Sing, unburied, sing by Jesmyn Ward

Beautifully written to the core, exquisite understanding of the human nature, a book set up to become one of the best of 2017.

I was amazed by the writing style, this being my first Jesmyn Ward book. There is a melodious ache in her words, deeply resounding and immediately compelling, comforting yet fantastic in a way. I would most likely buy the hardcopy and reread entire passages. I made so many notes on my kindle, so many beautiful phrases to treasure.

The characters​ in this book are going through complex struggles, psychologically and physically too. Jojo is my favorite and I felt so deeply with this boy, too mature for his years. I could not imagine being in his shoes, seeing and going through so much hardships and yet shouldering huge responsibility towards his toddler sister. His savior and role model is his grandpa, Pop. This just goes to show how important having a firm role model is to young kids.

Leonie is a wreck of a mother, I was engrossed by all her actions and way of thinking. I could not fathom her becoming who she was in the book. Her character is nevertheless well rounded descriptively and realistic.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who likes sublime writing about real life hardships. The message I manage to feel is that there is a glimmer of hope usually between the darkness of what life can be.

Many thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton

The world created by Leslye Walton, largely the house on Pinnacle Lane, is a magical haven, a false secure place or a house of cards ready to crumble at the first firm touch from the real world. This is a heart-breaking story, with so many elements of beautiful wonder and sheer cruelty at the same time, I found it a bit forced.

Ava is the picture of innocence, a girl just wanting to be like everyone else. She doesn’t want her wings. She wants to be normal. It was so touching and comforting that she had a good friend and also a boy who fell in love with her. Nevertheless, Ava is probably the symbol of marginalized people, though more so due to the perception of their immediate family and environment they grew up in.

The climax was horrific and it just blew the house of cards completely. Was it because, reality is so much tougher than magic? Why are there monsters among good people? I did not want to believe that really happened to Ava, it was so unnecessary. I wish I could ask the author why she thought the plot that way.

Setting aside the climax, the rest of the novel is without doubt fabulous. I recommend this to everyone with a bit of patience to find out why and how a girl is born with wings and how love and life can play out for her.

It happens all the time by Amy Hatvany

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This is an eye-opening novel, full of strong emotions and hard truths. I recommend it to everyone, just really make sure you talk openly with your kids about body image, sexual behavior, what is what and how to behave in certain situations. It is so important in the world we live in!

I haven’t read much about the book beforehand, nor any reviews. I preferred to just dive in and see for myself what made it so discussed in social media.

I had many contradictory feelings towards both Tyler and Amber, main characters in this book. I somehow tended to understand each separately yet I was furious with both and with how society is so particular and protective about men vs women when it comes to sexual behaviors.

There are many problems highlighted in the book: anxiety disorder, eating disorder, rape, parenting and role models or the absence of.

I liked the chapter structure from the POV of both Amber and Tyler, it made the plot and the atmosphere more rounded in a way.

Finally and not wishing to reveal any spoilers, I was content with the ending, and how the characters got their closure and their will to move forward in a positive way.