Blooming in the Dark is a beautiful poetry book by Jennifer LeBlanc and Kristen McNeill. The poems contained within it are relatable and tug at the heartstrings. At their core, they are representations of different aspects of the human condition. They address issues such as love, friendship, identity, and healing.
They particularly delve into the intricacies of love – the intensity of it, the toxicity that can be created when this emotion is manipulated and the damage it can do when provoked. It tells of the depression of those left by loved ones, the loss of identity by those that were manipulated by lovers, and the healing required to reach a semblance of peace.
Interestingly, this book also thoroughly explores the love between friends and how a toxic friendship can leave someone withered and low. However, not everything is sad and depressing in this book. Some poems talk about overcoming imposter syndrome and the need to be perfect.
They talk of embracing the present and moving into new chapters of our lives without regret or remorse, of fighting our demons and winning, and of forgiving and letting go. In many ways, this book celebrates healing and the realization of the authentic self. It makes you remember your pain, your joy, and how they interweave – it feels like a love letter to your soul. It makes you feel seen, all of you – the intense and the laid back. Clearly, the authors poured their heart and soul into this project, ensuring that it was an accurate description of what it means to be alive.
They do a good job of weaving emotion into the poems without making the language feel heavy – it almost feels like you are reading the words of someone who has lived what you have lived. It also helps that while the authors do some symbolism, it is clear what they are talking about. They manage to create a beautiful balance between veiling and message execution, making this book easy to read, even for poetry beginners.
Once you start reading it you can barely put it down – it could take just a couple of hours to finish. As long as you like deep emotional poetry, Blooming in the Dark will be a breathtaking read for you.
Pages: 181 | ASIN: B08W4P1Q2C
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Crow Moon is a book of poetry with a unique and vivid view of life and nature. What inspires you to write poetry?
Anna Griego: Writing for me is like a form of alchemy using words to evolve, and sypher through experiences and emotions. As a child writing was a form of escapism. Now it is necessary. I studied at the University of New Mexico.
Ruth Nakamura: I grew up surrounded by the natural world in the south valley of Albuquerque. I felt very in tune with creatures and plants, and had an imagination that lent that communion its own mythology. I also watched programs like Wild America and National Geographic with my Grandma Lucille. My mom was an artist and was always pointing out things like sunsets, migrating geese, as well as the concrete elements of the city. Ever since second grade, I loved writing stories and poems. It was my favorite part of school all the way into college at the University of New Mexico.
What was the collaboration process like between Ruth Nakamura and Anna Griego?
Anna Griego: Ruth and I have been collaborating our writing since the college days. We enjoy each other’s growth and evolution.
Ruth Nakamura: Anna and I met each other in college because we are so similar we kept finding ourselves enrolled in many of the same classes, from poetry to Chicano studies courses. From there we discovered we also shared many life experiences, from being single mothers, having drug addicted exes, to finding joy and healing in the writing process. I think at the time we were both beginning our healing journeys, rediscovering ourselves.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in your poetry?
Anna Griego: Healing was an important theme for my section. The idea of molting, Ecdysis of old skin and the growth of new skin. Shedding of past hurts to become something new.
Ruth Nakamura: Just like Anna, the theme of healing is very prevalent in my part of the book, and the healing journey at first becomes a dark and shadowed underworld. I loved the idea of Persephone’s journey below, and back again to the light. All this entwined with the seasons metaphorically correlating with the moods and feelings of the narrator.
Do you plan to publish more works of poetry?
Anna Griego: Yes! Publishing is a very important career move for both of us. You can find me on Facebook under Anna Griego and on Instagram at Dreamingintheyellow as well as Blackberry Bramble Books.
