“Perhaps they simply thought it was more genteel to keep ugliness off the stage. No one wants to watch stomach-turning violence at the theatre, especially over dinner. It can be very upsetting.”

Genre: Literary Fiction

Pages: 255

Published: 1st April 2019

Rate: 4 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

Lucy Lurie is deeply sunk in PTSD following a gang rape at her father’s farmhouse in the Western Cape.

She becomes obsessed with the author John Coetzee, who has made a name for himself by writing

Disgrace, a celebrated novel that revolves around the attack on her. Lucy lives the life of a celibate hermit, making periodic forays into the outside world in her attempts to find and confront Coetzee.

The Lucy of Coetzee’s fictional imaginings is a passive, peaceful creature, almost entirely lacking in agency. She is the lacuna in Coetzee’s novel – the missing piece of the puzzle.

Lucy Lurie is no one’s lacuna. Her attempts to claw back her life, her voice and her agency may be messy and misguided, but she won’t be silenced. Her rape is not a metaphor. This is her story.

Disclaimer: A copy of the book was sent to me by the publishers, Europa Editions, for review but all thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.

My Take

Lacuna is one book that took me through it. Fiona Snyckers has managed to write a book that is illuminates prominent issues, in a quite easy to digest manner while at it. Lacuna is a hard hitting book and I would first say check out the trigger/content warnings before picking it up.

Now, onto the book. This a brilliant, well written book. I had a hard time figuring out what is real and what is not. We have an unreliable narrator and the way she tells the story had me second guessing myself and at some point I didn’t know if I am delusional or it’s our MC. I love how the author uses different writing styles to tell the story. I found it interesting and it plays a huge role in how the plot unfolds. The author writes a very vivid book, which brought out strong emotions in me and I had to keep on taking breaks because it would be a lot at times.

“I can’t think of a better way to describe myself than inactive. I don’t know how to become active again…”

Lacuna is largely character driven and I love how well they are written in the book. From the flawed ones to the morally grey characters to the absolute worst of them. Each has a place in the book and a role in the book and they do it so well. Both the main characters and secondary characters. What I had as a concern was there was little to no character development/growth. Also, the ending had me feeling somehow.

Lacuna is a book that evokes strong emotions. It’s quite heartbreaking, and harrowing in parts. I loved it and would recommend it (with caution). It can be difficult to read because of the subject matter. Also, can we talk about the cover? Absolutely love it.

Have you read Lacuna? What did you think about it?