Cracked Open By Megan O’Keeffe [Book Review]

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Book Review: Cracked Open by Megan O'Keeffe | Poetry | Blogging | Book Blogger | Reading | Poetry Collection | RachelPoli.com

I received a free digital copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Summary:

A collection of love poems.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.comI think the book cover is very pretty. I like the colors and it certainly looks like exactly what the title suggests – something is cracked open.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.comI’ve read my fair share of poetry collections so I was more than happy to give this one a try.

Plot | RachelPoli.comCracked Open is about the narrator getting over her lover. And… that’s pretty much it. There is a happy ending but it took a while to get there. This collection tells a story through its poetry from start to finish yet I didn’t feel as though there was a beginning, middle, and end.

Characters | RachelPoli.comI don’t have much to say about the characters. There are no names and not many gender pronouns used either. I could relate with the narrator since I’ve been through a break up before. I have to say, that part was captured nicely and accurately despite each of us going through it in our own way.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

The poems in this collection were just okay for me. They were free verse – most of them not really having much rhyme or rhythm. With that said, the poems didn’t seem to flow well for me. I felt as though I was reading a letter written by the narrator to her ex instead of poetry. The words felt a little flat rather than poetic and while the emotion was well captured, it felt as though the narrator was just complaining to her ex rather than fully letting go of her emotions in a rhythmic poem.

Overall | RachelPoli.comCracked Open wasn’t a bad read. It’s short and sweet. I couldn’t connect with the poems that much though I did sympathize with the main character, whoever she may be. With that said, this was just an okay read for me.

Cracked Open by Megan O’Keeffe gets…
Book Review Rating System | 3 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com3 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“We are not a love story
and we are not a lesson.
We were just two people wasting time
Comfortable in the in-between
hiding from our truths.”
-Megan O’Keeffe, Cracked Open

Buy the book:

Amazon

About Megan O’Keeffe

Megan O'Keeffe | Author | Cracked Open | Poet | Poetry Books | Book Blogger | Blogging | RachelPoli.comUp and coming Poet, Megan OKeeffe has been writing poetry for the last decade and has made the leap to publish her first collection. The love and support Meg received from her blog Debatably Dateable encouraged her to make this next step in her writing career. When she’s not writing, Meg is binging Brooklyn 99 or walking her dog Maverick. You may spot her touring the newest spot on Long Island, NY with her sisters and boyfriends.

Be sure to check out other Poetry books I’ve reviewed!

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you enjoyed this post, please share it around!

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Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook By Shel Silverstein [Book Review]

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Book Review: Runny Babbit A Billy Sook by Shel Silverstein | Children's books | Poetry | Reading | RachelPoli.com

I got the book at Barnes & Noble when I was a kid.

Summary:

Runny Babbit is Shel Silverstein’s hilarious and New York Times-bestselling book of spoonerisms—words or phrases with letters or syllables swapped: bunny rabbit becomes Runny Babbit.

Welcome to the world of Runny Babbit and his friends Toe Jurtle, Skertie Gunk, Rirty Dat, Dungry Hog, Snerry Jake, and many others who speak a topsy-turvy language all their own.

So if you say, “Let’s bead a rook
That’s billy as can se,”
You’re talkin’ Runny Babbit talk,
Just like mim and he.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.com

As usual, Silverstein’s cover doesn’t disappoint. It’s out of the ordinary yet simple.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.com

Shel Silverstein was one of my favorites back when I was a kid. I read and reviewed Where The Sidewalk Ends and Falling Up and, coincidentally, my mom found this one in the garage the day the second review went up. So I read this one as well.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

As usual, this book is filled with charming and silly poems. Shel Silverstein thinks outside the box when it comes to the imagination. It’s a quick read and the poems are great fun to read aloud with others.Overall | RachelPoli.com

It was fun to revisit this one. It’s a book I’ll keep in my library forever and will share with my nieces and nephews for sure.

Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook by Shel Silverstein gets…
Book Review Rating System | 5 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com5 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“Runny’s Nicpic

One day Runny Babbit
Met little Franny Fog.
He said, “Let’s have a nicpic
Down by the lollow hog.”
He brought some cutter bookies,
Some teanuts and some pea.
And what did Franny Fog bring?
Her whole fog framily.” -Shel Silverstein, Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook

Buy the book:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Abe Books

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you enjoyed this post, please share it around!

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Falling Up By Shel Silverstein [Book Review]

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Book Review: Falling Up by Shel Silverstein | Poetry | Reading | Childrens books | RachelPoli.com

I got the book at Barnes & Noble when I was a kid.

