All the reasons why we want to be just like Mary from Jenny Downham’s ‘Unbecoming’ when we’re older

It’s not often that you find yourself saying “when I’m a grandma, I want to be just like…” but because of Jenny Downham’s ‘Unbecoming’ (shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2016 no less!) we’ve been doing just that.

And it’s all because there’s something about Mary…

something about mary

But what is it exactly?

1. Mary, despite having Alzheimer’s is still full of spirit. The fiery nature we see and feel in flashbacks and memories doesn’t fade.

spirited away

2. She’s a rule breaker. Don’t you just want to be that person? They underestimate you because of your age, and then KAPOW you stick it to them in every which way you can.

spirited away

3. Mary may be confuzzled at times, but she uses the power, and joy, of storytelling and shared experiences to push through it.

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4. Even though she’s made some mistakes in the past, she has still lived life to the fullest. Maybe not without regret, but certainly without a missed opportunity.

spirited away

5. She’s not perfect. And if you manage to make it into your twilight years without one flaw than you’re probably inhuman. BUT there is something incredibly inspiring about Mary’s flaws. The don’t ‘become’ her, they are a ‘part’ of her.

spirited away

6. Mary is slowly disappearing. Dementia is terrifying. And yet she’s the kind of fearless that makes you wanna cry. And nod. And hope that you can replicate should it ever happen to you.

spirited away

Still haven’t read this beauty of a book? Wanna read about Mary yourself? You can get it in glorious paperback, right here.

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Written by Sarah Clare

Sarah is the Lead Writer and Design Queen here at Maximum Pop! Sarah holds an MA in Professional Writing from Falmouth University, and a BA in Creative Writing with English Literature from Marjon (BIG UP THE MARJON MASSIVE!). Sarah joined MP! after seeing an advertisement for writers on Instagram – because where else would a design master find their dream job?

Sarah is currently working on an expose on Draco Malfoy in her spare time. But not if his father hears about it.

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