March Book Reviews
This month, I got a lot of reading done!
So here are my reviews for YA novels The Trick of the Light (5/5 stars), The Last Time We Say Goodbye (5/5 stars), Sick Kids in Love (4/5 stars), and Hot Dog Girl (4/5 stars) as well as a non-fiction novel (I normally don't review these, but this one was bas enough I felt the need to, 1/5 stars).
A Trick of the Light by Lois Metzger
Really intriguing premise, with the narrator as anorexia, and the exploration of male anorexia in particular. The author not only captured the facts of the disorder well, she captured the feelings and side effects (socially, physically, emotionally) as well. Shorter, well-written, with some great symbols. Definitely recommend reading.
The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand
A well-written account of grief, Suicide, and what comes afterwards. Raw and real, this book stays away from cliches to offer a poignantly emotional story. The characters are well-developed and relatable. The romance plots refreshingly aren’t overpowering nor do they solve problems they shouldn’t. The topic of suicide is handled tactfully, with great insights many books do not explore (ie the domino effect, suicide prevention, etc). Definitely worth reading.
Sick Kids in Love by Hannah Moskowitz
4/5 Stars. Overall, a great book with awesome #ownvoices and disability rep. Well-developed themes on chronic and invisible illness, disability, family/friends/support, Judaism, and more. Definitely worth reading.
From a literary point of view, the plot was lacking. There was no driving force for Ibby or a main goal she is trying to accomplish besides Not Dating, which left some parts dragging. Another thing I wished was different— the triggering of intimacy in their relationship was cringy, and the lack of teenage lust beforehand felt unrealistic.
Hot Dog Girl by Jennifer Dugan
4/5 Stars. Overall a solid book. Dugan is clearly gifted and there were a lot of elements I liked (fake dating, LGBTQ+ rep, flawed protagonist who means well). The ending was well done and definitely helped make up for any pieces I wasn't crazy about earlier. I also appreciated that the conflict was not based on lack of communication on the part of the protagonist, like many romances infuriatingly are.
While I mostly enjoyed the MC I did get frustrated with her for her plots. She was stubborn, to a frustrating degree, especially for how ridiculous some of them were. I do see how this was a part of her character, but it did often suspend realism for me as I questioned how anyone could really believe that these would work.
The Brain Fog Fix by Dr. Mike Dow
As if there weren’t enough issues about nutrition and mental health misinformation without books like this... especially from a therapist and doctor.
Sugar is compared to cocaine (really??), “toxins” and inflammatory foods blamed for mental illness, and anxiety and depression stated as apparently curable in 3 weeks by eliminating all these foods....
For the record, no individual food is unhealthy in moderation, and definitely not the same as cocaine. “Toxins” are not a thing. Diet does not cure mental illness.
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