Tuesday, January 18, 2011

# 3 - A Girl Named Zippy: Growing Up Small In Mooreland, Indiana by Haven Kimmel

I passed by this book many times in the second hand bookstore that I frequent. I never picked it up because, well, the cover didn't look that interesting and summary at the back had none of the unusual and fucked up stuff that we usually look for in memoirs. One day, a random Pajiban (I don't remember who) mentioned that the book was LOL (sorry Dustin). So, taking Pajiban word as gospel, I picked the book up the next time I saw it, still at around 1$.

The book is really simple, a series of scenes from the childhood of smart and mischievous girl in small town Middle America. Indiana is middle america, right, Americans? True to what the back of the book said, there is none of the usual sad, tragic memoir stuff. It may have been poignant at times, but it was mostly a happy and energetic read. Which is not to say that her life was perfect. In fact, were Kimmel inclined to moroseness and woe-is-me-ness, she could have spun a depressed, overeducated mother, gambler father, poorness (although Americans never seem poor to us third worlders. Even Your poorest have TVs! And huge ass sofas!) and sibling sometimes-violence into an entirely different memoir. But Kimmel was such a zippy child that she seemed to take all the bad shit in a real good way. It just was, and she was still happy.

Oh Zippy was a funny, boisterous, unusual, imaginative and smart little cookie. The scrapes she got into were funny, though not, in my opinion, laugh out loud. But then again, my husband says that I'm humorless, so maybe it's just me. The characters and her family dynamics were very interesting. Her story and her family life, is, I guess, fairly typical, but also unusual in the way that everyone is unique. What makes the book work, is Kimmel's voice and her energy. Her zippyness, as it is.

*Some may have noticed that I have not posted review #2. That's because it's not done yet.
*currently reading Never Let Me Go
*I don't usually read this much non-fiction

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