April and May Book Reviews

Hello again my friends! It’s been quite a while. We spent most of our month of April prepping for our Australia and New Zealand trip, and then of course we adventured around for the majority of May. So I definitely didn’t read as much as I had hoped, but such is life. I had a pretty good excuse. 

For a bit of backstory, I have been reading through the book Light the Dark, in which different authors share aspects of the writing process. As a supplement to that (or perhaps the other way around), when I read a chapter from a particular author, I read one of their books.

This time around I picked up Stephen King’s The Shining, which honestly was a long, mucky process to get through. In retrospect from my own observation and also from people I’ve chatted with, this may not have been the best of his books to start out reading, but it’s what I picked so there wasn’t any going back. I can see how it was acclaimed in its day, but now with my oversaturation of the horror genre, it was predictable and dragged on far too long in its descriptions and backstory. With that being said, I did love the characterization of Jack and how he organically evolved into being overtaken by the hotel.

The shining (har har I’m so sorry) aspect of the book to me was how King portrayed the voices that Danny could hear—this shows how the written language can really turn into a work of art. (As a side note, I also enjoyed this because in my own book I’m working on, I am exploring a similar concept. So it was neat to see another author’s take on the formatting, albeit a bit annoying because I thought I had come up with the idea myself and yet here is one of the most well known authors of our time already doing it. So it goes.)

Would I recommend this book? Eh, since I probably will never have a desire to read it again, probably not. But I do want to read a few more of his works to add them to my reading repertoire.

 When I went to New Zealand for the first time, it was 2015 and I was going with a group of students and a couple professors from my university right after school ended for the summer. To keep a long story short, it had been my dream to visit since I was in 7th grade, and I absolutely fell in love with everything about New Zealand, the people, the land, the culture. I learned so much about myself and about what it means to be a human living on the earth, and I will always be grateful for that experience. During the middle of summer we had a reunion party at the professor’s house, and while there, she gave me me The Bone People by Keri Hulme. I raced through reading it, desperate to consume anything related to New Zealand after returning to the states. So for this second trip, I was excitedly curious to read it again while actually in the country and read it a bit more deliberately.

This novel is by far one of my all-time favorites. I know I tend to be a bit hyperbolic in my excitement about things, but honestly, this book is everything I aspire to be as a writer. It’s beautiful, tragically poetic, and is woven together with mysticism of the land and our intrinsic connection to one another as humans. In short, I love this book. I never know how much to give away when it comes to these reviews, but for this I won’t say anything else. This book is a masterpiece and if you have any sense about you, you will check it out from the library, purchase it immediately, whatever you can to get your hands on this book. You won’t regret it.

And now that we are gearing up for June, I cannot wait to dive back into reading regularly. There have been so many summer books coming out, I can practically smell the summer air, taste that cold iced coffee, all while soaking in the sun sitting on my porch surrounded by stacks of worlds. Aaah, the dream.