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review 2020-04-04 08:22
Silence, privilege and opression
Purple Hibiscus - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

This book is terrible. It hurts like a bitch in a very quiet, understated way, it does not have the grace of tying the themes in any of the expected or more hopeful ways, and does so in a excellently written way. "Beat me while I love you" much?... Feels like a meta-theme.

 

There are: parallels between the government and Kambili's father's tyranny, between her aunt dithering on leaving the country while urging her mother to leave her father, the friend's questions on what is to be done if the strong leave, the children as reasons for leaving, where to go as the mother asks.

 

There are: commentaries about privilege, and the amount of issues it conceals, about the difference between public and private image, about having for others to see but not enjoying, about compassion not being something deserved, or related to station.

 

There are: questions about internalized colonization, the way religion opens paths for oppression and culture erosion (I raged so hard at the baptism and confirmation names thing), how a nation's identity gets eaten.

 

The motto of a university being "to restore dignity", like dignity has been lost, and higher education is what "gives" it... I have so many issues with the pretentiousness of that motto even while I think education does empower a people.

 

There is frankly a lot, and it left me so sad.

 

The first tenth is a mastery of the ominous. There is no overt violence, but the atmosphere itself is violently oppressive, and you can feel how the silence was bred into this girl. There is a moment where Jaja talks about another girl that saw her father murdered just starting to talk after 4 months, and he says she'll never heal from that, and it stayed with me that none of this characters ever will. The mother drank the love sips and was grateful that there was no second wife. Jaja paid heartily for his inner guilt. Kambili still yearns for her father's approval in her dreams, and that's how terrible and binding this twisted mockery of love is. They still do not talk. But maybe they have some hope of laughter.

 

I'm not touching that other priest with a ten foot pole because she's freaking 15.

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review 2020-03-25 07:22
How do you talk to an ocean
Solaris - Stanisław Lem,Steve Cox,Joanna Kilmartin

(but maybe, we should worry more about how the ocean would try to talk to us)

 

It's a very disturbing read from the start, and you can feel the disquiet grip you into the pages immediately, but it's pretty dense and it can get dry.

 

Know what this reminded me off a lot? "Moby Dick". It's those essays, and the way everyone keeps approaching that ocean from a description of the components because the whole is unfathomable. Also quite a bit of "Arrival", and the inherent difficulties of communications.

 

Around the middle, I found that I started to like Snaut because he was saying everything that Kalving wouldn't even admit in his own internal narrative. Snaut was a ruthless bastard that angered Kalvin, but there was this sense that the reason Kalvin got angry all the time was because he was voicing what he did not want to see.

 

I did not expect it to end where it did, though that is likely the fault of my vague memories of the last movie made. There is so much that it leaves you speculating on, the concepts of a god that evolves and a god cradle in that final conversation specially, with Snaut wishing to stay, and that we never see anyone else's visitor but Kalvin's (oh, and the fact that Kalvin is the only one that does not obsessively hide his, the things that says).

 

There a lot more odds and ends that keep running around my mind for such a short novel, so I'll likely be chewing on my book hangover for a while.

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text 2020-02-29 16:51
NEW RELEASE! SON OF HANOVER BLOCK

 

Title: Son of Hanover Block

Series: The Hanover Quartet (Book 3)

Genre: Dark Fantasy/Occult/Horror

Length: 250 pages

Imprint: new dollar pulp

Release Date: February 29, 2020

 

Description:


young boy collapses on a playground. Surgeons carve out a giant tumor and half of his brain. Soon after, the boy's father locks him in a secret prison for his own perverse amusement. Through physical and psychological torture, he plans to transform his son into a monster, but he creates something wholly unexpected.

 

 

A research psychiatrist is on the verge of publishing a strange and beautiful new book, a collection of artists' renderings of the hallucinations of the clinically insane. Her book threatens to expose a terrible truth, and this truth will not set her free.

 

 

A mysterious infestation, intensely personal and deadly, is decimating communities across the nation. All that stands in its path is a ruthless government agency which may prove to be more lethal than the otherworldly parasites it aims to destroy.

 

 

The son is rising…

 

Order the Paperback

Signed by the Author | Amazon | BAM!

 

Order the Kindle edition

 

 

Need to get caught up?

 

Get started with The Hanover Block for only 99¢!

 

The Hanover Block 

 

And continue with Brides of Hanover Block for just $2.99!

