Reviews: 5/7-5/13

Word by Word
by Kory Stamper

This was a very enlightening look into how dictionaries are made (particularly Merriam-Webster). It introduces you to lexicography, to the editing process of dictionaries, to the vetting process of words, and to the mind-boggling task of defining such words as “take” and “run”. I found it super interesting, if a little heavy at times. It’s especially good for anyone interested in words and how they work, especially how they’re defined. I recommend it to any word nerd.

The Gunners
by Rebecca Kauffman

This was an interesting novel about a group of friends whose friendship ended when one member of their group suddenly broke away from them. They come together at her funeral and one by one, secrets come out, secrets that might have had to do with her leaving. It’s a very human book full of foibles and changes. I actually really enjoyed it, which was surprising to me, since I’m mostly into books with a plot. This didn’t really have one, just a selection of life moments one after another.

We Should All Be Feminists
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

The print version of her TED talk, it was very inspiring and very interesting. I can definitely see it being a staple on any feminist shelf. While she focuses strictly on cis relationships, don’t hold that against her. It’s a very good introduction to feminism.

The Princess Saves Herself in This One
by Amanda Lovelace

This was an interesting poetry collection. It deals with a lot of heavy issues, like child abuse, intimate partner abuse, death, and eating disorders, but at the end there’s a light of happiness that shines through to make it tolerable.

The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One
by Amanda Lovelace

This is the second in her poetry series. There’s a thread of hope that runs through this whole collection that was missing in the first one, a fierceness and a fire that keeps you going through the heartbreak inside. This is anger at the society we live in, and very righteous anger. I enjoyed this one a lot, and I look forward to her next collection.

Passing Strange
by Ellen Klages

A historical queer novel that ends happy? I almost couldn’t believe it. While there is plenty of period-typical racism, it’s always called out and shown as being wrong, not just a *shrug* part of life thing. The queerphobia in here is treated the same way, shown to be wrong. The little bits of magic in here are weaved in very well. The characters are very well rounded and lovely to read about. I enjoyed this one very much.

Dictionary Stories
by Jez Burrows

This was interesting collection of short stories. Some were a little random with the connecting sentences, and yet some were very poignant. There was a good selection of comedy in there as well. It’s a long way through the alphabet, but worth it for some of the stories.

About Fleet Sparrow

Writer, Reader, Critic, Bear.
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