The Bookish Community Isn’t Too Sensitive:A Discussion

img_4188

So I’ve seen a lot of people complaining on Twitter, Tumblr and even WordPress about how the bookish community is “too sensitive.”so today I’d thought I just talk a little bit about it, and what my thoughts are because why not.

 

For the past couple of weeks and maybe even months, I have seen countless people complaining about how they feel attacked and how they’re being bullied because of the books they read and how they don’t feel like they can’t express their opinions properly. I disagree with  these statements on so many levels and I feel as though a lot of these are really unfounded  and not at all based on facts.

 

The first thing I’d like to address is the fact that people feel as though reading is no longer a fun experience and that they can’t enjoy a book without the fear of being judged. No one is asking you to not enjoy certain  books, everyone has their problematic faves. Everyone reads books that they know are bad but they still love. No one is telling you to stop enjoying those books. While you can enjoy these books, you also have to acknowledge the fact that the books that you enjoy have problematic aspects in them. You can like  something problematic, but what you can’t do is ignore the problematic aspects. Maybe consider not recommending  it to people, or supporting it quietly.  If you’re supporting a book that is more problematic more than a book that isn’t, then there’s a problem. At the end of the day, no one can stop  you from enjoying things that are deemed problematic, but you also have to realize that your voice does matter, and you may be persuading people to read one book when they could be reading a better and less problematic one.

A lot of people are really scared of being called out, and while I get it, I also think that you need to move past it when it does occur to you because it’s not a big deal. From what I’ve seen, noone is immediately going to attack you, they may politely tell you that what you’re reading is problematic and at that  point you just apologize.No one expects you to know every single book that is problematic, but once someone calls you out on it,try to change the way you see that book, and at least mention the problems when talking about the book.Everyone is capable of change. What’s not okay is ignoring what the person has said, and not even acknowledging them. There’s no shame in making mistakes but there’s plenty of shame in ignoring those mistakes.

I’ve also seen a lot of people say that too many books are being deemed problematic and that littlest of sentences  can make a book unreadable. Honestly at this point, it’s lazy  and prejudice writing to write even one small sentence that could be deemed as problematic. It isn’t that hard to avoid offensive phrasing if you care about the feelings of  the marginalized.If marginalized people are hurt, isn’t that enough reason. They have been oppressed for so long, they don’t need to see such offensive language or plotpoints in fiction as well.Writing one bad sentence doesn’t make you a bad person  but you can’t get all up in arms when people do mention it. Words do hurt, even  if it’s 10 words out of 70k. A good example of  an author taking criticism well is Becky Albertalli. In her debut novel, one of her characters said someone that was really offensive to lesbians. When people told her about how it hurt them, she apologized and in her next book she hired sensitivity readers to make sure that mistake wasn’t repeated.I feel as though this is less about people being sensitive as it is about marginalized people being sensitive. If someone white was to complain about some small little issue that bothered them no one would care,  they only care when people should actually be sensitive about the issue.It all comes down to the fact that  a lot of people still don’t want to hear marginalized people’s opinion.

Lastly I just wanted to commented about a fact that I’ve noticed quite frequently specifically concerning PoC speaking about these issues. PoC are expected to be the 100% polite while addressing these concerns, and the minute they use a little bit of snark, they’re deemed as unworthy of being listened to.If they want to be listened to they have to be completely polite, while white people can be so godamn rude and they’re actually praised for being “honest”. It’s not fair and people  need to check themselves when they do this. You may claim to not be racist, but when you call out PoC but you don’t call out white people, you are racist.

So What do you think?Feel Free to leave any comments or opinions you have down below

Things I’d Like To See More in Books

So today I thought I’d do a post talking about what type of things I like to see more of in books,these are all related to diverse books because while there are some great books out there, there are some things I’d love to see more of.

  1. More Jewish Characters

I’m Jewish and I really really want to see more books about Jewish characters that aren’t set during the Holocaust. I’d love to see books about non-practising Jews or practising Jews. It would honestly make me so happy to read somebody like me.

