Beneath Miss Aluminum’s glittering fairytale surface lies the story of a girl’s insatiable hunger to learn and her anguished determination to understand the circumstances of her mother’s death. Moore gives us a sardonic portrait of Hollywood in the seventies, and of a young woman’s hard-won arrival at selfhood.
As readers of Moore’s fiction know, she is a brilliant storyteller and sentence-maker ... The latest addition to her oeuvre reminded me of everything I ever loved about her as a writer and now, as happens with certain memoirs, I feel like she is my friend — a very elegant, accomplished grande dame sort of friend, to be sure ... Moore’s voice on the page is sometimes reminiscent of one of her mentors, Joan Didion, in its spellbinding rhythms and effortless transition between the physical and the intellectual ... Stories like these are grounded in her unflappable narrative tone and her conviction, shared on the last page of the book, assessing her prospects at age 30, that 'it would be all right.' Given the luminous literary career she had not yet even begun at that age, it seems to be so.
... striking ... Moore recounts with — what is that inflection? Not rue, not regret, not extraneous affect; the reader is invited to supply all of that herself, and the effect is both mesmerizing and sometimes maddening ... there can be little doubt that this memoir is Moore’s own provocative entry into the conversation. Through the #MeToo lens, her measured, superficially judgment-free recounting of her time in the middle of All That can be read as a personal statement of empowerment: She came, she saw, she took notes, and she left to become a novelist and a miss-no-detail student of female autonomy.
... poignant and hugely entertaining ... an examination of the masks women wear to meet social expectations, occasionally prompting them to forget who they are entirely ... The book bursts with brilliantly gossipy titbits, recounted with wry understatement ... There is a dispassionate matter-of-factness to Moore’s prose as she relates her most traumatic moments. Self-pity isn’t her style ... In Miss Aluminium, her tales of the Hollywood high life certainly provide giggles and glitz, though the darkness is never far from the surface.