Book Review: The Home For Unwanted Girls

Book Review: The Home for Unwanted Girls
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“In 1950s Quebec, French and English tolerate each other with precarious civility–much like Maggie Hughes’ parents. Maggie’s English-speaking father has ambitions for his daughter that don’t include marriage to the poor French boy the next farm over. But Maggie’s heart is captured by Gabriel Phénix. When she becomes pregnant at fifteen, her parents send the baby Elodie to an orphanage where she receives horrible treatment. Seventeen years later, Maggie, married to a businessman eager to start a family, cannot forget the daughter she was forced to abandon, and a chance reconnection with Gabriel spurs a wrenching choice. As time passes, the stories of Maggie and Elodie intertwine but never touch, until Maggie realizes she must take what she wants from life and go in search of her long-lost daughter, finally reclaiming the truth that has been denied them both.”

Throughout history in every country if you dig deep enough you will uncover some horrible atrocities. The Home for Unwanted Girls tells the story of what happened to the daughters of unwed mothers in Quebec. Some were sold to Jewish families who were unable to adopt in the US. Many more were given to orphanages run by nuns where they lived humble lives that revolved around school and church. Until a law was passed that offered more reimbursement for mentally ill patients than the orphanages were paid to take care of children. So almost over night the children were evaluated by physicians and diagnosed mentally ill. 

This story is told in alternating chapters from the perspective of Maggie, who spends her life searching for her daughter who was taken from her at birth and sent to an orphanage, and her daughter Elodie, who thinks that her mother is dead.

As Elodie and Maggie’s stories unfold we’re treated to a history listen on the the abuse and atrocitites of the orphaned children which continues for many years until a new law is passed denouncing the previous law. After the new law frees the older girls back into a society that they are not prepared to live in many of the younger girls remain in the orphanages. Confined back to a life of education, church, cleaning, and being reminded that they are there because of the sins of their mothers.

This is a vibrant story about family, a mother’s love, and a young girls unending fight for her life. I love fictional stories that educate me on true historical events and rated this book 5 Stars. 

The Village; My Newest Love.

My new favorite television show is The Village. I have a tendency to fall in love with stories about humans loving other humans in the midst of it all. And The Village has it all. (so far) *fingers crossed like a mug*
 
I’m on episode three and BABAY When Lorraine Touissant’s character tells her man how heavy it is to have to deal with Cancer and the heaviness that is the sadness and despair of the people who love you, I near bout fell out of my chair.
 
It’s a conversation that I have with Sheree L. Greer frequently acted out on the screen in such a way that I never imagined was possible.
 
I’ve been waiting forever for someone to acknowledge this. To talk about what it’s like to be sick or fighting for your life and to also be burdened with the feelings and emotions of all of those around you in addition to every other horrifying thing you’re going through.
 
“It’s more work for me Ron, being in charge of your pain and mine I don’t have it in me.” Has got to be the best line on a television show this year. At least for me whose Mama and Mama’s Mama are both fighting cancers.
 
“You’re an organ in my body woman. You fail. I fail.” has me on the floor rolling around with something in betwixt glee and heartache.
 
It’s like… Grey’s Anatomy… That feeling that I had when I fell in love with it all those years ago and I’m so here for it.
 
Especially this love and those dance breaks.
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Matchmaking for Beginners: Book Review

2 Stars

I wanted to love this book and while I loved things about this book in the beginning my love quickly went downhill.

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What did I love about this book: The plot setup was amazing. I LOVED Blix the entirety of her story. If the whole story was about Blix then this would have been a five star review. Enter in Marnie and the story goes sideways. Without spoiling the story I can tell you that Marnie’s primary goal in life is to get married and have a life so simple and boring it would make the average person’s head spin.

The story had so much promise. I would have loved to read more about Blix who was a fresh breath of air of a character and her magical spells that brought people together in life and love but unfortunately the story is really about Marnie. Blix sets the story up for Marnie to have an amazing life but she’d not interested in that.

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Even when Marnie is given the opportunity to explore and build an incredible life she only accepts the opportunity so that she can hurry up and get back to her hum drum of a life which wouldn’t be so horrible but she’s an unlikeable and boring character which makes the book a drag.

Read the story for Blix and the magic of matchmaking. Try and ignore how annoying and bland Marnie is.

The Unlikely Tale of the Royal Elite Squad: Book Review

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The Unlikely Tale of the Royal Elite Squad is a story of an average group of teenage girls who develop super powers during a science project and use them to try and save the world, or at least parts of it. Someone else was in the school during the incident and they’ve also developed super powers which won’t make it so easy for the heroines to save the day.

Adeema super fit and athletic comic book lover, Libby Gray creative social queen , Janais the nerdy smart only child, and Kenzie

As the girls learn to use this their super powers they develop the best power a girl can have, friendship. “We all have our issues… and we may not fit in all the time, but I can assure you that you don’t have to go through life alone anymore.”