2.Diverse Historical Fiction

I love Historical Fiction with a burning passion but it’s pretty white and straight. I’d really love more books like Book of Negroes or The Paying Guests. I am so excited for the Gentleman’s Guide To Vice and Virtue  and I really hope that more books like it will come out.

3. Diverse ChickLit

I absolutely love Chicklit, and basically Sophie Kinsella is a genius who has me in tears from laughing. I’d love a Sophie Kinsella style book but with lesbians or PoC characters. It would honestly make a chicklit a thousand  times better.

4.Cute Diverse Middle Grade

Honestly I would probably die of cuteness if I ever read a LGBT+  Middle Grade novel and while I don’t often  read middle grade, I would definitely reach for it more if it had more Diverse Characters.

5.More Anxious Characters

Honestly I’d love to see more character of all different types of mental illnesses but this one is more special to me as I have anxiety.I’ve read some books with anxious characters but none that have really resonated me. I’d just love more books portraying different anxious characters.

6.More Ace/Aro Spectrum Characters

This is probably the area of the LGBT community that has been written about the least. I know there are more books that are being published about this, but I honestly kind of want  a million books featuring Ace characters. I mean there are as many asexuals as there are redheads so if virtually every book can have a redhead I think we can have a few aces.

What do you want to see more of? Do you know of any books like these?

The Cruelty by Scott Bergstrom Book Review

img_4188

29102898

Goodreads Summary:When her diplomat father is kidnapped and the U.S. Government is unable to help, 17 year-old Gwendolyn Bloom sets off across the sordid underbelly of Europe to rescue him. Following the only lead she has—the name of a Palestinian informer living in France—she plunges into a brutal world of arms smuggling and human trafficking. As she journeys from the slums of Paris, to the nightclubs of Berlin, to the heart of the most feared crime family in Prague, Gwendolyn discovers that to survive in this new world she must become every bit as cruel as the men she’s hunting.

My Rating:2.5/5 Stars

Disclaimer:I received a copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.

Plot:

I requested this book from the publisher without realizing what this book was. If any of you are on twitter, you may remember the hashtag that was going around like a year and a half ago #morallycomplicatedYA after the author of a certain book said that his book was much more morally complicated than any other Young Adult book.This is that book. It is so arrogant to say that you’re YA novel is so much better than any other ones. You can’t just belittle your target audience.So while I tried to be objective while reading this, it’s really hard to when the author claims that his book is so much better than everybody else’s

So the Cruelty is about  Gwendolyn Bloom who is the daughter of a diplomat, one day on a visit to Paris, he goes missing. Gwendolyn then takes upon herself to find him, and goes from Paris,to Berlin, to Prague, in search for some answers. The Cruelty is a very fast paced, interesting novel filled with an intriguing plot that kept me turning the pages. While I did like the premise, a lot of things were lacking.  Their was this weird random romance that was super insta-lovey that made like no sense whatsoever. While I’ve never read a book with this exact plot, The Cruelty is anything special. It utilizes a lot of clichés and a lot of the time it’s really weak. You can really tell that the author was trying very hard to get that  “morally complicated” vibe down, but it failed very hard. There was also some really weird ass descriptions,  one of them was like “his skin glowed as if there was a lantern inside his chest.” I’m not even kidding.

Characters

My main problem with this book was Gwendolyn. The book starts off in her classroom where they’re reading some classic novel, and of course she’s already read it,not only that but she read in its native tongue. She then proceeds to swear at a some girl in french for calling her off on her pretentiousness. She’s described as noone knowing where she’s from,because she looks like so many ethnicities which is just such a copout. Why couldn’t she be a person of color?How on earth do you look like everyone? That’s not even possible.  Gwendolyn is so high and above herself and I feel as though I’ve read a million books with characters like her. Her character isn’t any special,and frankly it’s kind of really annoying, and she’s not an interesting thing to read about.

Honestly this book is really hard to review, because while it was enjoyable and while it did have its merits,I’ve read a million YA books that are better.I don’t think this white guy  deserved to get a six figure deal, while there are marginalized people who can’t get their book published. I don’t think this book will be as successful as predicted.

