Hiding Out: A Memoir of Drugs, Deception, & Double Lives by Tina Alexis Allen (3 out of 5) 

I’m telling you right now. This memoir is full of exactly what the post script promises…if you cannot move past Debbie Macomber books, this is NOT for you. There is incestuous sexual harassment, gratuitous partner swapping, scenes of lesbianism, etc. In addition to the secrets the author’s Dad is hiding in the book. So if you can’t handle it or are of a prudish nature, forget it. This is not the memoir for you. If you like an upside down on a motorbike wearing only heels and a smile book, then THIS is for you! 

Tina Alexis Allen grows up in a big Catholic family, the youngest of thirteen kids. I have parents who come from huge families, so I have heard stories about how hard it is to get attention in a family that big. Allen does mention that, and I have to imagine that in a culture of familial repression that was present in the 50’s and 60’s, there are more stories that aren’t told to the world. Hers is quite a tale. She spends the early part of the book trying to get get her bellicose, overly dramatic dad to return her affections. After one of her birthdays, her Dad notices and figures out her sexual orientation, and drunkenly confesses that he, too, is gay. And then they get drunk and go dance in gay clubs. Quite often. Tina is suddenly her dad’s favorite, and she takes to helping him with the family business, which books tours to the Vatican for families. Tina’s dad always seems to have a suitcase full of cash, and some of the stories he tells and the company he keeps don’t always match up with a business on the up and up. You feel that huge revelations are coming, but they don’t measure up with the end times. I felt as if there were some shady mafia stuff going on, but that’s not quite what happens. There is a build-up on several angles, but close to the end, Allen shifts her focus somewhat and those lively characters lose their vitality to the reader. Big time. Enough that this reader lost a lot of her interest. Highly disappointing because up until that point, she had me. She really had me. This is still a good memoir, but it lost a lot of steam in those last two chapters. This book is out in February, 2018.

~ by generationgbooks on December 12, 2017.

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