Cinderella Ate My Daughter was an entertaining read, but it’s not really a “stick to your ribs” type of nonfiction. Orenstein is a journalist and she...moreCinderella Ate My Daughter was an entertaining read, but it’s not really a “stick to your ribs” type of nonfiction. Orenstein is a journalist and she writes like one. I generally find that journalists write very accessible and entertaining books that cover a wide shallow pond instead of a deep well. Although I often enjoy that sort of cherry picked light analysis for topics I am just fleetingly interested in, I found it deeply unsatisfying for her subject material. I am concerned about this topic as a new mother of a daughter and disappointed I came away from this book without any worthwhile conclusions.
If I had read this book before having my daughter, I probably would have really liked it and been forgiving. However, now that I have a daughter and worry about what her childhood will be like and what kind of adult she will grow into, I found this book to be disappointing. It may be more my misplaced expectations for anticipating at least a little bit of “how to” advice than any failure on Orenstein’s part but the disappointment lingers. I guess the presentation and title of it don’t explicitly say that it set out to be a parenting guide. But the publicity for this book (I heard and read multiple interviews that positioned it as a guide more than narrative) and Orenstein’s past forays into the topic of raising girls led me to believe that it would be more substantive. I’m not exactly thrilled to learn that there are no easy answers to the issues she discusses in this book.
I read this book (and started writing this review) when my daughter was still in the larval stage. Now she’s almost 2 and showing no real inclination towards anything “girly”. She probably wears more pink and sparkles than I’d like because they’re so prevalent and (ok, I’ll admit it) cute, but she likes her cars and trucks as much as her stuffed animals, has no use for dolls, has never seen a Disney movie (although she does watch other tv) and was decidedly ambivalent about the tutu her aunt bought for her. I know that she is still young and mother-daughter struggles over what is appropriate are probably lying in wait in the bushes further down the parenting path, but I am relieved that so far it’s a non-issue for me. I will continue to quietly donate and return Barbies and Disney Princess items that are given to her while I still have the luxury of it not being a fight. (less)
I won this mystery novel from the First Reads giveaway program. I quite enjoyed it. I couldn’t shake the feeling that something paranormal was at work...moreI won this mystery novel from the First Reads giveaway program. I quite enjoyed it. I couldn’t shake the feeling that something paranormal was at work for the first few chapters thanks to Stef Penney’s deliciously creepy tone-setting. As the book progressed, it became evident that nothing beyond human emotions was driving this mystery but it remained a suspenseful read. The novel switches between two narrators and both are extremely vivid and realistic. One of the characters is a teenager and I was delighted that Penney wrote him so well. I think many teenaged characters in books I read seem more like after school special caricatures than actual humans with real emotions or problems. Penney manages to balance on the fine line between what adults view as teenaged shallowness and the idealized version of what teenagers think they should be like. She creates a young man with his own dreams, contradictions and yes, occasional teenage shallowness who is an able guide into the fascinating world of Romany life in the United Kingdom. In fact, all the characters are written very well-they are all intriguing and none of them seemed to be standing in for “filler” even the minor actors in the plot. I would recommend this novel highly to both mystery lovers as well as anyone who enjoys a well written, intriguing story. (less)
I first heard of this case in a college Psychology and Biology of Human Sexuality course five years ago and saw this book on Swaptree and decided to t...moreI first heard of this case in a college Psychology and Biology of Human Sexuality course five years ago and saw this book on Swaptree and decided to take a gander. I loved Colapinto's writing style! Finally, a book based on a rather sensationalized news story that is intelligent and clear. Normally, books like this read as a novel length "People" article. Colapinto gives true justice to this heartbreaking story by both his prose and meticulous research methods that utilize a variety of sources to tell David's story from a many viewpoints.
Based on my previous scattered knowledge of this topic, I was already in favor of letting children with different genitals be at birth until they are old enough to decide what and if surgery should be performed and after reading this book, this view was strongly reinforced. Thank god we're moving away from Freud's batshit theories of the penis controlling it all; I'm not sure why feminists were so quick to use the twins case as support when the whole idea that a male can't be a man without a "normal" penis is so deeply sexist and offensive to me.
I read the 2000 printing of this book so it didn't mention the tragic post-script to this story; both the twins committed suicide within 5 years of this book's publication. I would strongly encourage fans of this book to read this article written by Colapinto after David's death http://slate.com/id/2101678/ .(less)
Finally, an excellent historic fiction novel without the stupid prim and proper love story clogging up the plot. In this case, Nan's quest for love en...moreFinally, an excellent historic fiction novel without the stupid prim and proper love story clogging up the plot. In this case, Nan's quest for love enhanced and guided the plot. Brilliantly written and researched (the author is a historian, after all) and shows quite a different side of Victorian society than most novels do. Also, who can argue with learning Victorian slang for various sex acts?(less)
I adore Octavia Butler's writing style in Kindred and although the plot in this series isn't my cup of tea, her writing was compelling enough for me t...moreI adore Octavia Butler's writing style in Kindred and although the plot in this series isn't my cup of tea, her writing was compelling enough for me to finish this but I'm working slowly through Adulthood Rites (Xenogenesis, #2) (I bought the whole 3 book series in one volume or I probably wouldn't have continued with this series). I can't wait to read more of her work(Fledgling looks particularly promising) but I'm a little "meh" towards this series. (less)