A Couple of Books I Really Don’t Like

So for the past couple of weeks,I’ve been having a lot of trouble getting into the books I was reading, which is why I haven’t really posted  anything.So today I decided to write a post talking about some books which I really don’t like. Because while it’s fun to write about books you do like, it’s even funner to write about books you don’t.

1.Thirteen Reasons Why by  Jay Asher

This book is just so overrated and problematic and just a horrible portrayal of  depression.The problem with Asher’s book is that they’re so easy to read so you fly through it but at the end you’re just like why did I read this? The reasons why Hanna Baker  killed herself are so clear and pinpointed which is such an unrealistic portrayal of life.It’s never that easy to pinpoint. Honestly this book is so frustrating and I hate that this is so popular.

2.Made You Up by Francesca Zappia

This is another book where the portrayal of mental of illness is so bad. The girl is schizophrenia but it’s such a stereotypical portrayal of the illness and you can really tell that there wasn’t that much research put into it.plus it was super confusing and made no sense. I wrote a review of this on tumblr if you’re interested.

3.Going Bovine by Libba Bray

I love Libba Bray’s Gemma Doyle Trilogy and I love The Diviners, but this book was so weird and I don’t even know how to describe it. I honestly felt like I was reading something that someone wrote while high because it just was that weird. While there was some redeeming aspects, the majority of the book was just plain bad and weird. This book really wasn’t for me.

4.The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melissa Salisbury.

I honestly forgot about this book but I was looking through my books to see what books I didn’t like  and I saw this. From what I remember this book was not executed well at all and was one of those cases where it could have been really good but it wasn’t. Also there was a really horrible love triangle so yeah.

 

5.I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson.

This book was such a disappointment. The Sky is Everywhere is an amazing book but this was so not good. It was trying so hard to be lyrical and deep and it just wasn’t. I think this book was definitely a case of “it’s not you, it’s me.”  but I was still very disappointed and very underwhelmed.

What are some books you really don’t like?

Hannah Recommends:Diverse Books to read for Valentines day

img_4188-2

So Valentine’s  day is right around the corner and while I could give two shits about it, I do want to recommend some awesome diverse books to read because a lot of lists are missing some great books.

1. Aristotle and Dante Discovers the Secrets of The Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

Okay if you haven’t read this book, you seriously need to. It’s amazing and beautiful and just so well written and it’s everything you can want in a book. Ari and Dante are the most precious boys on the planet and I can’t wait for the sequel.

2.To All The Boys I’ve Loved  Before by Jenny Han

This book is really cute and the perfect contemporary and I really need to get on to reading the second book. The MC is Korean-American and she is just the purest cinnamon roll ever. Also the covers for this series are gorgeous so there’s no excuse to not read it.

3. Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

Okay so this book  doesn’t have any romance at all but it’s too good to not be mentioned. It has one of the best platonic friendships that I’ve ever read, and the MC is bi-racial and bi, and there’s a demi-sexual character and it’s just perfection. Alice Oseman writes characters flawlessly and if you haven’t picked up one of her books, I highly recommend that you do.

4.The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

I always forget about this book, I don’t know why because it’s amazing. The writing is lyrical, the setting is wonderful, the characters are perfect. It’s a really great summer read and I highly recommend it.

5.Everything Leads to You by Nina Lacour.

The book is amazing. It’s adorable, it’s atmospheric and just really well written. Nina Lacour is an amazing author, and I highly recommend this book if you’re looking for a great book  about lesbians, and movies. Plus this book kind of reminds me of the Nancy Drew movie which is great.

6.Ask The Passengers by A.S King

This is one of my favorite books, I just really love it, and I can really relate to it. It’s a great book  about figuring out who you are and trying to find your place in the world, which is combined with some really awesome magical realism. It’s  a book that really resonates me and one that I highly recommend.

So there are six books that I really love and that are great cute books.  I know I haven’t read that many but I hope to change that this year and I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll get some really  great diverse contemporary that I requested from the publisher.

What are your favorite diverse books perfect for valentines day?

