Book Review: The Tiny Journalist by Naomi Shihab Nye

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The Tiny Journalist by Naomi Shihab Nye
Published: 2019
Genre: Poetry
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 112
Source: Library
Date Read: April 30, 2019
Grade: A
Synopsis: Internationally beloved poet Naomi Shihab Nye places her Palestinian American identity center stage in her latest full-length poetry collection for adults. The collection is inspired by the story of Janna Tamimi, the “Youngest Journalist in Palestine,” who at age 7 began capturing videos of anti-occupation protests using her mother’s smartphone. Nye draws upon her own family’s roots in a West Bank village near Tamimi’s hometown to offer empathy and insight to the young girl’s reporting. Long an advocate for peaceful communication across all boundaries, Nye’s poems in The Tiny Journalist put a human face on war and the violence that divides us from each other. (from Goodreads)

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Book Review: The Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt

trpThe Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Princes Trilogy #1
Published: 2006
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Kindle
Pages: 392
Source: Purchased
Dates Read: March 29 – April, 27, 2019
Grade: F
Synopsis: 
There comes a time in a woman’s life when she must do the unthinkable – and find employment. For the widowed Anna Wren, that means taking a job as female secretary for the Earl of Swartingham.

Secretaries are always male – never female – as Anna well knows but the real downfall of her career is the realization that she is falling in love with Edward de Raaf – the Earl. But when she realizes that he is going to visit a brothel in London to take care of his ‘manly’ desires, Anna sees red – and decides to take advantage of the opportunity to also take care of her ‘womanly’ desires – with the Earl as her unknowing lover.

But the Earl has another reason for going to London. He is formalising his betrothal and trying (with little success) to forget about a secretary that has no right being female. Unhandsome, he knows that no woman wants him.

Except for the mysterious lady with whom he spent two unforgettable nights at Aphrodite’s Grotto, the most scandalous brothel in London. But when Anna’s plan is revealed, a bit of blackmail is thrown into the mix, a proposal is rejected and even the Earl himself will be unprepared for the intrigues that ensnare them. (from Goodreads)

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Book Review: Hot Asset by Lauren Layne

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Hot Asset by Lauren Layne
Series: 21 Wall Street #1
Published: 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format: Kindle
Pages: 266
Source: Purchased
Dates Read: April 16-20, 2019
Grade: B
Synopsis: Ian Bradley is the definition of a Wall Street hotshot: seven-figure salary, designer suits, and a corner office. His drive off the floor is just as potent. Every woman who knows him has felt the rush. But now he’s met his match in Lara McKenzie—a woman with the power to bring Ian to his knees.

An ambitious, whip-smart daughter of FBI agents, Lara is a rising star in fighting white-collar crime. Her latest case—the investigation of Ian Bradley for insider trading—could make her career. She knows a scoundrel when she sees one. Ian fits the bill: a cocky, ridiculously handsome bad boy with a slick swagger.

She’ll do anything to prove he’s guilty. He’ll do anything to prove he’s not. But it’s only a matter of time before their fierce battle of wits gets oh so hot and personal. Now, taking down Ian has become more than business for Lara. It’s become a pleasure—and there’s more at risk than she ever dreamed. (from Goodreads)

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Book Review: A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing by DaMaris B. Hill

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A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing by DaMaris B. Hill
Published: 2019
Genre: Poetry, History
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 192
Source: Library
Dates Read: April 5-6, 2019
Grade: A
Synopsis: From Harriet Tubman to Assata Shakur, Ida B. Wells to Sandra Bland and Black Lives Matter, black women freedom fighters have braved violence, scorn, despair, and isolation in order to lodge their protests. In A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing, DaMaris Hill honors their experiences with at times harrowing, at times hopeful responses to her heroes, illustrated with black-and-white photographs throughout.

For black American women, the experience of being bound has taken many forms: from the bondage of slavery to the Reconstruction-era criminalization of women; from the brutal constraints of Jim Crow to our own era’s prison industrial complex, where between 1980 and 2014, the number of incarcerated women increased by 700%.* For those women who lived and died resisting the dehumanization of confinement–physical, social, intellectual–the threat of being bound was real, constant, and lethal.

In A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing, Hill presents bitter, unflinching history that artfully captures the personas of these captivating, bound yet unbridled African-American women. Hill’s passionate odes to Zora Neale Hurston, Lucille Clifton, Fannie Lou Hamer, Grace Jones, Eartha Kitt, and others also celebrate the modern-day inheritors of their load and light, binding history, author, and reader in an essential legacy of struggle. (from Goodreads) Continue reading “Book Review: A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing by DaMaris B. Hill”

Book Review: The Tokaido Road by Lucia St. Clair Robson

ttr.pngThe Tokaido Road by Lucia St. Clair Robson
Published: 1991 
Genre: 
Historical Fiction, Historical Romance
Format: Kindle
Pages: 538
Dates Read: June 29, 2014 – March 28, 2019
Grade: A-
Synopsis: After the execution of her father, young Lady Asano’s life is in danger from the powerful Lord Kira. To save herself and take revenge, Lady Asano, known in the Pleasure District as Cat, must find the leader of her father’s warriors. In disguise, Cat travels the fabled Tōkaidō Road. Her only weapons are her quick wits, her samurai training, and her deadly, six-foot-long naginata, with its curved, eighteen-inch blade. She’ll need them all to outwit the rōnin hired to capture her. (from Goodreads)

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Book Review: Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata

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Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata (trans. Ginny Tapley Takemori)
Published: 2016
Genre: Fiction
Format: Kindle
Pages: 163
Dates Read: March 18-24, 2019
Grade: B+
Synoposis: Keiko Furukura had always been considered a strange child, and her parents always worried how she would get on in the real world, so when she takes on a job in a convenience store while at university, they are delighted for her. For her part, in the convenience store she finds a predictable world mandated by the store manual, which dictates how the workers should act and what they should say, and she copies her coworkers’ style of dress and speech patterns so she can play the part of a normal person. However, eighteen years later, at age 36, she is still in the same job, has never had a boyfriend, and has only few friends. She feels comfortable in her life but is aware that she is not living up to society’s expectations and causing her family to worry about her. When a similarly alienated but cynical and bitter young man comes to work in the store, he will upset Keiko’s contented stasis — but will it be for the better? (from Goodreads) Continue reading “Book Review: Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata”