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Search tags: The-Arm-of-the-Starfish
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review 2018-06-03 22:25
loooooooove this! Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman
Starfish - Akemi Dawn Bowman

I just this moment finished this book and I can't say enough how much love, hope and healing I am feeling because it exists. I want to sit down properly and write out what's what here but I had to immediately shout to whomever is out there reading/listening... this book is AMAZING!! Every word was perfection and the chapters look like a toddler got ahold of a highlighter and went to town, that's how much quotable awesomeness there is within. Ok, first sleep then (hopefully) coherent gushing in the morning.



"I draw a girl with arms that reach up to the clouds, but all the clouds avoid her because she’s made of night and not day."

Oh man I am starstruck with this book... Starstruck and ensnared. This book is emotionally brutal and beautiful, and gripping in the most poignant of ways. Even though I'm not the exact targeted audience... I'm not biracial, I never dealt with the agony of divorce, my anxiety is off the chart but outwardly, socially, I look like a regular, "normal" mess. I still consumed, nay... DEVOURED this beautiful gem... I LOVED every second... I was Kiko... I KNEW..I felt... I winced.. I cried... I was learning to navigate crippling social anxiety... dealing with a toxic mother/daughter/family dynamic and searching for a way to rely on myself to exist and coexist in a scary, chaotic world.



"I know not every family is the same. We all have different personalities and names. Different colors in a box of crayons. Different shades in a box of graphites. And maybe love looks different to different people, the same way beauty looks different. But the kind of love I need isn’t the kind I have. I guess I’m still trying to find a way to be okay with that."



"I don’t want to need anyone. I want to stand on my own two feet. I want control of my own life and my own emotions. I don’t want to be a branch in someone else’s life anymore—I want to be the tree on my own."


The writing was so smooth and effortless I kind of want this review to be a compilation of quotes...let the writing speak for itself....BUT I'm a slightly narcissist book reviewer so I have to put my 2 cents in. Anyway... I found myself breazing through... happily unaware of my page progression. The characters were rich and lovable and loathsome and brilliant all at the same time. Kiko' s anxiety was so tangible and relateable that my own panic rose, chest constricted and pulse galloped every time she ran into triggers.


"I live my life in the small space between “uncomfortable” and “awkward.”


I can relate!


One of my favorite characters was the most amazing Art/Life mentor, Hiroshi. He was like an introspective Zen master who knew all the right things to say and expressed them in all the right ways.... visually, verbally, charismatically , intrinsically.

"Don’t live to please the starfish, especially when their happiness is at the expense of yours. That is not love. That is narcissism. There’s an entire ocean out there, Kiko—swim in it.”

And then there was Jaime. Oh sweet Jaime, how I adore thee! He may have seemed a little bit too perfect but in a world of abuse, anxiety and uncertainty I'll take Perfect every time, greedily. This guy was so swoon worthy that I am still thinking of his unconditional, slightly unbelievable, loyalty and love for the girl who comes off as utterly broken and hopeless yet happens to be the strongest most self aware, resilient character in the book. She is an amazing work in progress and Jaime is aware enough to recognize her awesomeness.


There was just too much incredible, and loads of amazing with all sorts of feeeeeeels!!!

I can't recommend this book highly enough!! THOUGH there are a few trigger warnings:

*pediphilic overtures
*attempted suicide
*anxiety triggers abound
*parental neglect/verbal/mental abuse

There are also amazing triggers like:
*coming to terms with what cannot be changed
*learning to rely on oneself instead of using people as crutches to deal with Life
*learning to love thyself and find beauty in the mirror...

It showed that Beauty comes in all flavors and it can be found in random, unconventional places.

"Artwork isn’t finished just because you’ve colored up to every corner on the page. Artwork is finished when you get to the end of your sentence."

I know this was slightly long but I can not convey enough that this book is BRILLIANT!! Read it, you'll thank me later!!

