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Booky

Gettin' booky with it.

Currently reading

White Oleander
Janet Fitch
Waterglass
Jeffery Donaldson
The Stand
Stephen King

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks - Rebecca Skloot "She's the most important person in the world and her family living in poverty. If our mother is so important to science, why can't we get health insurance?"

Both fascinating and enraging.

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail - Cheryl Strayed Beautifully written, honest, and heart wrenching.

The candor with which Strayed chronicles her experience of loss and grief is at times ugly and unflattering. But even though my life is drastically different from the one that she narrates, I see a lot of myself in her. Reading this memoir was a humbling experience. She makes me believe that maybe I can be wild and brave too.

Spinning Silver

Spinning Silver - Naomi Novik I love this woman. Please keep writing magical books for me to love.

East of Eden

East of Eden - John Steinbeck I want people like Samuel Hamilton and Lee in my life. I know that I'll return to this book just to hang out with them again.

His Majesty's Dragon (Temeraire)

His Majesty's Dragon (Temeraire) - Naomi Novik Dragons!
Dragon love

The Child Thief

The Child Thief - Brom World building is where this novel is at its strongest. It was very atmospheric, and the descriptions of Avalon were beautiful and captivating.

I didn't love this novel for a few reasons:
- The novel just felt gory for the sake of being gory, and I frequently skimmed through the long action scenes.
- The ending felt really abrupt and unsatisfying.
- I also didn't find the novel's characterization of women to be very kind (lots of unflattering physical descriptions of older women's breasts, for example). It was almost enough at the beginning that I abandoned the novel altogether.

I'm glad I stuck it out, because some of the characters were really intriguing. Sekeu, the witch and her children, Cricket, and Lady Modron were standouts. I find it really interesting that the best characters were women and girls, and at the same time the writing is incredibly harsh towards mortal women in the real world. Not sure what that means.

And while I found this novel a bit too gory for my tastes, I appreciated the way that it stripped Peter Pan down from its lyrical prose and exposed the darkness underneath.

Beartown

Beartown - Fredrik Backman "The easiest way to unite a group isn't through love, because love is hard. It makes demands. Hate is simple. So the first thing that happens in a conflict is that we choose a side, because that's easier than holding two thoughts in our heads at the same time. The second thing that happens is that we seek out facts that confirm what we want to believe - comforting facts, ones that permit life to go on as normal."

Cruel Beauty

Cruel Beauty - Rosamund Hodge If you're looking for a delicious, wicked anti-villain in a romance plot, look no further. This was pure book candy, and I ate it up.

Swamp Thing, Vol. 1: Saga of the Swamp Thing

Swamp Thing, Vol. 1: Saga of the Swamp Thing - John Totleben, Stephen R. Bissette, Alan Moore 3.5 stars. 5 stars for chapters 1 and 2. The rest of this volume really fell flat in comparison. The first 2 chapters were so good, though, that I can't give this volume less than 4 stars.

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 5: Super Famous

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 5: Super Famous - Nico Leon, G. Willow Wilson, Cliff Chiang, Takeshi Miyazawa, Adrian Alphona Yes! Definitely the series's best installment so far. 4.5 stars

The Green Mile

The Green Mile - Stephen King 4.5 stars. 😭

Fangirl

Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell 4.5 stars

I can't believe how much I identified with this protagonist. I swear, I'm Cath. Never have I felt the desire to protect a character so much from the meanness in the world.

Some reviewers found this book's plot too simple. Some found themselves distant from Cath and the fictional world she writes within. I had the opposite reaction. For me, this was an emotionally charged read. Yes, it was often cheesy, and the Harry Potter references didn't always work (the text mentions Harry at one point, even though Simon Snow IS Harry in this universe), but I really felt like I was transported into the mind of my younger self.

Frankly, I'm just happy to not read another quirky romance where characters are quirky for quirkiness sake (a point that Rowell makes several times throughout the text - no old Volvos or cigarette-stained fingers here! Thank god). These characters were simple, but they felt real.

I didn't get on the Eleanor and Park train, but holy smokes, Fangirl resonated with me.

V for Vendetta

V for Vendetta - David Lloyd, Alan Moore I've been on a spree of fantastic graphic novels for the past few months. I guess it had to end sometime.

I loved Watchmen. While I took issue with Moore's treatment of women in that work, I also found it to be gripping, subversive, and smart storytelling. I was willing to overlook that lapse in narrative judgement and delve into more of Moore's work. I was intrigued by his crazy beard and anarchist attitude.

Well, call my curiosity satisfied. I could not ignore the misogyny in V for Vendetta. The novel has a philosophical and political tone, with lots of obscure puns and Yeats quotes, but under that guise is a deep distrust and dislike for women. The novel's treatment of Evey Hammond, the protagonist, for example, is abhorrent. V, the terrorist hero, kidnaps, sexually assaults, and tortures Evey in order to groom her as his protege. And he does it for "love." She passively remains in captivity, and then becomes thankful for her torture-induced "awakening" into "freedom." There's also a weird scene where V slut shames a statue.

Ugh.

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 2: Generation Why

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 2: Generation Why - Jacob Wyatt, G. Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona This volume started off with a really strong first chapter. It was hilarious and campy.

I was much less impressed with the rest of the volume, however. I went from enjoying the absurdism of the universe to cringing at the plot.

Basically: teenagers are being used by the villain as batteries, and this is explained to be a metaphor for how older generations think teenagers are parasites who are constantly on their smartphones.

3.5 stars for crocodiles with guns on their heads, a cockatiel villain, and Wolverine.

Guards! Guards!

Guards! Guards! - Terry Pratchett Dragons with indigestion, a man named Carrot, and a dysfunctional secret society. This novel is a lot of fun, and turns the fantasy genre on its head.

Unfortunately, it doesn't go much deeper than that, and I never connected with any of the characters (besides Errol, the pet dragon. But that's a given.)

Some Girls Are

Some Girls Are - Courtney Summers Mean Girls, if the Plastics were actual violent psychopaths.