• Literary Book Review

    The Human Zoo

    My Review: The Human Zoo is a surprising novel, one that I feel is needed to shine a spotlight on the current state of the Philippines’ broken political system. The main character, Ting, is researching and writing about Timicheg and the Igorot people who were brought to the United States as part of a human zoo. The Philippines’ long and horrendous history of colonization provides context for Ting’s story in present-day New Manila. I loved this book because it was both charming and uncomfortably real, many of the characters felt like I was reading about my actual friends and family.If you spend enough time in this country, you come to…

  • Erotica Book Review,  Literary Book Review

    Kink: Stories

    My Review: “It was the first real pain he had caused me, it made me suck in my breath, but it wasn’t too much pain, and not unexciting.”Kink is a curious little collection of literary short stories with heavy doses of BDSM and other kinks. It is a nuanced collection that explores human sexuality, relationships, communication, and consent through a diverse lens. I loved the wide spectrum of sexual orientations that are represented while also exploring various themes about desire and the joys and frustrations that come with it. The collection is definitely spicy, especially in the earlier stories. I was surprised that I could find some stories relatable, particularly…

  • Literary Book Review,  Women's Fiction Book Review

    The Girl in the Garden

    My Review: I had a difficult time gathering my thoughts and deciding how I wanted to rate this book. When I closed the book after the final page, I wasn’t even sure whether or not I liked it. The primary reason for this was because I spent most of the book wondering where the story was going and waiting for the plot to start taking shape, which didn’t really happen until the end. The book appeared to start off strong, with Mabel taking in a teenage mother abandoned by an older gentleman, but from there the story just sort of meanders.June has Luke to anchor her. Mabel disagreed. Anchors weigh,…

  • Literary Book Review

    Hardboiled & Hard Luck

    My Review: Hardboiled & Hard Luck is a collection of two novellas that share a theme of grief and loss. Both stories read like a gentle goodbye as each narrator explores their feelings through memory. The stories together elicit a warm, comforting feeling despite the heavy subject matter in its sparse prose. It was an easy read to calm my anxieties and unplug while wrapped up in a blanket.She was still there inside me now, just as she always was: a life put on hold, a memory I didn’t know how to handle. Hardboiled follows the journey of a narrator as she walks along a country road to visit a…