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Showing posts from July, 2014

in which I mark the passing of time.

This week marks the seven year anniversary of the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Can you even believe it?
I was 24. I’m fairly sure that puts me outside of Harry Potter’s intended demographic and yet I felt like I had been waiting for this book my whole life. Helen and I had spent more hours than it’s probably even possible to count after the end of Half Blood Prince coming up with theory after theory: Who was RAB and surely Dumbledore’s not really dead and omg the Snape of it all. We drove ourselves crazy.
I live out in the sticks a little bit, so there was no exciting midnight release for me. I was living with Helen at the time, and instead two shiny new copies of the book were delivered by a postman (who likely had the heaviest post bag of his career that day, except for OotP release day, obvs). They were so shiny and new and beautiful and my tummy did a funny flippy thing.
& then Helen went out. I’m not even kidding. Off she went with her chums from work on a …

We Need New Names

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We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo is actually a very very good book. I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads, which for me means I really liked it. I’m curious, actually, about how people interpret the Goodreads star rating. For me it works as follows:
5 stars: THIS BOOK IS SO AMAZING I HAVE LOST THE ABILITY TO EVEN. 4 stars: This book is an excellent book 3 stars: This book is a good book. I liked it. 2 stars: I am indifferent towards this book. It was okay. 1 star: Do not like.
Anyway, the point is, I gave We Need New Names 4 of those pretty red stars. So, that says a lot.
Paradise is all tin and stretches out in the sun like a wet sheepskin nailed on the ground to dry; the shacks are the muddy color of dirty puddles after the rains.
It’s a story about Darling and 5 of her friends growing up in an African country I assume to be Zimbabwe although this is never explicitly stated. The six children dream of escaping the hell that is their life, a shanty town called Paradise where they sneak into …