Apologies for the dodgy photo, my library uses super shiny covers!
I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.
Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
Maggie O’Farrell’s memoir I am, I am, I am depicts her seventeen (yes, seventeen) brushes with death.
O’Farrell’s memoir is not for the faint of heart. From a run in with a murderer to nearly drowning, to be quite honest I am not overly sure how she’s still alive. O’Farrell takes us through her life (so far) in meticulous and beautiful detail.
This book is in an interesting format in that O’Farrell does not recall the accounts in chronological order. At first, I couldn’t quite understand why that was the case but came to understand that it gradually explains how she has become the person she is today and the impact these events have had on her life.
I personally felt I could learn from O’Farrell. Not in that I think she made mistakes that caused her brushes with death but in how carefully observant she is in every aspect of her life. Her recall of sight, sound, touch, taste, and even smell is phenomenal and adds a depth to each account which makes this book unputdownable.
I fell for O’Farrells strong and impulsive nature but I’ll be honest about one thing – if I ever saw her boarding the same plane as me, I’d probably just get on the next flight.
A dark, compelling, and witty read.
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