A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara


A Booker short-list, ‘A Little Life’ is an extraordinarily sad story of an orphan. Jude St. Francis who suffers through abuses all his childhood and never recovers from them as an adult. It is a moving story indeed and the shows the good and bad of the world in equal parts. Even though the book starts as the story of four friends, it quickly focuses on one of them and the novel becomes his story. However, there are major flaws in the story line. For example, not clear why Brother Luke kidnapped Jude out of the monastery. If abuse was the objective, it could have been accomplished in the monastery too; he was being abused there anyway. Then the twist of Jude’s straight friend Williem suddenly developing feelings of Jude and their becoming lovers. Not very believable.  The book is also way too long and tends to be repetitive. A thousand cuts on the arms and the legs, the same friends meeting for dinner at a Sushi places a hundred times, Jude’s constantly  losing weight – after a point start getting on your nerves. My verdict: No.  A good story but not a good read.