Review: The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

22752127The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: March 8th, 2016
Publisher: Tundra Books
Point of View: 3rd Person & Alternative
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing:Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Friendship, Coming of Age, Family

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BLURB:

Dill has had to wrestle with vipers his whole life at home, as the only son of a Pentecostal minister who urges him to handle poisonous rattlesnakes, and at school, where he faces down bullies who target him for his father’s extreme faith and very public fall from grace.

The only antidote to all this venom is his friendship with fellow outcasts Travis and Lydia. But as they are starting their senior year, Dill feels the coils of his future tightening around him. Dill’s only escapes are his music and his secret feelings for Lydia neither of which he is brave enough to share. Graduation feels more like an ending to Dill than a beginning. But even before then, he must cope with another ending one that will rock his life to the core. Continue reading

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Review: Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman by Lindy West

29340182Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman by Lindy West

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group Canada
Publication Date: May 17th, 2016
Publisher: Hachette
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: NonFiction, Memoir, Feminism, Body Image, Sexuality

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BLURB:

Coming of age in a culture that demands women be as small, quiet, and compliant as possible–like a porcelain dove that will also have sex with you–writer and humorist Lindy West quickly discovered that she was anything but.

From a painfully shy childhood in which she tried, unsuccessfully, to hide her big body and even bigger opinions; to her public war with stand-up comedians over rape jokes; to her struggle to convince herself, and then the world, that fat people have value; to her accidental activism and never-ending battle royale with Internet trolls, Lindy narrates her life with a blend of humor and pathos that manages to make a trip to the abortion clinic funny and wring tears out of a story about diarrhea.

With inimitable good humor, vulnerability, and boundless charm, Lindy boldly shares how to survive in a world where not all stories are created equal and not all bodies are treated with equal respect, and how to weather hatred, loneliness, harassment, and loss–and walk away laughing. Shrill provocatively dissects what it means to become self-aware the hard way, to go from wanting to be silent and invisible to earning a living defending the silenced in all caps. Continue reading