Little Weirds – Jenny Slate

This book is weird. I’m sure you saw that coming a little—what with that title and all—but it’s good to repeat because it truly is Weird with a capital w. Not just because Jenny Slate’s writing is uncharacterizable. Something between poetry and prose, making me wonder if this was a memoir or collection of poetry. Or both? But also because of the highly sexual and tremendously unexpected imagery. The kind that makes you wonder if a human being wrote this or a half-human, half-giraffe with an addiction for chocolate poutine and a need to externalize every single one of their half-human, half-giraffe thoughts.

If your instinct tells you—shit, this review is getting really weird and I don’t think I have the stomach for it—please do exit on your left. But if you are intrigued, please proceed, continue, go ahead, have fun, enjoy your moments of imaginary bliss and disconnection from human life, in favour of papery disillusion and a not-drug-induced cheeseburger atmosphere.

You might, at some point, actually wonder what the hell I’m talking about. Who the hell is this Jenny Slate whose writing seems to have completely taken over my brain and destroyed my coherent cells and turned me into an ice cream cone collecting food from the sky. Well, you would be very right in wondering that, and certainly at times I did ask myself the same thing about Jenny Slate herself. But then my infected brain realized that to understand the incomprehensible, one must become incomprehensible in return and let our minds be attacked by the crazy.

In all seriousness, I seriously enjoyed this. It is an experiencefirst and foremost. BUT, and here’s the thing that surprised me the most, Jenny Slate had some actually meaningful and insightful things to say through the vacuum of weird thoughts. And the good thing is that, because they were so unexpected, most of them stood out like a naked Barbie doll on the cover of a book in a room full of horny teenagers (that did happen, everyone was staring, it was a real social experiment). Here is one such quote for you to admire and ponder:

I jumped out of their hands and into their mouths and I yelled EAT ME way before they even had a chance to get horny and notice me and lift me up. – page 41

You might reconsider your subscription to my blog after reading that. Really, that’s what she considers worth admiring and pondering? Okay, chill, I can’t write down the entire mind-shattering context, but really think about it before jumping off your horse. When I read that, I immediately thought of how hard I try in friendships. How desperate I am to have a meaningful connection that I don’t let anyone really miss me or want me, maybe because I’m scared that if I give them too much space, I’m also giving them too much opportunity to completely forget about me. But that’s something I’ll be discussing with my therapist.

Cheers.

(Oh, yes, and please read this book because I loved it.)

Thank you Hachette Book Group Canada for allowing me to experience Jenny Slate in exchange for what you probably wished was more comprehensible of a review, but I hope you will forgive me.

Sea Prayer – Khaled Hosseini

38664775Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: September 18th, 2018
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Recommended Age: 8+
Genres & Themes: Picture Book, Poetry, Refugee Crisis, Short Stories


BLURB:

The #1 New York Times-bestselling author of The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and And the Mountains Echoed responds to the heartbreak of the current refugee crisis with this deeply moving, beautifully illustrated short work of fiction for people of all ages, all over the world. Continue reading

5 to 1 – Holly Bodger

5 to 1 by Holly Bodger

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: May 12th, 2015
Publisher: Knopf BFYR
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Dystopian, Feminism, Freedom, Competition


BLURB:

In the year 2054, after decades of gender selection, India now has a ratio of five boys for every girl, making women an incredibly valuable commodity. Tired of marrying off their daughters to the highest bidder and determined to finally make marriage fair, the women who form the country of Koyanagar have instituted a series of tests so that every boy has the chance to win a wife. Sudasa, though, doesn’t want to be a wife, and Kiran, a boy forced to compete in the test to become her husband, has other plans as well. As the tests advance, Sudasa and Kiran thwart each other at every turn until they slowly realize that they just might want the same thing.
Continue reading

The Poet X – Elizabeth Acevedo

33294200The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Published: March 6th, 2018
Publisher: Harper Teen
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Poetry, Romance, Family Relationships, Religion, Drama, High School, Feminism


BLURB:

Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking. But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself. So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out, much less speak her words out loud. But still, she can’t stop thinking about performing her poems. Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent. Continue reading

One – Sarah Crossan

23524610One by Sarah Crossan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Borrowed
Published: 2015
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Normal/Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Poetry, Romance, Family Drama, Siblings, High School


BLURB:

Grace and Tippi. Tippi and Grace. Two sisters. Two hearts. Two dreams. Two lives. But one body. Grace and Tippi are conjoined twins, joined at the waist, defying the odds of survival for sixteen years. They share everything, and they are everything to each other. They would never imagine being apart. For them, that would be the real tragedy. But something is happening to them. Something they hoped would never happen. And Grace doesn’t want to admit it. Not even to Tippi. How long can they hide from the truth—how long before they must face the most impossible choice of their lives? Continue reading

I’ll Love You Forever – Owen Hart

34551046I’ll Love You Forever by Owen Hart

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Distributor
First Published: September 1st, 2017
Publisher: Tiger Tales
Recommended Age: 3+
Genres & Themes: Picture Books, Animals, Poetry, Love


BLURB:

Polar Bear and Cub explore the beauty of their home in the Arctic as the seasons change. Throughout the journey, Polar Bear reassures Cub that no matter what changes occur in nature-snow falling in winter, flowers blooming in spring, air warming in summer, and leaves changing color in fall-the loving bond between them will never be broken. Continue reading

Review: Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone

23341894Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group
Publication Date: June 16th 2015
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Poetry Contemporary, Swoon Romance, Mental Illness, Friendship

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide


BLURB:

If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling.

Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can’t turn off.

Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn’t help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she’d be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam’s weekly visits to her psychiatrist.

Caroline introduces Sam to Poet’s Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more “normal” than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear. Continue reading