I picked up this collection of poetry on my Kindle for a few bucks and decided to give it a go. The dedication is to Harry Potter, so I figured it’d be a pretty interesting work.
Lovelace writes quite a lot about reading, and quite a lot about writing as well. I for one am not a huge fan of poems about poetry, so I didn’t connect well with a good chunk of the book. Her writing on her mother and their relationship was good, but I still didn’t find myself very immersed for the most part. Her writing is very good, it’s just not much to my taste.
I did, however, really like what Lovelace did with form. There’s some concrete poetry as well as some interesting spacing tricks going on that pull the reader’s eye to the page in a nice, not overbearing way. It’s really refreshing to see formatting played with once in awhile.
A few of my favorite poems were; “did it really happen if i can’t remember it?” “my dragons,” “over before it began,” “& it’s okay not to know,” and “the sign you’ve been waiting for.”
The title in and of itself has a very feminist vibe – I immediately saw Megara (the Disney version), and I was pretty down for an independent damsel. I saw the theme of independence in a few places, but Lovelace didn’t push it through quite enough to meet my expectations. Themes of abuse and violence against women are definitely present, as well as mention of mental illness, rape culture, and other feminist issues.
Overall, I think that theming the whole collection hurt Lovelace in the long run. There were too many cliches present, and too much going on for it to work for me as a whole. Lovelace went for the modern, super minimalist form and qualities that I think work very well for writers like Nayyirah Waheed, though I didn’t feel that Lovelace herself achieved the same power in her writing.
My Kindle notes are available here if you’re interested.
I give the book a 7/10.
the princess saves herself in this one