All Boys Aren’t Blue – George M. Johnson

39834234. sy475 All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: April 28th, 2020
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Memoir, LGBTQIA+, Family, Identity, Sexuality, Assault, Grief


REVIEW:

I feel honoured to have had the chance to read about George M. Johnson’s positive and negative experiences growing up. I also feel humbled by the fact that the author trusted us with his secrets and wanted to make this book a safe space for other people out there who may struggle with the same issues he did or want to become more educated on them. Continue reading

Strong Looks Better Naked – Khloé Kardashian

25434370
Strong Looks Better Naked by Khloé Kardashian

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Library
Published: 2015
Publisher: Regan Arts
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Self Help, Health, Love, Memoir, Growing Up, Celebrity Life, Family


REVIEW:

Khloé is the Kardashian I relate to the most and am most excited about seeing appear on the screen. She is so relatable. She’s been through so much. I loved the way she opened up to us in this book. She shares her ups and downs, her journey to a healthier, stronger, more love-filled life. Continue reading

Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive

39218350
Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive by Stephanie Land

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group Canada
Published: January 22nd, 2019
Publisher: Hachette Books
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Memoir, Social Issues, Abuse, Motherhood, Work Conditions


REVIEW:

The low average rating for this one baffles me.

Personally, I was completely consumed. I had never read something like this before. Stephanie Land opened my eyes and made me face the truth about so many issues I had never thought much about before. She also made me realize that there are ways to discuss poverty and financial issues with dignity, elegance and strength. Continue reading

Girls Need Not Apply: Field Notes from the Forces

43270067
Girls Need Not Apply: Field Notes from the Forces by Kelly S. Thompson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: August 20th, 2019
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Memoir, Military, Coming of Age, Feminism


REVIEW:

I have such mixed feelings about this memoir. I was very excited to read it because I don’t recall ever reading a memoir from someone who served in the army, let alone a woman, and because I could feel it in my bones that it would be impactful. I enjoy both light and heavy stories so I was ready for an arrow to pierce my heart. Continue reading

Save Me the Plums: My Gourmet Memoir – Ruth Reichl

41644326
Save Me the Plums: My Gourmet Memoir by Ruth Reichl

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: April 2nd, 2019
Publisher: Appetite
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Memoir, Food, Personal & Work Journey


REVIEW:

I have wanted to read Ruth Reichl for YEARS and I was going to start with another of her memoirs – Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise – because it sounded JUICY and very secret indeed. But then this one came out and I was offered a chance to review it so I jumped on the opportunity. Continue reading

Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos – Lucy Knisley

30145085
Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos by Lucy Knisley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: February 26th, 2019
Publisher: First Second Books
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Graphic Memoir, Nonfiction, Pregnancy


REVIEW:

Woah. This book feels like a GAME-CHANGER. And maybe it is, who knows, I sure don’t know many graphic novels mainly about pregnancy so this may just be one of the firsts of its kind. And maybe there will be more in the future, only time will tell. Wouldn’t that be amazing, though? Continue reading

Between Two Worlds: Lessons from the Other Side – Tyler Henry

30139140Between Two Worlds: Lessons from the Other Side by Tyler Henry

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Borrowed
Published: 2016
Publisher: Gallery Books
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Memoir, Coming of Age, Spirituality, Relationships


REVIEW:

I used to watch the TV show Ghost Whisperer with my mom when I was younger, so I’ve always kind of believed in ghosts and the afterlife. But I had never before read a nonfiction book on clairvoyance and what happens after death. This was refreshing, surprising and insightful. I was ready to hear the usual ”people die and follow the light leading to a better place,” but Tyler Henry had much more to say than that and although I hadn’t given the concept of reincarnation much thought in my daily life prior to reading this book, I’m ready to explore it further now. Continue reading

Sisters First: Stories from Our Wild and Wonderful Life

Sisters First: Stories from Our Wild and Wonderful Life by Jenna & Barbara Bush

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group Canada
Published: October 24th, 2017
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Memoir, Family, Siblings, Sisterhood, Coming of Age


REVIEW:

This is what I like to read about: Family members loving each other and caring about each other and being there for each other. It simply warms my heart. You often see ‘‘perfect’’ families in movies, and it’s true no such thing exists, but you can have glorious bonds with those you are related to, that I am sure of. Continue reading

I’m Afraid of Men – Vivek Shraya

I’m Afraid of Men by Vivek Shraya

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: August 28th, 2018
Publisher: Penguin Books Canada
Recommended Age: 15+
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Memoir, Feminism, LGBTQIA+, Gender Issues


REVIEW:

Sometimes I read 300 or more-page books and I wonder if I read anything at all. Not everything I stumble across has to make me look at the world differently or teach me over and over, but I want something memorable because it’s more much valuable than a book that provides you with the kind of instant pleasure and happiness that you’ll forget about two days later. Continue reading

I’m Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering

36204320
I’m Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering by Janelle Hanchett

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group Canada
Published: May 2018
Publisher: Hachette Books
Pacing: Normal
Recommended Age: 15/16+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Memoir, Nonfiction, Parenting, Mental Illness, Addiction


BLURB:

At 21, Janelle Hanchett embraced motherhood with the reckless self-confidence of those who have no idea what they’re getting into. Having known her child’s father for only three months, she found herself rather suddenly getting to know a newborn, husband, and wholly transformed identity. She was in love, but she was bored, directionless, and seeking too much relief in too much wine. Over time, as she searched for home in suburbia and settled life, a precarious drinking habit turned into treacherous dependence, until life became car seats and splitting hangovers, cubicles and multi-day drug binges–and finally, an inconceivable separation from her children. For ten years, Hanchett grappled with the relentless progression of addiction, bouncing from rehabs to therapists to the occasional hippie cleansing ritual on her quest for sobriety, before finding it in a way she never expected. Continue reading