Mother's Day Review Special: After Birth by Elisa Albert

Imagine This: You are the mother of a bouncing baby boy. Except you are not all so happy and really thrilled about this motherhood thing because it’s not happening the way they sold it out to be. Because
a)      You had him under a knife.
b)      You are going through the world’s worst Post-partum disorder.

Your husband cannot help because, he has no clue as always. He rather expects you to bounce back and go on living like you didn’t go through any mean feat, like your life could ever be the same with a baby yelling you up awake and screeching before your alarm clock goes.

You are really pissed at the world, the co-op of mothers for not voicing how they really feel and pretending all is roses and soft cheeks. Fuck them all! While at cussing at them, let’s begin to hate TV Commercials, Doctors that speak against breast-feeding the child and opting for formula. Let’s talk about how medical practitioners prescribe unhealthy ‘miracle’ fertility drugs to aid fecundation. Let’s fucking talk about how women are just supposed to pretend all is well, and never fathom any thoughts this could all go wrong. And while at that too, let’s talk about all the fucked up things that have happened in your childhood, your mum who’s moods were unpredictable, all the female friends in your life who’ve been nothing but friends and a lot like females.

Let’s talk about Mina who’s moved a couple of blocks nearby, who’s had a rough past and is as femininely-opinionated as you. Mina you plan to help get around the ropes of this new birth thing. Mina who happens to be strong and made out of the fire she’s experienced throughout her life. Mina who offers some silver-lining in the hostile terrain called motherhood.

There’s also that dissertation you have to write for you doctorate degree in women studies. And the hot carpenter who if your stupid, ancient house doesn’t stop falling apart you might just have to fuck…

Ari’s hellish life summarized for your delight…

What a book!

Elisa Alberts has moved into my ranks of authors who do not give a fuck the sensitivity of her topic and isn’t afraid to lay it bare as it is. A beautiful book about giving birth and c-sections, breastfeeding and respecting your body as a pregnant woman, Post-partum depression, and all the other insides about birth you are never, ever told. A star to this amazing storyline.—★

I love the language. It’s literary fiction at its finest. I’ve decided when I begin writing anything (serious) I want to write like Elisa Albert! She doesn’t quite consider the huge barrier separating poetry from prose  (much like how she doesn’t care about laying on her subject matter and her themes easily). She criscrosses between the two to achieve this rhythmic, pulsating composition that astounds and is very highly literary. Yet she infuses a commercial spin to this writing by injecting blasts of humour. What amazing writing!—★★

The main character, Ari, is fucking adorable! She’s smart, she’s feminist, she’s strong, she’s peculiar. She’s well-developed! Her voice is breath-taking. A character to contend with. Her opinions are enlightening and very… controversial! She’s the embodiment of a true feminist, although in this book she states what kind of feminist she is (the smart one who’s not an activist in a group of women that are going to breakdown anyway because you can’t have all such toxicity in one group). A star.—★★★

Other characters I loved are Mina, the ex-drummer of a band that didn’t quite make it who’s been a prostitute, a writer and everything in between. There’s Paul, Ari’s husband who does tolerate her too much. There’s Wil, the hot carpenter who listens and understands our lead. There’s Molly, there’s Jess, there’s a whole cast of all Ari’s old friends who are fascinating because our lead wouldn’t go for the ordinary. There’s Sheryl, our lead’s stepmother who she blanks out most of the time because of her stern Jewish values (“You really have to circumcise this child!”). A star to all these characters.—★★★★

(I FEEL I NEED TO ADD THIS :) I had this book since last year, and I was afraid to dive into it because of the reviews on Goodreads. But come on, which reader who actually loved a book ever had time to go put up their reviews on Goodreads. I’ve come to realize Goodreads is the biggest anti-feminist review-site out there so please if you’d go get a brilliant feminism book like this, don’t you dare be influenced by all that happens on that site. It would be nice to form your own opinions. (If you don’t believe me, see Courting Trouble by Kathy Lette, see Dietland by Sarai Walker, all great books really). I’m really learning, thanks to Elisa Albert, to say fuck you Goodreads, never ever would you influence my choice of reading!

My rating is definitely a five out of five stars.
Elisa Albert’s After Birth is available on Amazon. 

I recommend this book to anybody who wants to think as well as laugh. Anyone who wants something on the subject of feminism. You want something literary? Well, this is high, high form of literary. This book is highly recommended to all (young) mothers and all plain adults. Books like this mould!

My work not done here. Off to post my review on Amazon as well as Goodreads.


