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Rachel Unkefer

Joined 10 months, 4 weeks ago

Reader, writer, mostly literary fiction with brief forays into nonfiction and poetry

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Rachel Unkefer's books

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2023 Reading Goal

84% complete! Rachel Unkefer has read 42 of 50 books.

Old God's Time (2023, Penguin Publishing Group) 4 stars

Tough subject matter, masterfully handled

5 stars

What is really happening, what is memory, what is the mind’s defense against knowing the truth? Barry’s main character Tom Kettle confronts these questions daily as he navigates the aftermath of intergenerational trauma, the creation and destruction of a family, and the ongoing damage of sexual assault by Catholic priests in Ireland.

Girls They Write Songs About (2022, Farrar, Straus & Giroux) 3 stars

The 2nd half is better than the 1st half

3 stars

This book is like a mashup of “Almost Famous” and Lena Dunham’s “Girls.” So, not great. The writing in the first half has a lot of run-on sentences and badly needed an editor. The last half is much better written, but doesn’t really make up for shaky start. Ultimately, the theme of the book is that even the most intense female friendship can’t survive one of the friends choosing marriage and children. The main character, first person narrator, who remains single, is supposed to be the wronged one here, but she comes off as whiny and immature. There is a romanticization of life as a couple of 20-something girls in late 1990s New York working for a music magazine, but it actually doesn’t seem like they’re having all that much fun. A bit mystifying why this book got good reviews.