Ruth Nakamura: Yes! There is plenty more to work on. We have another collab coming soon, centered on the landscape of dreams. We decided to kickstart by publishing Crow Moon as an indie book, but we have hopes for publishing traditionally, as well. I have another several manuscripts waiting in the wings for editing and revising. The whole process brings such joy. I can be found on Instagram at veranotaos and at Blackberry Bramble Books.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: Anna Griego, author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, Crow Moon, ebook, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, nature, nook, novel, poem, poet, poetry, read, reader, reading, Ruth Nakamura, story, writer, writing
In The Nature of Nature: Why We Need the Wild, Enric Sala talks everything nature and discusses conservancy, the importance of protecting the planet, and living responsibly. Having been a marine biologist for decades, Enric Sala pulls from years of experience to provide a sharp and informed perspective on the environment and how man has managed to drastically change nature. As he discusses the wild, animals, plants, and every living thing, one can tell how passionate Enric Sala is about the subject. The agony in his words when addressing the destruction of nature, the joy in his tone when he discusses conservancy and how to preserve the planet’s endangered species makes one fall in love not only with the book but also the work the author has been doing over the years.
Through the lessons and Enric Sala’s stories about his work and personal life the reader is exposed to a world that is so vital to us, yet nebulous. I enjoyed the experiences Enric Sala shared about his line of work. The stories the author gives are eye-opening and will leave you feeling informed about the role humans play in destroying flora and fauna. Not many people get to witness directly how human activity affects animals both on land and in the sea. Enric Sala shares this reality through simple and engaging language that kept me rapt.
Readers will learn a lot about the value of saving the environment and how politics, the economy, and other sectors are affected when the environment is destroyed. Through this book, the author encourages everyone to be an environmental activist in little ways. Modernization and civilization have led to an increase in air pollution. To control this, the author encourages people to adopt new lifestyles and engage in activities like tree planting and cleaning the environment to ensure that the air we breathe and the water fish swim in is not harmful.
The Nature of Nature: Why We Need the Wild comes at a critical time for the planet and should be essential reading. Enric Sala has written a thought-provoking book that distills complex ecological concepts into easily understandable ideas that could save the planet, improve your health, and strengthen the economy.
Pages: 272 | ASIN: B08273CTZK
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Believe in Fairies by Wayne Gerard Trotman and Sherrie Trotman is a children’s story about why you should believe in fairies. It discusses topics such as how devoted fairies are to keeping plants alive. Fairies will put dewdrops on flowers to cool them and cover them with parasols to protect them from the rain! Fairies also love healing, and feeding the weak flowers. They take pride in taking care of their plants and your garden because the beauty of those flowers is what proves that their magic is real.
The authors of this story give beautiful descriptions and rhymes to captivate their readers. They provide details on how the fays take care of plants, and what exactly they do for them. The art is vibrant with plenty of action on the page that will certainly capture a child’s interest. I especially loved a sad little snail that appears about halfway through, so cute. There is much to learn and see while reading Believe in Fairies which is why I found this book to be so enjoyable!
Believe in Fairies is an enchanting poetry book that I think is perfect for young readers. Children will learn a lot about the fairies and walk away with a better appreciation for nature. Wayne Gerard Trotman and Sherrie Trotman will have readers believing in fairies in no time.
Pages: 32 | ISBN:1916184863
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Don’t Step on the Spider is a charming children’s picture book that educates readers on the importance of life and how every insect benefits mother nature and brings balance to the ecosystem. Kirk Raeber accomplishes this with very easy language and a cute comic art style.
Young Tim is at his grandparent’s house when he decides to go out and play and encounters a spider. He’s about to step on it, like I think most people would do, but is stopped by his grandfather. His grandfather tells him that every creature has a right to live, and to prove his point he takes Tim on a jaunt through the forest to meet many more insect friends.
Every insect they meet along the way is adorable and friendly, and each one explains how they contribute to the ecosystem. There is plenty to learn in this book, even I learned about the importance of ants! This is a great book for early readers or for parents and teachers to read to children. This book provides many opportunities to discuss nature and how everyone has a role. Don’t Step on the Spider skillfully informs and entertains young readers and is one book I can see reading several times.
