Jenna. Does. The. Best. Tags.
I hadn’t seen the thank u, next tag before Jenna did it.
I love a good music/book/pop culture mash-up. Approve.
A quick warning: these prompts turned into mini-essays that trended serious.
But hey: the song is about break-ups and exes who’ve died. Some solemnity isn’t unprecedented.
Thank you, next.
Name a book you told, “Thank you, next,”
i.e., DNFed (Did Not Finish)
I’m tempted to DNF The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle.
If I’m this annoyed with the protagonist on page 30, things aren’t likely to get better.
And I bought this book on sale, so it’s fine to dump it…right?
Name a book that taught you love
(i.e, a book you loved)
I bought the very short and SUPER adorable A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns.
It’s lovely! Such a great teaching aid!
I would like a world where my friends and coworkers don’t have to beg others to use the right pronouns.
Name a book that taught you patience
Both books in the Montague siblings duology took time for me to get into, especially the first one.
I’d been promised fun, fast-paced adventure and got…not that.
The first hundred pages are rife with pining and pain.
I eventually slogged through the duology’s slower parts. I felt it was MOSTLY worth it.
Name a book that taught you pain
I used to read tacky romances for fun.
Not after Red Girl, Blue Boy.
I DESPISE wacky hijinks.
I find wackiness works much better in middle-grade lit, children’s lit, and/or parodies.
DOESN’T WORK AS WELL IN FLUFFY ROMANCES.
You will NOT get away with having your allegedly-neurotypical heroine BURST into song because THAT’S WHAT THE KIDS DO ON GLEE.
Yes, spending all your time around adults would stunt your interactions with teens.
Still, you mean to tell me that a heroine who watches SO MUCH TV is COMPLETELY unfamiliar with GENRE CONVENTIONS?
“Bleep bloop, I only understand politics,” apparently qualifies as adequate characterization.
Also, the heroine’s love interest finds her behavior CUTE AND CHARMING.
NOPE. THAT IS NOT A THING.
Name a book that you loved at the time of reading but, in hindsight, you do not like as much anymore but which you still learned some other quality from
I named The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy as an early contender for my favorite book of 2019.
Since then, Mackenzi Lee has garnered controversy for her trans love story The Madness Blooms.
That controversy made me reevaluate my connection to the Montague siblings.
Quite honestly, it took me a while to finish Lady’s Guide; though Lee’s research is top-notch, she struggles with pacing.
I loved Felicity as a character and the social commentary really resonated with me.
The expectations for women in the novel aren’t some outdated trope; marriage and motherhood are still the standard for women in many of my former communities and in other locations around the country.
I’m incensed that women are still pressured to set aside giftings and passions for their “true” purpose of marriage and children.
(For the record, Ben Shapiro and followers, there’s a HUGE difference between wanting to become a wife and mother and ONLY being allowed to want that.)
To watch asexual hero Felicity challenge that assumption boosted my tired heart.
I don’t know if I love this book as much as I once did.
I still, though, remember how I felt when I read it and I won’t forget that.
Name a book you’re currently talking to
i.e., have the hots for
If I’m Being Honest looks bright and fun.
And, if I’M being honest, Jenna keeps talking it up.
AND…PINK IS MY FAVORITE COLOR.
Name a book that gon’ last
The book of you, the book that helped you love yourself a little more
First of all, spoilers, spoilers, SPOILERS for Maggie Stiefvater’s The Dream Thieves.
My senior year of college was rough.
I repressed so many of my emotions and needs that I made myself sick. I would berate myself for anxious thoughts and frequently fell into painful emotional spirals.
I wanted to be perfect and I fell so short.
All of this made me vulnerable to emotionally-unsafe communities and relationships.
I found The Raven Cycle in the midst of this.
There’s a moment in The Dream Thieves that I’ve written about several times.
In it, Ronan learns that the terrifying creatures that keep attacking him are the externalized manifestations of his self-hatred.
Opal tells him, “They’re just you. Why do you hate you?”
Ronan reaches out to one of the creatures and says, “I don’t.”
Since college, since switching churches and prioritizing my mental health, I have learned there’s nothing inherently wrong with me.
Like Ronan, I don’t hate me anymore.
I have MORE music tags and some bonus summer tags.
THIS IS THE SUMMER OF TAGS.
ALL SHALL BOW BEFORE MY LITANY OF TAGS.
Listen, I woke up to a 4.6 earthquake last night. This is the best ending I got.