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4.16  ·  Rating details ·  6,721 ratings  ·  669 reviews
From the celebrated poet Yrsa Daley-Ward, a poignant collection of autobiographical poems about the heart, life, and the inner self.
Bone. Visceral. Close to. Stark.
The poems in Yrsa Daley-Ward's collection bone are exactly that: reflections on a particular life honed to their essence--so clear and pared-down, they become universal.
From navigating the oft competing w
Paperback, 138 pages
Published September 26th 2017 by Penguin Books (first published June 16th 2014)
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Average rating 4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,721 ratings  ·  669 reviews

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Angeline Lee
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
you don't need to write a novel to tell a story. yrsa daley ward knows this. she can tell you a story in 50 words. make her point in 20. make me cry in eight.

bone pulls you so far deep into the ocean of yourself that you both lose and find yourself completely. forget who you are and wear the skin and bones of someone else entirely for a change.

until you hit the four lines every once in a while that will shake you to the bone and the very heart of you. then, there, it will hand you your name.

Jul 01, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn’t connect with this collection of poems as much as I would’ve liked.
There’s no doubt though that Yrsa is an incredibly talented writer. She has the ability to tell a story and paint a vivid image in your head with few words and it’s powerful to be able to tell a story and relay that with poetry alone.
Dec 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 Stars

Beautifully written and heartbreaking. I didn't connect with every poem, but there were a few that really hit home for me. Overall I think it's a powerful collection that's definitely worth the read.
Apr 27, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-reads, poetry
“and anyway,
there will always be your breath
which, hard as you try,
you cant do without
you cant run away from.
There will always your heart
stronger and louder
the harder, the further
you run.”
Ammara Abid
Thank Goodness I have nearly
folding my desire into itself
being afraid to claim it.'

'The most important thing to do isnot to worry. The lines on your face will never stop the sun from coming'

'what love isn’t
It is not a five star stay. It is not
compliments and it is never ever
It is solid. Not sweet but always
always herb, always salt. Sometimes
It is now and till the end. It is never a
slither, never a little
it is a full serving
it is much
too much and real
Brown Girl Reading
Nov 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: poetry lovers
Apr 17, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poc, poetry, adult
I don't know where I stand : did I like it ? did I hate it ? both ?

I probably would have liked it less if I wasn't having a bad day, because I think you need to be in the right mindset to actually properly enjoy this poetry collection, and I was.
I didn't connect with any of the poems, but does that mean they weren't good ? No. They were powerful, hard to read sometimes because of their topics, and even though I didn't understand sometimes who the author was talking to or talking about, I still f
Nov 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Penguin Books for providing me with this review copy!

I'm going to start this with the caveat that I rarely read poetry. In fact, this might be the first poetry book I've ever reviewed on here. But when I read a couple positive reviews and discovered that the author is Nigerian/Jamaican, I was definitely intrigued.

Since I'm such a poetry newbie, I don't feel at all qualified to comment on the technical merits of this collection. I will say that this many of the poems in this collecti
(Nearly 3.5) This debut collection from a Black British (Nigerian/Jamaican) performance poet reminded me most of Kate Tempest’s work. Some recurring themes are growing up in a fractured family, the highs versus occasional anguish of romantic love, and the complications of being gay in the context of conservative religion. I particularly liked “Coordinates” (“Every time I travel / I meet myself a little more / Sometimes you have to leave all your cities to fall in love”), “Poetry” (“You will come ...more
Desirée Venn Frederic
“one day I will tell you what I’ve been.
It will scare you.”

'revelation', bone

yrsa daley-ward's 'bone' assails the senses and swallows you whole.

daley-ward's writing is refreshing, a study in direct, "to-the-gut" storytelling. she assumes many guises becoming many narrators, each voice with equal suppleness. bone is an exploration offering cerebral moments amid light and ladened experiences. sharp. familiar. a captivating legato of life strung together. i met many women within the pages, each
Currently Free On Kindle: I had this on my wishlist so excited!!!
So I finished this poetry collection about a month ago, and it is only now that I feel able to properly express my thoughts.

Daley-Ward is a fantastic writer and poet. Out of all the poetry collections I've recently read that have similar themes and writing styles, hers captured my attention the most. When I read her poems, I felt like I was absorbing pure energy, as she manages to capture such deep and raw emotion almost effortlessly. Partly why I am praising this collection so much is that I r
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is by far one of the best poetry books I have ever read. Yrsa Daley-Ward knows how to write poetry that tears your insides apart. This is my type of poetry book. I would recommend this to anyone who loves poetry for its raw effect on the senses. Outstanding. If I could give it 10 stars out of five, no rating would do it justice.
Must read.
Paige (Enchantology)
3.5 stars
Never Without a Book
Short and beautiful written 💛 loved it.
lauren ♡
this was so powerful and hard hitting.

tw: for homophobia, religion, sexual abuse & rape
Jun 11, 2020 rated it did not like it
The only thing worse than the self-centered, pretentious foreword by Kiese Laymon is this fake deep, sappy poem collection written in the vein of Tumblr quotes and Lang Leav.

