“Unmask Alice” Book Review

I remember reading the ‘anonymous’ diary, “Go Ask Alice” when I was in middle school. It seemed pretty scandalizing back in the day, but I had no idea how much controversy was actually attached to the story behind the book.

Rick Emerson has done what good non-fiction writers do: crafted a book that reads like a fast-paced tale that kept me glued to each page, extremely curious what could possibly happen next in this bizarre story. Turns out there was a mastermind behind “Go Ask Alice” – a woman named Beatrice Sparks, who had no qualms about inventing much of her own history, as well as how she ‘acquired’ this diary. Her story is so crazy and comes with so many twists that it totally brings to mind that saying that truth is stranger than fiction.

Emerson also does a masterful job at incorporating history and culture into each section of this book. There was a lot I didn’t know about topics like Nixon’s War on Drugs and the Satanic Panic period during the 1980s. The facts given were so colorful and interesting that it didn’t feel like I was reading a non-fiction book at all.

This is my favorite kind of book – one where I’ve learned a ton and felt like I came to truly know a lot of the real people involved. I absolutely cannot wait to see what real-life events Emerson turns his attention to next. I’ll be first in line to read it!

5 stars

*Free ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review*


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