Book Review

Review: Poisoned by Jennifer Donnelly

So here's the thing. I read Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly a year ago and loved it. It was a solid Cinderella retelling, with some good twists, a wider cast and personifications of concepts like Fate and Chance. And perhaps I went into Poisoned with expectations that couldn't be met, but I just couldn't love it in the same way.

Book Review

Review: How it All Blew Up by Arvin Ahmadi

This book does that YA thing where it tries to tie together a lot of important and concerning themes - being gay, being Muslim, being Iranian, coming out, knowing your parents won't accept you, finding 'your people', being targeted by flight marshalls because of race - but doesn't quite spend enough time on any of those things to make them significant. That may be because these are some of the author's exaggerated memories, or the POV writing of a teenager. But a short novel gives an impression without giving much depth.