Contemporary Books

book review | I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver | lgbt+ lit.

i wish you all the best mason deaver book coverAuthor: Mason Deaver
Title: I Wish You All The Best
Series: –
Genre: LGBT+ literature; Contemporary
Pages: 329
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

I feel like LGBT books are the best thing in Contemporary genre. Or at least, the only ones I like in that genre (still wouldn’t pass a good lgbt+ fantasy series, like Captive Prince). E.g. “I Wish You All The Best” by Mason Deaver, a wonderful and simple in a good way book of LGBT youth on the other side of kind and understanding parents.

About the Book: Ben’s life ended the same evening they found enough courage to come out to their parents: Ben’s nonbinary. Meaning they don’t fall under male or female gender categories in a world where ever colors seem to invoke associations with genders. So, as ignorant people do, Ben’s parents kicked their child out onto the street in the night. Having no place to go, they contacted their long lost sister, who ran from home with no goodbyes the first chance she found. Ben is thus forced to start a new life, full of anxiety, panic, a constant need to come out and again, and again, therapy, and too many apologies. But hey, new life is new hope too, right?

My Opinion: The book is very light and simple, which makes this topic more approachable to people who don’t yet fully grasp of how can you NOT be a set standard. And due to Mason Deaver being nonbinary too, you can be sure you’re getting information straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak (who coined this saying and why the hell?). To add to that, it shows a different world a, sadly, more realistic world than that of “Love, Simon” whose parents accepted him instantly. But it’s not as dark as it sounds anyway, and I promise, the ending is wonderful.

5 out of 5 from me, and I wish Ben all the best too. And all of you, out there. Stay safe until you can shine, and once you can shine: blind all the haters with your light.

Categories: 5-5, Books: Everything, Books: LGBT, Contemporary Books, LGBTQ+ Books | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo

if I was your girl meredith russo book coverAuthor: Meredith Russo
Title: If I Was Your Girl
Series: –
Genre: LGBT Literature; Contemporary
Pages: 280
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

I was scared to pick up “If I Was Your Girl” by Meredith Russo. I’m always scared to pick up teenage contemporary LGBT literature. I always feel like they’ll either ruin my mood by being bad, or… Ruin my mood by making me jealous of those years I never had. But this book was very good, and I’m happy I read it.

About the Book: Amanda transferred school and even town, just to escape nightmarish homophobia, bullying, beatings, and an attempt to take her own life. But here, with her father, she has a chance at new life as herself, for once, finally, as herself. She can finally live free and breathe, make friends, graduate, go to parties, maybe even fall in love. As long as she can fight or resist that guilt she feels over keeping such a huge secret from everyone. That is, until she finally has someone to trust it to.

My Opinion: I’m surprised at how many real trans people issues this one book contained, and how well they were approached, answered, and evolved within very different characters, leaving room for more than just pink fluffy dreams. It’s a good starter book to those who have a need for a book like that. And to those who don’t, well, it’s a good book by itself, very heart-warming, scary and beautiful at the same time, full of great character development. It’s like “Love, Simon“, but instead of a gay guy it got a young trans woman, I’d say.

Yep, good book. Loved the author word at the back of it too. 5 out of 5 from me.

Categories: 5-5, Books: Everything, Books: LGBT, Books: Other Fiction, Contemporary Books, LGBTQ+ Books, Trans Literature | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | “On the Come Up” by Angie Thomas

on the come up angie thomas cover the hate u giveAuthor: Angie Thomas
Title: On The Come Up
Series: –
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 464
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

I loved “The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas, so there was no doubt I’ll pick up “On The Come Up” too, as soon as I could get my hands on it. Which isn’t very soon, but hey, not too late yet. The book was absolutely brilliant too.

About: Bri’s life was never easy. A black girl in a pretend-progressive school she witnessed her share of racial profiling, singling out and punishing the kids of color on daily basis, while white kids got away with a lot without even a comment. At home there’s other kinds of problems. Like, her shoes falling apart, gas getting turned off, late rent, constant shortage of everything. Her father was shot, her brother, with all of his education, moved back with his mother and works as a pizza maker to help them meet the ends, and their mother has barely gotten out of a drug slum which she fell into grieving. All Bri wants is to make it, become as great a rap star as her father was, greater even, so she can help everyone out, stop the struggles, get her loved ones off streets, hell, get new shoes… But we all know that path to success is rarely paved with roses. And so, one day she’s singled out, she’s the black girl who didn’t cooperate. She’s on the ground, cuffed. And every phone is pointed at her.