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review 2016-12-06 01:32
Good Story and Characters
Starfish Moon (The Brides Of Blueberry Cove) - Donna Kauffman

Kerry McCrea is a natural born wanderer. The fact that she’s been back in her hometown for a year without leaving is something short of a miracle, although only her beloved uncle knows the real reason. When that reason walks into her uncle’s bar from halfway around the world, Kerry isn’t happy.

This was a really good book. It was a contemporary, which aren’t usually the types of books I read very often, but I loved how the author set up the feel of the book and all of the characters were very well written. It kept me reading until I finished the book. I recommend.

**I voluntarily read and reviewed this book

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review 2016-10-08 19:40
Starfish by Peter Watts
Starfish - Peter Watts

Series: Rifters #1


Starfish is an uncomfortable book. I feel I should issue a warning that several of the characters have been abused or were abusers. That said, it’s also a good book. There is a dismal atmosphere that is both oppressive and claustrophobic, and a large part of it takes place in the depths of a black ocean. These people are tasked with the care of a geothermal generator station on the ocean floor. The combination of their initial personalities and the behaviours they develop in this isolated alien place is really creepy.


I might have rated it higher if I hadn’t spent most of the book wondering where it was going. I did enjoy the journey but there was a vague uncertainty throughout a significant chunk of it. As it turns out, the book is headed somewhere; it’s just not apparent from earlier on. So I might increase my rating on a reread although I need to finish the series before even considering one.


Simple or complex. File or Infection. Checkers or Chess. βehemoth or biosphere. It was all the same problem, really. 1211 knew exactly which side it was on.

(spoiler show)


The thought that everything comes down to checkers or chess amuses me. The quote won’t make sense if you haven’t read the book (hence the spoiler tag).


I’m counting this one for the “Read by candlelight or flashlight” square for the Halloween Bingo since I read it at night on my ereader (or at least I did until I got near the end). This really isn’t the best book to read before bed though.

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text 2016-10-06 18:02
Reading progress update: I've read 79%.
Starfish - Peter Watts

"Three hundred megatons," Brander repeats at last. "You know, I can't tell you how disturbed I am to find that you know such things."

Lubin shrugs. "It's basic physics. It shouldn't intimidate anyone who isn't totally innumerate."

I can't tell you all how refreshing this book feels after listening to the boring condescending info-dumps of Seveneves, where almost halfway through the book it is felt necessary to define "delta vee" and go in to explain what the delta symbol means in mathematical parlance. Even if you're not that comfortable with physics and math, can't you figure it out from context? The book even calls delta "a common bit of mathematical shorthand." And this is well after the term is first used, of course.


I have been reading Starfish mostly at night before bed via backlight for the bingo square, but I plan on just going ahead and finishing it now. I'm too close to the end to put it down just because it's light out.

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review 2016-05-10 00:00
Sunfish & Starfish: Tropical Drag Queen Detectives
Sunfish & Starfish: Tropical Drag Queen ... Sunfish & Starfish: Tropical Drag Queen Detectives - Wallace Godfrey

2,5 stars

Oh dear...
How I wanted to like this book!..


The blurb sounded INTERESTING, promising and fancy. I watched some movies about the world of drag but I have never read a full-length novel where the main characters were drag performers, these beautiful creatures who use their cha­risma, unique­ness, nerve and tal­ent to enter­tain and mes­mer­ise!

And, be honest, how often do you come across a book with TWO drag queens at the same time in a leading role?


And not just some novel - a mystery! And not just a mystery, but one of the best mysteries of the year, because this book was nominated for the 28th Lambda Award in the category Gay Mystery!

Maybe I had too high expectations, we all know that high expectations SOMETIMES could be very tricky.

The good things:
Beautiful-lips Extraordinary and likable protagonists. This duo has potential to fill a niche in MM genre.

