their “blithe, inscrutable, crooked father,” and their various acquaintances who become new patchworked families — all manipulating and scheming their way through the 1940s US of A. This is voluptuous American writing. Like the family, the story is patchworked — the pieces, not necessarily linear, but when put together, they tell a more perfect story than tales that are forced into a tight chronological narrative. Events are revealed through a simultaneous tide-in and undertow-out flow of action and letters from the future; the writing voice changes from third person to various different first persons and yet it is never confusing. Why? Because Amy Bloom writes at the pleasure of a muse that is uniquely her own — a truly authentic and organic voice and structure. Bloom’s voice and structure are so naturally honest that they seem easy. But I’ve read writers who I’ve suspected have tried to copy her, and, in their copycat hands, you realize this level of honesty is anything but easy. Amy Bloom copies no one. She writes at the pleasure of her Original Voice. And so few writers find, let alone express themselves in or from their original voices that it seems rare. Maybe that’s just the way it is. An Original Voice is treasure. This book is treasure. I mean that in both an emotional and physical way. I found myself running my hands over the physical book — the lush colors and embossed type on the cover, the exquisite interior design and thick matte, deckle-edge paper (Susan Turner, designer), a reprise of the cover art in endpaper illustrations (Deborah Van Auten), and even a red detail on the top and bottom edges of the inner spine: this book — Bloom’s text and designers’ interpretation — is complete, cohesive, sensuous art. I read it as slowly as I could, rereading passages, not for the reasons I usually do — because a writer is “being literary” and therefore incomprehensible. I reread because I was savoring it, the way you would incredible food that you want to taste for as long as possible before swallowing and digesting it. Here’s a morsel, spoken by the younger sister, Evie, about her job telling fake fortunes in a beauty salon: “If you’d asked me what I understood about fortune-telling, I would have told you that no one came to see someone like me because they were happy. I would have said, People come because they are so frightened, they wake up in a sweat. They look into the well of their true selves, and the consequences of being who they are, and they’re horrified. They run to my little table to have me say that what they see is not what will happen.” Filled with real human beings and out-of-left field gallows humor, Lucky Us is a masterpiece.
KonaFrost More than 1 year ago
This story takes place a little before my time, but based on my memories of my parents and their contemporaries I suspect that the much less buttoned-down culture that's portrayed in this story is pretty much on the mark. In the pre-1950's, people could re-invent themselves at whim and out of necessity. That's where the fascination lays for me, aside from the fact that Eva is such a great character to hang a story on. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
DemyD More than 1 year ago
I was initially drawn to this book intuitively, I did not understand know why but I am surely glad I decided to pick it up. I haven't loved a book like I loved this one in a long time. If you love to read emotionally intelligent books that cover many types of relationships and the hardships and hopes we all deal with, pick this up.
TheIndigoQuill More than 1 year ago
See full review @ The Indigo Quill . blogspot . com Special thanks to Netgalley and Random House for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. After receiving this book for review, I had heard good things about it on NPR. The reviews for Lucky Us are all over the place, so you may just have to read it yourself to decide what you think about it. It's definitely a unique work, and if you like a lot of dynamic and don't mind some explicit storytelling, then you will enjoy it. One reviewer didn't seem too impressed, and especially did not find the connection between the cover art and the pages that lie behind it. Related or not, the absurdity of a lion and a zebra stacked and balanced on a tight rope was appealing to me, but then again, my phone case has elephants flying by hot air balloon. Lucky Us is a story of two girls, Eva and Iris, who blindly feel their way through life after emerging from their dysfunctional and abandoned family unit. We are then catapulted into a series of quasi-unrelated events that somehow lead these girls from one experience to the next (and the reader isn't entirely sure how they got there). Iris is an emerging starlet who carries the potential to be America's next sweetheart. In the hype of Hollywood's glamour, she begins experimenting with her sexuality and the reader suddenly finds themselves in the center of several scandalous sexcapades. Needless to say, this is not a family-friendly book. Iris is betrayed by her fellow starlet and femme-fatale lover and is banished from the limelight forever. Eva, on the other hand, is the conventional one who lives in Iris' shadow, but she is also the storyteller and gives us a glimpse into the quiet-but-fierce persona of her own. She may not be another pretty face, but she definitely has a strong stomach, and so the reader learns to admire her through her narrative. This book possesses an exceptional level of realism and artistry that will leave you dazed and charmed all at once. Truly, it's a ripple effect of serial events that keeps the reader's attention because of its unpredictability. It's impossible to guess the ending or what is going to come next, so be prepared to adapt quickly and spend moments wounded and thrilled simultaneously. Because of this, you can't help but feel dynamic attachments to the characters. It's almost comedic how bizarre and jarring it all is. There are times when the plot seems to be in utter chaos, traveling around in strings weaving out and in between, but in the end they enter twine together to become a masterful design. If you enjoy a story that hybrids historical and modern society, and names its chapters after vintage song titles, then you'll love this book. Not to mention the mystery cover that leaves you both intrigued and scratching your head!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was sad when this ended. The characters were not typical and the time span covered was truly shown through her characters facing different challenges
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not worth the 9 bucks, I finished the book, but I did not recieve any satisfaction from weathering through it. I wasn't sad it was over.
