Climbing That Empathy Wall into a Louisiana Sinkhole: Arlie Russell Hochschild’s Strangers In Their Own Land (2017 Reading Book #87)

I really loved this book for a number of reasons. It was really interesting to learn about all of the issues Lousiana and its residents are dealing with–many of which I only had a little idea of. I also found it extremely fascinating albeit a bit upsetting to gain a … Continue reading

A Diverse, Unexpected Playfulness with Form: Monica Youn’s Blackacre (2017 Reading Book #86)

Contemporary poetry–or at least the poets I’ve been reading–is all about playing with form. Along with playing with form, there also seems to be a playfulness with approaching topics. Youn’s poetry seems to hit upon the same issues and images just from different angles. I really liked how different poems … Continue reading

Fixated on Food: Jami Attenberg’s The Middlesteins (2017 Reading Book #85)

This story and the family it centers on is unlike anything I’ve run across before. I really liked the narrative voice and how the story jumped around in time, telling the reader not only the past and present but also the future. Attenberg has a great understanding of these characters, … Continue reading

A Fascinating World I Never Knew Existed: Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians (2017 Reading Book #84)

I had no idea what I would be stepping into when all I knew of this book was that it was Chick Lit and focused on Asian culture. To me, that sounded a bit like a remedy for disaster. Fortunately, this novel is nothing like the stereotypes that might come … Continue reading

An Interesting Combination: Solmaz Sharif’s Look (2017 Reading Book #83)

The poems in this collection are such an interesting and unexpected combination of content. I thought it was really cool how terms from the military dictionary were used. It made for a really interesting juxtaposition. I also enjoyed the vareity of forms used throughout the collection. It seems that contemporary … Continue reading

Finding Common Ground: Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely’s All American Boys (2017 Reading Book #82)

I picked up this book because it was one of the predecessors to Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give, and author Jason Reynolds is blurbed on the cover of Thomas’ book. I was really interested to see what books on the topic of racism and police brutality had come before the … Continue reading

Stunning & Expansive: Ocean Vuong’s Night Sky with Exit Wounds (2017 Reading Book #81)

The poetry in this book is absolutely stunning. It covers so much ground and weaves together so many different images and issues. Vuong is a master at playing with form and the format of the poem does a great job of supplementing the words. I found myself dog-earing many poems I … Continue reading

The Most Feminist YA Novel I’ve Ever Read: Isabel Quintero’s Gabi, a Girl in Pieces (2017 Reading Book #80)

I LOVED this book. Gabi is such a lovable character. I love her spunk and heart. I found many of her coming of age concerns to feel true to what I worried and wondered about as a teen. It was a really interesting to learn about the Mexican-American culture and … Continue reading

Totally Unexpected in the Best Way: Aimee Bender’s The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake (2017 Reading Book #79)

This book was so surprising and not like anything I’ve read before. I loved the narrative voice; it reminded me of Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven. It was unexpectedly creepy in some parts, especially with what we learn about the brother. That aspect of the novel reminded me of Ransom … Continue reading

A Little Beyond My Comprehension: Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee (2017 Reading Book #78)

This work was a really interesting combination of elements and forms. It almost seems to push past poetry into some greater piece of art. I’m always fascinated by what we categorize as poetry and the variety that exists within that genre. This is definitely a work that pushes boundaries and previously … Continue reading