Book Review: The Assistants by Camille Perri

Imagine This: You are thirty. For six years you’ve been an assistant to one of the richest most powerful men in the world. Although you are respected, everyone needs a favour from you, you run his life accordingly, you are still underpaid and overworked.

You are drowning in student-loan debts and your 30,000 dollars a year is kind of sucking at bailing you out. But of course, slowly you’d get that loan off your neck, maybe in six to seven to ten years.

Then a cheque lands on your desk. The exact amount of your student loan debt. No one has any idea of it except you. You’ll keep it in your bag for a few days. You’re not going to use it. Only if they hadn’t invented that app where you snap a checque and immediately it gets cashed in into your account.

Relief! Your student loans-debt are paid!

Except you are not all free, some assistants have caught wind of what you’ve done. And they as well, have student-loans to pay too. And if you don’t help them… they wouldn’t help you too.

I loved this book! Since (the Devil Wears Prada) no book has been able to quite capture the not so glamorous life of The Assistant…

Amazing storyline! The Assistants of a multi-billion firm duping their filthy rich bosses to clear off their student-loan debts, because of course what they earn a year is what their bosses spend on a golf-club! Brilliant! It starts out as a chick-lit novel, a random one. Then it evolves into a title subversive and revolutionary. A star to the storyline.—★

You’d love the main character! Tina Fontanna! She’s a loner, known as a dyke back in school, spends too much time making sure her boss’ life runs smoothly yet can’t keep hers in check. The typical assistant. However, you wouldn’t find her seething about her boss being a slave-driver (maybe he is, but he has a good heart) and Tina works for him happily. She’s funny. She’s super timid. And is very generous… with money that’s not her own. A star.—★★

Other characters you’d love are Emily, the ‘bonafide’, Harvard-graduate (press her and you’d find she’s lying), accomplice and roommate. You’d also love Wendi Chan, the Asian, band-drummer, anarchist-at-heart computer geek assistant from the IT department. There’s also Margie Fischer, the burly woman who hates Tina’s guts for whatever reasons. Robert Barlow, the boss being duped who has one too many quotes embedded in our lead’s head. A star to these characters and other more amazing Assistants I can’t mention for fear this review might turn into an epic poem of some sorts. —★★★
And there’s a very amazing, and satisfying ending too.—★★★★

My rating: Four out of five stars.

Go get The Assistants by Camille Perri (it’s her debut!) on amazon.

I recommend it to anyone who wants a chicklit title that isn’t all about sunny summers and jilted vacationers, but one that is full off revolutionary material, checking on some error on society.

My work not done here. Off to post my review on Amazon as well as Goodreads.


Killer Review: In The Cafe of Lost Youth by Patrick Modiano

Imagine This:  You are missing. Your husband is in search of you. A detective is in search of you. A narrator with whom you have an unknown relationship is in search of you.

When everyone is asking around for you, getting on clues to piece your disappearance together and find you, only you know where 
you are. And you might not even know you are missing.

I’m in love with Patrick Modiano. I had this perception that to win a Nobel Prize in Literature you have to be a Wole Soyinka (whose writing I dislike so much despite being African. I know, hang me!). Anyway, Modiano writes with skill, every word, every sentence needs to be decoded so the reader can piece the mystery pervading in the novel. A star.—

About the mystery. You’d find yourself wondering where Jacqueline DeLanque (“Louki”) is. Throughout the novel, you’d be wondering why the fuss with her. (Because the narrators sure do make a fuss about her). There’s one thing though you’d love about Jacqueline, you wouldn’t be able to figure her out, she’s complex, complicated, and perhaps demented from past, childhood demons. A star to the mystery, and another to the main character.—★★★

One of the nicest things about this novel is I couldn’t put a genre to it. At one point I thought it was solely a mystery novel, then I thought it was intrigue—when missing woman is given her point of view—then I pegged it down as just literary fiction because I couldn’t pinpoint the direction of the story but the missing woman didn’t seem missing at all, and when I gave up trying to put a genre to it enjoying its beautiful writing (novels are like sexuality! It’s not all black-and-white!), I found out it was a Literary (Psychological) Thriller in the end.—★★★★

Get this along with all the Patrick Modiano collection from Quercus. This year, they are really bringing him in this season with about four titles you could enjoy from this literary sensation.
I recommend this book to anyone who loves their novels mysterious so much you can’t even tell what the words on the page are saying till you come to realization that—OMG—you should have paid more attention to the clues the writer was trying to drop.

My work not done here. Off to post my review on Goodreads as well as Amazon.