Ronnie293 More than 1 year ago
Lucky Us is the story of the lives of half-sisters, Eva and Iris, after Eva’s mother left her at her fathers house and disappeared. I found the story itself very interesting but was let down by the execution. It jumped around in a disconnected way and left me wondering what was happening at times. The characters were very bland I didn’t dislike them or like them, I felt nothing. I feel Eva’s character didn’t develop. She was a clingy 12 year old at the beginning of the story, following Iris around and doing everything for her, and even though she aged throughout the novel she was still clingy and lack lustre at the end. I was glad at the end that I did manage to stay with it and on reflection I think that Iris was the perfect self indulgent 1940’s actress.
RobertDowns More than 1 year ago
If I want to learn how to turn a phrase, and fill my life with words and sentences that will make your world spin, I shall to turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to fill my world with characters like Iris and Eva, who may not be the most likeable characters on the block, and yet still get you to continue reading, continue your evaluation of a novel all the way to the end, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to find a historical novel during the period of the Holocaust, where the world was filled with despair and hate, and yet find some token of goodness to keep your spirits up, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to hold onto hope even as I turn my head away, and find myself somehow lost along the road that never ends, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to think about a story after I have finished a novel, where worlds have collided, and my feelings have not subsided, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to hear phrases that speak and words that sing in a compact tale of less than 260 pages, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want rich characters, filled with thought, and dialogue that’s both realistic and possibly experimental, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. If I want to call myself lucky, or maybe refer to ourselves as LUCKY US, I shall turn to Amy Bloom. And if you want to read a familial saga told over a period of years with strong women and even stronger prose, maybe you should too. I received this book for free through NetGalley. Robert Downs Author of Falling Immortality: Casey Holden, Private Investigator
Almost-Tica More than 1 year ago
I didn't much care for this.   Maybe it's because I had a hard time identifying with any of the protagonists or maybe it's because many of their actions seemed totally unbelievable.  It certainly isn't a book I'd be interested in re-reading.
Anonymous 6 months ago
I loved this book. It is written from several perspectives that somehow grow into an incredible story of the resilience of people. It lets you see how love happens in the most unusual places if you are open to an unfolding life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A heartfelt and sometimes difficult look at family life. I learned some great history too. ~*~LEB~*~
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have read in a long time, and I read a lot. It shows that we all need a little (or a lot) of help from our friends.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This author writes in a very appealing witty style. The book is filled with the ususal modern novel - the gay character, the bashing of religion (Jews, Catholics, and overall believing), the character that is above racisism, ethnic stero typing, the dig at the political arena (only one way - slam and run), and the formula goofy family. I am not sure if like a lot of current published novels this was required or this gifted writer took these ideas and cleverly made a funny novel about them. Even the cover is absurb. Hopefully you will read this an make a check list of the latest in what is suppositvely in. This is a funny story - made even funnier by the author's witty way dealing with stupid current requirements written and may be required in so many of the current published books. You can see this author must understand why self published books are on the rise. Last, I challenge you to read and make a laugh list of your own.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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MahMah More than 1 year ago
Having read a number of Bloom's earlier novels, I had no doubts that I would enjoy her latest also. However, I believe I purchased this newest one partially due to the illustration on the book's cover! As I began reading page after page of this mind and heart-grabbing novel I kept looking for something that would connect the story with the strange graphic of a lion walking a tightrope with a zebra standing on its back-- but I never found it. Needless to say, the story is as captivating as the book's imaginative cover and is true BLOOM through and through. I'd highly recommend getting on that tightrope with lion and zebra and stepping ever so assuredly thru a most mesmerizing tale that as far as I can see, has no connection to any animals.