Pretty by Karen Vorbeck Williams


A charmed life.

That is what strangers thought when they looked at little Karen, a beautiful child from a loving family, growing up without a care in the world.

They did not see the pressure to be perfect. The instability of a family dealing with alcoholism and the euphemistically termed “melancholy.” The risks a growing child, a young lady, would take to feel that she was something more.

The raw honesty of The Glass Castle meets the glamour of 1950s Hollywood in Karen’s journey to break free of PRETTY.

This is an honest and vivid memoir, and Williams portrays life in the 1950s as realistically and faithfully as she can. One can imagine the smiling faces with “cigarettes and their iced bourbons,” hiding deep traumas and stigmas of the times. Here, Williams confidently discusses painful truths about happiness and how we achieve it. It is a commentary on the afflictions of childhood and how we attain dreams and learn from mistakes. It is an assured read from an Eric Hoffer Award-winning author and one that readers won't forget.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review
book review by Dylan Ward