All things Wordy, Nerdy and Beautiful

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40 books in nine months. I can distinctly remember where I was when I read each of these books, the emotions I was feeling, and the moments in time I was seeking to escape. Looking back at the books in January, I realize that I was a very different girl when I turned their pages. This group of 40 have seen me through some pretty significant changes, so maybe this is why I am so sentimental in this review. 

I’ve read some pretty fantastic books this year, and some pretty awful ones. I wish I could throughly review each of these, and perhaps someday I will. But for now I will run through my favorite five; the ones that will stick with me for years to come, the faithful companions that brought laughter in dark times. 

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin 

  • WHAT A BOOK. I am not much for paranormal or suspense, but this book lures you in with the first paragraph and holds you captive till the very end. Hodkin has a style of writing that I found refreshing, providing a gaslight-esque protagonist that is as honest as she is mentally unstable (or is she?).

Every Day by David Levithan

  • I was already a Levithan fangirl when I picked up this book. Coming from his The Lover’s Dictionary novel that made my writer’s heart awaken, I knew I would enjoy this book, I just didn’t know how much I would love it. Writing a gendered character is hard, but writing a dynamic androgynous character is even harder. This book really made me consider the gender roles I have in place in my own life, as well as the expectations I hold for others. It also made me very aware of how patriarchy is still such a stronghold in my mindset, as I kept finding myself referring to the protagonist as a “he”.  Levithan highlights the sexlessness of love through a teen who happens to wake up in a different body every day. Yet again, Levithan does wonders for LGBT young adult lit, a genre that still goes under represented. 

The Diviners by Libba Bray

  • The roaring twenties are often portrayed with a innocence and glamour that isn’t necessarily true. Bray compares the nation wide corrupt idealism that is seen in today’s society with the mystery and shadows that occurred in the corners of speakeasies and in-between the pages of bookies number lists. For after all, the monsters we dream up aren’t nearly as scary as the monsters that actually exist. 

Love in the Time of Global Warming by Francesca Lia Block

  • I actually just finished this book and am still processing how I feel about it. Regardless, I made quite an impact on me. Heading into the book I knew that Lia Block’s style was highly controversial and different for YA lit. She continues this theme in her newest book. Retelling the story of The Odyssey and placing it in a modern, post apocalyptic world with four trans*/queer lead characters, Lia Black creates a confusing yet memorable story. While some of her prose was muddled with what I found to be an overuse of figurative language, she still paints a world mixed with magical realism and spirit.  

Code Name: Verity by Elizabeth Wein 

  • A story of friendship between two British female soldiers in WWII, CN:V is a story that will stick with you long after you turn the last page. “It’s like being in love, discovering your best friend,” Verity comments towards the beginning of the book. A quote I find to be a beautiful summation of my thoughts on friendship. Recounting her story of triumph and failure to her Nazi captives, Verity makes your heart be broken over and over as you learn to love the two dynamic ladies she talks about, and their war torn world. While the book contains a lot of confusing technical language, it will appeal to any aviation minded reader. Wein is able to lead the reader on a journey of disbelief, anger, frustration, guilt, empathy, and love all through 300+ pages. 

Follow my reading journey over on my goodreads account

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Everyone who terrifies you is sixty five percent water. And everyone you love is made of stardust, and I know sometimes you can’t even breathe deeply, and the night sky is no home, and you have cried yourself to sleep enough times that you are down to your last two percent, but nothing is infinite, not even loss. You are made of the sea and the stars, and one day you are going to find yourself again.
F. Butler (via whitebeyonce)

(Source: theskinwithin, via loveandtomfoolery)