 

Brides of Hanover Block

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review 2020-01-25 16:27
That's one hell of a ghost
Beloved - Toni Morrison

I don't really know what to say about this book, literature-wise. What I know is that it touched me. I left a comment over halfway through, about crying to the beat of the lifting bits, and negative spaces, and I don't know if I'm capable of doing it more justice.

 

There was a lot that kept crashing over and over, in the echoes of lines and themes through the ages, and stays with me: Freedom as owning yourself. Freedom being necessary to be able to love. What can't be borne, what breaks you, the sequels, the need sometimes to leave the past buried. This idea:

 

“You your best thing, Sethe. You are.”

 

And this idea:

 

For years Paul D believed schoolteacher broke into children what Garner had raised into men. And it was that that made them run off. Now, plagued by the contents of his tobacco tin, he wondered how much difference there really was between before schoolteacher and after. Garner called and announced them men—but only on Sweet Home, and by his leave. Was he naming what he saw or creating what he did not? That was the wonder of Sixo, and even Halle; it was always clear to Paul D that those two were men whether Garner said so or not.

 

But over all, this:

 

“Here,” she said, “in this here place, we flesh; flesh that weeps, laughs; flesh that dances on bare feet in grass. Love it. Love it hard. Yonder they do not love your flesh. They despise it. They don’t love your eyes; they’d just as soon pick em out. No more do they love the skin on your back. Yonder they flay it. And O my people they do not love your hands. Those they only use, tie, bind, chop off and leave empty. Love your hands! Love them. Raise them up and kiss them. Touch others with them, pat them together, stroke them on your face ’cause they don’t love that either. You got to love it, you! And no, they ain’t in love with your mouth. Yonder, out there, they will see it broken and break it again. What you say out of it they will not heed. What you scream from it they do not hear. What you put into it to nourish your body they will snatch away and give you leavins instead. No, they don’t love your mouth. You got to love it. This is flesh I’m talking about here. Flesh that needs to be loved. Feet that need to rest and to dance; backs that need support; shoulders that need arms, strong arms I’m telling you. And O my people, out yonder, hear me, they do not love your neck unnoosed and straight. So love your neck; put a hand on it, grace it, stroke it and hold it up. And all your inside parts that they’d just as soon slop for hogs, you got to love them. The dark, dark liver—love it, love it, and the beat and beating heart, love that too. More than eyes or feet. More than lungs that have yet to draw free air. More than your life-holding womb and your life-giving private parts, hear me now, love your heart. For this is the prize.”

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review 2020-01-19 21:17
Sociopaths In Love by Andersen Prunty
Sociopaths In Love - Andersen Prunty

I don’t know why I pick up books like these. It’s some strange compulsion that I cannot ignore. Some are better than others. This one falls right about in the middle but scores all the points for the gross-out.

 

An unhinged man enters the home of a young lady caring for her ill granny. He’s not there to make friends and have some tea either! He’s a dude who takes what he wants and walks away. He can do this because he has some sort of power that allows him to remain unseen once he walks away from the scene of his atrocities. I can’t fully wrap my head around that concept but I kept reading to find anyhow. So you can probably guess he is there for rapiness but he ends up finding more. Erica figures she’s not going to fight this guy because it will only be worse for her and she’s a little intrigued by the excitement of it all. After some extremely dubious con sex occurs, Walt realizes she shares his super power and they head off into the sunset and live happily ever after doing whatever the heck they want without consequence.

 

Well, not really.

 

Love isn’t exactly easy when you’re a murderous sociopath who likes to eat people and glory in your own filth.

 

What follows is a horribly gross, murderous and twisted road trip filled with wicked turns and cruel acts that were nearly too much even for me. I’m talking poop covered mattresses, a poop filled room, poop piles tinged with blood. There is poop. There is too much poop!  Poop isn’t something I like very much. I see enough poop. I raised two kids and currently have five pets. I need no more poop in my life. 

 

Anyhow, what this book is really about is a narcissistic psycho who gets increasingly more depraved page by page. To be honest, I found it a little boring in spots. There was much debauchery but spending time in these peoples heads was sometimes tedious. They weren’t very interesting to me and I’m not quite sure what compelled me to finish so please don’t ask. I do not know what is wrong with me but I do feel like I need my brain scrubbed right now.

 

If you’re a similar weirdo and think you might want to push your limits this book will mostly likely do that for you!

 

The copy I listened to was narrated by the author who reads this tale of deviant deeds in a dead tone that suits the monsters inhabiting the story.

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