Skip to main content

The Girls: Lori Lansen

Genre: Nonfiction
Author:Lori Lansen
ISBN: 0-316-16728-2 Pages: 340 pages It started out pretty bad, I mean, let’s get real. How many of us can connect instantly to a pair of craniopagus twins stuck together at the head? You can connect to a protagonist who is a bad ass swearer who spends his time loitering in the pubs because his wife left him. But craniopagus twins? Not a lot. So, in the beginning, it was like a narrative piece of poetry trying to let us into the world of a pair of twin sisters stuck at the head. Rose and Ruby. For your benefit, here’s the synopsis. “Twin sisters Rose and Ruby Darlen have been known since birth simply as “The Girls”. Raised by Aunt Lovey, the nurse who took them in after their mother abandoned them, they have lived all their lives in the small town of Leaford, in an old farmhouse bordered by cornfields. This is their story, told by Rose and Ruby themselves – two sisters who are ordinary in most respects but who have a relationship of profound and unmatched intimacy. For “The Girls” are conjoined twins, connected inseparably, facing the world side by side. As Rose and Ruby speak, and as their stories unfold, diverge, and intertwine, the novel charts the depths of a miraculous friendship, unsettling and beautiful in its closeness. The Girls aims at the heart of human experience and celebrates the fundamental joy of connection” The difference in their personalities has been intricately webbed out by the author. One hard, one soft. One pretty, one ugly. One able, one disable. One seeing, one unseeing. One purposeful, one missionless. One passionate, one succumbing. One a writer, one a dreamer. In a lot of ways, Rose and Ruby are completely different and yet they’re stuck together….where it counts most. When one wants to write, one wants to sleep. While Rose likes to explore and travel, Ruby is car sick. The odds are against them in every imaginable way. What’s more profound is that the author writes them in turn….very personal ways….like they’re writing a diary. While Rose takes her writing more seriously because she’s the writer in the family, Ruby’s accounts are more personal. Rose never revealed the fact that there’s a tumor in her brain that is bound to explode one fine day, the twins are to die but Rose never revealed it, never wrote about it. Instead, it was Ruby who revealed it to us in her writing. When Rose felt headaches, cannot see, and her mobility reduced to a wheelchair, Rose says nothing and it was Ruby who spilled the beans to the readers in her part of the autobiography. I find it interesting how Lori Lansen manages to write one part of Rose’s ‘autobiography’ when she was already blind. The author manages to write from a blind person’s point of view. I don’t know about you but I find that incredibly difficult. Reduced to just four senses, Lori Lansen probably had to close her eyes and write that part. Although I trudged through the first part of the book by taking more than 2 months to actually get to reading it, I am glad I didn’t ditch this book aside. The more I got to know Rose and Ruby, the more I understood them and how their languid lifestyle was a dread. And how persistent they were in remaining alive despite their conjoinment. Through this, a bond is definite. They complain about each other but in some part of their brains, they can probably read each other’s minds. Did they die in the end because of the aeneurysm in Rose’s brain? (They cannot be operated on because it’s on a major vein in the brain that they share) Lori Lansen, the author, did not say. She ended the ‘autobiography’ with a very short but sweet good bye filled with hope and dreams for the girls. Inconclusive but up to your imagination.


Anonymous said…
ok its more of a question then anything......if you were to pick 8 songs to go with this book what would they be....and can u email them to me
Anonymous said…
It's true story?
Marsha Maung said…
8 songs? too many. can't think of one, even. true story? i don't think so. just through the author's imagination, i think

Popular posts from this blog

Maid Side-Kick

I was kind of a little sad when I read the news about this - there will be no live-in Indonesian maids in Malaysia anymore.

There are pros and cons to having a live-in maid, as with everything else, but for us, we enjoyed more pros than cons. Back then, when my kids were little, we brought in a family of maids to help with...well, just about everything, and we were like two families merged into one. They ate what we ate, we sleep, they sleep, we shop, they shop, they joke, we laugh, we joke, they laugh...for me, the maid I hired was more like a sister and side-kick to me.

For that few years, I was dependent on her to mind-read my schedule and when I need or don't need help. She picked things up quickly and we ended up having lots of moments whereby we were in sync. Today, two of them are on my Facebook and we were gleefully chatting over Facebook Messenger since they've just discovered the wonders of the Internet and Social Media.

Since we were more like partners in crime, I f…

HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS before you hit thirty

In terms of internet savviness, I think I am quite ‘there’ lah….a bit lah. Not a lot but a bit ‘there’, up there with some of some internet marketers out there but let’s face it, I’m not going to be swimming in cash yet unless I learn to do something extraordinary. REALLLLLYYYYY EXTRAORDINARY. But come to think of it, some of the biggest gazillionaires who made a whole lot of mullah from the Internet did not start out thinking it would make them millionaires. In fact, some of them did it for fun. Humor me, fun = lots of money. Let’s have lots of fun, then, instead of working our butts off for mediocre earnings, am I right? :-)That leaves me thinking…what can I do that is fun and can make me truckloads of money everyday? I want to hear the cash register going ka-ching, ka-ching every minute of the day and my sole responsibility is to have complete, unbashed fun. I took this list off somewhere, can’t remember where (trust me, I have all these things, ready to be blogged about, and I do…

Stargazer - Stretch Those Sides

I have been doing this pose, part of Cosmic Dance (a type of yoga, I am assuming), called Stargazer pose without knowing it is called Stargazer's pose a lot in the past. You see, sometimes, I don't follow the rules and come up with my own stretches and poses. It is fun.

I have on some music, nice, soothing music or just anything I can click on. Then I go with the flow, letting my hair down. Just moving to the music...and that is when I come up with the above Stargazer's pose.

This pose really stretches your sides. Keep your eyes on the outstretched hand if you are keeping it pointed to the top, as if you are waving or connecting to a higher energy from the Universe. Your arms will ache a little but hey, toned arms, here you come! :-)

For those who want a bigger stretch, it is safe to slowly and gently move the lifted hand towards your back...don't overdo it, listen to your body's complaints and respect it. You don't have to prove anything to anyone, remember th…