book review: sea of strangers by lang leav

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goodreads summary:

Sea of Strangers by Lang Leav picks up from her previous international bestselling books including Love & Misadventure, Lullabies, and The Universe of Us, and sets sail for a grand new adventure. 

This completely original collection of poetry and prose will not only delight her avid fans but is sure to capture the imagination of a whole new audience. With the turn of every page, Sea of Strangers invites you to go beyond love and loss to explore themes of self-discovery and empowerment as you navigate your way around the human heart.

my thoughts:

There is a stirring in my soul, a restless, wild anticipation.  I am staring out into the horizon, as far as I can.  I can’t see what’s beyond it, but I can feel it.

 

I adore Lang Leav. I have been a fan of her work for many years, and have read every one of her books (many of them more than once), and each time I finish one, I am left feeling a whirl wind of emotions.  No matter how many times I read her poetry, I am always left in awe by her writing. Something about her writing is so serene and her words flow together beautifully.

So much of what she writes deeply resonates with me, and I often find myself thinking back on her words when I am going through a difficult time.  Her poetry is such a comfort to me, and I am endlessly grateful for the existence of her poems.  Even though all of her poetry in collections are similar in nature, I still find each one to be unique and beautiful in its own way.

I actually got my hands on an early copy of Sea of Strangers, but it wasn’t until recently that I finally picked it up and read it.  I now realize that I was meant to wait to read it, as I am currently going through a difficult time, and once again, Lang Leav provided me the exact comfort that I am desperately in need of.

Sea of Strangers is an emotionally beautiful and empowering collection of prose and poetry about love, loss, healing, and self-discovery.  This collection was incredibly moving, and I definitely had tears in my eyes when I read some of the poems.

I highly recommend this book (along with all of her other books if you have not yet read them!), especially to anybody that is going through a tough time and is in need of healing.

Lang Leav is truly a gift to the poetry world, and I am impatiently awaiting the release of her next book!

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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book review: the witch doesn’t burn in this one by amanda lovelace

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goodreads summary:

2016 Goodreads Choice Award-winning poet Amanda Lovelace returns in the witch doesn’t burn in this one — the bold second book in her “women are some kind of magic” series. 

The witch: supernaturally powerful, inscrutably independent, and now—indestructible. These moving, relatable poems encourage resilience and embolden women to take control of their own stories. Enemies try to judge, oppress, and marginalize her, but the witch doesn’t burn in this one.

my thoughts:

The princess returns with a fiery vengeance in this one and I am here for it!

The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One is Amanda Lovelace’s second poetry collection, as well as the second book in her Women Are Some Kind of Magic series, and I absolutely loved it.

I adored her first book of poetry, The Princess Saves Herself In This One, and have been eagerly anticipating the release of her second collection ever since I finished reading Princess.  But as breathtaking as Princess was, I think I liked this book even more. Amanda has grown as a writer, and it really shows in her second book.

Amanda is an amazingly talented writer, and her poems have a way of making me feel empowered and ready to take on the world. Both of her books, although different in many ways, are equally emotional and empowering. Princess was a more personal read, and although it was still very much about feminism and giving a voice to women, Witch really shined when it came to showcasing the power of women.

Amanda skilfully crafted together a passionately angry collection of feminist poems that were thought provoking and inspiring. This collection was so liberating, and made me want to go out and burn things and shout inspirational things about feminism and the rights of women to anybody who cared enough to listen.

I can honestly say that I have felt even more powerful ever since I finished reading this book, and I am so happy that this inspiring book exists.

Amanda is taking the poetry world by storm, and  I cannot wait to find out what she has in store for us next!

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1/2’s 

book review: dropkick romance by cyrus parker

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goodreads summary:

A collection of autobiographical poetry about healing and learning to love again from professional-wrestler-turned-poet, Cyrus Parker.

The first half of DROPKICKromance focuses on a toxic, long-distance relationship the author was involved in for several years, while the second half focuses on his current relationship with poet Amanda Lovelace. Ultimately, the collection tells about a profound journey of healing.

my thoughts:

Cyrus Parker’s debut poetry book is beautifully written and will dropkick you right in the heart with all of the feels. I have long been awaiting the day that Cyrus would finally release a poetry collection, and I was not left disappointed.

Cyrus clearly poured his heart out in this collection, and it shows on each and every page. This book managed to break my heart and put it back together, all in one sitting. So much emotion bleeds in every poem, and in the first half of the of the book you can feel all of the heartache and pain that he endured, while in the second half, you can see and feel the love brimming off of the pages.

This book encompasses everything that poetry about.  Its heartbreaking. Its hopeful.  Its moving. Its inspiring.  It makes you feel.

The first half of this book tells the story of a toxic long distance relationship, while the second half of the book takes you on a journey of self discovery and healing, and is not only about piecing back together the pieces of a broken heart, but also about finding love again, both with self and with another.

Something that I found to be really delightful about this book is the fact that the girl who Cyrus finds his happily ever after with (aka the girl that inspired the second half of this book) is Amanda Lovelace, the author of The Princess Saves Herself In This One (Which is also an amazing book of poetry and one that you should definitely read if you haven’t yet, just saying.)  Parts of this book are definitely a nod to Amanda’s book, but this book still holds its own weight, and I would have still been just as moved by the words Cyrus wrote even if I had no idea of who she was.  Amanda also wrote the beautiful forward to this book, and it made it that much more touching.