Mine: If you compare American white authors written YA parents, and those of an author of color… I think most of us in Europe will see our parents in the latter ones. There’s this strong love and caring, without the cliche nonsense where a parent is either too understanding, too dumbly kind, or too great of an opposition against their child. Bri’s mother did all she could, sacrificed all she had, and gave her children everything. She lived and survived for them through the worst of it. But it didn’t mean she can now read their thoughts or understand everything, and approve of everything. They spoke, like adults, like child and mother, and they figured things out. You know, the way real world works or tries to work. On top of that, the plot is so amazingly well written, with every side-story so well woven into it, that for once I was just happy to read natural, organic conversations and events. Everyone was their own person, with none of those lines where you read it, you read a response to it, and you just know author wrote all of that just so this character could say this thing. And, I know I’ve spoken in length about it now, but seriously, this is such a good book about real struggles, real poverty, real stressful guilt that you honestly need something when you’ve got nothing… I loved it.

This is a quality read. Especially if you like rap rhymes, oh boy these are nice! Just like The Hate U Give, this one too gets 5 out of 5, and I am sure going to read whatever’s next for Angie Thomas.

Categories: 5-5, Books: Everything, Contemporary Books | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

diversity | “Queens of Geek” by Jen Wilde

1Author: Jen Wilde
Title: Queens of Geek
Series: –
Genre: LGBT Literature, Contemporary
Pages: 262
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

We’ve all ran into that “different” title at some point in our lives. And often I feel like girls likely run into it more often. For I always knew plenty who loved to read, play video games. And yet, they were self-described, and described by others as “not your usual girl“, so, different. This is a book about them, and how it’s all normal.

About: Taylor lives with a form of autism, severe anxiety, and absolutely constant nervousness. It were the YA book series that got her through school. And so, it is thanks to them that she pulls together all of her courage and determination, and accepts an invitation to SupaCon, provided to her by her good friend vlogger-actress, Charlie. Charlie has a panel there, and hopes to not meet her toxic ex while Taylor will be out hunting her favorite author. Both of them hope for the best, expect the worst, and have absolutely no clue of how their lives will soon shift.

Mine: They had me at “Felicia Day“. I enjoy books that normalize the different. Because that’s the thing, it’s not different, you’re just told you have to fit a mold all your damn life, and that’s just a big fat lie. You’re not different, you’re you. And sure, you’re unique, and that’s bloody great, but there’s no reason to put all the girls and boys who like what they “should” (according to general society, possibly their parents) like, into one herd, as if they’re somehow below us, “weirdos“. Even if they think so of you. Which they also, shouldn’t. This book is a great example of how it is, should be, could be, and should absolutely not be.

I’ve read this book and caught myself wondering whom am I going to gift this book too. I like books like that, with a good message in them. It’s idealized to a teeth-rotting sweetness, and the writing isn’t top notch either. But hey, 5 out of 5 for sheer message it passes.

 

Categories: 5-5, Books: LGBT, Contemporary Books, F/F Literature, LGBTQ+ Books | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

diversity | “The Immortalists” by Chloe Benjamin

1Author: Chloe Benjamin
Title: The Immortalists
Series: –
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction
Pages: 346
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

I picked this book up for diversity due to Gold family being Jewish. In my surroundings, and the books I tend to read, religion either goes unnoticed, doesn’t exist, or is the same old one (or the branch of it). But there was more than just that, lucky for me.

About: A rumor of a mysterious psychic woman who tells very accurate fortunes reaches the four Gold children. They cannot resist the human temptation to just get to know things. Will I be happy? When will I die?

Years pass, and each one of them carries inside their date of death. Some shared it, others preferred it to remain a secret. But each one lived dreading, hoping. Hoping that the day will come, and that it will pass.

Mine: So, as I said, this book is more diverse than I expected. Other than a lot of different characters surrounding the main four, one of the main four was a gay guy. In the times when AIDS was called “the gay cancer“, due to mostly affecting the homosexuals, and no one really knowing neither what it was, how it was spread, or any means to prevent it. The main characters in general were pretty interesting, each one very unique, with fairly strong personalities. But that’s all you get. They’re strong in their convictions, still doesn’t mean they won’t do as their told, even if it goes against them. There’s jobs, there’s family statuses, there’s doing what you have to do. While waiting for the date of death to come, with hopes it’ll pass you by even just one day. In the meantime, with all the unnecessary details flooding us, I sat there wishing to know more of the true magic that apparently exists here, or have time to react to such great things as an adult child finding their parent. But you can’t, because there’s no room, and no time, and seams are covered with just useless observations of too tight t-shirts, juicers, photographs.

I wish these were four separate books of four siblings growing up knowing when they’ll die. But instead we have too short stories in too long of a book. I can only give it a 3 out of 5, for while it was good, it wasn’t there yet.

Categories: 3-5, Books: Everything, Contemporary Books | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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