Monday, February 9, 2009

pretty good for a girl

This book was most likely my favorite book that I have been assigned throughout my four years at Saint Mary's College. I know that there are some people that were not able to connect to this book as much as others, but I am sure if you think of it you can. Think of something in your life that you wanted more than anything in the world, something that you worked so hard for but you fell short of your own expectations.

When Heywood was told by her doctor that she had to give up her lifetime dream and something that she worked most of her life for, I felt heartbroken for her. When she was receiving this news I could actually feel myself tightening up in fear of how she was going to react. I could not even imagine how I would react to this type of news. I was surprised to how well Heywood took the news and put her energy into Body Building. At first I was afraid she was over doing it in this sport, too. But I believe by the end of the book she became a stronger person in more ways than one.

Last class period the question was brought up if we believed this was actually a Feminist Memoir or not. Throughout the book I could not see how this was a Feminist Memoir, I actually thought the complete opposite. That was until I got to the Epilogue and she told the readers why she was writing this book. Now, I can see how this is a a Feminist Memoir and how powerful it was at that.


  1. I completely agree with you. Like a lot of people in the class, I had a hard time connecting to Leslie's character in this book. However, I had completely different feelings about her once she got the news from her doctor. While she was definitely unhealthy as a lot of points in the book, I cannot imagine the pain she went through when she found out that she would have to stop running. I thought she handled the news very well, much better than I probably would have. I've played soccer since I was five and was really passionate about it, and my junior year when I was a captain of my high school team, I tore my quad and was out for the season. I eventually came back to play my senior year, but I was seriously depressed after my injury. Leslie's was obviously much more severe than mine, and I can't really imagine how she coped with it so well. After she received this news, I had a whole new level of respect for her, and this was definitely a turning point for me in the book, marking when I started to identify with and enjoy it.

  2. I am really glad that more people started to connect with Leslie in the class. I think from a runners stand point it is really easy to see where she has been coming from, but when she recieved the news about her injury and channled her energy somewhere else, I was beyond impressed. I don't know if I would be able to handle the news in that way. Do you think maybe it because really she did want to stop running? Maybe she had lost love for running and it became more of a lust factor where she felt it had to be done? What do you guys think?

  3. I have to admit, when I first started reading this memoir I didn't connect with it and didn't enjoy it. Now that I have finished the book and we have talked about it in class I have a new appreciation for it. Now I DO connect with her and find that we all have a little bit of Leslie in each of us. We all have obsessions...her's is perfection.

  4. I will say that although I enjoyed the memoir ( and I am in awe of her dedication to her sport) I didn't feel like Leslie, at least through her writing, grow much. Usually, in a memoir the author learns a lession about themselves and I did not have this impression of Leslie.