Summary:

Millie McDeevit screamed a scream
So loud it made her eyebrows steam.
She screamed so loud
Her jawbone broke,
Her tongue caught fire,
Her nostrils smoked…

Poor Screamin’ Millie is just one of the unforgettable characters in this wondrous new book of poems and drawings by the creator of Where the Sidewalk Ends and A Light in the Attic. Here you will also meet Allison Beals and her twenty-five eels; Danny O’Dare, the dancin’ bear; the Human Balloon; and Headphone Harold.

So come, wander through the Nose Garden, ride the Little Hoarse, eat in the Strange Restaurant, and let the magic of Shel Silverstein open your eyes and tickle your mind.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.com

The cover portrays the title well and matches the illustrations used inside the book to explain the poetry.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.com

I was very much into Where The Sidewalk Ends when I was a kid, so I ended up getting this book as well.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

Shel Silverstein upholds his reputation of writing silly yet witty poetry for kids. Each poem has the same premise of using the imagination and also having a certain rhyme or rhythm to it yet the content of each poem is vastly different from the last. The lengths of the poems vary, but they’re all quick reads and this is a book to keep turning the pages.Overall | RachelPoli.com

This was a great book to revisit from when I was a kid. My nephew is about 2.5 and I’d love to read this book with him sometime. This is a great one for kids.

Falling Up by Shel Silverstein gets…
Book Review Rating System | 5 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com5 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“No teacher, preacher, parent, friend
Or wise man can decide
What’s right for you – just listen to
The voice that speaks inside.” -Shel Silverstein, Falling Up

Buy the book:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Abe Books

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you enjoyed this post, please share it around!

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Where The Sidewalk Ends By Shel Silverstein [Book Review]

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Book Review: Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein | Reading | Poetry | Children's books | RachelPoli.com

I got it when I was a kid from Barnes & Noble.

Summary:

Where the sidewalk ends, Shel Silverstein’s world begins. There you’ll meet a boy who turns into a TV set and a girl who eats a whale. The Unicorn and the Bloath live there, and so does Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout who will not take the garbage out. It is a place where you wash your shadow and plant diamond gardens, a place where shoes fly, sisters are auctioned off, and crocodiles go to the dentist.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.com

I’ve always loved the book cover. It paints the title of the poetry collection so well. The drawing is simple and while it may seem bland to some, I find it to be perfect to go along with the illustrations inside the book.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.com

I used to read Shel Silverstein a lot when I was a kid. I found this on my shelf and decided to read it again for old time’s sake.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

This is a collection of poetry aimed toward kids. Some poems can be long, but most of them are pretty short being less than a page long. A lot of the poems have illustrations similar to the cover to accompany the poem which are all well done.

The poems are silly and completely unrealistic, but that’s what makes them great. They usually rhyme and you can’t help but read them with some sort of rhythm in your tone.

Overall | RachelPoli.com

It was great to revisit Shel Silverstein again. I haven’t read his poems in a long time and I forgot how great they were. This is a must read for kids who are looking for something quick and silly.

Where The Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein gets…
Book Review Rating System | 5 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com5 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“If you’re a bird, be an early bird–
But if you’re a worm, sleep late.” -Shel Silverstein, Where The Sidewalk Ends

Buy the book:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Abe Books

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you enjoyed this post, please share it around!

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Locomotion By Jacqueline Woodson [Book Review]

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Book Review: Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson | Reading | Young Adult | Realistic Fiction | Poetry | Book Blogger | RachelPoli.com

I bought a paperback copy at Barnes & Noble.

Summary:

When Lonnie was seven years old, his parents died in a fire. Now he’s eleven, and he still misses them terribly. And he misses his little sister, Lili, who was put into a different foster home because “not a lot of people want boys-not foster boys that ain’t babies.” But Lonnie hasn’t given up. His foster mother, Miss Edna, is growing on him. She’s already raised two sons and she seems to know what makes them tick. And his teacher, Ms. Marcus, is showing him ways to put his jumbled feelings on paper.

Told entirely through Lonnie’s poetry, we see his heartbreak over his lost family, his thoughtful perspective on the world around him, and most of all his love for Lili and his determination to one day put at least half of their family back together. Jacqueline Woodson’s poignant story of love, loss, and hope is lyrically written and enormously accessible.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.com

The cover is sweet and pretty. I like its simplicity, though it doesn’t have much to do with the contents of the book.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.com

I’ve read a couple of Jacqueline Woodson’s books before and she’s a great writer. So when I saw this at the bookstore I decided to pick it up.

Plot | RachelPoli.com

Through poetry written by Lonnie, the protagonist, we learn a lot about what’s going on in his life and the world around him. This is the story of him and how he’s growing through his poetry and overcoming challenges and his past with his little sister and his foster mom.