Pages: 35 | ASIN: B0842DJSWV
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Palm oil is used in so many ways from cooking to cosmetics to fuel. Very few ever think about the process of getting oil refined enough to apply in some of the uses. This book is about the role of a chemical engineer in the process of milling palm oil. It is about the team work and passion that goes into milling palm oil. By the end of this book, you will know more about palm oil and the milling process. You will also get a literary tour of a mill as well as vicariously experience the dynamics of a palm oil mill.
One thing that is well appreciated in this book is the detail and expertise with which it is written. It feels like a school field trip one might actually enjoy. There is so much intriguing detail and information. With all of that the book still manages to be engaging and interesting even to a person whose only knowledge of palm oil extends to the temperature it needs to be before frying something. Palm oil milling and the chemical engineering involved might be something you never think of Googling. In fact, it might sound like something straight out of a National Geographic special but this book sure is an enjoyable read.
The author has achieved a delicate balance of casual and professional. Providing the reader with stories of their experiences which personifies the book and gets the reader to not only connect with the writer but also remain rooted in their seat throughout the book. It reads a little bit like The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt. Narration of a tale with a very important purpose. This style is well appreciated especially for this subject.
This book may be about chemical engineers in palm oil milling but a lot of it could really apply elsewhere. For example, the writer talks about teamwork, passion and importance of caring for the environment. These sentiments could carry to many other areas of life.
The writer uses very simple language. You do not feel as though you have to constantly consult chemical engineering books and the palm oil Wikipedia page. Once you have started, you feel yourself relaxing and settling into it. The writer’s passion is evident through his writing. You can feel that he enjoyed writing this book.
This book will educate you, and might inspire you to change careers or give an aspiring chemical engineer some direction and a sort of literary internship. It is quite the task to write a book about such a highly scientific subject while keeping it simple and relevant to anyone and everyone who comes across it.
Pages: 216 | ASIN: B08CGVT4W5
But The Sparrow Stayed is a bilingual poetry picture book that showcases the beauty of nature and birds, specifically sparrows and eagles. But the Sparrow Stayed is the first poem in the book and is a more poem about a sparrow that stays even though winter has come. Each hand drawn piece of art that accompanies each section of the poem shows the sparrow standing strong against a bitter winter. This poem is followed by another entitled First Flight which follows the life of an eagle and shows how one should be brave when afraid. Unlike the first poem, it is less abstract, but equally compelling. This is also accompanied by colorful sketches of an eagle in beautiful landscapes.
The poetry is delivered in two different languages, English and Spanish. Both exceptionally well done and is perfect for readers in both native languages but also for people who are trying to learn the language. I appreciated the sketches that accompanied each poem. They reinforced the idea of the poetry and gave it a hand crafted quality. Although I enjoyed the images I felt that they were a little dark or underexposed. If I had to choose a favorite, I really enjoyed the thought–provoking nature of But The Sparrow stayed. At the end of the book readers are treated to half a dozen sparrow and eagle facts that are informative and interesting. Nature lovers, bird enthusiasts, or anyone that wants to read delightful poetry.
Pages: 30 | ASIN: B08CRZYZ8Z
We see grass everyday, tread on it, maybe handle, smell, or plant it.But how many of us noticed it – let alone appreciated its amazing presence and resilience and the way it someway holds our planet together? It’s everywhere.
This beautifully illustrated book, engaging and readable, gives us the full,picture. It tells of the marvellously complex evolution of grass, the incredible number of species (did you know that bamboo and sugar-cane are forms of grass, and that three kinds of grass make up the major food of humans and the grazing (‘grass’-eating) of innumerable animals?), leading us on into some appreciation of the abiding necessity of grass for humanity, for nature and for the arts. It has a place in folklore too, and in poetry
A book to give and to treasure.
David Campbell Callender, a name taken (adapted) from, and in memory of, her gifted Irish grandfather, is the penname of the British anthropologist Ruth Finnegan.