Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Review: Poisoned Apples

Poisoned Apples: Poems For You, My Pretty
by Christine Heppermann

Why did you choose this book? I wanted to try reading poetry
When did you read this book? September 2015
Who should read this book? feminist readers of poetry
Source: library ebook
Here is a synopsis of Poisoned Apples from Goodreads

Once upon a time...
you were a princess,
or an orphan.
A wicked witch,
fairy godmother,
prom queen,
team captain,
Big Bad Wolf,
Little Bo Peep.
But you are more than just a hero or
a villain, cursed or charmed. You are
everything in between.
You are everything.

In fifty poems Christine Heppermann places fairy tales side by side with the modern teenage girl. Powerful and provocative, deadly funny and deadly serious, this collection is one to read, to share, to treasure, and to come back to again and again.

My Review

I picked this one up because I had challenged myself to read a variety of genres from the Goodreads Choice Awards. Unfortunately, this was not an enjoyable read for me. Now it’s possible that this just confirms that poetry is not my thing — I’ve never been a big fan of poetry, but I keep thinking that with enough exposure that could change — not yet, though.

But the other problem I had was with the persistent ‘feminist’ tone of the book. I use quotes because my definition of feminist and the author’s definition of feminist may be different. This book seems to define ‘feminism’ as attributing all of a girl’s problems to men and the pressures of society. I really couldn’t relate to many of the poems, possibly because it is aimed at young adult girls.

One poem in particular, Sleeping Beauty’s Wedding Day, was really annoying to me, outlining a tedious grooming procedure and how tiring it is for the princess. The message seems to be that she is doing primping for someone other than herself, and it is mandatory to please others, presumably a man. This seems to be completely opposite of one poem I actually did enjoy, Nature Lesson. Here the author talks about dress codes and the requirement to ‘cover ourselves’ so as not to distract a boy. She ends with

We say
that if a hiker strays
off the path, trips, and
winds up crippled,
is it really
the canyon’s fault?

One thing I did enjoy about the book are the pictures. The book is illustrated with some wonderfully artistic photography.

I am not the obvious target audience for this book; a young adult girl. I am also not a big fan of poetry. Chances are that if you are either of these you may enjoy this book a lot more than I did. It’s a quick read, so if you think you might be interested, give it a try. As for me, I probably won’t be picking a poetry book up again anytime soon!

My Rating:  ★★1/2      2-1/2 Stars
post signature

1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.