Linking up with the usual crew for the Sunday meme at Kimba’s book blog.
~ On The Blog ~
Hi everyone, how was your week? I have started reading something extremely exciting this week, but more on that later! This week I have blogged two times, as usual. I’ve posted two reviews – Le Chateau which was so bad it deserved a sarcastic review which might be funny for you to read, and A Closed And Common Orbit, which was slightly a let-down as a sequel of A Long Way To A Small, Angry Planet, but alright as a stand-alone.
~ Coming Up Next Week ~
Next week I am finally publishing my review of Felix Yz. Turns out the book has been published since the beginning of June and I just mixed up the dates 🙁 so sorry, Lisa Bunker – I absolutely loved it! I definitely hope that a slightly late review still does all the good it should. Also I’ll be reviewing Born Aware, a book for anyone who’s slightly into the New Age spirituality, just as I am.
~ Currently Reading ~
I’ve started reading The Ocean At The End Of The Lane, and it’s so exciting! I’m sure more of you will have read it, but if you haven’t, I’ll just say this – I thought Neverwhere was my favorite book by Neil Gaiman. Well, I’m not even done with The Ocean yet, but it’s totally taking over the proud spot. Neil Gaiman just weaves such incredible dark fairytales for adults. I could never get enough of them.
Also still reading All Day. Going to share a quote with you today, about how the education system is, well, equipped to turn out problematic adults:
I see a diabolical setup. I was shocked, but not surprised, to learn that many states calculate the number of future prison beds they’ll need based on failing reading levels of third graders. Funds are allocated based on these projections, so those beds have to be filled. It’s a prison preorder.
Shocking, huh? Based on levels of third graders. If you know someone who failed at reading at that age, you might imagine there was a prison room waiting right there for them. It baffles me how we as a society would rather know this is happening and prepare to incarcerate them, rather than educate and try to save someone who is still clearly in the age where you can save them from a bad future. I believe it’s a book everyone in America should read. At least, everyone who knows how important it is to learn about how the poor, the misjudged and unprivileged live. It’s never enough to have just part of the picture of the country you live in, of the world we all live in. We shouldn’t cover our eyes to the other side of it. The side nobody wants to look at.
Also still reading The Nix, it’s alright, but nothing much to report.
~ Mini-Review ~
I’ve finished Down The Up Staircase, but it wasn’t either awesome enough or bad enough (lol) to deserve a separate review, so I’m posting it along with the Sunday post.
As someone from Europe, I was very curious to find out more about Harlem and the black culture, the transformations harlemites had to go through in the 20th century. The book boasts a history of three generations of Harlem, told by a person who grew up there and saw it all. Devout Muslim believers, mink wearing divas living in a slum, pimps and dealers and college professors, and just plain simple people – the picture is so vast and colorful.
But I couldn’t say the book was quite what I expected. Perhaps it’s because it was written by a sociology professor, or perhaps because I had the advance reader digital copy, which couldn’t pride itself on good formatting, and perhaps final editing. But still, I feel like the writer couldn’t quite figure out what he wanted to say. What was the book about? His family? Or a detached history of Harlem? At times it reads like a memoir, at times – a history book. Sometimes things lapse, aren’t connected enough or are repeated as if they haven’t been said yet. So the overall experience of reading wasn’t too exhilarating, especially as I’ve read some pretty good nonfiction this year.
But I will admit that the subject matter is good – therefore I give it 3 stars. It was interesting to her certain stories of Harlem, and to gather more background about some of the bigger names in black people’s culture that, to use their own words – “advanced the race”. I loved reading about what they believed in, and despite how mistreated they were, how they still persisted. I honestly didn’t know New York was such a bad place to live in the 1970s, especially if you were PoC. So as an educational experience, it was good.
In the end, I figured out why it’s called Down the Up Staircase. Ultimately, this is a story of a family’s downfall, with the backdrop of Harlem history. And although the author didn’t really make it quite clear what the story was about, it does do it’s job and give you quite a lot of insight about the place and the day.
I thank Columbia University Press and NetGalley for giving me access to an early copy in exchange for an honest review.
~ General Rambling ~
This week I found out I’ve been incredibly stupid for all this time. My blog didn’t even have a WordPress follow buttons 😀 since that mistake has been rectified, please click it and follow me! Thanks, you’re the best 😘
This week I’m sharing two awesome quotes. One is from The Nix and it’s a very strong quote about the woman’s position in the 1950’s household, and, ultimately, the world. The second one is from The Ocean At The End Of The Lane and it’s a wonderful thought about how none of us ever really grow up, how adulthood is more pretend, and how even the toughest of us can be scared.
#Womanhood in the 50’s and 60’s was tough. Maybe even unrewarding. I particularly love this #quote from The Nix by Nathan Hill. It exposes the horror of domestic, well, incarceration. And putting #women into a box, confined so they could never become more than this. #book #quotes #women #feminist #feminism #books #literaryquotes #literary #literature #fiction #readingrecs #reading #stepfordwife #stepfordwives
Nobody’s a real grownup and monsters can be scared too. Neil #Gaiman, The Ocean At The End Of The Lane. I have to say, this #book is unbelievable. I’m 63% into it and still retaining a vain hope that it will never end. I don’t think I’ve read anything as strong since #StephenKing’s Pet Sematary. #Mythology is used in the most satisfying ways, and the kind of deep #horror, which is sad and understandable as if “there’s simply no other way to be” is something only Neil Gaiman can write. #monsters #adulting #growingup #adulthood #neilgaiman #AmericanGods #bookstagram #book #bookish #ebooks #books #bookquotes #quote #quotes #fantasy #fiction #literature #readingrecs #whattoread #currentlyreading
What about you? Have you read anything awesome this week? Have you bought or received any awesome new books?