It’s a sweet story but that’s basically all there is to it. We about Lonnie’s past and how he’s trying to overcome it. It’s a lot of telling through his poetry.

Characters | RachelPoli.com

There’s only a handful of characters in this story and we see them all through Lonnie’s eyes and what he writes in his poems. Lonnie is an interesting character to follow and I liked his teacher and foster mom. His younger sister played an important role though she wasn’t in it much.

The development is subtle, but it is there for most of these characters.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

This is a book of poems written by the main character in his point of view. They’re easy to read and flow well. The poems range from various styles and definitely work well with the plot. The book itself is short and sweet being only 100 pages. It’s a very quick read to get through.

Overall | RachelPoli.com

While I wouldn’t peg this as one of my favorite books by Jacqueline Woodson, this was a good read and I enjoyed it. This is certainly worth the read.

Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson gets…
Book Review Rating System | 4 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com4 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“Ms. Marcus don’t understand some things even though she’s my favorite teacher in the world. Things like my brown, brown arm.” –Jacqueline Woodson, Locomotion

Buy the book:

Amazon

Read my reviews of Hush and Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson!

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you enjoyed this post, please share it around! Also, check out some other Book Reviews I’ve done!

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Amnesia By Breanna Brown [Book Review]

Amnesia by Breanna Brown | Book Review | Poetry | Self-publish | RachelPoli.com

Summary:

This is a collection that details my struggles with grief and abandonment issues after the death of my mother and the dissolution of my household. I struggled with relationships, parenting and my mental health. Eventually, I found God again and He reawakened me from my depressive slumber. Through Him and my daughter, I learned to live and love again.

My Review:

Book Cover | RachelPoli.com

I have to say I absolutely love the book cover. The colors were well chosen. It’s pretty and it pops out. Yet, everything is mixed together, as is the title. The way the title is written is clever because with “amnesia” everything is jumbled up.

First Thoughts | RachelPoli.com

I’ve been wanting to read more poetry and expand my horizons a bit in that genre. I’ve also been reading a few mental health subjects lately so I figured I’d give this a try.

Plot | RachelPoli.com

This book tells the story of the author’s struggles in life after losing her mother. It was a powerful read, especially since this is something we all have gone through or will go through. It’s part of life. Like some, the author found God and was able to bring her life back on track.

Writing Style | RachelPoli.com

I enjoyed reading this book. It’s broken up into poems of various lengths and forms. I’ll admit there were a few poems I had to re-read in order to understand them. Though I don’t think it was from the writing, I think it was because I was reading so quickly. It’s easy to get caught up and carried away with poetry, especially short ones.

I felt the author had a nice way of conveying her feelings through it all. At some moments, I felt like I was right there with her.

Overall | RachelPoli.com

This was an uplifting read, despite the context, but it was filled with hope. The writing was well done and the story was told well through the poetry. If you enjoy poetry, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this book.

Amnesia by Breanna Brown gets…
Book Review Rating System | 4 Cups of Coffee | RachelPoli.com 4 out of 5 cups

Favorite Quote:

“is there such a thing / as a happy medium / when your body is / swollen with life / but your soul is watching / everything else / walk off with death?” –Breanna Brown, Amnesia

Buy the book:

Amazon

About Breanna Brown

Breanna Brown, Author | RachelPoli.commy name is Breanna Brown, 26 years old, mother of one, in Nevada
writing has been my passion since my mother taught me
before I entered preschool. I love writing poetry and fiction
and I am currently pursuing my masters in English
my literary heroes are Stephen King
O’ Shea “Ice Cube” Jackson, Ellen Hopkins
Rupi Kaur and Christopher Nolan. Coffee
oils my gears, reading horror tames my fears
rap and rock flood my ears
and if I could, I’d live out my years
off french fries and spend my days
listening to classic rap
surrounded by a dozen cats
with paper stacked
both literary and monetary
I’m grateful for the miracle life
and what it has to teach me
so I cringe when people preach to me
unless it’s metaphysics, philosophy
or poetry
but I’ll digress and say I’m very appreciative
you giving your time and kindness
thank you for reading this
I hope you will enjoy
some more of what I got
comin’

Have you read this book? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below, I’d love to chat!

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I Am Soul By Yecheilyah Ysrayl [Book Review]

I Am Soul by Yecheilyah Ysrayl | Poetry Book Review | RachelPoli.com

Title: I Am Soul
Author: Yecheilyah Ysrayl
Published: 
December 20, 2017 by Literary Korner Publishing
Genre: Poetry
How I got the book: I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Summary:

I AM SOUL is Yecheilyah’s Fourth Collection of poetry. Select poems from the PBS Blog and her personal journal, these pieces focus on all things personal and all things SOUL.

