the art of poetry;

the art of poetry

I was never much of a poetry girl growing up. I mean, I liked them well enough, I suppose, but they never evoked that sense of wonder or roused my emotions the way getting lost in novels did.

Until recently, that is.

Tumblr has made being exposed to different styles of poetry much easier. The first few ‘proper’ poems I had read were Shakespearean and the more classic types taught in my English Literature classes. Tumblr has taught me that poetry can be pretty much anything. From a story, to rhyming words, to a protest (of sorts), or to – whatever this is.

I have not had the chance to read Milk And Honey by Rupi Kaur, but I have read some of her poems and there are a few that have struck me. Poetry, in its essence, is about feelings.

And I have a lot of those.

It has resulted in my writing poetry. Since the beginning of the year, I have been writing quite a bit of poetry. My muses are my family. My daughter, my mother, my sisters – I’ve written poems for and about them. I’ve written poems about my faith, about my feelings on subjective topics.

Maybe someday they will resonate with someone the way they resonate with me.

Maybe someday they will inspire someone, make them fall in love with poetry, the way I have slowly begun to my own descent.

Maybe.

Poetry has gone from something I did not quite understand, though I appreciated the aesthetics of it, to something I love.

2016-04-12 11:46

review; entwined

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Entwined
by Heather Dixon

‘Come and mend your broken hearts here.

Just when Azalea should feel that everything is before her – beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing – it’s taken away. All of it. And Azalea is trapped. The Keeper understands. He’s trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. So he extends an invitation.

Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest, but there is a cost. The Keeper likes to keep things. Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late.

Review:
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SPOTLIGHT; food for thought & the Young Adult genre

We interrupt our regular schedule to bring you this post.

A friend recently linked me to this article, and I’ve had it open on my phone for a while. Just to go back to and read because the first time I read it, I realised something – I agree with most of these points.

food for thought

I mean, I love YA books. I pretty much only read YA books. Almost all the reviews on this blog are of YA books.

But when I look at the audience reading these books, we are (almost) all in our twenties or older. Or in our late teens. We read these books for escapism, for the want of the adventure or the nostalgia.

I can’t say I wouldn’t have read these books as a teenager. There are certain YA books I did read as a teenager, but as the author the article points out, the portrayal of these protagonists is, well, unrealistic.

And it made me realise something –

I mentally age up the characters of these novels.

Book has a sixteen year old protagonist who is super skilled? By mid-way through the book, I’m imagining someone who is twenty or slightly older.

The teenage protagonist is super self-sufficient and their parents seem to be non-existent? COLLEGE STUDENT AWAY FROM HOME (possibly for the first time to explain some of the things they wind up doing and/or saying).

Probably not what the author intended, but it makes it easier for me to swallow the stories when the protagonist is not unrealistically young for their actions and their character arc.

Has anybody else read that article? What were your thoughts? Am I the only one who had an epiphany upon reading that post, or am I not alone? Please tell me I’m not alone, I need to not be alone in this, heh.

2016-04-12 11:46

review; fangirl

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Fangirl
by Rainbow Rowell

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…

But for Cath, being a fan is her life — and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

Review:
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june 2017; it’s a wrap

midyear wrap up

It is the middle of the year, and so far, so good! I still refuse to do the whole stats thing, because there is not enough activity on my blog – by me or by anyone else! – for that too look anything but sad.

But on the blogging front, I am rather proud of myself! I have kept to my schedule of one discussion post per month, drafted in advance so that I have little stress. AND I have come up with a new feature that allows me some freedom too! Say hello to SPOTLIGHT, posts that can and will be posted as and when I write them! Posts that include interviews with authors! Posts that include me highlighting authors and books that are relatively unknown! Posts that include me, well, flailing would be a good term!

On the downside, I have read NO BOOKS so far this year. I have however written some poems, a short story in verse (a new thing for me!) and have been plotting out another experimental short story. Writing front, yay; reading front, nay?

For those of you interested, on the personal front, things are settling into a new equilibrium. I am now the proud mother of a little 3 month old princess, which is why I haven’t been reading. So I don’t feel too guilty. I’m too busy learning and embracing motherhood.

