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review
marianese
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Pickpick

I'm a late adopter of Rebecca Traister, evidently I was oblivious. I somehow assumed All the Single Ladies was superficial and poppy. Ha. Instead what she does here is a virtuosic feat of contextualization and synthesis, as well as sharp, lively analyses of how and why women's anger has always been a potent and productive political force, as well as emphasizes the importance of and challenges to intersectionality in activism. Invigorating.

review
marianese
Ayiti | Roxane Gay
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Pickpick

Quite a gem. Short, some quite short, stories set in/ about Haiti and its people with vivid, sensuous prose. Expect strong women, heartbreak, violence, yearning, lust, sex.

review
marianese
Interior States: Essays | Meghan O'Gieblyn
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Mehso-so

I wanted a bit more emotional engagement from these essays. I look for that and/or aesthetically pleasing prose from any essay unless its ideas are really important to me, and crisply delivered, as with a Sontag piece. These essays often skirt around lost faith, but in a way that tends to hold back. There's a lot of enlightening stuff re why fundamental Christians do what they do, but in the end I have a low tolerance for OT bible stories & such.

review
marianese
The Long Goodbye: A Memoir | Meghan O'Rourke
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Pickpick

I put off reading this for so long out of a weird skepticism. I shouldn't have. It's so beautiful. Not at all sentimental but full of feeling. Gorgeous metaphors, gracefully handled.

review
marianese
The Art of Memoir | Mary Karr
Pickpick

This was a solid exploration of what makes a good memoir, with close readings of a number of classics in the genre, as well as considerations of how Karr has approached the common challenges and pitfalls of writing memoir. I wouldn't say it was chock-full of amazing insights, but definitely valuable to those interested in writing memoir.

12 likes1 stack add
review
marianese
Ghachar Ghochar | Vivek Shanbhag
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Pickpick

Quite fun, yet menacing and disturbing. Shines a light on the dark underside of family life and examines the morally corrosive effects of easy wealth. I wish it were up to 50 percent longer, elucidated some characters further. Though I can see reasons for not doing so!

blurb
marianese
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Rising up the TBR. HELL yeah.

review
marianese
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Bailedbailed

I've read half of the digital galley, which I was grateful to get, but it's not for me. I prefer memoir with more scenes and more powerful sense detail than I'm finding here. I'd also like more specific grounding in policy that the author cites as so consequential to families like hers. Onward.

Reviewsbylola Darn, this one sounds so promising! 1y
marianese Give it a try if it sounds appealing! I may be the weird outlier. I did find her grandmas and mom pretty cool. 1y
7 likes1 stack add2 comments
review
marianese
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Pickpick

I loved this debut collection. Safe to say that it renewed my flagging faith in the realist short story. It was also fun because I'm familiar with the places in VA and surrounds where stories are set. Maybe 2 did not quite work for me but even those are worthwhile.

review
marianese
Pickpick

I'm very late in getting to this one. Extensively reported and researched, and well constructed. I wish a Black writer had been the one to tell this story. But overall this book is important and compellingly told, with sufficient care. I actually found its main story - or close to it - to be that of the legacy of enslavement, Jim Crow, and intergenerational trauma and poverty.

review
marianese
Open City | Teju Cole
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Pickpick

The great flaneur novel of our era so far, brainy, introspective, and sometimes surprising.

review
marianese
Pickpick

A disturbing but important look at the history of callous, cruel practices in medical research on institutionalized children. Tbh the writing is not great, and there's a fair amount of repetition as well as gaps, and trying to frame the problem as especially one born out of the Cold War is not that convincing. But there is a good share of valuable information here, and an excellent list of sources! Not for everyone.

review
marianese
Ghosts on the Shore | Paul Scraton
Pickpick

Thoughtful exploration of history and memory through rambles on the German Baltic coast of the former East Germany. I learned a lot from this book, though I live in Germany, from lesser-known WWII era events to some textures of everyday life in the GDR to German literary history, as well as enjoying the evocation of cities and townscapes and beachheads. Good stuff.

quote
marianese
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The younger Lydia Davis stories are just as good as the more "mature" ones, but their narrators are living younger-people lives, raising young children, gentle - stepping around their misogynist husbands, and displaying on balance more vulnerability than wit, though the wit's always there, of course. I just love her work. Interestingly, her mother was also a writer and at one time an ardent communist, which she wrote about in a memoir.

blurb
marianese
Ghosts on the Shore | Paul Scraton
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I'm rapt in these journeys across the Baltic Coast of the former East Germany, a lovely, thoughtful fusion of history, memoir, travel, and psychogeography.