My Review:

rp-first-thoughts

I was pleased to find out this author had a poetry book up her sleeve for one last release in 2017. Poetry has intrigued me lately and I’ve been trying to read more of it. So I was eager to give this one a try.

rp-writing-style

As the summary suggests, I Am Soul is a collection of poetry from the author’s blog or personal journal.

These poems are based on African history and literature as well as Women’s literature. It’s interesting to read from such a perspective because I come from a different background than the author. It reads just like a journal and it’s refreshing.

The poetry comes in all shapes and sizes so that it doesn’t get monotonous. Some are long lasting two to three pages while others are just a few lines taking up half a page. Some of them rhymed and some didn’t. Some lines were long reading like prose and others weren’t. It kept my attention and I was able to read it in one sitting, despite how short it is at 96-pages.

rp-overall

If you’re interested in history or even just poetry in general, this is a great book to read.

I Am Soul by Yecheilyah Ysrayl gets…
5-Star Rating | Book Review 5 out of 5 stars

Favorite Quote:

“But I can write, / articulating the suffering / of the now silent.” –Yecheilyah Ysrayl, I Am Soul

Buy the book:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Into The Light By Emily Stroia [Book Review]

Into The Light by Emily Stroia

Title: Into The Light
Author: Emily Stroia
Published: 
October 2017
Genre: Memoir, Poetry
How I got the book: I received a free digital copy in exchange for an honest review

Summary:

Into the Light is a memoir-inspired poetry collection in seven parts.

The book shares the author’s life from a transformative perspective of being in a deep state of darkness to finding hope, miracles and light. In the final part, there are notes to the reader and finding one’s inner peace after adversity.

This book explores trauma, abuse, sexual abuse, mental illness, loss, healing, spirituality, meditation, inspiration and empowerment.

My Review:

rp-first-thoughts

This isn’t the kind of book I would typically read. I’ve read poetry before and I do enjoy memoirs. However, if I saw this at the bookstore I probably wouldn’t have picked it up. It’s a dark, sensitive topic, but it’s a quick read and it never hurts to branch out a little. Since this is a memoir, this review will be written a little differently.

rp-plot

This memoir is told through the author’s point of view from birth and beyond. It goes through all the motions as everything she witnessed as a child between her father’s relationship with her mother as well as her father’s relationship with herself. She describes both of her parents and watches them both continue on with their lives, though not necessarily in an upbeat way.

There is light at the end of the tunnel, however. It’s hard to describe as the story is so short. This one is better if you just read it yourself.

rp-writing-style

This book is a quick read being only 158 pages. It’s told entirely through poetry, so it goes fast. Some pages only have a few words written on them.

The poetry was well written and easy to follow. Some pages rhymed while others didn’t. Some of the poetry was written in longer sentences and some weren’t. It flowed well and no matter how it was written, it just read poetically. The author does have a way with words.

The book is broken up into several parts as well. We start at the very beginning, go through the journey and pain, and end up with her breakthrough and finally forgiveness. It goes through the motions very well almost as if it were the stages of grieving.

It’s fast-paced, but I think it worked well for this particular topic. As I read the story, I felt as though the ending, the redemption, was slower than the beginning. That was my interpretation of it, but I liked it. You want that happy ending.

rp-overall

This was a great read. While I can’t personally relate to the author, I’m sure there are others out there who can. It’s easier said than done, but there are positive moments in life and everything does and will get better. I think that’s what this story is about. You go through tough times, but there always is a light at the end of the tunnel. It was well written and I commend the author for sharing her story.

Into The Light by Emily Stroia gets…
5-Star Rating | Book Review5 out of 5 stars

Favorite Quote:

“If you ever wonder what you could
have done differently
remember you were doing your best
with what you knew how.”
-Emily Stroia, Into The Light

Buy the book:

Amazon

About Emily Stroia

Emily is an intuitive teacher, spiritual leader, author, and artist. Emily first discovered her gifts of intuition and creativity as a child and was placed in a highly gifted program for children. She often explored her gifts through writing, art, and experienced frequent visions and dreams that would turn out to be accurate. Not understanding fully why or how she was able to do this, she decided to study.

She has always felt a strong attraction to the metaphysical and spiritual aspects of life and continues to delve deeper into each. Believing strongly in her intuitive gifts, as well as wanting to express her deep desire to help people, Emily decided to utilize her abilities to turn her passion into a profession.Her mission is to inspire people to find the gifts in

Her mission is to inspire people to find the gifts in their stories and live powerful transformed lives with ease and peace. Her life is a breathing expression of intuition, passion, spirituality and creativity. Most days you can find her coaching clients, writing, practicing yoga and playing with her dog in Los Angeles.

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