Two Faces

As Ali backed out of her parking space at Walgreen’s, she tried to focus her entire attention on the road  instead of the bag next to her. She told herself that she could wait ten minutes to get home, but there was a big difference between what she could do and what she wanted to do. Her fingers tingled, as she strongly gripped the steering wheel, trying to resist the urge to open her pill bottle. She told herself that one pill wouldn’t hurt, though she knew that one pill would turn into two, then three and then by the fourth one she usually lost count. Her psychiatrist was willing to look the other way, as he prescribed bottle after bottle, as long as she paid. Her father didn’t seem to notice the small bits of money withdrawn from her college fund, but then again he was more worried about the past than his daughter’s future.

 

Her psychiatrist wasn’t much help, although he kept on giving her words of wisdom, words that Ali would rather do without. He wanted to talk to her about her addiction, which was rather ironic seeing as he was the one who enabled it. He said that there was a difference between needing and wanting the pills, and that Ali didn’t need them, she wanted them. But that was where he was wrong, it wasn’t a question of needing or wanting them, it was the strong desire to feel normal.

 

She used to tell herself that she was ordinary, that her existence was one that

was lived by many, she let go of that illusion when she found her mother in the barn that night. There was nothing normal about finding your mother surrounded by pieces of a broken glass, insisting that the lady inside the mirror was going to kill her. There was nothing normal about being called out of her SATS because her mother had been found wandering around the forest wielding a knife. There was nothing normal about a young girl of 16 being asked by her father to go find his wife, because he was too scared to find her himself. Nothing normal about finding your mother with a gun to her temple, insisting that the voices told her to do it. Ali thought that if she took the pills she might be able to escape the insanity that her mother had suffered from, but it turned out it only created another reminder that she was anything but normal.

 

Ali focused her attention back on the road, surprised to see that she wasn’t going home, but towards the barn house. She screeched her car to a halt, only to realize that the road was too narrow for her to turn around. Ali continued driving, vaguely remembering a driveway somewhere near the barn house. She decided to really focus her attention on the road, as the only light to guide her way were the weak headlights of her car. Ali breathed in deeply, trying to suppress the memories that were resurfacing as she approached the barn house. She jumped, thinking that she had heard the sound of a gunshot only to realize that it was all in her mind. Taking another deep breath, she moved steadily along. She could see the driveway up ahead, and prepared herself to turn, but then stopped suddenly once again, as a figure darted towards her. Ali couldn’t see the front of the figure, but there was something about the back that made Ali study the figure more closely. She noticed long hair hanging loosely against the silhouette’s back.Ali studied them more closely wondering if she knew them.Just as she was about to get out of her car, the person slowly turned around to reveal a face  of a girl that Ali knew all too well. From the slant of her head, to the shape of her nose, down to the very last freckle, this girl was identical to her. This girl was her.

 

   Okay since I can’t make a decision to save my life, I figured I’d ask my followers which story they prefer. We have to  hand in a short story, for English Class and I kind of like this one but I kind of don’t cause I wrote it like 2 years ago, the other option i  have is this one, and I love this one but like idk if I want to hand it in? So which ones do you guys prefer?

The Golden Son by Shilpi Somaya Gowda Book Review

img_4188

33586211

Goodreads Summary:The first of his family to go to college, Anil Patel, the golden son, carries the weight of tradition and his family’s expectations when he leaves his tiny Indian village to begin a medical residency in Dallas, Texas, at one of the busiest and most competitive hospitals in America. When his father dies, Anil becomes the de facto head of the Patel household and inherits the mantle of arbiter for all of the village’s disputes. But he is uneasy with the custom, uncertain that he has the wisdom and courage demonstrated by his father and grandfather. His doubts are compounded by the difficulties he discovers in adjusting to a new culture and a new job, challenges that will shake his confidence in himself and his abilities.

Back home in India, Anil’s closest childhood friend, Leena, struggles to adapt to her demanding new husband and relatives. Arranged by her parents, the marriage shatters Leena’s romantic hopes and eventually forces her to make a desperate choice that will hold drastic repercussions for herself and her family. Though Anil and Leena struggle to come to terms with their identities thousands of miles apart, their lives eventually intersect once more—changing them both and the people they love forever.

