Religion · Young adult

The Poet X – Elizabeth Acevedo ★★★★★

Blurb; A young girl in Harlem discovers slam poetry as a way to understand her mother’s religion and her own relationship to the world. Debut novel of renowned slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo.

Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking.

But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself.

So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out, much less speak her words out loud. But still, she can’t stop thinking about performing her poems.

Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent.

My Review; Now I must admit this has been on my pile a while waiting to be read and I am so happy I finally got round to reading it. It is an easy read written in verse. But not just that this is such a powerful, uplifting, brave and inspiring story. I praise this book. A book everyone should read.

The story focuses on Xiomara who is struggling with her strict religious mother and her own forced on religion. She doesn’t want to be silent. She knows what she wants but her mother is there to stop her everytime with her defence of religion and sin. She wants a boyfriend. She want to be part of the poetry group. She doesn’t want religion forced on her. She has so many questions but no answers. Can her mother come to accept her? Can they overcome their differences?

Such a brilliant read. I relate to the religion bit strongly I was young when I was made to go to church, communion etc. Shouldn’t it be a choice and not forced? Xiomara stood up for herself and what she believed in – Poetry. Her poems are just amazing and straight from the heart. I just loved her character and everything she went through and stood up for.

This has gone into my top reads of the year and I’d give it all the stars I could. Highly recommend. I urge you all to buy and read it. Just wow. Amazing. No wonder it’s won an award. Beautiful.

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chick-lit · Christmas · Religion · romance

The Little Church By The Sea – Liz Taylorson ★★★★★

Blurb; Isolated and unwelcome in the picturesque seaside village of Rawscar, Reverend Cass Fordyce has lost her faith and her home. Christmas is coming, and she isn’t looking forward to it. Then she meets attractive local man Hal – twice divorced and with a reputation as a ladies’ man he’s everything that a celibate vicar like Cass should avoid… especially as Hal is hiding secrets of his own, including his past with the mysterious Anna.

Can Cass ever find her way in Rawscar? What secret does Hal have to hide? And is there ever such a thing as a truly fresh start?

My Review; What a lovely story. Its was perfect for me. It has a little bit of everything, christmas, romance, cute little village and religion but not too heavily to put the reader off. I enjoyed reading this story. It was easy to read, fast paced and contains short chapters.

When I started this book I didn’t want to put it down I just kept reading chapter after chapter. Yes, I was hooked. I fell in love with the characters, the cute little village and adored the hint of Christmas within too. A one of a kind story that is brilliant, I was sad it had to end. I awarded a well deserved five stars and I would highly recommend this story to you all. I also love the cover. A lovely story. 

The Little Church By The Sea will be released on the 23rd of November so pre-order now. You will not be disappointed and have a brilliant story to read just in time for christmas. Enjoy. 

Bestsellers · contemporary · mystery · Religion · suspense · thriller

The Loney – Andrew Hurley ✶✶✶✶✶

the loney

If it had another name, I never knew, but the locals called it the Loney – that strange nowhere between the Wyre and the Lune where Hanny and I went every Easter time with Mummer, Farther, Mr and Mrs Belderboss and Father Wilfred, the parish priest. It was impossible to truly know the place. It changed with each influx and retreat, and the neap tides would reveal the skeletons of those who thought they could escape its insidious currents. No one ever went near the water. No one apart from us, that is. I suppose I always knew that what happened there wouldn’t stay hidden for ever, no matter how much I wanted it to. No matter how hard I tried to forget..

I got to pick book of the month in one of my many book clubs I’m a member of and I chose to read this one. It was nothing like I expected it to be but nevertheless a brilliant story which I devoured. I didn’t expect the subject of religion throughout but it did not put me off! It wasn’t a scary book or thrilling to me personally but a story I enjoyed and will not forget any time soon. Which is why I awarded this story five stars. The Loney is a one of a kind book which I cannot describe. I would highly recommend it to you all if you haven’t read it already… I really felt for all the characters especially the two boys who both had too much expected of them. The Loney is somewhere I wouldn’t like to go! I must admit I was a bit confused at the ending but I re read it and understood it (I think). I don’t want to give anything away! This is the perfect book for readers who enjoy a brilliant bestseller, mystery, thriller, suspense, contemporary and religion filled story with a TWIST. It’s no wonder The Loney won a Costa book award in 2015. A very weird, one of a kind story which surprised me. Loved it. Enjoy.