I love the diversity of the book which represents most normal parts of America, there’s the type A cheerleader, the spunky Spanish girl, the muslim, girl, the nerdy comic book lover and ——I love when books teach you something and this book teaches you about different religions and customs without even trying.

Overall I really liked this book and would recommend it for most teenagers and any other adults, like me, who enjoy YA novels. I gave it 4 stars.

Book Review: The Collector -Nora Roberts

 

 

 

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Let’s talk about the time I read a book and rolled my eyes the entire fucking time. To be fair, I read a lot so I run into this eye rolling thing pretty frequently but for some reason this eye rolling session really annoyed me. The Collector by Nora Roberts is the first book of 2018 to get thrown into the corner. And that’s only because the window was closed and I didn’t want to shatter it for such a stupid novel.

Actually I changed my mind. I’m not going to talk about it. I love Nora Roberts. She is a phenomenal writer so I refuse to even discuss for any more seconds how horrid The Collector is. I’ll just say read at your own risk. 1 Star because it’s impossible to give 0.

Sold on a Monday: Book Review

4 Stars

Sold on A Monday was a great read although at times it was a little slow. I love a story that keeps you entertained while teaching you things. During the pages of this story I was reintroduced to the way that women were treated in our history. How no matter how smart or talented they were they had to fight twice as hard just to be a secretary and how unwed women with children could be treated so badly that they would lie to protect themselves.

I’m always curious about where the idea for a story came from so I loved where the author told us all about that at the end.

The Girls at 17 Swan Street: Book Review

The Girls at 17 Swan Street by Yara Zgheib deserved every single one of the 5 stars that I gave it.

Anna Roux was a professional dancer who followed the man of her dreams from Paris to Missouri. There, alone with her biggest fears – imperfection, failure, loneliness – she spirals down anorexia and depression till she weighs a mere eighty-eight pounds. Forced to seek treatment, she is admitted as a patient at 17 Swann Street, a peach pink house where pale, fragile women with life-threatening eating disorders live. Women like Emm, the veteran; quiet Valerie; Julia, always hungry. Together, they must fight their diseases and face six meals a day.

The Girls at 17 Swan Street is an amazing read and should be read by everyone, those going through similar situations with eating disorders so that they can finally see themselves in a story and feel seen, and those who don’t suffer from eating disorders. I think the story would be especially helpful to the family members of eating disorder sufferers so that they can actually see what it’s like to feel like you have to force yourself to eat every bite to make others happy and to look in the mirror everyday and no matter how thin you are still feel fat.

Typical books about ED show one side of the story, either they show the eating disorder suffered perspective or the perspective of the family and friends who are forced to witness their loved one suffering from this horrible disease. The Girls at 17 Swan Street does have the lense on Anna for the entire story but we’re able to see clearly how her husband and family are effected as well and I really enjoyed that aspect of the book. Anna and Mathias’ love story had my clutching my chest in fear.

Yara did a fantastic job telling this story. It had me thoroughly invested from the moment I began to read up until the final page. I loved the different emotions that the story invokes by showing you different parts of the women’s lives. I rooted for everyone in this story and would love to read a follow up to find out if any of the women beat the disorders and to see what their lives would be like after treatment and returning home.

*Trigger Warning* That Time I Got Stuck In A Group Text Laughing About Rapists *Trigger Warning*

Firstly, Let me go on record and say that I’m not a lover of group messages. In general. I hate the ones that I’m currently stuck in on Facebook and only put up with one on my cellphone which is shared by my siblings and my parents because:

1: Family

2: My mama has cancer.

Most of the time I read and don’t respond to the communication in group threads because I’m busy and an antisocial mother lover. There aren’t many reasons to include me in group messages and I appreciate the friends who responsibly include me in them like my trainer who will occasionally send out group messages with the disclaimer to RESPOND TO ME ONLY because for whatever reason everyone in his messages always follow his request to only respond directly to him.

But, I got caught in one recently with a girlfriend of a friend and have yet to ask to be removed. Mostly, because I like the friend, network with multiple members of the chat, and the messages are sporadic and usually unharmful. Until today.

Today there is a whole entire group thread on my cellphone with pictures of Rapist Kelly mocking his interview and hopefully pending long term jail stint. I don’t want to be the wet blanket and ask to be removed from the thread because I do business with these people. Even though I come up with at least six really really good messages that I never send such as:

Hey, please remove me from this triggering ass thread. Rape and rapists are never the fuck funny.

or

Hey, Rapist Kelly reminds me of the grown ass men who used to rape me when I was a teen.

or

Hey, Rapist Kelly reminds me of the grown ass men who preyed upon my friends when we were in high school.

or

Hey, I’m not sure how many of you in this thread is a victim of rape but I am and this shit is triggering as all hell. I’ve been avoiding the internet today because every single time I’ve logged in all I see are pictures and articles about him so like, yeah could ya’ll please not.