CarolynM I love the cover 1y
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Welcome to Litsy 👍📚 1y
marianese @StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Thank you! 🙂🙂🙂 1y
7 likes3 comments
blurb
marianese
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Research.

review
marianese
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Pickpick

5 stars. I'm into essays, but this is for sure the most intellectually limber yet companionable and finally moving book of essays I've ever read about the form of the essay. A lucid and personal exploration of why literature matters.

9 likes1 comment
review
marianese
The Isle of Youth: Stories | Laura van den Berg
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Bailedbailed

I read the first 3 stories and watched a YouTube video where the author read from a 4th, and I found myself firmly in the meh camp. As a person with an MFA I hesitate to use the term 'MFA story,' insofar as that may denote low stakes stories about middle class white people - though with a dash of contrived grit and whimsy - It's in that bland category for me. My reluctance to carry on was fomenting a mini reading block, so it had to go.

blurb
marianese
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I reviewed this kickass memoir for the Minneapolis Star Tribune!

RaimeyGallant You're awesome! 1y
marianese @RaimeyGallant Aw, thanks! ♥️ 1y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Welcome to Litsy!!! 1y
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thereadingowlvina Welcome to Litsy!!! 💕👋 1y
Bookspirit 👋☺ Welcome to Litsy and Congrats on becoming a Litten!👏😊 1y
marianese @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks happy to be here! 1y
13 likes8 comments
blurb
marianese
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1. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is probably the last series I read, long time ago. I'm much more into stand-alone titles.
2. Six Feet Under.
3. Yes. Fave team is the Mets. When I lived in San Diego and then DC, I followed the Padres and the Nationals. Still fond of them.
4. Homemade dal or homemade veggie burgers.
5. Occasionally. I remember once he was reading The Pump - House Gang.
#friyayintro @jesshowbooks

blurb
marianese
Blind Spot | Teju Cole

When you are at a great reading but the room is too hot and stuffy and crowded and has no disabled seating and you have to stand there in the heat so you end up posting on Litsy from the disabled restroom till your friend comes out. 😥😥😥

Lindy ☹️ 1y
marianese Finally they opened one of the doors to get some air in the room! And I was able to go back in to catch some of it. He's really delightful, though the way they showed photos from the book was not great. I'd like to pick it up sometime for sure. He's turning into a new author crush for me. 1y
5 likes2 comments
blurb
marianese
Open City | Teju Cole
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Loving the peripatetic braininess and subtle reflections of this novel. #currrentlyreading

Lindy I enjoyed this book also. Welcome to Litsy! 1y
marianese @Lindy Thanks! 1y
10 likes2 comments
review
marianese
Excavation: A Memoir | Wendy C. Ortiz
Pickpick

A raw, sometimes difficult to read memoir of a girl's coming of age and saving herself through her writing. Along the way she experiences the jolts of power and vulnerability that define adolescence, and thrashes her way through an illegal sexual relationship with a teacher and a panoply of drug use while her alcoholic parents issue wan admonitions. A beautiful, fierce voice.

rather_be_reading welcome to litsy! 📚🎉📚 #litsywelcomewagon 1y
LitsyWelcomeWagon Welcome to Litsy! Hope these #Litsytips by @RaimeyGallant http://bit.ly/litsytips and #LitsyHowTo videos: goo.gl/UrCpoU are helpful. There‘s so many fun things to do: book exchanges, buddy reads, photo challenges and more! Check out @LitsyHappenings for details. #LitsyWelcomeWagon @rather_be_reading 🤩 1y
Chelleo Hello 🤗 1y
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Eggs Welcome to Litsy 👋🏻😊 1y
RaimeyGallant Nice review and welcome! 1y
marianese Thanks, RaimeyGallant, Eggs, Chelleo, rather_be_reading, and LitsyWelcomeWagon! 1y
marianese @RaimeyGallant Thanks so much! 1y
marianese @Eggs Thank you! 1y
marianese @Chelleo Hello! 🤗 1y
marianese @rather_be_reading Thanks! excited to check everything out! 1y
RaimeyGallant Of course! 1y
Wife Welcome to Litsy!🌹 1y
13 likes13 comments