My Rating:4/5 Stars

My Thoughts:

 Plot:

The Golden Son follows the perspective of two Indian people: Anil and Leena. Anil is the first person to leave his village and has gone to Dallas where he begins a medical residency at  a large hospital. Leena is one of Anil’s childhood friends, and enters a marriage that later shatters into pieces. This book follows these two characters as they suffer through many trials and tribulations both in America and America.

While this book isn’t anything special,it’s one that I wish I read more of.Books like these are so important because they discuss a world that isn’t very widely recognized. Books need more non-western settings. This book discussed so many interesting themes from the difficulties of marriage in India to racial injustices in America.We need more #ownvoices books that are set in non-western settings that talk about the different types of lives.I love reading books with Non-Western settings. I love reading about the culture, the food, the people. It’s so interesting to me, much more interesting than reading some boring ass adult book about some suburban white mom.These are the type of books I want to read all the time, especially when reading Adult books. For that aspect alone, this book is amazing.

Characters

Honestly the characters in this book were precious cinnamon rolls and I loved them so much and want to protect them from all evil. Both Anil and Leena suffered so much in this book  but despite that they came out stronger.I think the hardest parts to read were from Leena’s perspective, it was very difficult for me to  see her suffer through such a horrible marriage and for her to live through so many hardships. It was also very hard for me to see Anil go through so much to become a doctor, and how hard he had to work. This book really proved to me that being a doctor isn’t easy. Another thing that I loved about this book were Anil’s roomates. They were so funny and nice, and just really great friends for him to have.Something really bad happened to one of the characters,but I’m glad they pulled through it. One thing I would’ve liked to have more of is a little bit more of a relationship between Leena and Anil. I liked what I liked but would have liked to see more of their friendship.

What’s your Favorite Non-Western book?

To Deny Diversity is to Deny the World we Live in

l honestly don’t expect anyone to read it since it’s not the usual length of a blog post but I wrote this essay for school and have decided to post it here for archival purposes.

 

The We Need Diverse Books campaign defines diverse books  as all diverse experiences, including  LGBTIA, people of color, Native, gender diversity, people with disabilities, and ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities. This campaign started in 2014 when authors Ellen Oh and Malinda Lo expressed displeasure in response to an all white,male panel at a book convention. Their conversation sparked the interest of many authors,readers and publishers who all agreed with the sentiment that the Young Adult publishing industry was very homogeneous. Since then many people have advocated this problem by promoting diverse books, authors and even writing their own books. Diversity in Young Adult Literature  is important because it offers a wider perspective of the world,it destigmatizes negative stereotypes  and provides marginalized youth with an accurate reflection of their life.

If  we look at minority groups solely in terms of population,Caucasians are really the minority in our world. Asia alone comprises over 60% of the world’s population, so to have so many book characters being portrayed as white is not only racist but also unrealistic. Fiction, no matter what the genre, is a reflection of our society. Even if one is  writing a fantasy or science-fiction novel,there’s always going to be elements of our society in that book. People of color make up 37% of the population in the United States and yet the number of books being written about them has been hovering at around 10% since 1994. In excluding diverse characters and narratives from one’s story, one is saying that diverse people aren’t a part of the way they view the world.  Literature can contribute to a change in mindset and ideology and can educate youth on issues that they wouldn’t otherwise learn about in school but if the books they read are solely about white,straight,able bodied individuals their perspective of the world will never grow. The world isn’t only limited to North America, and it’s important to realize that the large majority of the world’s population doesn’t  live in the western world. Most people in the world are poor and  they’re also not white. To focus most of fiction on the Unites States is boring and unrelatable.Only 325 million people live in the United States,and to have the vast majority of fictional books set in the States is very american-centric. There are so many perspectives of the world that aren’t always talked about in school and the marginalized are always excluded from historical narratives. Fiction is the perfect outlet for people to write the untold stories of the underrepresented. Our society is very prejudice and if youth were offered a wider perspective of our world,it could possibly resolve the deep rooted bias that so many people have when thinking of minorities.

