Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Good Golly Lolly

Yes, I just got done reading "Flowers in the Attic."

Flowers in the Attic (Dollanganger, #1)Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ok, so here it goes. My thoughts on the story of the Dollanganger kids and their time in the attic.

I admit when I first got this book I thought it was going to be much different. I heard about how the brother and sister fell in love and please don't judge me for buying the book after having this impression.

This book is so different from what I feel like the majority says. SO SO different and I have so many feelings about it. The feels are real!

First thing I have to say is that the "forbidden love" and the "Incest" is just either people whom haven't read the book or perverts. Yes, Chris and Cathy do have sex but that's not just it. If you really look into the book and the meat of the words then you will realize that it's a sad side effect of the abuse they endure. These kids are pre-teens and babies (12-14 and 4) when they move into this attic that they are "just spending one night in" and the two older ones are thrown into the role of mom and dad for four long years. They are in constant close proximity and none of that matters anyway because they are mentally, physically and in a certain way sexually abused by their grandmother and mother and that alone would make a kid do crazy things! I get it that they are going through puberty and they JUST have each other while going through amazing trauma and when something happens the guilt they feel drips off of the page and your heart is ripped open for them.

The line right after something happens between the two of them are this:
"He didn't have to say he was was all over him...the way he quivered, the way his hands trembled and were so clumsy with his buttons." Then the most powerful line in the whole book happens a few pages later:
"The tears that rolled onto his pillow, I named as they fell: Shame, guilt, blame." 
 crying GIF photo:  santanacrying.gif
I cried.

These are not grown adults, these are kids. Kids that are being called "Satan's issue" and many other ugly things. Chris is being whipped in the bathroom while his siblings hear it and he chooses not to scream or make one noise because he doesn't want the twins to be afraid. They are being starved, imprisoned then come to find out poisoned. SO yes, I get that they broke and did crazy, stupid things. There are times when you should be feeling revulsion you are actually thinking to yourself "Well at least someone loves them!"

I read a bunch of people say that they read this when they were twelve and it effected them for life.
I'm in my thirties (early thirties thankyouverymuch!) and I can step back and see what is really happening to them and I can understand where their minds are at.

This book is insane and it's just GOOD. It's different from other books these days and while half of the words were seriously cheesy, like "oh golly lolly," there are some other amazing lines that paint a picture that makes you go into the world that these poor kids are living in.

I can't wait to read the second one and I'm assuming that Chris will act like he is the least affected but will probably have a hard time giving his sister Cathy up. I feel like after the responsibility that was put on his shoulders and the way he committed himself to all of them and having lost one in the process that it will be hard to step down from that and I can imagine that it will be all PSSD that will be plaguing him. I don't know though. Don't tell me or I'll find you and pull out all your leg hairs with tweezers while MMMBOP plays on repeat.

I suggest this book to the most mature reader. And I challenge you to look beyond the surface and feel for the kids.

OH and a side note. I used to hate Twigs mother (From the Book Breaking Twig) more than any fictional mother I'd ever read but she has been replaced by Corrine Dollanganger. That woman is the most passive aggressive, selfish, mean woman I've ever read on paper. At least Twigs momma was open about how mean she was. Not Corrine, man I want something awful to happen to her in the later books.

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Nicki Elson said...

I'm one of those who read Flowers in the Attic when I was young. But even being young, I remember feeling about the book the way you express here. Oh that mother! Easily the most wretched human ever portrayed in fiction. She had no reason to do what she did. They made a movie of this book - it was HORRIBLE. I highly recommend you don't see it. I also read the follow up books, but it was so long ago and I was so young that I could be wrong, by my impression was that they pretty much went downhill, so just don't expect too much & maybe you'll enjoy them more than I did.

Sherrie Petersen said...

I was SO in love with this series in 7th grade. My mother would have been horrified to know I'd read them but damn, they were addictive!

Aurora Smith said...

Sherrie, Bahahahhaah. Wasn't it the book "you weren't allowed to read?" Love it!

Chris McMullen said...

I read Flowers in the Attic just before 1990 and was surprised to see it on t.v. now.

Don't you have a new book that you're working on with a cool cover? Seems like I saw the cover months ago. I was looking for it today, but I guess it's not ready yet. :-)