Finals week is… too close for comfort, unfortunately. I haven’t read that much lately, and most of what I have read has been for school and not for fun. However, I’m trying to fix that and make this week different by REMEMBERING TO MAKE TIME FOR MYSELF for little relaxing things such as curling up with a book that wasn’t assigned to me. I’ve been getting way too wrapped up in end-of-semester stress and was starting to forget the intense love for books that drew me to what I’m studying in college.
That would have to be Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: An American Lyric, which I read for my Black Fiction Now class. A highly inventive book that explores the effects of racism upon one’s mental state using poetry, lyric prose, and multimedia components!
I didn’t intend to read this during National Poetry Month, but I’m glad I did. We read it right before Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates (which I’m not including in this post because it was a reread for me) and if you haven’t read either, I would strongly recommend that you pick up both at around the same time because Coates’ book balances out Rankine’s by taking a look at how racism affects the body.
I finished A Mercy by Toni Morrison on Monday! It was the first of Morrison’s books I’d ever read, although I’d been meaning to try some of her writing for quite some time, and now I’m lamenting the lack of free time I have because AHHH I WANT TO READ MORE.
My Black Fiction Now prof explained this novel as an exploration of what life in early (1690s) America was like, before slavery had become wedded to skin color. I really admired Morrison’s craft in this novel – the multiple perspectives, the speaking/writing/thinking styles of the different characters, the shifts in time, et cetera.
I’ve been reading Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur, which is FANTASTIC. I read her poem “All You Need Is Yourself” a few days ago as part of National Poetry Month and really enjoyed it, so I was looking forward to more of it. I was on a waiting list for more than a month, so I couldn’t be happier that it was finally available for me to pick up at the library. Her poems are mostly quite brief, but absolutely raw with emotion.
I should have finished Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad several weeks ago seeing as how it was assigned as part of the second unit in my Literary Retelling & Impersonation class and we just finished the third unit… but I didn’t have the time, oops. I really enjoyed what I did get the chance to read, though, so I’m anxious to get back to it! It’s a super short book, so it shouldn’t take me very long.
After The Penelopiad, I want to read Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. That book has been on my TBR for ages and I meant to have it read before the TV adaptation came out, but then SCHOOL and also LIFE interfered. I have a feeling it’s gonna be super weird to read this book in the age of Trump, ew.
Recently Added To TBR List
Some of the books I recently found and/or were recommended to me are:
- Queer, There, and Everywhere: 23 People Who Changed the World by Sarah Prager is EXACTLY my kind of thing – an illustrated history of LGBTQ+ people whose names we all should know!
- Steph Bowe’s Night Swimming is an F/F YA novel set in Australia (!!!) and it sounds super cute!
- I want to get my hands on Scarlet Witch, Vol. 1: Witches’ Road by James Robinson ASAP because I love that character so much and I’m really excited to read her brand-new series, the first installment of which was published just last year!
- One of my friends recommended Ice Haven by Daniel Clowes and I think I’m going to read it even though I wasn’t a huge fan of the same author’s book Ghost World, just because that friend’s rec of Ice Haven sounded so interesting.
- Imagine Wanting Only This by Kristen Radtke is a graphic novel memoir about grief and loss… so, sounds like very similar emotional territory as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, which I LOVED.
Feel free to steal this idea for your own blog, or answer the questions in the comments! Actually, PLEASE answer the questions in the comments, because I would love to know more about your reading habits! (And what is the best book you’ve read lately? Do you have any recs for me?!)