First things first: I received this book through NetGalley.
Trigger warning: eating disorder.
Summary: Fifteen-year-old Ivy's world is in flux. Her dad has moved out, her mother is withdrawn, her brother is off at college, and her best friend, Anna, has grown distant. Worst of all, Ivy's body won’t stop expanding. She's getting taller and curvier, with no end in sight. Even her beloved math class offers no clear solution to the imbalanced equation that has become Ivy’s life.
Everything feels off-kilter until a skipped meal leads to a boost in confidence and reminds Ivy that her life is her own. If Ivy can just limit what she eats—the way her mother seems to—she can stop herself from growing, focus on the upcoming math competition, and reclaim control of her life. But when her disordered eating leads to missed opportunities and a devastating health scare, Ivy realizes that she must weigh her mother's issues against her own, and discover what it means to be a part of—and apart from—her family.
This book. THIS BOOK!!!
This book totally caught me off guard. Once again it's one of those books that I got from Netgalley, forgot about it and then started reading it without reading the summary again and didn't know what to expect.
The book deals with some tough topics but I think, they are handled really sensitive and respectful. The writing was so damn beautiful. Seriously, some of these moments in Ivy's life were so painful but they were written in the most beautiful way.
Poetry is my new favorite thing but I only ever read books with lots of different poetry, this time it was a whole book, a whole story. And it was beautiful.
It was super easy to get into, I started the book and pretty soon was half way through it. The characters were wonderful and so fleshed out.
Aaaah, I just love this book so much, it made me feel all the things and I highly recommend it.
Lift every voice and sing.
James Weldon Johnson (born June 17, 1871) was a high school principal, a lawyer, a consul in the Roosevelt Administration, a key figure in the NAACP and a celebrated author and songwriter with a successful Broadway career.
This poem appears to be a distant ancestor of all those horror films where teen couples die horribly as a consequence of sneaking off to have illicit pre-marital sex. Our cultural obsession with virginity as a symbol of moral purity and an only marginally more subtle form of Patriarchal reduction of the female to property never ceases to amaze me. Yep, it's weaker in the West, now, than it has been historically, but it's still present in some quarters, as evidenced by those same horror movies, and there are many countries where it's still a Really Big Thing that you have to be a virgin on your wedding night. Maybe one day the Middle Ages will come to a close? Don't hold your breathe, though.
Marlowe either abandoned this poem incomplete in favour of other projects or died whilst still actively working on it, I don't know which, but either way, he only wrote the first ~1/3 (or less, haven't actually counted the pages) and George Chapman took up the task of completing the story. Unfortunately, on this evidence, Chapman was not nearly as talented as Marlowe - which is more informative than it might seem at face value. See, Marlowe (and all the other Elizabethan-Jacobean playwrights and poets) exists under the enormous and deep shadow cast by Shakespeare, who went from an early career as Marlovian imitator to towering genius of dramatic-poetic expression. What Chapman shows, however, is that the better known contemporaries of Shakespeare, such as Marlowe, Jonson and Middleton were actually talented in their own right - they just had the misfortune to overlap with the best there's ever been by a remarkable stretch. In fact Shakespeare wrote a lot of plays and numerous of these less celebrated authors wrote works that were as good as or better than Shakespeare's weaker efforts. Chapman's mediocrity serves to illustrate that Marlowe was actually excellent - he just had a rival who permanently skewed the chart of dramatic-poetic genius.
It's a fun poem, especially at the beginning (Marlowe's bit) and the end (sudden turn to the Tragic), particularly if you like tales of gods and heroes and can swallow the ridiculous moral of the tale.