Monday, January 26, 2015

Really Short Reviews

I've read 5 books since my last post and I REALLY want to write about them all but it's getting to the point now where if I don't just do really short reviews, I'm not going to write about them at that's exactly what you're gonna get....really short reviews. Here's why you should read all of these books!

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed - I fell head over heels in love with Cheryl Strayed after reading Wild and now, after reading Tiny Beautiful Things, I'll just call her my own personal life coach. This book collects some of her columns from her advice column, Dear Sugar, and it's heart-achingly beautiful and wise. You could have never experienced anything that she writes about in this book and come away with a new set of eyes to see the world, but chances are some of this will hit home. To say that nearly every page is quotable feels a little cliche, but that's how beautiful her writing is. This is a book I'll carry with me for a long, long time.

Something Like Winter by Jay Bell - I am so obsessed with this series!!! It really took me by surprise how much I'm loving it. Something Like Winter tells the events of Something Like Summer from the viewpoint of Tim, while also giving us Tim's story outside of the first book. What I love most about Bell's writing is the authenticity of navigating the world as a gay teen, trying to figure out your place in it and transitioning into the world of adulthood becoming comfortable in your skin...or trying to at least. These books are a gift to teens and adults alike.
The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly by Sun-mi Hwang - Oh this little story. So sweet, so gentle, so heartwarming and heartbreaking. The tale of a laying hen who dreams of hatching her own eggs and becoming a mother and getting that wish under very unusual circumstances. I've never been a parent, but I've been on the opposite side of that equation and this story just pulled at my heartstrings. I love stories that use the lives of other animals as a metaphor for something greater and this one does it beautifully with gorgeous illustrations throughout.

Honoring Grief by Alexandra Kennedy - I wanted a good book on grief for
work. I work as a counselor and I'm always looking to learn more myself. I took quite a bit for myself in this little book. This book isn't written just for those who have experienced death, but those grieving any sort of loss...a relationship, a job ending, a major life change...anything that leaves you suddenly having to redefine your world. She gives wonderful, quiet advice on how to truly honor the grief we feel when we have to redefine our worlds instead of rushing through it and leaving business undealt with. It's a book I'll use and recommend quite often!

Ms. Marvel Vol. 1 by G. Willow Wilson - OMG thank you Marvel for publishing this!!!!! What a refreshing comic this was coming from one of the big comic publishing houses. So often our heroines are white, tall, scantily clad, big breasted, long haired women whose looks precede their intelligence and abilities...the latter half of that sentence being the troublesome part. There's nothing inherently wrong with being white, tall, big breasted, long haired or scantily clad....but it's when writers choose to combine those things and make that the feature story of a character that it truly becomes a problem. I am so proud of Marvel, first of all for giving this story to G. Willow Wilson, a Muslim woman, to write; and secondly, for making Ms. Marvel a young Muslim woman herself who ultimately rejects those stereotypes and chooses to embrace herself as Ms. Marvel. And no, it's not just gimmicky...the story itself is fantastic and I cannot WAIT for volume 2 in March!!


Debi said...

Well, just look at you Mr. Reading Machine! :) And the bestest part of all is that you're so loving what you're reading! And I'm so loving that you blogged!!! :)

Carole McDonnell said...

I love, love, love!!! The Hen who wished she could fly! What a sweet good book!

Kailana said...

You are doing an awesome job with the good books this year!

Beth F said...

I Must Must Must get to Ms Marvel. I don't know why I haven't read it yet. March will be here quickly.

Anonymous said...

Did you see that some people in SF (I believe) graffiti-ed over some anti-Islam advertising on public transportation with pictures of Ms. Marvel? That made me so happy.

DesLily said...

wow.. you have been enjoying some books! I love when we get on a "good streak" of books!!


Trish said...

So many great things here! And of course Tiny Beautiful Things. I have so much love for that one. Glad you found it worthwhile, too.