RaveChapter 16Every single person in this book has an understandable — though not always laudable — desire ... Even when, like Agnes, the characters mess up, we’re right there with them, understanding their motivation. Birdsong’s prose sings with a poet’s sensibility, so each story is carried along with pitch-perfect rhythm and nuanced understanding of human foibles. In the end, Agnes, Suzette and Maple are true to themselves, stepping into their own power and defying predictable solutions.
PositiveNashville SceneLike her first, Crazy Brave, Poet Warrior is a memoir about becoming. But whereas Crazy Brave is a coming-of-age story, this new book describes Harjo’s coming into herself as a poet, or as she puts it, the journey from ‘Girl Warrior’ to ‘Poet Warrior’ ... the truer journey is Harjo’s internal one, recounted in poetry woven throughout. Always in third person, the poetry is richly informed by the Old Ones and by intuition ... In some ways, Poet Warrior revisits material covered in Crazy Brave but with greater attention to her journey with words ... Poet Warrior is a wise book and an inviting one. While some writers might fetishize otherworldly experiences as mystical, it’s their ordinariness in Harjo’s memoir that drew me in. They gave her strength to follow words.
PositiveChapter 16My Autobiography of Carson McCullers is structured...in a way that feels conversational. Sensitive to the false narratives biographers sometimes impose, Shapland tries to avoid clichés, in particular the idea that McCullers’ relationships with women were insignificant compared to her \'tortured\' relationship with Reeves McCullers, whom she married at nineteen, divorced, and remarried ... Although there is a narrative arc, reading My Autobiography of Carson McCullers feels more like listening in as Shapland thinks out loud about McCullers and herself—about why we cling to labels, what it means to write a biography, and why she decided not to sit in McCullers’ blue chair. Implicitly, she invites us into the conversation, to grapple in whatever way we want with identity and more.