The problem with certain portrayals of diverse characters is that they perpetuate negative stereotypes. Examples of this are the sassy black women, or the gay best friend. Characters like these are merely caricatures and are not at all fleshed out compared to the main characters.Not all representation is good representation and for youth to see these stereotypes again and again is harmful and doesn’t do any good. A good example of this is the recent publication of popular Young Adult novel “Carve The Mark” by Veronica Roth. PoC (people of color) reviewers got a hand of the book before publication and realized that the book utilized the dark skinned aggressor trope. What this trope is are dark-skinned “savages” serving as the enemy to the main characters.This trope is a frequent occurrence and is oftentimes the only portrayal that one really sees of native americans in fiction.While many people have complained about this book,the author has yet to apologizes for the harmful stereotypes that are in her book. This case illustrates that while a lot of authors are willing to learn from their mistakes, other are okay with hurting their marginalized audience with insensitive writing. Words can hurt and while being a teenager is very hard, it’s even harder to be a marginalized teenager. For them to consistently read inaccurate portrayal of themselves is harmful. Marginalized people aren’t their stereotypes, they are people who live a variety of lives and to reduce them to an idea of a person is extremely disrespectful and shows the author’s true perspective of the world. There are so many issues that have a huge stigma surrounding it.An example of such an issue is mental illness. In a lot of fictional stories,mental illness is not always accurately portrayed. The illness is oftentimes downplayed and symptoms are not always accurate. While depression and anxiety is represented quite a bit in fiction,mental illnesses like schizophrenia and DID(dissociative identity disorder) are oftentimes demonized and characters with these mental illnesses are the murderers or enemies of the story. By dismantling such negative stereotypes, books will be less harmful to marginalized youth and much more enjoyable.

A way to avoid having negative stereotypes in books is for either the author to hire  a sensitivity reader or for publishers to publish more #ownvoices book. A sensitivity reader is someone who reads over a manuscript in search of anything offensive.This reader will be a part of the group of marginalization that the author is writing about.An author may not always intend to be prejudiced against these marginalization groups, so these sensitivity readers will make sure that there are no negative stereotypes or microaggressions..Such readers should be  part of every publication process,as essential as an editor.This would prove to marginalized youth that the publication industry cares about the interest of these teens.

Another way for the publication industry to ensure that the books they are publishing do not contain harmful stereotypes is for them to  purposely seek #ownvoices books.#Ownvoices is a hashtag created by author Corinne Duyvis to promote books about diverse characters written by authors who are a part of that diverse group. Think of it this way, if a murder happened and there are  two people:a witness and someone who heard about the murder on the news, The police will obviously ask for the witness’ version of the story. The same goes for writing diverse books. Someone who has lived through these experiences firsthand will have a better hold on the topic. They won’t resort to using negative stereotypes and they’ll treat their characters as equally as any of their other ones. Marginalized people have always been denied the right to tell their story,and they’ll always been excluded. In publishing #ownvoices authors we’re finally giving a voice to the people who have never gotten the chance to be heard.

If a straight,white,neuro-typical,able-bodied teen was to go to their local bookstore,go to the Young Adult section and pick up a random book chances are that that book will contain someone who looks like them.That isn’t the case for marginalized youth. Books are a way of seeking asylum from the oftentimes chaotic world.Teens will read when they have nowhere else to turn to.For a teen to see themselves in literature is extremely important, especially when that teen feels like an outcast. Marginalized youth need more “mirror books”,books that accurately reflect their life and struggles and they need to have characters who are like them.As Jenny Han acurrately describes it ”Everybody wants to feel like their story is worth being told. Everybody wants to be the hero of their own story.”Marginalized teens deserve to have their story told, they deserve to have stories written about them. There should not only  be books about the struggles of minority youth but just books about these youth going on a quest,solving a mystery or just falling in love. A trope that is oftentimes utilized in both books and T.V, is the death of marginalized people to further the non-marginalized characters. Non-minorities shouldn’t be able to thrive off of the suffering of minorities. When these teens suffer so much, it’s important for them to be able to turn to Fiction and seen teens like them thriving and being happy. It’s important for them to see people like them on the cover of books. Seeing teens like them inspires them to do great things, and  to even write their own stories. As Matt Le Pena put it where is the African-American Harry Potter or a Mexican Katniss?

