• Literary Book Review

    Marriage of a Thousand Lies

    My Review: Marriage of a Thousand Lies is an absolutely stunning book that I picked up completely by chance. It gives readers a lot to unpack in a seriously small package. The book explores topics about family, love, marriage, culture, tradition, societal expectations, and queer/gender issues. Lucky is a first-generation American whose parents hail from Sri Lanka. She is also a lesbian that is married to a The drums will beat louder and louder toward a frenzy as he ties the thali around her neck like a noose.gay man in order to keep up appearances for both of their families. Her stable arrangement with her husband is turned on its…

  • Feminist Book Review,  Literary Book Review

    Milk Blood Heat

    My Review: Love requires a bareness, a certain pliability, and I didn’t thrill at the possibility of being transformed or wiped away.Milk Blood Heat is quite simply a stunning short story collection and an impressive debut. The stories in this collection felt as hot and sticky as the Florida sun, filled with complicated characters and the less-than-perfect lives that they lead. Having spent years living in Florida I felt at home while reading these stories, the microaggressions from the largely white middle-class inhabitants were deeply relatable. The stories in this collection were all about power struggles; between mother and daughter, husband and wife, brother and sister. The titular Milk Blood…

  • 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…