Holding Up the Universe

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by Jennifer Niven
Published October 4th 2016 by Alfred A. Knopf
Young Adult
3.5 Stars

“Dear friend, You are not a freak. You are wanted. You are necessary. You are the only you there is. Don’t be afraid to leave the castle. It’s a great big world out there. Love, a fellow reader”

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Of Goats and Poisoned Oranges

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by Ciku Kimeria
Published December 13th 2013
Fiction
3 Stars

 

“It really is a strange situation to find oneself in – that of attending your own funeral. If anyone told me that the day would come when I would get to listen to my own eulogy, see old lost friends shed a tear and notice the absence of those I had assumed would be at my funeral, I would have thought them mad.”

I am still trying to find contemporary Kenyan authors. I’ve been looking for a while now and I always end up being told of short stories and novellas. The only one I can consider a novel is Dust by Yvonne Owuor Adhiambo and maybe The Last Villains of Molo by Kinyanjui Kombani. I had heard about Of Goats and Poisoned Oranges from my sister and for the longest time I just could not pick up the book and read it. She gave that ‘meh’ answer when I asked her how it was. The story line sounds intriguing but the constant disappointment when looking for modern literature from Kenyans had put me down too. Continue reading

I’ll Give You the Sun

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by Jandy Nelson
Published September 16th 2014 by Dial Books
Young Adult/Contemporary
3 Stars

“People die, I think, but your relationship with them doesn’t. It continues and is ever-changing.”

I expected to absolutely love this book but I just did not. This has to be the first hyped up book that I didn’t love. Wait, that’s a lie. Eleanor and Park takes the crown there. That’s the thing with many YA books, it’s always a bit too much or just amazing making you happy that all these kids have access to some literature that is relatable to them. This one felt a bit too much. Yes, I know people have been saying it’s a poetic novel about life but I just was not feeling it as much as I thought I would. Continue reading

The Hate U Give

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by Angie Thomas
Published February 28th 2017 by Balzer + Bray
Young Adult/Contemporary
5 Stars

 

It would be easy to quit if it was just about me, Khalil, that night, and that cop. It’s about way more than that though. It’s about Seven. Sekani. Kenya. DeVante.
It’s also about Oscar.
Aiyana.
Trayvon.
Rekia.
Michael.
Eric.
Tamir.
John.
Ezell.
Sandra.
Freddie.
Alton.
Philando.
It’s even about that little boy in 1955 who nobody recognized at first–Emmett.
The messed-up part? There are so many more.

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Room

by Emma Donoghue
Published September 13th 2010
Fiction/Contemporary
5 Stars

“Everybody’s damaged by something.”

Let me be honest, this book was not easy to get into and I put it down so many times before I got through the first part. I initially wanted to read it before the movie came out but I never got around to it. The only reason I picked it up this time is because the book was on sale at the local store but I still found it hard to get hooked until I got to some section of the first part where the story started hooking me. Continue reading