REVIEW: Diver and Other Poems

Diver is a collection of poems that I purchased from Lit Books back in 2018. I don’t usually purchase poetry since I’m picky about it but I was curious about this one since it was by a local author. It’s already 2020 so it’s about time that I read this.


49289960._SX318_SY475_

Diver
by Alina Rastam

get it here (from Litbooks, an independent Malaysian bookstore)

BOOK SUMMARY

A self-published poetry collection by writer and social activist Alina Rastam.

BOOK REVIEW

4 STARS

Diver is a thin book with 20 poems. It may be a quick read because of the number of poems it has but it is certainly not easy to read it all in one go.

There’s no theme for this collection but a lot of the poems were addressed to people in the poet’s life. Some felt like love letters or diary entries. I’m not entirely sure how to categorize it really but it seems as if they were letters, written from the deepest part of the heart, that wasn’t meant to meet the surface.

It is one of those poetry collections that need to be put in an art gallery. Every line feels sincere. When I read it, it feels as if the poet was pouring out her inmost thoughts and feelings from within the heart. It felt as if I was creeping and seeing something I wasn’t meant to, like as if I was reading into the poet’s diary and experiencing her feelings.

This might’ve been one of the most beautifully written poetry collection that I’ve read so far. I’ve always been more fascinated in lengthy poetry that takes up pages apiece. There were some poems that I didn’t understand and had to read a few times. Either way, I was still able to enjoy the writing.

With that, there was a handful of poetry that I enjoyed. It left a deep impact because of how raw it felt, and the choice of words amplified the emotions. Some of my favourites were ‘For My Father’, ‘For Chang on Her 50th Birthday’, ‘The Quiescent Rain’, ‘Letter to Jane’, ‘Uncle Bob’ and ‘To A Beloved Student’.

I highly recommend this poetry collection. However, it may be a little difficult to find out of Malaysia.

REVIEW: Stargazer

Poetry collection number 3 of my little poetry reading challenge is Stargazer by Rachel M. Patterson. I’ve finished this before going on a short hiatus to focus on my finals but now I’m on a semester break until July. Hopefully, I’m able to read a bit more now.

I’ve received quite a lot of poetry collections to review in the past few months and a lot more since I’ve started this poetry reading challenge so it’s definitely gonna take me some time to get to it, especially since I’m juggling some other books too at this moment. There’s gonna be more reviews heading your way soon!


Stargazer

Stargazer
by Rachel M. Patterson (Patreon)

buy it here

BOOK SUMMARY

A series of unique and emotionally charged poems, paired with sketches from the author.

BOOK REVIEW

3 STARS

Stargazer is a poetry collection that could be read in one sitting. There are 17 poems altogether, accompanied with illustrations from the author.

There were poems about love, depression, hopelessness and hope. Some of the poems were completely heartbreaking and relatable, and some just felt magical. There isn’t a theme that could describe the whole book since it’s about different topics but don’t let that discourage you from giving this a read.

All the poems follows a structure with rhymes so melodious, it easily rolls off the tongue. It was a pleasant read, even if some of the poems were dark. Those were my favourites, actually. I enjoyed how Patterson uses beautiful metaphors and I’m absolutely blown away by each line.

My favourites were “Jagged Pit”, “Chronic”, “Spiral” and “Lunatic”. The way each line was written conveyed the feelings accurately. You are able to experience the emptiness and hopelessness in “Jagged Pit”, “Chronic” and “Spiral” but feel the curiosity and thrill in “Lunatic”. It was enjoyable and not many poems I’ve read was able to make me feel like I’ve been brought to a different dimension.

Filled with illustrations made with a pen. I’ve always admired art like that. It’s simple yet with the many strokes and shading, it looks complex and also beautiful. A good complement to the poems.

REVIEW: Poetry Dead to Society

cover161014-mediumPoetry Dead to Society
by Cee Jay & Shirley Spring

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

All types of poetry; love, romance, life’s journey, religion, heartbreak, and even hatred and anger that will amaze and stun readers. It’s guaranteed to open your mind’s eye. Poetry Dead to Society written to awaken the life of poetry within our society.

BOOK REVIEW

3.5 STARS
*An e-ARC was given through Netgalley in return for an honest review.*

I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a poetry collection as much as this.

It began with a rocky start – poems about love that made me hydrate my eyes by rolling every few seconds, inconsistent and strange illustrations that ended up somewhat disturbing. However, after the initial 7 (yes I counted), I found a few that I really liked.

After the first chapter, every poem was enjoyable. There were around 8 poems that left me speechless and became instant favourites. A few of those are ‘Today the World Ended’, ‘Quiet What I Wish to Be’, ‘True, Real Life’ and ‘My Only Fear’. I absolutely loved the free-flow verses and the diverse topics in this poetry collection.

However, I had a few issues with this that although I can look past, it is rather disappointing. These issues are more towards the formatting of the poetry collection. I downloaded a kindle version of this, hence I’m not sure if some of the text merged together into a line instead of it being split. Furthermore, the illustrations were inconsistent. The art styles and size constantly changed and towards disappeared completely from Chapter Four onward. I was unable to enjoy some of the earlier poems because of this.

Overall, it was an incredibly enjoyable read that speaks to my heart. If you are dipping your toes into poetry, want to read poems covering different topics and just want to read something that can possibly put your thoughts and feelings into words, this is the book to pick up.