Sidenote: my best friend sent me a card for Mother’s Day that stated motherhood as the most terrifying hood one will ever go through. I’ve got to agree.

Back to blogging though. I’ve got the next few posts for the next few months plotted out, and I’m trying to figure out how to make this new feature I have thought of a reality so watch this space!

Hope your first six months of 2017 have been a blast!

2016-04-12 11:46

review; wildefire

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Wildefire
by Karsten Knight

Ashline Wilde is having a rough sophomore year. She’s struggling to find her place as the only Polynesian girl in school, her boyfriend just cheated on her, and now her runaway sister, Eve, has decided to barge back into her life. When Eve’s violent behavior escalates and she does the unthinkable, Ash transfers to a remote private school nestled in California’s redwoods, hoping to put the tragedy behind her.

But her fresh start at Blackwood Academy doesn’t go as planned. Just as Ash is beginning to enjoy the perks of her new school – being captain of the tennis team, a steamy romance with a hot, local park ranger – Ash discovers that a group of gods and goddesses have mysteriously enrolled at Blackwood, and she’s one of them. To make matters worse, Eve has resurfaced to haunt Ash, and she’s got some strange abilities of her own.

With a war between the gods looming over campus, Ash must master the new fire smoldering within before she clashes with her sister one more time…

And when warm and cold fronts collide, there’s guaranteed to be a storm.

Review:
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review; sun and moon, ice and snow

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Sun And Moon, Ice And Snow
by Jessica Day George

Blessed—or cursed—with an ability to understand animals, the Lass (as she’s known to her family) has always been an oddball. And when an isbjorn (polar bear) seeks her out, and promises that her family will become rich if only the Lass will accompany him to his castle, she doesn’t hesitate. But the bear is not what he seems, nor is his castle, which is made of ice and inhabited by a silent staff of servants. Only a grueling journey on the backs of the four winds will reveal the truth: the bear is really a prince who’s been enchanted by a troll queen, and the Lass must come up with a way to free him before he’s forced to marry a troll princess.

Review:
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the seven deadly sins tag;

the seven deadly sins tag

I came across one of the most interesting tags I have seen over on Jess @ JBelkBooks‘ blog. I’m not one for tags unless I have actually been tagged in things, which is rare. But this was too good to pass up. And when Jess suggested that I do it after I flailed a bit about it, well, who was I to say no?

GREED

What is your most inexpensive book? What is your most expensive book?

Hmm. A few years ago, I actually picked up the entire Gemma Doyle trilogy by Libba Bray for 14 NZD. Which was – whoa. I mean, ENTIRE TRILOGY. IN GOOD CONDITION. FOR FOURTEEN DOLLARS. It was, quite literally, a steal. I also once found this book I had never heard of – The Shakespeare Secret by J L Carrell – for like, 5 SGD? And it was a really good book, so WOW. I lucked out.

WRATH

What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?

At the moment, I would have to say J.K. Rowling? Because while Harry Potter will always have a special place in my heart, I have realised her representation is quite lacking. I just – wish she would Stop.

GLUTTONY

What book have you devoured over and over with no shame?

The Chronicles Of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. The Chalet School Series by Elinor M. Brent-Dyer, or at least the books in the series I have. Both just make me feel like a little kid again.

SLOTH

What book have you neglected reading due to laziness?

What book haven’t I neglected this year? But specifically, because I was supposed to read it before the baby was born and she’s almost three months and I still haven’t read it – The Happiest Baby On The Block by Harvey Karp.

PRIDE

What book do you talk about in order to sound like an intelligent reader?

SHAKESPEARE. Literally anything Shakespeare. And sometimes Austen, even though I’ve actually only read Pride & Prejudice completely. I love them both.

LUST

What attributes do you find attractive in male or female characters?

Snark, but like, not to the point of rudeness. Wit, but a good heart. Not afraid to show their emotions. Loyal to the people they love.

ENVY

What book would you like to receive as a gift?

