These two poetry collections come out on the same day and they are by two halves of a couple, so I decided to review them together despite my differing opinions on them.
I received an early copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Release date: March 6th, 2018
the witch doesn’t burn in this one
The first collection of the women are some kind of magic series has been on my wishlist since forever, so I was really excited when I got to read this one. Unfortunately, it didn’t live up to my expectations.
I have heard people talk about how empowering Amanda Lovelace’s poetry is, and I definitely enjoyed many of the poems – I loved the little references to the way women survive and support each other, the body positivity, and the confidence in every poem. Still, there were almost none that really shook me to the core the way I expected.
Truthfully, many poems in this collection felt repetitive and redundant, repeating sentences I’ve heard many times in feminist circles. Make no mistake, it’s still incredibly important to say these things! But it simply didn’t feel as revolutionary as I expected based on what others said.
I did love how the formatting of the poems varied, and there were some unconventional ones I loved, e.g. “how to prevent getting sexually assaulted”. I also loved some others, e.g. “confidence isn’t egotism” and “confidence isn’t healthy”.
Still, poetry for me is mostly about emotional response, and this collection simply didn’t awake those emotions in me. Somebody else might like these poems more than I did and get more strength for them, though.
(note: This poetry collection deals with heavy topics such as abuse and rape, as well as misogyny, fatphobia and a long list of other things. There is a mostly-complete trigger warning list at the beginning, which is pretty useful.)
My rating: ★★★☆☆
This was one of the best and most powerful debut poetry collections I’ve read.
I loved the composition and how all the poems together told one story – I read the whole thing almost in one sitting because I was eager to know what happens next. The way Cyrus described every small detail of his two very different relationships was captivating, both the toxicity of the first relationship, and the little, loving, everyday moments of the second.
As someone who’s used to fiction, reading some of the poems was strange – there were some events that weirded me out and yet I couldn’t really “disagree” or judge, since this was someone’s real, actual life, not the relationship of two fictional characters. I’ll have to get used to this if I read more personal poetry, but I still enjoyed the poems in this collection.
My rating: ★★★★★