REVIEW: Flock in A Closet

43562409Flock in A Closet
by Tia Wins

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

Hey there!
Here’s what you had been searching for since so long.
Well, not merely a poetry book but a piece of my heart I’d love to gift you. Something that you will not just read but that which will leave an impression on you for a lifetime. I mean “a good impression” *laughs*

Flock In A Closet is a profound and intense collection of relatable poems written by Tushnamaity Davierwala,
Tia Wins ( pen name) where each poem has it’s own grace, a unique way of narrating thoughts and feelings.
Having a pleasing aura this book has almost everything enough to serve every reader leaving them content yet craving for more. It contains the experiences and stories of people whoever and whenever entered the poet’s life accompanied by the poet’s deepest thoughts and emotions that’ll touch your heart and treat your soul in just the right measure.

BOOK REVIEW

3.5 STARS

*A copy of Flock in A Closet was sent in exchange for an honest review.*

I’ve been reading a lot of poetry lately and I don’t think any of them was as fun as Flock in A Closet. Flock in A Closet is a collection of poems separated into three different parts — Spectrum, His Diary of Love and Valentines Collection. There were themes of love, friendship, feminism, sadness and encouragement, and these were all relatable.

Although there were some punctuation and spelling errors, it does not take away from the poem. The fun rhymes, satisfying structures and carefully arranged words can’t help but bring a smile to your face!

The first few parts may not seem that interesting but I’ve grown a fond liking for some of the poems, especially Bridge, What You Learn, Is What You Earn, Being Woman and Hey Girl, Don’t feel so low! The author could convey her love for poems through her writing and it really shows that she had a fun time writing it!

REVIEW: The World is a Dark and Lovely Place

The World is a Dark and Lovely Place
by Carol Chu Mei Yin

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

A poetry chapbook that describes nature, the fear of drowning, friendship, love and loss in a world that is at times dark but beautiful. My writings here are heavily influenced by the classic language of Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost for I am a fan of theirs but the words are entirely my own. 

BOOK REVIEW

3.5 STARS

A collection of poems that shares about highs and lows of life. 

Carol has a way with words that makes you think deeply about this life that we live. There were poems that dealt with loss, missing someone, faith and love – many different aspects that makes us, us. 

I believe that if anyone were to write a good poem, it must be poured out from the deepest part of the heart. It is very evident in the writing here. It was raw and intimate, telling of the griefs and the little things that we don’t often pay attention to.

It’s great to read a poem and find that you relate to it in ways that even you yourself cannot form into sentences. I felt that way when reading the poem “Rain” and “Trust Not Your Broken Heart”. If you’re looking for poems that makes you want to reflect, appreciate the many aspects of your life and to be open about the way you feel, this is the collection for you.

REVIEW: Timeless Tales

Timeless Tales
by John Alexander

Get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

This debut book of poetry by John Alexander offers inspiration. As these lilting verses roll off your tongue, let the words soothe your weary soul. Written especially for you and your inner child, the poems reach into your soul to that child within you. Nurture yourself with rhymes that speak to your heart. You can keep them to yourself, or you can share them with the children in your life.


A rhyme rose within me,
it caused me to smile.
It focused my thoughts,
I escaped for a while.

Be free of the past
filled with trouble and strife.
That child who’s within us
knows much about life.

Rhymes read through the lens
of those innocent eyes
Can challenge our views
on what matters, what’s wise.



BOOK REVIEW

4 STARS

I did not expect this to be a somewhat religious poetry book (think teaching about the way of life and being kind, trusting on God and being thankful religious).

This poetry book is separated into 3 parts. The first part, poems for your inner child, appeals more to the child within you, using characters like mice in order to teach good values. The second part, blessings for you, share the hope for happiness and aid in our daily life where there are troubles and cares. The third part and final part, heart to heart, is where Alexander shares his personal stories. 

All these were written through rhymes. It was an extremely fun read as the words flow so smoothly, yet the rhymes have a deep meaning to it. Some were easy to understand and some needed a little bit of thinking. Either way, it teaches good values and encourages us to not only focus on our busy lives but to reflect on the blessings we have.

I enjoyed the way the book is divided into parts and separated by a short description. It is neat and orderly and adds to the appeal of the book. Overall, there’s a wonderful selection of poems and a good amount, neither too little or too many poems. Each poem either teaches you a life lesson or bring some encouragement and hope to the reader.

REVIEW: Girl Empowernment: Poetry

Girl Empowernment: Poetry
by Hunyah Irfan

Get it here

BOOK  SUMMARY: 

Girl Empowernment Poetry By Hunyah Irfan Girl empowernment poetry is about empowering girls to be strong women 

BOOK REVIEW: 


1 STAR


*A free PDF copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review*

This poetry book is a short read, something you can definitely finish in one sitting.

The poet wrote it in a way where the ideas were direct on how empowerment is vital to young girls and how it would shape them into strong women in the future.

Right off the bat, there were a few spelling errors that were overlooked in the editing process. The poems were also a little too short for my liking. However, there’s a hint of a satirical tone to it if I had to be honest. Some poems mocked the idea of women doing traditional women things, which was how I understood it. Nonetheless, the execution could’ve been improved and more impactful, if this was the way the poet intended for the poem to be interpreted. It was also written in a way that seemed chronological which I found to be interesting.

Personally, I did not enjoy reading this book. It definitely requires you to read it 2 or 3 times, just to figure out if there’s more to it than it meets the eye. One thing I definitely remembered from my literature classes were not to take things at face value, so if I read too deeply into this than it was intended for, my bad!