The words “Daddy’s Money: an unlikely feminist spin” on a green background
The words “Daddy’s Money: an unlikely feminist spin” on a green background

I am decidedly not a fan of country music, but I did spend a good part of my rural childhood listening to country music radio and cassette mixtapes of country music that my mother made. An exception to my general distaste for the genre is “Daddy’s Money” (1996) by Ricochet. This song is about falling for a woman that has everything: she’s beautiful and rich, amongst other things that are not always valued in women. Not only is it catchy and fun to sing along to, but it gently subverts the misogyny long present in the greater tradition of country…

Intense? Weird? Uncomfortable?

I received an e-arc copy of Hummingbird Salamander from Netgalley.

I am not sure how to describe this book — intense? weird? uncomfortable? This was like a more confusing, modern Monkey Wrench Gang (a compliment, FYI).

This is my first Jeff VanderMeer book and I was warned that his writing style is “confusing,” and I can indeed confirm that. I was and still am very confused by this book, however, the writing never felt overwhelming. The story revolves around taxidermy, eco-terrorism, and endangered species and manages to make what most people might consider a boring subject into a thrilling rollercoaster.

As much as I love the ebook loans from my local library, the loan length of popular books is…a true challenge. I had to rush through all 517 pages of The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow in 7 days and I finished it with about 35 minutes left on my loan, so the plot is all a bit of a blur. What I do remember from the plot is that it pays real attention to the very real race and respectability politics that were at play in the for-realsies suffrage movement. …

Kent Haruf is canceled for the grave crime of absolutely destroying my heart.

I am grateful to the weather because my misty eyes were hidden behind my sunglasses when I listened to this audiobook while on my walk [in public]. Kent Haruf is canceled for the grave crime of absolutely destroying my heart.

Our Souls at Night is a novella that is a character study of Louis and Addie and does not have a whole lot of plot. The characters are so well set up and explored in the short number of pages that I did not “miss” a plot at all. Addie, a 70-year-old woman whose husband has passed and whose son…

10 Books to Cheer You Up
10 Books to Cheer You Up

I recently made a YouTube video on my channel about what to read if you need cheering up.

I absolutely need some cheering up right now and I thought I would pass on my cheery wisdom. These books are listed in alphabetical order.

Watch my video here

Belle Weather: Mostly Sunny with a Chance of Scattered Hissy Fits by Celia Rivenbark

My third rave review of my trilogy of rave reviews
My third rave review of my trilogy of rave reviews
My third rave review of my trilogy of rave reviews

The third rave review of the final book in the Shades of Magic trilogy. You can read my two previous rave reviews of A Darker Shade of Magic and A Gathering of Shadows. I am a husk. Devastated this series is over. What am I supposed to do with myself now? More importantly, how am I supposed to procrastinate now? I waited six months for this book after I devoured the first two. Six months. It was torture. Like the first two books in this series, I read A Conjuring of Light in one day. I listened to the audiobook…

Shocker 😲 🙄

A Frolic Through Fiction has brought me many excellent book recommendations (thanks, Ashleigh!), but From Blood and Ash was not one of them.

Something I did really enjoy was the positivity around Poppy’s sexuality and her scars. She takes the lead in many aspects of her relationship with Hawke and I found their relationship a lot less toxic than other fantasy/paranormal fantasies in which I have dabbled (and then regretted dabbling). However, I found a lot of the plot arc to be overly trope-y without much of an original spin. The dialogue also seemed forced and overwrought. I have often…

This is a review of an advanced reader copy of Violeta Among the Stars by Dulce Maria Cardoso from Netgalley. Violeta was originally published in Portuguese in 2005 and is coming out in English, translated by Ángel Gurría-Quintana, 24 June 2021.

I picked up this book because it reminded me of the premise of 10 Minutes, 38 Seconds in This Strange World, which was one of my favorite reads of 2020. Violeta has overturned her car and her life flashes before her eyes as she meditates on her complicated relationships with others and with her own body. It is told…

Earth was far from perfect, and Qita was far from perfect. Nobody was perfect, not from the beginning. There wasn’t a place in the universe that was unchangeably perfect.

The premise of Skyward Inn is that Earth invaded and conquered another planet, Qita, in the recent past. Jem and Isley decide to open a pub together, Skyward Inn, to attempt to create an oasis away from the havoc the interplanetary war has wreaked. As the story unfolds, the character and the reader begin to question the way the war really unfolded.

Previously, I have read Aliyah Whiteley’s The Beauty and was what you might call “weirded out” by it. “Thoroughly disturbed” is another phrase that comes to mind. Whiteley’s newest, Skyward Inn, is another probing insight into what makes us human. The first half of Skyward Inn was not all I hoped it would be. I had a hard time following and did not really enjoy it. The second half, however, blew me away.

I especially enjoy Whiteley’s focus on language, something with…

Too many people write off the romance genre as frivolous or silly. It certainly can be, but the main problem I have with the romance genre — and why I have historically steered clear of it — is the toxic and heteronormative relationships it often evangelizes. We have all seen the recent discourse on Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series. I read The Duke and I…and yeah. I am still going to read the rest of the series though because I enjoy torturing myself. It is really fun and you should try it. …

Caroline Cox

Historian | PhD student | LSE

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