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Recent Reads And Other Things

Remember when I said I was back in May….. *Tyler the Creator voice* well that was a fucking lie.

Jokes aside, I really thought that I would be posting more on here, but tragedy doesn’t really care for intention. Days after I last posted, everything changed. I’ll just keep it simple — this pandemic is deadly and my family, like so many others, has lost somebody to it. It sucks. So much.

I’ve been reading here and there so I wanted to talk about some of my recent reads:

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann

One of my favorite things to read in books is slow burn. The amount of yearning and pining in this book was just *chef’s kiss*

In many ways, this book took me on a trip down memory lane to my old college days and the dumb crushes I would pine over. I still have really bad poetry somewhere in my old tumblr drafts 😂 Some scenes felt like they were ripped outta my own mind! I think Kann does a great job at creating this 19 year old girl who is at the cusp of adulthood and is still going through the last few growing pains of childhood.

We Are Not From here by Jenny Torres Sanchez

Told through the perspective of three Guatemalan teenagers, We Are Not From Here is a story about hope, perseverance and strength. These three teenagers have to leave Guatemala suddenly, and try to make it to the US on top of the infamous La Bestia. Pequeña was a standout character for me and the elements of magical realism throughout her POV were especially poignant. The scenes in Guatemala were filled with bittersweetness — it felt as if the characters were already missing their home even though, at that point, they had not left.

However, I am not a Guatemalan reviewer, so I’ll include some words from my old college roomie who is an ownvoices reviewer for this novel:

This book hit hard for so many reasons. It had so many references to mi Guate. from talking about Rio Dulce to my favorite Guatemalan meal, pollo con crema. Never have I had that happen, where I get that many accurate non stereotypical references. I got so excited with them I sent pictures with the references circled to my mom. Then there were all the references to the dangerous parts that I know about too. The reasons people flee and risk their lives. 

Dark Days by James Baldwin

Aside from my own personal bubble, the months of May and June were extremely chaotic, horrifying and infuriating in the US. Blind patriotism is gross. I donated to a couple of orgs I found on the National Resource List , a great resource for those of us that have a little bit to give: linktr.ee/nationalresourceslist

I don’t think I was introduced to James Baldwin’s writing until university– which in retrospect seems mind boggling. I think high schoolers across the nation would benefit more by reading one of his essays rather than reading Catcher in the Rye for the third time in a row…

Hood Feminism: Notes From the Women that a Movement Forgot

Mainstream feminism aka white feminism has never been made with BIPOC women in mind. It’s rigid in its stance — which is ironic for a movement that prides itself in breaking the glass ceiling.

This book is short but packed with a lot of quick information that some people may not be aware of. Mikki Kendall writes in a sharp, no-bullshit-allowed voice and I really enjoyed how she wove in personal stories with facts.

Beyond the Gender Binary by ALOK

This is another short book, spanning only 64 pages but its packed with great info and personal experience from its author ALOK. ALOK (they/them) is a gender non conforming creative and this book is as vivid as they are.

Things I’ve Been Watching in May + June

Movies:

The Old Guard (Netflix) – Netflix Party hosted by Adriana from over at BoricuaReads! Charlize Theron beat some guys up with her giant axe and Dudley from the HP movies was there?

Palm Springs (Hulu) – I don’t think they ever mention the words Palm Springs once? Could’ve been called White People: The Movie

Mucho, Mucho Amor (Netflix)- Walter Mercado’s voice reminds me of coming home from school, kicking off my shoes, feeling the cold tile underneath my feet, the warmth of safety

Nobody Knows I’m Here (Netflix) – hello watch this one !! A loner lives in exile after a brush with childhood stardom fucks him over. great performance from jorge garcia, who you might recognize as hurley from lost!

Splice (Netflix) – fuck this movie, it made me spill my water on my laptop and it broke, so i had to get a new one. super busy third act that makes no sense, @ guillermo del toro, i know you are a monster fucker but why did you produce this lol.

Hamilton (Disney+) – i’m so glad i had my hamilton phase in university and not high school bc i know for a fact my room would have been decked out in merch and ew.🤢 anyways daveed diggs marry me challenge.

An Evening With Beverly Luff Lin (Netflix) – this movie is trippy but i loved it so much. aubrey plaza steals the whole damn show but her chemistry with jemaine clement is zany n ripe with strangeness. david lynch vibes but weirder.

Downton Abbey: The Movie (Amazon Prime) – literally so boring, i only saw half. they kept having to explain why certain characters were gone. should’ve just been the ghost of dan stevens’s character roaming the halls.

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (Netflix) – i liked this movie bc you could tell dan stevens had so much fun playing a russian. rachel mcadams should be in more comedies. but the fact that will ferrell in a bad wig was her love interest? electric chair.

I’m No Longer Here (Netflix) – another must watch. in monterrey mexico, ulises is part of a gang that revers the the kolombia cumbia counterculture scene. when tragedy strikes he is forced to flee to the US and finds himself in the bright and unfamilar streets of new york.

Vox Lux (Hulu) – what if i told you this movie has the same plot as that one futurama episode where fry makes a deal with the robot devil👀 the first scene is extremely shocking, and unsettling — mostly because i didn’t know it was going to happen, tw: school shooting scene.

Artemis Fowl (Disney+) – literally do not watch. didn’t even finish it, it b a d. josh gad does some nasty poop humor joke that will literally make you want to puke. judi dench has a funny accent. watch spy kids instead.

Da 5 Bloods (Netflix) – shocking at certain points, more blood than i expected.

Unbreabkable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs. The Reverand (Netflix) – this was interactive and i kept choosing the wrong buttons and having to restart. daniel radcliffe was delightful! a welcome escape during horrible times.

The Last Airbender (Netflix) bad. but dev patel 🥺

TV Shows Rated Only By Emojis:

I May Destroy You (HBO) 👏

I’ll Be Gone In the Dark (HBO)🤯

What We Do In the Shadows (FX)🤗👻

Mrs. America (FX)😌

Ramy (Hulu)🧐

Normal People (Hulu)😴

Avatar: The Last Airbender (Netflix)😮

The Midnight Gospel (Netflix)🤠

Hollywood (Netflix)🤡

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