Sunday, January 13, 2013

Chanel Bonfire

Chanel Bonfire by Wendy Lawless was a challenging book to read. It is the true story of the childhood of Ms.Lawless, whose mother suffered from mental illness and took out the brunt of her anger and sadness on her two daughters, Wendy and Robbie. As a mother, I cringed as I read the horrors that this mother subjected her daughters to. Their mother, Georgann, cared only for herself and dragged the girls from home to home on only a moments notice. She cared only of appearances and kept the girls in fancy clothes, but always withheld love. There are so many horrifying stories in this novel. Georgann lying to them about their father not caring for them and not allowing them to see him for 10 years was possibly the worst. But, sleeping with their high school crushes, giving away their Christmas presents because they weren't appreciative enough and telling them that they would all be better off dead are just a few of her endless offenses.

The book was very well written. I read the book in a single sitting because I could not tear myself away and not know what would happen next. It was an unforgettable, searing novel about the high cost of mental illness, not only to the person suffering but also to those around them. I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars and, if you like roller coaster reads, this one is for you!

On a lighter note, I think I will purchase a copy of this book to keep. Then when I am having a bad Mommy day, I can take out the book and read a scene or two. Then I will know, without a doubt,that in comparison to Georgann Rea, I am the most wonderful mother that ever walked the Earth! And also, I will  never wear a blue nightgown again!


  1. Just a note: This book is nonfiction, not a novel. I'm not sure if that puts your reading in a different light or not, but it is a rather remarkable true story.

    1. Thanks for the note, Juvie! I did realize that it was nonfiction, but now see my mistake of using the word "novel". I appreciate the reply!

  2. I finally got around to reading this book-also thought it was well written and engaging (and I hope like heck that when I'm a parent, I'm nothing like Georgann). Great review!