Larry and Oscar are not a love couple, but best friends and partners on stage. They differ not only in appearance, they are different also in their ideas and ways of living and thinking. Larry - the six-foot-two, two-hundred-fifty-pound hairy bear of a man - has his feet planted firmly on the ground, he lives together with Stan, his life partner since 15 years. The ever single Oscar, a star-spangled Hispanic, 12 years younger than Larry, is hopelessly romantic young man with dreams too big for the real world.

Beautiful-lips A decent writing style.

The author is a full-time ghostwriter and novelist. He is not a beginner in this field, and one can feel it.

My issues:

What disappointed me mostly was a mystery part. When I pick up the book, that is supposed to belong to one of the best gay mysteries of the year, I expect a mystery, that will keep me on the edge of my seat all the time, I expect to be stuck to it and not to be able to put it down.

For the most part of the book I felt bored. And irritated. Because I didn’t see what Oscar saw, and I wasn't convinced with the explanations the author delivered me trying to justify Oscar's annoying behavior.

An expensive lonely left (or was it right?) shoe under a dumpster in a parking lot leads to surveillance video that recorded two fighting people without giving away their faces, and this video in turn leads to a very reach girl with a black eye, THAT in turn leads to a BAD BOYFRIEND. OH HOW AWFUL. (I'm trying not to be sarcastic)

You HAVE to have a VERY good fantasy and a well-developed six sense to suspect something wrong here, and it is exactly what everyone DID NOT.

Except Oscar. He sacrificed his free time, his power and sanity hunting a BAD BOYFRIEND of an occasional reach girl whose problems he takes VERY personally, following her every step and begging her to report it to the police. I don’t know what I as a reader was supposed to feel. Probably compassion with the victim and admiration for Oscar’s exemplary moral courage, but all I felt was non-stop-eye-roll and annoyance.

The easiness with that Oscar got an access to this reach circle (maids, house, friends, clubs), the eagerness with that everyone chattered with him about family and other secrets, delivering all kind of information he needed was very unbelievable. All he had to do was just to say, "I'm a friend of...."

Of course he was much luckier with his ingenious method than the police. WHAT A LUCK (Again I'm trying not to be sarcastic) .

The fact that he WAS right with his suspicions, became irrelevant at the end, because
1) I didn't care
2) of course you can find a crime behind many domestic violence cases that CAN look innocent at the first sight, but IF an author decided to make a thrilling story out of it, then he HAS to put more credibility, more healthy sense in the actions of his amateur sleuth.

Sure, an author can do it without any logic, but at least he can make it FUNNY and WITTY. It is always helpful when any good sense is secondary.

And it is WHERE I come to my second complaint: I wish the story would be more humorous and have more funny situation, because OBVIOUSLY two drag artists offer all these good stuff by themselves. There were some humor but not enough for my liking.

There are two subplots to the main story line:
I have to confess that I like them more than the main one

Beautiful-lips Edward Hannandale, a politician and a priest who names himself reverend and who is well known for his hate speeches towards gay society has been accidentally photographed in a gay bar during the show of Oscar and Larry. Suddenly Larry, together with Hannandale, are the number one news on all TV channels. And Jerry's gay bar, a home stage for our boys, is occupied by all news team of the country. The whole situation got out of control.

Beautiful-lips My favorite subplot! Oscar and his love affair(s). Did he really mean it - AT LAST to leave Niko behind and make place for a new real relationship?

I understand that as a starter for a new series, the tasks of the first book was to provide readers with the first insight into surroundings, characters’ lives, it has to introduce not only those who play the main role in the series, but also those who play the second part. I can imagine, that I’ll like the next book more. The first case was solved and maybe the next case will be more interesting for me, and if there will be also more of a private life of our protagonists and less of a private life of people that are less interesting (to me), then I'll probably enjoy it much more.

I have though to warn you, that I'm in the minority with my opinion, and it looks like other readers enjoyed this book, so don't take my review too seriously or like a not recommendation to read it. Because you can like it.


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