Relationships are hard, and sometimes devastating, but they can also be be beautiful and magical, and Cyrus really captures all of that in this collection.

I myself have been through the pain of heartbreak, and I could relate to the pain that Cyrus expressed within this book.  But I can also relate to the happiness that comes with finding love, the type of love that was described in this book, not just with another person, but also within myself.

This book was raw and beautiful, and I recommend it to anyone that is in a dark place and is in need of a reminder that happiness is out there, waiting to be found.

The prince found the princess…but he also found himself too.

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

 

 

 

book review: i love my love by reyna biddy

*** i received an eARC of this book from the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest reviewi love my love.jpg

amazon summary:

In short, poignant verses, Reyna Biddy’s poems explore pain, emotional reckoning, and the power of self-love.

The debut collection from 22-year-old poet Reyna Biddy, I Love My Love tells the story of Reyna’s childhood, her parents’ toxic relationship, and how, against all odds, she learned to love herself.

my thoughts:

i was really excited when i first stumbled across this book but in all honesty, i ended feeling a bit underwhelmed by it. this really was just a very hit or miss book for me; there were some poems i absolutely loved, while there were others that i just couldn’t really connect with, whether it be because of the content or the overall format.  but that is not to say that reyna biddy is a bad writer, or that i didn’t love the themes within the poems, and the message that the author was trying to convey.  it was raw. it was unapologetic. it was messy. it was heartbreaking. but ultimately, it was very real & empowering. reyna certainly did not hold back, & i admire her for that.  i also loved that this collection focused on love, and how complex it can be in all its different forms.

this really was a very emotional and expressive book, written by a very passionate and strong woman, but unfortunately it just really wasn’t my cup of tea. however, i do think that reyna really is a talented writer & i would certainly be open to reading more of her work in the future!

my rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️ 1/2 ‘s

book review: bones in the garden by mckayla debonis

bones in the garden

goodreads summary:

Here lies the anatomy of the first Heartbreak.

But,

take my advice, you can grow, you can heal, you can learn, no matter what.
Just pick yourself up and keep going.

my thoughts:

as soon as i saw the cover of this book i just knew that it was going to be something special, and i was right. in fact, this book is now one of my absolute favorite poetry collections. but even with that being said, i’m finding it harder than i thought to write a review for it, as i feel that nothing that i say is going to properly convey just why i love this collection so much. it was dark and haunting but it was also hopeful and beautiful and i feel more empowered than ever after reading it.
i want to place this book into the hands of anybody who is heartbroken and trying to piece themselves back together and is in need of a reminder of how special they are, because this book is just that: a beautiful reminder that no matter how much we may struggle to love ourselves, especially during the worst of times, we are all unique, strong flowers that deserve to flourish.

“i am more than broken bones and

bruises

i am more than scars etched in 

white

i am the strongest and unique

flower in the garden

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

book review: 7,300 days by isabella mente

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goodreads synopsis:

this book holds my story, my odyssey, through twenty years of life. it shares my story through the darkness and the light. get comfy, put your favorite sweats on, boil some water, and make tea. crack open the pages and feel with me. hold my art upon your lap and let it become a part of you. because this story is not just mine, it is yours, too. all my love, me. [themes found within this text: femininity, mental health: depression/anxiety, self-love, sexual abuse, love, trauma, etc. a coming of age] xx

my thoughts:

wow. it’s poetry collections like this that make me remember why i love words so much, and why it’s important that we open ourselves up enough to share our words with others. this book spoke to my entire heart and soul; i connected with and saw myself in so much of what was written in here. this collection was so raw and so filled with emotion that it’s clearly evident that the author bled herself dry onto each and every page. thank you, isabella, for being brave enough to open yourself up and share with us the words that you have been holding inside for so long.

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

book review: i am more than a daydream by jennae cecelia

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amazon synopsis:

How often do you daydream? For most, it is many times a day. We stare out the window instead of the task in front of us. We fantasize about where we would much rather be, the significant other we long for, our ideal job, the body we hope to see in the mirror, a healthier mindset, pure happiness in our lives and the lives of others, peace in this chaotic world. However, how many of us daydreamers believe these pleasant thoughts will truly turn into our reality? Daydreams are more than just short bursts of happiness that only our minds can see. I know I am more than a daydream; and you are, too.

my thoughts:

this poetry collection may have been short, but it was an extremely empowering read. i love how much it stresses the importance of self love and finding your self worth despite the struggles you may face in life.

as someone who has been battling an eating disorder and body image issues for many many years, i just want to say THANK YOU, Jennae. I have been working through recovery for a long time now, and it’s definitely not an easy fight, so it is always so nice to read things that both encourage me & remind me that my self worth is not based upon what my weight may be, and that self love doesn’t come from my pants size. so many of us struggle with the ability to love ourselves because of what we see in the mirror, and it is easy to lose focus on the fact that beauty and self love is much, much more than the numbers on a scale.

to anybody who may be struggling in any sort of way, and is having trouble navigating their way through the many obstacles that are a part of life, please do yourself a favor and pick up this poetry collection. words are a truly powerful thing, and they can go a long way in helping to change your life for the better.

my rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️