This was an interesting book. The writing itself was not that good, but that did not detract from the experience of reading this. I think Drain needed to write this, for herself: to vent, to rationalize, and it was a form of therapy for her. I respect that narrative.
I will say one thing about the WBC, it does not deserve our attention, our outrage, because they feed off it. They almost get off on it, to be crude. They, in my armchair psychologist analyst, have a collective martyr complex. They are emotionally-stunted as a collective. This is a dying cult, it will be dismantled or die out in the next few decades. We should ignore them, that will be the ultimate form of suffering for them, and it will rob them of their collective identity if no one reacted to them at all.
I hope that Drain will seek out a therapist to deal with all the crap she had to put up from not only the church, but her father and mother.
Being part of the ONTD community, there was a time while reading this that I enjoyed the spilling of the truth tea. The shading of members and the pastor, and sometimes not so subtle dragging. It was like reading a WBC tell-all.
I think Drain, and the Phelps girls who have also left the church after Drain, have a long way to make up for the damage, hurt, and pain they caused. I feel sympathetic towards them, but many won’t and I can understand why. I never had to deal with this cult first hand, so it’s easier for me to forgive them. (For those that don’t know, I am a lesbian).
I look forward to reading more memoirs from the ex-members of the WBC cult.
Also huge trigger warning for physical and emotional abuse.
This book was intense. It made me feel really uncomfortable. It’s hard to put it into words. Definitely not for the weak of heart. Great writing.
ETA 10/31/14 after watching the movie at least 10 times in the last two years:
The movie was a lot more palatable then the book, but still disturbing (at least for mainstream horror). The book and movie are a bit different in the fact that the movie feels more like dark comedy for me, and the book more horror.
I read a lot of horror, and this novel disturbed me and stayed with me even years later. I am debating re-reading it to see if it is as disturbing to me, still.
Recommended For: Those who want a trashy good time
Disclaimer: This book was sent through Netgalley for free, in exchange for an honest review.
This book was not like any of her novels that came after. So your mileage may vary.
I mean it was a trashy-in-a-good-way pulpy vintage novel that I found entertaining and amusing. It was a good mental vacation with the various things that have been going on in real life. It read like a more grown-up version of the outsiders. This is a good thing.
I loved “Morgenstern’s” parts of the novel- witty and snarky, I was laughing a lot and quoting choice parts to my family.
What detracted from the enjoyment was Goldman’s comments in the first 35 pages and I didn’t even read “Buttercup’s Baby” segment. The misogyny, fat-shaming, and one homophobic comment (fearing that his son will turn into a pouf) was really grating to read- I had so much second hand embarrassment, that it was kind of amusing how bitter he sounded.
I hate to pick which was better, the movie had a lot of Goldman’s commentary out of it (the first 35! pages), which was a good choice, but you had more back-story in the book. I guess that will have to be your choice, fellow fans. 😀
This took some getting into. At first I thought this was a bit too juvenile for me, but I pushed through the first couple of chapters, and it was worth it. It was a cartoonishly funny yet dark. It was almost like watching an episode of Adventure Time but much darker (IMHO). I will definitely be reading the next book in the series.
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