The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo

The Way You Make Me FeelThe Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is not a book to read if you’re looking something insightful and ‘timeless’ (as it might have been described on the cover), or something to learn things about people from. At least not if you’re older than 12.
It’s a simple story. As a glance on teenage life, I would even say simplified.
The protagonist is a ‘softly rebellious’ girl who is supposed to find better things to care for in life by the end of it. And that’s all there is too it.
The protagonists is also, in fact, extremely difficult to emphasize with. And not even really because of her behavior, which is very questionable as it is, but because of her language and how she expresses herself. All the ‘yeesh’ and ‘sheesh,’ and her other reactions were generally very annoying. I don’t think I could have emphasized with her no matter how old I was.
Her relationships were either all very shallow, or very shallowly described. People who were supposed to be her friends were very easily dismissed less than half-way through and it seemed very strange. She just suddenly ‘gets’ a love interests who is ‘very hot and rich’ and who cares much more about her than she about them, and that’s that.
Were we supposed to care about cultural details? Or about food? I honestly couldn’t tell.

There’s not really enough in this book to hate it, though.
If you’re looking for something very simple and light to take your mind of things, and can read shallow stories without feeling a need to question everything or get annoyed with it, then this book maybe is what you’re looking for.

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Sky in the DeepSky in the Deep by Adrienne Young

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

DNFed this, sorry. I don’t know if I’m going to come back to it when I’m feeling more tolerant and patient… (because somewhere inside I’m maybe still hoping that I’m wrong about this) but probably not.
I really like the setting, but I simply couldn’t bring myself to like what was done with it. When I saw a ‘novel in a viking-like setting with a strong female protagonist’ I thought I’d love to read it, simply because I usually love to read all things to do with winter lands and warriors.
However… First, I couldn’t really feel anything pleasant towards the first person POV and the voice of the protagonist in this. Something just felt really off to me about her and I couldn’t get into reading at all. (I believe the general opinion is that because the writing is extremely bland and boring.) I left this in my desk at work for months. Then, I saw where the story was going… and I’m sorry to say, but I really, really, really hate this current YA trend where every second book features one or more of main characters being captured and treated like slaves, or prisoners, or spies, who have to suffer through beatings and humiliation for the large part of the story. And besides, it also became obvious that this was going to feature an enemies-to-lovers trope with a bonus of him kicking her around bloody for a while. And maybe you modern kids are into stuff like that but I’m honestly not.

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The Writer on Her Work

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I read this book as part of my postgrad research (which you can tell by the number of sticky notes), but I actually have enjoyed it more for personal reasons.
I would recommend it to anyone who writes or plans to write, regardless of being male or female, because even though it does touch on a subject of being woman writer, I personally felt that the most interesting things were written on being writer in general, and dealing with yourself as a writer.
Even though you can put sex or race in front of some things, to claim or insist on some ideas, if you take them out you will realise that those ideas are true for more people than you tried to include.

Even though every essay had very interesting things to take out, I would personally recommend the “What Is It I Think I’m Doing Anyhow” by Toni Cade Barbara

 

 

On flirting:
“It brings out in me the most profound feelings of anxiety and exasperation. I was not raised to subtlety.
Why do people have to make such fuss about something so simple?
I say, “Talk to me. Tell me who you are, what you want, what you’ve never had, the story you’ve always been afraid to tell.””

“Two or Three Things I Know for Sure” by Dorothy Allison

“Two or three things I know for sure, and one of them is that no one is as hard as my uncles had to pretend to be.”

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