Sunday, April 11, 2010

Loose Girl: A Memoir of Promiscuity

The title pretty much says it all. I had briefly looked at this book at Target a while back and rejected it. Soon after that a friend of mine sent it to me and at a time that I was having difficulty picking out my next book, I found myself starting it.

Reading Ms. Cohen's story is rather like reading someone's personal diary... you know you shouldn't and you really want to put it down but you keep on reading. Even so, you feel a little tainted and disturbed with yourself as much as the author.

Ms. Cohen dives right in with her first tentative experiences with sex. She continues with her adolescent views of her dysfunctional family: a distant mother, both literally and figuratively, an emo uncommunicative suicidal sister, and a 'hip, I do drugs and party along with my daughter' father. Her young life is consumed with drugs, parties, finding boys and having no rules.

Not much changes through her high school years, college years and post grad years. When she does find men who love her she eventually destroys the relationship.

Probably the most disappointing thing about reading this memoir was Ms. Cohen's apparent decision that she was simply done with it. Not just the book, but the lifestyle as well. Although she participated in counselling for many years, she seems to just one day decide that she doesn't need men to define her or complete her any longer and she stops. Somehow she figures it all out, gets married and..... The End. Epilogue: Mom & sister weren't the evil people she always thought they were and Dad is actually pretty pathetic.

It was an easy, unsettling read and I was compelled keep reading, but my final feeling was simply that this book lacked real substance. It pretty clearly outlined a troubled life, but the happy ending came rather suddenly and unexpectedly.

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