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Becoming by Laura Jane Williams – A Love Letter Shaped Review

19 Jun

I realised writing a review for Becoming by Laura Jane Williams* wasn’t going to be easy very early on when reading it. I have had such an emotional reaction to this book, writing the kind of review you may be used to on my book blog Once Upon a Bookcase just isn’t going to cut it. So, instead, this is part review, part love letter to Williams, and part a post about me and my hurts. (This is pretty long. You have been warned.)

Becoming by Laura Jane Williams

Dear Laura,

It’s difficult for me to find the words to explain how much Becoming meant to me. I’m a huge fan of your blog Superlatively Rude, and admire you so much as a writer, so Becoming was always on my wishlist – to read more of your words, to hear more of your story. But it ended up affecting me on such a deeply emotional level. You’ve changed the way I think, you’ve made me want to be braver, and you’ve made me face and accept parts of myself I had always turned away from and ignored. Continue reading

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Man Up by Jack Urwin Book Launch

5 Jun
Man Up Launch

Sexism and the idea of gender roles is something I’m really passionate about. I consider myself to be a newbie feminist, and there’s a lot I’m still learning about, but one thing I’ve noticed in my reading is how most books (that I’ve read) tend to touch on how sexism affects men and boys, but they don’t really go into much detail about it. When I heard about Man Up: Surviving Modern Masculinity by Jack Urwin* and the launch for the book, I knew this was the book I had been waiting for, and eagerly booked myself a ticket for the event.

The Man Up launch happened on Friday evening at Waterstones Piccadilly. Jack Urwin was in conversation with Laura Jane Williams, author of Becoming and the lady behind Superlatively Rude (who was also a major draw to this event for me, I just love her!), and Joel Beckman, the General Manager of Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), a charity whose aim is to prevent male suicide. The three discussed the topics covered in the book, and how this idea that men have to be “masculine” is detrimental to their mental health. It was such an incredibly fascinating event, so I thought I’d highlight some of the major points made at the event. Continue reading

I’m Not Beautiful – & Actually, That’s OK

24 Apr
I'm Not Beautiful

I’m currently reading The List by Siobhan Vivian, a YA novel that focuses on beauty and how we look. At Mount Washington High, every year a list is released, naming the prettiest and ugliest girl in each grade, and we follow the eight girls listed over the course of a week, seeing how they are affected by being given their titles.

It’s a really interesting, subtley feminist novel, and has got me thinking a lot about beauty and what it actually means. I’ve come to the conclusion that beauty doesn’t actually matter. Continue reading

#ToTheGirls2016

22 Jan

With the UK release of All the Rage – a novel about a rape survivor whose whole community turns their back on her – YA author Courtney Summer has brought back her social media campaign to share support and advice to young girls, #ToTheGirls2016. Yesterday, Summers was on The Guardian website talking about her book (which I’ve read already, it’s amazing!), the campaign and why it’s so important.

Continue reading