To conclude, diversity in books offer a wider perspective of the world,aids in the destigmatization of stereotypes  and provides marginalized youth with an accurate reflection of their reality. The publishing industry needs more diverse books, and needs diverse books of all sorts. Everyone deserves the chance to see themselves in books, everyone should have their stories told. Our imagination knows no limits, and that should be the same for adding diverse characters. Teens are the pioneers of the future, and if the present is any indication of where we’re heading, the publication industry will change drastically in the next decades. Hopefully ten years from now, all books will feature diverse characters. Diversity is our world and to deny that is to ignore the society we live in.

January Wrap-Up

img_4188-5

screen-shot-2017-02-02-at-5-20-33-pm

Note: All diverse books are specified as such with an asterisks along with a specification as to how they’re diverse.

1.Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Goodreads

Rating:4/5 Stars

What I liked:  The fact that despite this book is an amalgamation of  a bunch of different books,it was very different and intriguing and kept my attention throughout the entire book.

What I disliked: It took me a long time to read , and I didn’t always feel motivated to read it, as it was very slow book at times.

2. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseni*  Set In Afghanistan and author is Afghani as well

Goodreads

My Rating 4/5 stars

What I liked: I absolutely love reading books that have non-western settings, so this book was great. I also really enjoyed the characters.

What I Disliked: It wasn’t as powerful as his other books which isn’t inherently a bad thing it just made me enjoy this one a little less than his other ones.

3. The Book of Negroes* Both Author and most of the main characters are black.

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:4/5 stars

What I liked: This book had a unique perspective, portraying something that isn’t always discussed in literature. Along with great writing, and well-developed characters, this book was great.

What I disliked: There’s nothing inherently bad about it, it just wasn’t worthy of a 5 star.

4.Factory Girl by Josanne La Valley* Set in China, though not #ownvoices.

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:4/5 Stars

What I liked:This is another story that offered a unique perspective which tugged at your heartstrings

What I Disliked:I found it be a little inauthentic due to the fact that the author was white, so it wasn’t really her place to tell it.

5.Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz* Bi,African American  and Anorexic Mc

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:5/5 stars

What I liked: The characters, the diversity, the writing and just how easy it was  to fly through it.

What I disliked: The shortness of it,it was only like 250 pages or so, which is so short and I would’ve really loved like 100 or so more pages.

6.The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

Goodreads

My Rating:3/5 Stars

What I liked:The vibe to it was really nice, it really felt as though I was watching a thriller or something like that, there was a lot of intrigue.

What I disliked: While I do enjoy thriller movies, I’m not the hugest fan of thriller books and this one really feel flat. It was boring and not that unique at all, and just wasn’t that interesting for most of the book. Plus the romance was really uneeded  and I really hated it.

7.My True Love Gave To me Edited by Stephanie Perkins * Some of the stories contain diverse characters, there’s m/m couple, a jewish Mc,a mexican Mc and an African American love interest,

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:3.5/5 Stars

What I liked: Seeing as this is a short story anthology it’s kind of hard to pinpoint what I liked but my favorite stories were the ones by Gayle Forman,Stephanie Perkins, Kiersten White and Ally Carter.

What I disliked: My least favorite stories were the ones by Holly Black and Laini Taylor, those were really weird.

8. The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:5/5 Stars

What I liked: The typical Morgan Matson feel to it: the characters, the writing, the love interest all combined to make a  really great book.

What I disliked: The lack of diversity, honestly writers  need to get their shit together and write more diversely because it’s something that’s really starting to bug me.

9. Here We Are Feminism For The Real World Edited by Kelly Jenson* A large majority of the essays  written in this book are written by marginalized people.

Goodreads

Review

My Rating:5/5 stars

What I liked:How accurate and relevant this book was, and how important and beautifully written these essays were. Everybody needs to read this.

What I disliked: Honestly nothing? There was like two essays I wasn’t the hugest fan of but asides from it was perfect

10. Golden Son  by Pierce Brown

Goodreads

What I liked: The political intrigue, the awesome characters. Also the ending was heartbreaking.

What I disliked: Yet again it was very slow and hard to get into. It’s very much a personal thing seeing as  I very rarely read sci-fi.

What Did you read this month?  Have You read any of the books I mentioned?