Literally anything you think I would enjoy? Or you could see my TBR. Lol. (No, but I used to tell my family to just give me cash instead of presents on my birthday so I could buy the books I wanted instead of them giving me something I didn’t like. I had no shame.)

books box

And that’s the tag! It was as fun as I thought it would be, so I’m glad I did it. I’m going to tag a couple of people, but feel free to pass on it if it doesn’t interest you, or if you’ve done it before!

Even if you’re not tagged and you decide to do this, feel free to link me!

2016-04-12 11:46

review; the dream thieves

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The Dream Thieves
by Maggie Stiefvater

Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same.

Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life.

Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after…

Review:
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SPOTLIGHT; Katie Cross in an Interview with the Author

We interrupt our regular schedule to bring you this post.

When I stumbled across Bon Bon To Yoga Pants on Wattpad, I never expected to tumble down a hole of “Must recommend this to everyone I meet!” and “When will the next book be complete?” and even “How has this not been picked up by a publisher yet?”

I did not expect to get the answers to my two questions (“Soon!” and “It has!“) ever. But here we are.

If you’ve followed me here from my Tumblr book blog, you will know that I loved this book enough to make a couple of edits for it. With the intention of making more. It happens when I love something this much. At the time, I had no idea I would start a book blog here on WordPress, and no idea that I would manage to get in contact with the author of Bon Bons, Katie Cross, and score an interview!

My second ever Spotlight feature is a little Q&A* with Katie Cross, because everyone should be reading Bon Bons, and what better way then to get the author herself to talk about her book.

interview with the author

Hi Katie! Thank you so much for answering my questions. I really appreciate it.
Thank you so much for having me! This is so fun. I love and appreciate all my readers, so thank you so much for recommending it and asking me. <3

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am an indie author, an avid mountain hiker, a mom of a toddler, and a military wife!

What’s your favourite book?
All of them. I love them all for different reasons! But I’m partial to anything that really hits me in the feel spot.

  • Tell us about your book in one sentence.
    Lexie Green embarks on a journey to lose weight and look stunning, but learns that happiness isn’t found on a scale.
  • Describe your protagonist in six words.
    Lexie is a hot mess!
  • Where do you write from?
    My kitchen table. Seriously. I love working in the kitchen because it’s the heart of the home. Stillness and silence make it hard for me to concentrate sometimes.
  • How did you come up with the idea for The Health And Happiness Society?
    Slowly. It kind of built upon itself with every chapter. Eventually, they became quite demanding.
  • Did you start writing Bon Bons To Yoga Pants knowing that it would lead to a series, or was it intended to be a standalone?
    I started it as a fun project, and it kind of grew a life of it’s own. Which is the best way to have it, I think.
  • When you started posting your story on Wattpad, did you expect for your novel to become as widely read as it did? Did you expect it to be published?
    Not really! It was just an experiment. I wanted to try writing in a really vulnerable way and see if people responded. Did they ever! But once it reached that point, it only made sense to publish it.
  • Tell us a bit about your editing process.
    A bit chaotic. My writing process is always under construction because I’m always learning, growing, and improving. But my editing process starts globally and gets more narrowed with more drafts.
  • What piece of advice would you like to give other authors that you think might help them?
    Little things lead to big things over time. So even if you can only write for a few minutes a day, it adds up to lots of minutes after a month!
  • What do you think was your biggest lesson learnt from the beginning of your writing till now?
    To trust myself. I have better instincts than I thought. But to never trust myself solely. Beta readers are a huge blessing!
Thank you again for taking your time to answer my questions!
My absolute pleasure!
* This interview was conducted via e-mail, and I have not edited her answers at all.

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I am honestly still shaking a little bit that this actually happened. I had scarcely dared to hope when I took a chance and messaged her, but again, here we are!
She is currently writing the other novels in The Health And Happiness Society, and I, for one, cannot wait to read them. But first, perhaps a reread of Bon Bons.

kcwriting

Katie Cross can be found on –

Twitter | Instagram | Website |
Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads

2016-04-12 11:46