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Stuck? Prompts for Writing ‘Positive’ Book Reviews! #1

Hello friends, I hope you are all having a fabulous day and are reading some lovely books!

Now that I’m in the thick of university, one of my biggest challenges when it comes to blogging is writing a review under pressure. Usually, it takes me two hours (two hours!) to write a review, but I’ve been aiming to write them in under an hour. One of the biggest problems I encounter when writing a review is simply not knowing what to write or how to approach a review.

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6

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #11

diversity-spotlight

Welcome to my eleventh Diversity Spotlight Thursday! This wonderful weekly blog meme was created and is hosted by Aimal at Bookshelves and Paperbacks! For more information about the meme, please read the announcement post here.

My participation in this meme is to help me with one of my reading goals: to read books with a variety of perspectives, especially ones different from my own. Every two weeks I will share with you:

  1. A diverse book you have read and enjoyed
  2. A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read
  3. A diverse book that has not yet been released

I wanted to do a theme for this week’s Diversity Spotlight – so this week’s theme is:¬†diverse science-fiction!

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40

Book Recs: Amazing Romances & Books with Ace Representation

Hello friends! I hope all of you are well.¬†‚̧

Originally, I was going to do a whole book recommendation post on amazing and well-developed romances. But¬†then, while creating the post, I realized that I don’t¬†actually like that many romance books. As someone who falls under the ace (asexual)-spectrum, it was like the stars aligned in my mind: I only like romances that have a close friendship or strong emotional connection preceding the romance – it had never occurred to me before that.

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16

Difficult Women by Roxane Gay – A collection of stories as subversive and complex as its female protagonists

The women in these stories live lives of privilege and of poverty, are in marriages both loving and haunted by past crimes or emotional blackmail. A pair of sisters, grown now, have been inseparable ever since they were abducted together as children, and must negotiate the marriage of one of them. A woman married to a twin pretends not to realize when her husband and his brother impersonate each other. A stripper putting herself through college fends off the advances of an overzealous customer. A black engineer moves to Upper Michigan for a job and faces the malign curiosity of her colleagues and the difficulty of leaving her past behind. From a girls’ fight club to a wealthy subdivision in Florida where neighbors conform, compete, and spy on each other, Gay delivers a wry, beautiful, haunting vision of modern America reminiscent of Merritt Tierce, Jamie Quatro, and Miranda July.

My biggest thanks to Hachette New Zealand, for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The more and more I think about it, the more certain I am that Difficult Women is a masterful collection of short stories.

To describe it simply,¬†Difficult Women¬†is about just that – it is a collection of twenty-one short stories that are about the so-called ‘difficult women’. Underneath that though is a nuanced and complex portrayal of women in modernity – and the images are haunting and riveting, and will inevitably sear your memory.

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24

The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig – A diverse cast of pirates, a heist, and time-travel – what’s not to love?

Nix has spent her entire life aboard her father’s ship, sailing across the centuries, across the world, across myth and imagination.

As long as her father has a map for it, he can sail to any time, any place, real or imagined: nineteenth-century China, the land from One Thousand and One Nights, a mythic version of Africa. Along the way they have found crewmates and friends, and even a disarming thief who could come to mean much more to Nix.

But the end to it all looms closer every day.

Her father is obsessed with obtaining the one map, 1868 Honolulu, that could take him back to his lost love, Nix‚Äôs mother. Even though getting it‚ÄĒand going there‚ÄĒcould erase Nix‚Äôs very existence.

For the first time, Nix is entering unknown waters.

She could find herself, find her family, find her own fantastical ability, her own epic love.

Or she could disappear.

Imagine this: time-travelling pirates, love that transcends time, a heist, a subtle narrative on American imperialism, a diversity of characters, and a story set in 1884’s Oahu of the Hawaiian Islands. The Girl From Everywhere¬†may be one of the most unique stories I have read.¬†In this story, magic and fantasy meet mythology and history to create an intricate tale about a girl whose existence is¬†in the hands of the Captain of the¬†Temptation —¬†who is also her father.

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24

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #10

diversity-spotlight

Welcome to my tenth Diversity Spotlight Thursday! This wonderful weekly blog meme was created and is hosted by Aimal at Bookshelves and Paperbacks! For more information about the meme, please read the announcement post here.

My participation in this meme is to help me with one of my reading goals: to read books with a variety of perspectives, especially ones different from my own. Every two weeks I will share with you:

  1. A diverse book you have read and enjoyed
  2. A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read
  3. A diverse book that has not yet been released

I wanted to do a theme for this week’s Diversity Spotlight – so this week’s theme is:¬†books with¬†bisexual protagonists!

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24

The Terracotta Bride by Zen Cho – An exquisite homage to love and life

terracottabride

In the tenth court of hell, spirits wealthy enough to bribe the bureaucrats of the underworld can avoid both the torments of hell and the irreversible change of reincarnation.

It’s a comfortable undeath ‚Ķ even for Siew Tsin. She didn’t choose to be married to the richest man in hell, but she’s reconciled. Until her husband brings home a new bride.

Yonghua is an artificial woman crafted from terracotta. What she is may change hell for good. Who she is will transform Siew Tsin. And as they grow closer, the mystery of Yonghua’s creation will draw Siew Tsin into a conspiracy where the stakes are eternal life ‚Äď or a very final death.

After reading Cho’s spectacular¬†Sorcerer to the Crown, I was an instant fan. I was thus inevitably drawn to¬†The Terracotta Bride –¬†a¬†fantasy short story that plunges us headfirst into the throes of the Chinese afterlife.

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