We have to recognize that when we feel conﬂicted and sick about our place in the world, that’s often true because our world was built to sell us things and to make us feel inadequate and needy.
But there’s a freedom in never being present enough to feel disappointment, never...more
I had a memory of reading this book, but it’s possible I just picked up enough about it through cultural references over the years to convince myself that I had. Or maybe my powers of recall are failing, because I didn’t notice any of the things that are drastically diﬀerent in the TV show version...more
I put this book on my to-read list shortly after it came out, and every so often I would notice it on my list, read the synopsis about Ariel Gore caring for her dying mother, and then I’d wonder if it was really something I wanted to read. Eventually ﬁve years later, I was looking for an ebook that I could download on my phone in a...more
Kate Day Hope
An interesting take on counterfactuals or alternate realities… If, Then follows four neighbors who begin seeing hallucinations that are actually glimpses of other possibilities in their lives. Though the concept has a lot of potential, the actuality of the novel is a bit disappointing. The damp Oregon setting is eﬀective,...more
I am writing to reach you — even if each word I put down is one word further from where you are.
Though I expected to love this book, honestly I was a little disappointed. I loved the elegiac writing that winds a story around the reality of intergenerational trauma, but I felt the ending was a...more
Celia C. Pérez
Celia is a friend, so I am biased here. But I’m pretty sure I would love her books even if I didn’t know her. After the success of her ﬁrst middle grade novel, The First Rule of Punk, she’s back with Strange Birds, embarking on new territory. Four girls in a...more
There are many compelling facets to this book, which is largely the story of a mother and two sisters who live together in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The older daughter Margot is employed at a big resort and has worked her way up, striving towards the management level, partially through her strengths in business but also in part because she learned...more
This has been a slow reading year for me, but for the most part I’ve been spending my decreased reading time with really good books, cutting out the ones I would have been pushing myself to ﬁnish or charging through disinterestedly. Quality over quantity is not a bad approach. If I were to make a top ten list at the end of this...more
I really like this book in theory, as a collection of eerie vignettes that explore diﬀerent hauntings through photos and ephemera. But while it’s enjoyably creepy, eventually the hints and suggestions of ghosts fell short for me. It makes sense in a way that the specters feel just out of reach, but the sections where the images were...more