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review 2018-08-14 04:02
The Undoing (Call Of Crows) - Shelly Laurenston

The biggest issue I have with these is the writing is as chaotic as the characters. I guess it makes sense. In some ways, it's like the dragon books only with a lot of feathers...and set in contemporary Malibu.


The h is an introvert, former cultist's wife (he killed her), multilingual berserker Crow. She hates small talk, hates being touched, loses her mind if injured, and doesn't stop until the offender is a greasy spot. Half the Crow seem to be wary of her. So is everyone else.


The H is a Protector - one of a clan given owl qualities. Owls are...smart but dumb. They can earn small fortunes, but forget to pay the bills.


He offers her a job translating some old books. She accepts only after the Crow leader decides to get her a job.


Somewhere along the line, she discovers that she enjoys talking to him...among other things.


And all this happens around the chaos of the cult leader tracking her down, the partying of her friends (which always seems to end in a brawl of some sort), and banishing a goddess to another realm.

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text 2018-05-17 03:43
This Feels Like My Other Job
The Undoing Project: A Friendship that Changed Our Minds - Michael Lewis,Dennis Boutsikaris

C'mon, Booklikes.  If I'm adding editions like, every day, maybe I can get a paycheck for all this work I'm doing?  That'd be great....  Thanks!

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review 2018-03-27 00:00
The Undoing of Langston Black
The Undoing of Langston Black - Tasha L. Harrison/T. Harrison So, disclaimer, this is noir. There’s no other way I’d describe it.

This novella was impressive for its layered characters in such a short time; It is my first Tasha L. Harrison, and won’t be my last because I already see someone whose characters are complex and neither good nor bad, simply imperfect and dealing with the circumstances they’ve been dealt. I can also tell her styling is fairly dark, so I’ll keep that in mind going into her other work.

The story is cleverly told, with flashbacks from Langston’s POV, alongside his interrogation. The style is direct, but it didn’t skimp on details, settings, mood or characters. And yes, I said interrogation. This is noir. It has a romance element, but there’s no HEA/HFN, there’s no real conclusion.

There were some editing issues. Out of place ‘.’ a time I noticed “she her” as if the sentence structure changed but the subject didn’t follow. Lack of ‘-‘ in self-confidence. I’m definitely not very picky about this, so if that drives you crazy, you’ll definitely notice on this one. I’m not sure that makes this worth skipping, if this type of novel from a promising author appeals to you.

So many questions:

What if someone you loved turned you into a weapon? What if your love was doomed prior to the first kiss? What if you knew that?
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review 2018-02-14 21:49
This Will Be My Undoing
This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins

Sigh. I don't know what to say. This collection of essays is very good. Jerkins goes into the highs and lows of being a black woman in America. She goes into what it means to be a black woman while on travel (Russia and Japan). She goes into being a black woman trying to be successful, but still treated like she's from another world since many black men out there don't know what to do with a black woman who is out there being a success and doesn't have time for their foolishness. 


Jerkins goes into the cycles of black women in America. When you are just a kid and realize that your hair is going to take a lot of your time/sanity to deal with since you get treated a certain way if your nice is "ethnic." How she felt being one of the smartest girls in her school and how that caused backlash among other black girls. 

From there she goes into going to Princeton college and finding herself un-dateable. I had the opposite problem when I went to the University of Pittsburgh. I just used to lie and tell people I was in a relationship to be left alone. I was focused on finishing undergraduate and that was it. When I did get into graduate school was when I went and found a dude who wasn't worth anything. I am still mad that I loaned this boy (seriously he was such a child) money and he had the nerve to act like I was not being a "good" black woman since I refused to cook for him after coming home from an internship and classes. A few years ago he sent me a Facebook friend request. I was never so happy to block someone in my life.


A lot of Jerkins essays though go in unexpected ways. Her essay about Michelle Obama actually made me sad and mad. I still cannot believe how much Michelle Obama was attacked by the media and conservatives out there.  I don't blame her for not running for office in 2020. I would be sitting on a beach and just drinking all the wine. 


Another essay I loved was the one Jerkins wrote about how powerful Beyonce is to black women out there and how her latest album, Lemonade, touched a lot of us in many ways. You start to think you are the only one out there struggling with things, because as black women we are taught to keep our pain inside. Keep on walking, stay strong, don't ask for help, etc. Constantly being on guard to make sure you speak "right" around mixed groups, to not be the "angry black woman" so people can dismiss your points is exhausting as hell. 


Though I gave this four stars, I still marked it as a favorite. The only reason why I gave this four stars is that in some of the essays, Jerkins jumps around a lot that can get a bit confusing if you don't have context for some of the things she is talking about. Though I liked her essay on "Black Girl Magic" she goes into what the movement was about, how some people attacked it, and then a personal subject about a medical procedure she decided to undergo. It was a bit crowded in there for me in that chapter. I would have liked it if it was broken up. 


I also just liked the "How to Survive: A Manifesto on Paranoia and Peace" was not for me. I liked "How to be Docile" much better since she uses similar writing styles in both essays. 


I have never heard of Jerkins before, but am going to go out and take a look at some of her writing as soon as possible. 

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text 2018-02-14 21:33
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins

Wow. What a very good read! I may not agree with all things in this collection of essays, but Jerkins got me thinking which is never a bad thing. This starts off slow and it tends to jump around (essays) but there were some essays I found quite powerful which were: Monkeys Like You, A Lotus for Michelle, Black Girl Magic, Human, Not Black, and Who Will Write Us?


I wanted to finish this before I see Black Panther tomorrow night. I can't explain to my friends who are not POC how excited and joyful this movie makes me. It's like going out to a big block party. I have friends who I have not talked to in a long time who are meeting up for dinner first. We are dressing to the nines. And we will be living and breathing Wakanda for two hours. My aunt said to me the last time she remembers this many black people watching something that was almost solely black actors and actresses is when Roots came out. That was in 1977 (I was not alive at that time). 

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