Don’t judge a book by its cover. This ubiquitous quote is what came to mind when I read Luckiest Girl Alive. Ani FaNelli has a seemingly perfect life – glamorous job, fit figure, dream wardrobe, dreamier fiancée. Yet, behind it all lurks a dark secret from her past.
Haunted by painful memories, Ani has the chance to set the record straight about a particularly horrific incident. A documentary is being filmed at the esteemed school she attended as a teenager, and Ani has been asked to tell her side of the story. Deciding how much she should tell, and what she should keep back, causes Ani yet more anxiety.
Can we ever get beyond the dramas and traumas of middle and high school? Or will our past experiences forever shape and direct our present and future?
Knoll's tale of secrets and reinvention is reminiscent of the devastating effects of violence in Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak.