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Search tags: borrowed-from-library
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review 2018-03-25 05:56
Honestly, Ben (Openly Straight #2) (Audiobook)
Honestly Ben - Bill Konigsberg

I liked so much about this book. I liked Ben in the first book and was happy to get his POV and get to know him more intimately. He's an introvert, and has a lot of hang ups because of his fun sucker dad who is king of repression. This book really focuses on why Ben feels the need to please everyone and why he's got so many issues speaking up and taking a stand for what he believes in - or even just figuring out what those beliefs are. So all of that was good, and while some things were left open ended, it didn't feel like a cliffhanger.

 

What I didn't like as much was Ben going GFY for Rafe. I can't even really say that this improves on the GFY trope since there is extensive talk about bisexuality, but Ben is very adamant about not being bi, which would be fine if that was all that was going on here. People are free to pick their own labels. But Rafe makes jokes several times about bi just being a transition phase to gay. Even though he says at one point that he doesn't really believe that, he still mentions it again several times, and Ben's understanding of bisexuality is rather lacking as well since it doesn't address those who would fall under the twos or fives under the Kinsey scale. So yeah, still not good bi representation, and Rafe came across as kind of a jerk when he couldn't give Ben the space and time he needed to figure things out on his own.

 

I can't speak one way or another if Toby being gender fluid was handled well or not. It's not a concept I understand much at all, and I can't say that this helped educate me in any way. I guess I don't see how wearing makeup and skirts can make a male character female. Because I never wear makeup or skirts, but I'm still a woman. I don't do anything particularly feminine at all but that doesn't make me not female. So gender fluidity doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me, sorry. I understand wanting to buck gender *roles* but I don't think that's quite what gender fluidity is about, but perhaps I'm wrong. I admit complete ignorance about this concept, but I'm more than open to learning or trying to learn. I did try looking for reviews on GR, hoping to find some written by gender fluid reviewers talking about that aspect, but I didn't find much of anything.

 

Oh, and there's a throwaway line by someone else saying they think Albie is ace. That's not ace representation, sorry. Zero points for that.

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review 2018-03-17 01:54
[REVIEW] The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily by Theresa Maggio
The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily - Theresa Maggio

This book is made of a series of small essays about even smaller Sicilian mountain towns. It starts off a little dry, but it isn't long before you find yourself googling the town names and planning vacations. The way Ms. Maggio speaks of Sicily and these towns it's impossible not to fall in love with them. I enjoyed learning about cultural traditions and culinary landscapes.

 

I know I've probably said this before, but I've always been genuinely fascinated with Sicily. My father's family is from there, and I've always wanted to visit. Reading about these hidden villages made Sicily seem more accessible to me, even more, it made deepened my desire to visit it ASAP.

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text 2018-03-17 00:57
Reading progress update: I've read 94%.
The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily - Theresa Maggio

Independent, unmarried, childless women like Enza, Rosaria, and Antonietta are rare birds in Sicily. They all say it irks some Sicilian men to see them succeed. Maybe their discomfort is the reaction of insecure men to proof that they are not indispensable.

 

Sad to see this shitty, sexist behavior thrives in other islands around the world.

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text 2018-03-17 00:23
Reading progress updates
The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily - Theresa Maggio

64%

Any meal is to a Sicilian what a madeleine was for Proust, a gateway to reverie.

 

66%

In Sicily, where food is love ad the street is a stage, street food is more than a cheap meal, it's Communion.

 

I really love learning about food culture in other cultures. It's fascinating.

 

68%

In the market I watched one man stop at what looked like a plate of glass splinters. He grabbed a fistful, threw his head back and swallowed them. They were neonati, transparent newborn fish that Sicilian women steam and sprinkle on pasta but men just eat raw—for virility, the man told me.

 

D:

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text 2018-03-13 02:34
Reading progress update: I've read 20%.
The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily - Theresa Maggio

A look is a powerful thing in Sicily, where people believe in the Evil Eye and love is declared with a furtive glance in church.

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