04 January, 2016

Book Review: Reckoning

From GoodreadsHeartbreaking, joyous, traumatic, intimate and revelatory, Reckoning is the book where Magda Szubanski, one of Australia’s most beloved performers, tells her story.
In this extraordinary memoir, Magda describes her journey of self-discovery from a suburban childhood, haunted by the demons of her father’s espionage activities in wartime Poland and by her secret awareness of her sexuality, to the complex dramas of adulthood and her need to find out the truth about herself and her family. With courage and compassion she addresses her own frailties and fears, and asks the big questions about life, about the shadows we inherit and the gifts we pass on.
Honest, poignant, utterly captivating, Reckoning announces the arrival of a fearless writer and natural storyteller. It will touch the lives of its readers.

Thoughts: Once again a Richard Fidler Conversation sparked my interest. I mean apart from the fact it's Magda Szubanski, one of Australia's funniest people, it's first line is this:
If you had met my father you would never, not for an instant, have thought he was an assassin. 
Seriously!! Is that not the best first line you have ever read!! Thankfully I have excellent friends who totally get me and my reading style so one of them bought it for me for Christmas - thanks Jodie! Nailed it!!

This is not your typical celebrity memoir. Szubanski takes you into her childhood, viewed from the eyes of a new immigrant to country. She explores complex and life changing feelings, events, experiences and thoughts, relating them back to her growth as a person, a comedian, an immigrant, a daughter. She is brutally honest about her struggle to accept her sexuality and her fear of it's affect on her relationships not only with her family but the public.
You cannot read this book and not admire Magda Szubanski. I don't think it would be easy for those who are valued for being funny to write so seriously. It wouldn't be easy to expose so much of yourself. 
Reckoning was definitely an excellent way to end the year.

Reckoning gets 4 stars.

*        Did not like it
**       It was OK
***      Liked it
****    Really liked it
*****   It was amazing