But I don’t. I silence the notifications on the group message, put the phone on the table, and pray that no one else calls me so that I don’t have to look at my phone.

And I angrily type this blog post in hopes that maybe a few of you who are sharing his image might realize how triggering it is to some of us. Look up Seneca Dolandson. Find a picture of him when I was 13 years old and nod in agreement when you say yeah, he looks a lot like him. Then stop texting your friends in group threads laughing at rapists. Because rape is never ever funny.

 

Obsession aka Teenage Girls Need To Chill; Little Monsters Book Review

Little Monsters Book Review

Obsession. The story little Monsters is told from the point of view of Bay and Casey. Bay’s story is told through her diary since she is missing or dead. While Casey tells us what’s happening now Bay’s diary tells us what happened leading up to her disappearance. 

Bay is clearly obsessed. With her best friend Jade who she calls her person and declares that she couldn’t lose or else she would die. 

With Casey who she seems to seriously hate even though she struggles to figure out how she really feels about the girl. She waffles back and forth admitting that she doesn’t know anything about her feelings regarding Casey except that she would like to punch the girl in the face. She’s only pretending to be friends with Casey because of her unrequited love of Casey’s stepbrother Andrew who is the true object of Bay’s obsession.  In addition to befriending Casey and hanging out with Andrew’s other sister who is only 13 years old, she does things like sit outside of his house at night watching him through his windows. 

While Bay tells us her story of what happened leading up to her disappearance Casey tells us the after and the lengths she goes through to find her friend. She continuously places herself at harm and makes herself look guilty while she searches desperately for Bay.  Even after someone tells her the truth about how Bay was never really her friend. 

I love a story with a strong plot twist and even though I figured out who done it pretty close to the end of the story the author did an amazing job of putting a new twist on this murder mystery and keeping the audience guessing about what really happened to Bay and who did it. 

I rated this book 5 Stars and recommend that you always know who your true friends are. Also, If you’re a teen, I know the person you think you love seems to be the most important thing in the world. I also guarantee that there are better things to be obsessed over like coffee, yoga, and loving yourself. It gets better. Just chill. 

What Will Become Of The Ladies of The Night?

There are prostitutes in my neighborhood. Apparently quite a few. My neighbors spend all day talking about them. Have multiple social network groups where they discuss how to deal with them. Where they live. How they proposition people and their children. How they’ve taken to calling them into the non-emergency police line every single time they see them.
If you see something say something they say. Along with a bunch of other racist, sexist, transphobic, and misogynistic language. And I don’t know if it’s the isms or the fact that I try to mind my business that has me cringe whenever I read the posts on NextDoor right under a post about free events for children at the library and above posts looking for a decent electrician.
I think of how most prostitues are made. How people steal children enslave them, get them hooked on drugs and alcohol, use them up for sex slavery and then throw them away like discarded pieces of paper.
I think of how most prostitutes are made. How husbands beat wives, beat boyfriends, beat girlfriends, and children. How they escape from that abuse to another location. How these people with little to no skills or ways to make money to feed themselves and their families except the easiest thing to sell on earth which is the one thing (or things) that are always on your person.
I think of how prostitutes are made. How people who own themselves decide to sell themselves cause that’s what the fuck they want to do.
I wonder which of my neighbors who complains about them is secretly seeing these ladies of the night. Because in the service industry people don’t build businesses in places where they can’t make any money and sure there is easy access to the highway and multiple things in the neighborhood to make these particular corner dwellers more marketable but most successful businesses don’t setup where they can’t benefit from the local traffic.pexels-photo-206381.jpeg
Every time I see a certain neighbor who has a “police car” and uses it to breed fear in individuals they deem as criminal, post about them, I think to myself that either he got the clap from one back in the day, his mama was a prostitute, or his life is so meaningless that he has time to actually ride around in a car that looks like a cop car with the sole intention of scaring and harassing people.
It’s funny because I wonder what my neighbors would have the police do with the prostitutes. Should they kill them? Ship them somewhere else so they can become a blight onto someone else’s neighborhood. Take them somewhere so that they can get help for the multitude of issues that lead to prostitution?
I know that crime such as prostitution brings home values down and that something should be done about the crime in our area but I can’t help but wonder why I never see anyone comment about the many white collar crimes that are surely happening in our neighborhood. Or why no one seems to notice that my next door neighbors are probably running a meth lab out of their home and have different cars all up in through their place at all hours of the day and night. Probably because their complexion and age grant them a certain amount of privilege where they can get away with all sorts of shit and still have people say, “They were always so nice. So normal. Unlike those transexual prostitutes on the next corner.”