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Womanish: A Grown Black Woman Speaks on Love and Life

4.39  ·  Rating details ·  62 ratings  ·  19 reviews
Life at the Intersection explores how being both black and female—not to mention middle-aged—complicates everything from dating to parenting to mental health in America. And how one woman responds to those challenges. In the vein of contemporary social commentators such as Roxane Gay and Rebecca Solnit, author Kimberly McLarin elucidates the joys, sorrows and frustrations ...more
ebook, 189 pages
Published January 15th 2019 by Ig Publishing
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4.39  · 
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 ·  62 ratings  ·  19 reviews

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Morgan ***Books and Bougie***
I was in the middle of reading "Black is the Body", another book of essays, when I found myself bored and wanting to read something else. This book was conveniently next to me and I picked it up. I finished it in a single day.

What "Black is the Body" lacks in fire, "Womanish" has the matches and gasoline. Every essay was punctuated with the no-nonsense voice of a Black mother speaking her truth and telling her wisdom. I found myself completely entranced in her life lessons and even laughing at t

In this brilliant and truthful essay collection, Kim McLarin covers just about every aspect of living in America as a Black woman. I was enlightened, amused, made quite uncomfortable at times, and impressed over and over by her intelligence. You know I have a thing for intelligent women.

Everything she covers is important to a grown or growing woman: on-line dating, depression, racial injustice in the courts, anger, marriage, motherhood, bad partners, revenge vs non-violence, and more. The whole
Devon H
Jan 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This nonfiction title explores some heavy topics, such as racism, sexism, mental health, and feminism through McLaren's life lens. Her perspective is not unique, but the way she writes about her story feels inspiring and fresh. I was drawn to Womanish by the gorgeous bright pink and purple cover, but a pretty cover does not always a five star book make. Let's jump right into the meat of her essays.

McLaren jumps right into her book with an essay about online dating. The thing I noticed right off
Melody Moezzi
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This stunning collection of essays is bold, brilliant, and beautifully written. I'm an author on a tight book deadline right now, and I picked up Womanish yesterday morning--planning to read just a little before I started writing for the day--but I couldn't put it down. My morning of writing quickly turned into a morning of reading, and I don't regret it. I have to really start writing today--otherwise I'd write a longer review--but if Goodreads lets me come back and revise this review later, I' ...more
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant, heartbreaking, empowering, and sobering. Must read!!! Amazingly good!!!
Reading in Black & White
It started off very well, sort of went into a different direction and lost me, and finished on a good note. This book is worth reading and I’ll write a longer review at a later date.
Kristen Ploetz
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this stunning, poignant collection in one sitting. It is excellent both thematically and because of the sharply written prose. McLarin’s collection has a wide range of topics all centered via her experience as a Black woman, and with each essay I found myself wishing she’d written an entire book about that one particular subject. She is unflinching and isn’t afraid to express the reality for Black people living in the U.S. today where white supremacy is still all too real and pervasive; a ...more
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kim McLarin taps into the Black woman's experience--in life, relationships, motherhood, and professionally--in a way that's relatable and accessible for all. Each one of these essays is a testimony to the truth of, not only womanhood but, Black womanhood, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading this collection.

Some of what's here has been offered elsewhere--via other publications--but that neither minimizes nor devalues the thoughtful ways she relays her experiences; in fact, there were many times whe
Breauna Franklin
Jun 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finished this book in one day. McLarin's essays are so powerful and concise and they always leave you reflecting on the ways her experiences can apply to your own life.

It is so refreshing hearing a black woman speak on her experiences in such a candid manner and realize her areas of privilege and marginalization.

I found myself bookmarking so many pages but here are a few of my favorite excerpts:

Maybe these women had not, in fact, internalized the notion that not only should Black women not ex
Joan Conte
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a fan of essays this book was just what I needed. At less than 100 pages I was able to read this over the course of an afternoon. I ended feeling full of ideas. Womanish is a collection of essays on black womanhood, education, politics, motherhood, online dating, mental health, and racism. Kim lays out her own life in an easy to follow narrative. She points out various issues of race and addresses them towards a white audience. She also gets very personal. What I love about Kim is her ease in ...more
Mar 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes we happen across a written piece we wish we could share with the world. In this collection of thoughtful and eye-opening essays, the piece I want to share with the world is the chapter entitled: Mothering While Black. McLarin delivers a stunning look inside the world of parenting children amid a storm of racism which swirls around them threateningly from the time they exit the safety of their mother's womb. This chapter will bring tears to your eyes and, to be honest, it will plant a s ...more
Mar 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This collection of essays is for me, now. Although I'm a little younger than the author, we're generationally similar in ways that are impactful for me. Even when I didn't quite agree, I felt like I understood what Ms. Mclarin was telling me at a bone-deep level. Her essay blowing up OK Cupid's findings about the state of Black female dating was uplifting; the essay about her nephew being sentenced to prison was crushing, and her wry asides in the essay blowing open the difficulties and power sy ...more
Demetria Gray
May 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was looking forward to reading this book. Excellent title, beautiful cover, interesting essays. At times it seemed overloaded with statistics/citing; and in those times, I wished for more of her own words (or less citing). Or maybe because two other books I’ve read by McLarin (Jump at the Sun, Divorce Dog—both great books) alluded to or mentioned the same/similar viewpoints, that I felt I’d already read this book before. Overall, a good read.
Ursula Villarreal-Moura
3.75/5 This was an engaging collection of essays. As a woman of color living in the Boston area, I could relate to the experiences of racism in this "progressive" state. Many of the topics McLarin explores are layered and her ideas are informed. Her writing style is rather conversational, full of fragments. It's a style that suits the dating essays, but it did require me to reread a number of sections. Overall, I enjoyed this Womanish and would recommend it.
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would love to have a dinner date with Ms. McLarin. I loved her voice and her oh too familiar life experiences in my hometown of Memphis, TN. Thank you so much for your transparency and humor. Reading your essays gave me the warmth of wine with a close girlfriend.
May 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Damn! can this woman write. Unflinching and clear and unadorned and deeply insightful. I borrowed this from the library but may need to purchase a copy for future re-reads.
Apr 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the delightful book of essays about some heavy topics I’ve been looking for for a while. This book has definitely made me smarter but I’ve hooted with laughter at least 3 times.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A sharp and thought-provoking collection of essays.
Miranda Burnett
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read!
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“This is a fundamental fact of life, a law of the universe, and the moment you embrace it is the moment you are free. Everyone gets at least one sociopath, one a-hole, one hurtful narcissistic jerk who barges or stumbles or falls into their life and causes pain .” 5 likes
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