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We Are Okay
by Nina LaCour (4/5)
I picked this book with no prior knowledge as to what it was about, and was pleasantly surprised by it. I ended up loving it. It's heartfelt, honest, and the way LaCour writes it never fails to keep you on your toes. The beginning is a little confusing, but it's supposed to be that way as the story unfolds. Stick with it - trust me. (and it's LGBTQ+)
I loved this book. I couldn't put it down, and it was so real. The way Green wrote the emotions and thoughts Aza felt and had to deal with, and the idea of existing as a character in someone else's story, was just amazing.
This book broke my heart.
Now that I've led with that.
I tend to love books easily, my bar is far too low for someone who reads so much, but when I say I loved this book, I mean I absolutely loved this book. So much that I might have to lower my other reviews so that the five star rating I give this one stands alone.
The beginning made me hesitant to continue, I liked the plot and the characters but didn't connect to it right away. But stick with it. Once everything starts to come together, it becomes absolutely amazing to read. The little details all fit together. The book is absolutely beautiful and breathtaking, and the meaning within the book is one of the best I have ever read. The way Schwab talks about artistry, creative, ideas, etc, is absolutely stunning. (And there's LGBTQ+ rep!)
This book is for people who want to read a beautiful masterpiece that values art and creativity.
If you haven't read it, read it.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
by V.E. Schwab (5/5)
Turtles All the Way Down
by John Green (5/5)
I personally liked this book, but I understand that it is not my place as a cis gendered person to talk about the accuracy of the book, or how it relates to reality/real life teens and gender fluidity. Instead, I will speak about my experience reading this book as a cis gendered person.
Although I agree with many people in the reviews that the plot was lacking, and I felt a lack of closure with the ending, I liked this book for another reason. But, I do not think that it was written for non-cis gendered people. Leaving out Riley's biological sex and pronouns did seem to leave a level of inaccuracy from reality - which I gathered from reading some of the reviews from readers on Goodreads who more closely relate to Riley.
As a cis-gendered reader, this book made me reflect on myself and gender. I think that Garvin's main point in leaving out any indication as to what Riley's biological sex/perceived gender is to force the reader to reflect on themselves. The question of whether or not Riley is biologically a boy or girl is a question you find yourself asking, and I kept finding myself asking this question, and then I would ask myself "why does it matter?" It was a continuous stream of self reflection and questioning why it mattered, why I cared, and what difference it would make. I liked this book because it forced me to reflect on my immediate responses. (PLEASE NOTE I am completely accepting of everyone and how they identify (I'm LGBTQ+ myself)). The book did a very good job explaining to a cis person what gender fluidity is, and gender in a way that doesn't conform to the societal norm, and it did a very good job at forcing the reader to reflect on themselves. By the end of the book, I found that I stopped questioning whether or not Riley was biologically a boy or a girl, and just payed attention to them as a character.
As to the writing and the plot, yes, it could have been better. I cannot speak to non-cis people, but I'm sorry if it didn't speak to you, and if you have any other books you recommend that deal with gender PLEASE let me know. To cis readers, I recommend this book. Especially if gender confuses you, or you feel like you don't fully understand it, read. this. book. And keep an open mind. Check yourself. And listen.
Symptoms of Being Human
by Jeff Garvin (4/5)
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