I can't believe that the same woman who wrote the raw, magnificent piece that is The Terrible also wrote this. What a disappointment!
Jan 01, 2021 added it
A good collection of poems about family and religion and the ways those things that are meant to bring comfort can do the most damage. I particularly enjoyed the longed, more narrative poems and the way Yrsa Daley-Ward crafted stories in such small spaces.
Jun 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All other poetry collections can go home.

I need to get a copy of the deluxe edition in my hands ASAP.
Jan 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Every single poem made me think. Loved this collection. Only issue is they are all very similar.
Hiba Arrame
Dec 19, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: شعر-poetry
I had high expectations for this one, and I just didn't get along with the whole collection. There were maybe two or three parts I loved and read more than once but that was it.

3.5/5 stars

bone by Yrsa Daley-Ward was a very mixed read for me. Some of the poems I absolutely loved and they seemed to hit me right in the heart. But other poems flew straight over my head and I didn't connect to them at all. In all, this was an enjoyable and thought-provoking poetry collection. I especially loved how this author brought a distinct story-teller quality to each poem. The poet didn't need a whole novel to produce an emotional story, rather she portrayed it in a variety of short
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
I have a lot of mixed feelings right now. There were some poems that hit me right in the gut with so much power and some I couldn't connect with at all. ...more
Jodie "Bookish"  Cook
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Book Review
Title: Bone
Author: Yrsa Daley-Ward
Genre: Poetry
Rating: *****
Review: As this is a poetry collection this review isn’t going to be as long as my novel reviews. For some of the poems I have read leading up to the ¼ mark in the collection, Bone is about how we see the world, how we see others, how others see us and how we love, good and bad. So far my favourite poems are Bone because it looks at how women look at sex and how it can make us feel in good or bad situations but you could also
Mar 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
Bone is a brilliant collection of poems. I preferred the long poems- they read like short stories and were packed with suspense and emotion. I loved how the long poems started and how the plot unfolds towards the middle of them. I wasn't really crazy about how some of the poems ended though.

Most of the poems were on death, sex, family, relationships and Christianity. She blends her West Indian (Jamaican) and West African (Nigerian) cultures beautifull
Julia Sapphire
Oct 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017, verse
I really didn't like this unfortunately... I found myself only liking about four poems from this whole collection. I don't like the way this was written and how some poems dragged for many many pages. This also has a religious component so I wanted to put that out there.

so some of the poems I just didn't like...
"tough tongue to flesh,
bite the lobe,
swallow the juice
she says will purify you"

like ew. what? no.
Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
"Romance your damn self"

"Women who were brought up devout and fearful
Get stirred, like anyone else.
Want men. Want
other women. Stink under the arms at the end of
the day. Get
that all too familiar mix of fear and discontent
in the night. Want to do the things
that they ‘Must Not Do.’
Those dirty, bloody attractive things."
Jay Moran
When the blood in your body is
weary to flow,
when your bones are heavy though
if you have made it past thirty
and if you haven't yet,
rejoice. Know that there is a time
coming in your life when dirt settles
and the patterns form a picture.

(From the poem Mental Health).

Wow. This collection is a battering, an embrace, a blow, a kiss, a laugh, a cry, a mourning and a celebration. I had read a handful of these poems before when I attended a reading a few years ago (Yrsa Daley-Ward is a hel
Jun 30, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
not bad but its okay, I loved some of the poems especially kid, mental health and mum. the author writes beautifully don’t get me wrong but they were honestly too many words jammed up and some I couldn’t connect to which made me want to drift off

overall, I was expecting life changing and inspiration stuff but it just got some mild reactions from me lol.
Jul 06, 2018 added it
#RWLChallenge:A poetry collection written or edited by an LGBTQIA+ person of colour.
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Yrsa Daley-Ward is a writer and poet of mixed West Indian and West African heritage. Born to a Jamaican mother and a Nigerian father, Yrsa was raised by her devout Seventh Day Adventist grandparents in the small town of Chorley in the North of England. Her first collection of stories 'On Snakes and Other Stories' was published by 3:AM Press.

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“Self expression is a tricky
thing. Just as you start to feel
comfortable with yourself after years
of not, you then have to justify
yourself to other people.”
“If you are afraid to write it,
that's a good sign.
I suppose you know when you're
writing the
truth when you're terrified.”
More quotes…