I’ve been thinking about how I want to run this blog…as in, how do I want to format my posts. Should I keep them strictly book related, only posting reviews? Or do I also want to draw you all in to my absolutely fascinating life?
The questions are numerous.
In the end, I couldn’t quite come to a decision, so for now I’ve decided to try blending in little snippets about my life into these reviews. If y’all hate it, feel free to let me know in the comments section (which I’m sure you would do regardless of this aside, but, ya know, whatever) or by angrily posting about me on GoodReads (Hey, no such thing as bad publicity, right?) In addition to the content of individual posts, I’ve also been playing around with the idea of combining multiple reviews into singular posts. After consulting with my board of directors (my cat, dog, rabbit, and birds), I have decided to give each book its own post. I mean, it’s not like I’m being forced to pay for the privilege of each post, so why not?
So, with all the boring stuff out of the way, let’s get to the exciting part: The review!!!
My most recent read was Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo. (Spooky)
It was absolutely amazing. Like, wow.
Behind the Beautiful Forevers will most likely rip your heart out. Even I, a seasoned reader of tragic tales and true crime, have left pages stained with what I will swear to anyone who knows me irl aren’t tears. Katherine Boo perfectly captures the startling realities, desperation, and hope present just outside of Mumbai.
Chronicling the lives of Abdul, Fatima, Asha, Manju, Kalu, and many more, this truthful account of various occurrences in Annawadi between 2007 and 2011 certainly deserves its National Book Award. Abdul, a teenager with his eyes on the future, finds a poor man’s fortune in recyclables, while Manju studies to become Annawadi’s first female college graduate as her mother Asha arranges her own rise to notoriety. Endearing and heart-wrenching, this book reads as one cohesive story, evidence of Boo’s masterful grasp of craft.
So yes, Behind the Beautiful Forevers will most likely be a bit painful to read, but if you’re anything like me, it will also give you hope. Hope for a world in which despite where they come from, anyone can make the world a little better.
^^^My review, as seen on Good Reads! (pssst! If you want to just see condensed reviews, but want to see what I think, check out my Good Reads account!)
This book really did rip my heart out. I plan to enter the Peace Corps after I get my bachelors, so anything about life in a third-world country grabs my attention. Of course, it’s Boo’s masterful grasp of craft that truly makes the book worthy of the National Book Award. The dedication Boo exhibited (living in India for so long, and just for the purpose of writing this book! #LifeGoals), alongside her treatment of the people who’ve lent their lives to this work, make her first (novel? non-fiction piece?) book immersive and cathartic.
I am not one bit ashamed to admit to you randos online that I cried a couple times (if you read the book, you’ll figure out when, trust me). But hey, that just proves to me the quality of the writing.
The Final Rundown:
Rating: 9/10 (because I can’t break this scale, too! (drat those triple-chocolate cakeballs))
Read This Book If: You enjoy torturing yourself with heavy feelings for some odd reason, You’re passionate about human rights/a bleeding heart, You find exposés fascinating
Don’t Read This Book If: The idea of children being in gangs disturbs you (I mean, it should, but still), You like living in your comfortable bubble and would rather not have it popped, Your mom got you the black iPhone instead of the rose gold and yoU’rE StiLL PisSEd GOT dAmN It MoM I TOLD YOU (sorry guys, that dug up some old emotions☻)
So, hopefully y’all like my new format, but if you absolutely hate it, want to tell me about your new toe fungus (it’s green, not yellow, this time!), or just want to say hi, shoot me a note in the comments and I’ll do my best to read it (maybe I’ll even respond, who knows??).
You are all the light of my life and the truth of my soul,
See ya next time,
(Gosh darn it, now I want triple-chocolate cake balls like the dickens)