September Reads: THE SUN AND HER FLOWERS by Rupi Kaur

While I didn’t fully love MILK AND HONEY until the end of the book, I loved THE SUN AND HER FLOWERS from the beginning. While MILK AND HONEY was raw in its honesty, somehow, this one felt a lot more personal, too. I’m not quite sure how.

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August Reads: THE GLASS CASTLE by Jeanette Walls

Jeanette Walls’ voice is incredible, frank and captivating, gritty and elegant. Everything she says feels so real and honest that you believe her automatically. She doesn’t sugar-coat by any means, but her wording and the way she describes things seems almost delicate. But I also don’t have to enjoy a book to realize how good it is and necessary it is.

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May Reads: THE HATE U GIVE by Angie Thomas (Review)

I’ve always supported the Black Lives Matter movement, but I’ve also always been an outsider as both a non-black person (my ethnicity is a mix of a few things, but there’s a fair amount of white in there) and someone who grew up in a ‘good’ neighbourhood. I can’t truly understand it because I’ve ever lived it and probably never will. I still don’t, but this book certainly helped a lot. It’s easy to support the movement and want justice for the black men and women killed, but understanding police brutality in the larger picture of systematic racism and its effects on society is different and much more complex. It’s easy to see supposed drug dealers and gang members as purely bad when you don’t understand the circumstances that go behind it, when you don’t know about the Khalils and DeVantes.

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Story Snippet: December

Matt’s staring at him, lips pulled down and eyes soft like he knows what Braedyn’s thinking, what he’s gonna say. It’s not the first time; it won’t be the last. “Nah,” he says, shaking his head. “Not today.” Then he turns around and walks away.

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June Reads: THE ODYSSEY by Homer

The Odyssey is a pretty great adventure. There’s a reason it’s so famous, and that’s because it’s so characteristic of the adventure genre itself. The Odyssey is basically the “OG” starting point of the Monomyth, and t’s a perfect match for Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey model. I’d recommend it to any and all adventure and epic fantasy writers.

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