Rarely do I read a book as quickly as I tore through this one. It took me four days (actually, four nights in bed) to read this book, which is extremely rare for me. Since, as a child and early teen, I longed to be a nun myself, I found this book to be compelling and intensely interesting. This book gives a very personal glimpse inside the convent of cloistered nuns in the early â60's â a turbulent time within society and within the Church. I was very glad that there was an epilogue that told of her life forty years later, and how she lives her life now.
I found the writing to be lacking at times â she writes as she probably speaks, and sometimes I can't follow her though process. However, this is a book NOT to be missed, regardless of your religious orientation.
This is a most interesting book about a young woman who decides to become a nun. She fights her demons while during her first years along with the others in her class. Most interesting to most older Catholic who were taught by nuns.
This book was very interesting particularly if you grew up Roman Catholic in the 60's. In some places it is very dull, such as when Larsen regurgitates the rules of her order but then I thought about myself as a 7 year old reciting meaningless catachisms over and over. Life was pretty dull sitting on either side of those Catholic school desks. This is a rare peak behind the forbiden convent doors. There is no bashing of nuns or priest or rehashing of suppresed sexual urges. Sister Mary Deborah, a good Midwestern Catholic girl, slips into the unquestionable obedience of convent life much like many women did in their late teens. This was a time when most religious orders were flooded with applicants, something I had completely forgotten about. Larsen takes us back to those times when we were awed by the sisters. Then bam the book is over, I will not say what happened but the last section is unexpected. I was very glad there was a post script also because at this point I was very concerned about Sister Mary Deborah & keen to know if "everything" turned out well. If you are a female baby boomer, who as a young woman never took up the NOW banners or gave your family cause to worry if you had been "spoiled", then you will recognize yourself in this book.
I have read this book twice and enjoyed it throughly both times. Perhaps because my mother had attended a catholic school and dreamed of becoming a nun, ( I'm so glad she chose not too). Regardless of the family's upbringing, this story had heart. A coming of age and realization. I recommend it to those who enjoy stories of women and their journey of discovery.