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review 2018-12-16 19:37
[REVIEW] Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul by Nikita Gill
Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul - Nikita Gill

I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

‘Heroes are meant
to be forged golden
from the blaze.’
(pg. 14)



I was very excited when I got approved for this book. It has all my favorite things in the title: feminism (yay!) and fairytales (yay!). And that cover? Swoon-worthy. The reading experience, however, was more… meh. The concept is good, it’s just not executed as well as it should be. The themes are repetitive, and nothing is structured or cohesive. This is supposed to be about fairytales, but then we take a turn into reality, dealing with eating disorders (that particular poem hit a little close to home) and then we jump back into fairytales. Some of it works, most of it doesn’t, at least for me.

The word choices are also a little bizarre. For example, in ‘Why the Sun Rises and Sets’ she speaks about 'cinnamon people' and that just made me uncomfortable. There’s this entire debate that people of color’s skin shouldn’t be described with food because it fetishizes and dehumanizes them. Another word like “amber,” for example could've been used here instead.

I also struggled a lot in particular with the short stories. The “lesson” behind each is anything but subtle, it hits you over the head with its message over and over again. You see this clearly in ‘Two Misunderstood Sisters.’ She creates backstories for some Disney villains (like Gaston and Ursula and Lady Tremaine) and again, I think this is poorly executed. She plays with the theme that no one is born evil, that evil is learned because of untreated trauma or wounds, and I kinda get it, but it also seems like she’s excusing their behavior? This is particularly displayed in ‘How a hero becomes a villain’ which is Gaston’s poem.

Not everything is bad, though. I enjoyed ‘An Older and Wiser Little Mermaid Speaks.’ This poem is what expected this book to be like. It’s powerful, and it’s evocative, in a way that the rest of the material wasn’t for me.

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review 2018-12-16 19:21
[REVIEW] Heart's Blood by Juliet Marillier
Heart's Blood - Juliet Marillier

It's a lovely book. Well written romance, fleshed-out sympathetic yet imperfect characters all around and plenty of tension and scares to have you skip ahead because your poor heart will give out in anxiety. The setting is so vivid you might want to run off to Ireland to see if you can find your own castle filled with the helpful yet scary spirits.

However, and I am frustrated that I feel this way, I didn't love it. I wanted to. It certainly gripped me enough that I read for six hours straight. But I found it way too easy to disengage. Perhaps because I had just DNF'ed Deathless with its ridiculously dreamy prose but a lackluster story. Here, we had a great story but the writing--to me--was so wordy and excessive that I found myself skimming to get to the point. 

The dog dies in the end. I wasn't expecting this, and it made me burst into tears for 15 solid minutes.

(spoiler show)
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review 2018-12-16 19:17
[REVIEW] Miss Buncle's Book by D.E. Stevenson
Miss Buncle's Book - D.E. Stevenson

Surprisingly delightful and fun read populated with lovely (and some hateful) characters. It was very slow at the beginning, the jumping back and forth between different perspectives in the same chapter made me dizzy. Then it picked up the pace along with the tension. There were times where I wanted to skip ahead because I was so frightened of what might happen to poor Barbara 

but no need to worry because it all ends well for her and for many characters that we warm up to.

(spoiler show)


Overall, this book kept me happy, amused and fairly distracted.

 

 

Reading progress notes

 

12% - This is nice but a little slow. Having a hard time with the violent perspective jumps, lol.
 
36% - Still moving along albeit slowly. It is picking up the pace just a tad.
 
53% - Damn it, Dr. John. I was about to say that I liked you but then you said that the book had to be written by 'a very simple-minded person--a woman' and now I want to smack the crap out of you.
 
75% - I think Sally might be my favorite.
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review 2018-12-16 19:13
[REVIEW] The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
The Kiss Quotient - Helen Hoang

I loved, loved, loved this book then again, I love a book that makes me feel, and this one made me feel so many things, all colliding within me at the same time. Easily my favorite romance novel read this year. All I want to do is squee!

I wanted to ignore people so that I could read, that's how much I loved it. Somehow it hit all my favorite things, some that I didn't even remember that I liked. 

Do you want love and light and fluffiness but also angst? Read this book.

 

 

Reading progress notes

 

page 19
...the most stunning pair of soft brown eyes.

My heart melted a little.
 
page 63
Holy hell *fans self*
 
 
page 114
omg that was HORRIBLE and AWKWARD. Poor Stella.
 
page 194
He’s giving her a gift. For all the birthdays where he didn’t know her.

*SOB*
 
page 205
I just let out a scream. HELL NO. WHY.
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review 2018-12-16 19:07
[REVIEW] Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America by Firoozeh Dumas
Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America - Firoozeh Dumas

I really enjoyed this audiobook and the heartwarming stories it contained. I also really enjoyed the narration by the author, her amazing pronunciation in French made me super jealous. I loved her heartwarming and hilarious tales about her parents and her family; it made me wish I knew them in real life. 

I picked this audiobook at random, and I'm glad I did because it helped me disconnect from reality which, considerating the state of the world, is a welcome respite.

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