2016 Goodreads Choice Award-winning poet Amanda Lovelace returns in the witch doesn’t burn in this one — the bold second book in her “women are some kind of magic” series.
The witch: supernaturally powerful, inscrutably independent, and now—indestructible. These moving, relatable poems encourage resilience and embolden women to take control of their own stories. Enemies try to judge, oppress, and marginalize her, but the witch doesn’t burn in this one.
PUBLISHED ON 6 MARCH 2018 BY ANDREWS MCMEEL PUBLISHING
I’ve rated this poetry collection according to what it’s about and the issues it focuses on instead of the poetry itself. That doesn’t mean the poetry is bad, just that, they didn’t always gave me what I expected. Somethings are for aesthetic purposes while some are just the poet’s style (called the free verse)–which I’m greatly impressed by.
The collection covers a wide range of topics from abuse to stigma against menstruation, and like any other poetry, a few can relate to me while a few can relate to you. That’s just how reading perception differs and should be treated in a healthy way. Without deviating from the review any further, let’s get back to the good and bad stuff.
There’s a raw honesty in each of the poems. No, I haven’t read Amanda Lovelace’s poetry before this (not the ever so famous Princess Saves Herself In This One) so it was a surprise to see a poet’s emotions jumping at me with a great leap. This makes the poems empowering and all the more real.
The poems speak up against trivial things that aren’t actually trivial. I remember one poem spoke about politeness and how being polite shouldn’t be something a woman should do always by default. Especially not when the other person isn’t polite in the first place. The poem ends with a line: ‘get up, you’re nobody’s doormat.’ It’s the little additions here and there that pop out and make me feel stronger.
The structuring is gripping and reflects a more woven together collection with four parts: the trial, the burning, the firestorm, and the ashes. It reads like a story when you can read each poem separately as much. The formatting is well thought out and I’m all for aesthetics so it shouldn’t be a surprise that the red coloured font garnered extra points.
There are rants about rape, physical abuse, misogyny, body shaming, and just about all the things that women have to go through despite of coming so far in time. I appreciate the poet for fulminating about such saddened issues and for bringing inter-sectional feminism into the pages of a white and red collection.
However, some ideas are too straight up generalized and that’s something I can’t fully support. I don’t believe that all women are right and all men are wrong (that’s not what the poems are all about) so it’s hard for me to read about boys being completely generalized as the match-boys and being submitted to a collective rage. Basically, as much I’m against misogyny, I’m against misandry too–after all, feminism isn’t about hating men.
Overall, it’s a really good book that I would definitely recommend for poetry differs with taste and you might love this so much more than I did. Plus, we need more feminism oriented literature so let’s push up the few we do have.
Trigger Warnings: misogyny, misandry, rape, physical abuse, body shaming, transphobia, child abuse, intimate partner abuse. Violence, fire, menstruation, sexual assault, eating disorders, trauma, death, murder.
I received a digital copy of this via Netgalley but that in no way influences my rating and/or opinions about it. Thank you so much Amanda Lovelace and Andrews McMeel Publishing! This post may contain affiliate links; to know more click here.
What about you guys? Have you read this collection? What did you think about it? Have you read any of Amanda’s previous works?
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