ARC Review: You Are Here by Dawn Lanuzo

You Are Here by Dawn Lanuzo Cover

Title: You Are Here

Author: Dawn Lanuzo

Published by:Andrews McMeel Publishing

Publishing date: February 12th 2019

Genre: Poetry

Pages: 272

Growth and change—two powerful anthems resonate throughout this collection of poetry and prose that will leave you feeling emboldened and empowered.

You Are Here is Dawn Lanuza’s newest collection of contemporary poetry that lends itself to the idea of giving ourselves second chances. These self-healing poems and words draw on central themes of self-love, self-discovery, and empowerment. In order to survive the vicissitudes of life, You Are Here boldly reminds readers to always choose themselves, and in times where it seems impossible, to find the courage and strength to start anew.

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A copy of this book was provided via Netgalley by Andrews McMeel Publishing in exchange of an honest review.

“Isn’t it sad, to be sad, and not able to say it”

You Are Here addresses themes like depression, chronic pain, healing, second love and second chances. A lot of these themes resonated with me and a lot of what the author was trying to say is important, but the execution took away from the message behind the poems. The writing style isn’t strong enough, is too simple and it doesn’t allow the poems to feel as powerful and touching as they could have been.

“No one knows how to love me when I’m sad

And I can’t blame them for that

I don’t even know how to love me

When the voices come at night

I hate and hate and hate

Even when I fight”

Nonetheless, I feel like this collection could help a lot of people dealing with depression (or mental illness in general) to feel seen and understood. There’s this poem that talks about Lanuza’s struggles to decide when it’s the appropriate time to tell a new romantic partner that she has depression, and I think that poem in particular will resonate with a lot of people, even if the writing isn’t the best. That’s one of the many poems that talk about mental health in this collection, which to me, represent the best of Lanuza’s work.

Overall, I would say that even if this is not the best written poetry collection, it deals with some important subjects in a relatable way and I would still recommend it.

Rating: 3,4 stars

Have you read this book? Are you planning on reading it? What poetry collections would you recommend?

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January 2019 Wrap Up (+ Mental Health Book Bingo Wrap Up)

Monthly Wrap Up newest

Life Update 

  • I started the month in the best way, traveling through Italy. I went to Rome, Florence and Venice and it was amazing! Venice was so beautiful.
  • Then I got home the 8th of January and I started my internship the next day – after a 20 days trip through France and Italy – and it was exhausting if I’m being honest. The internship has been kind of a disappointment.
  • I also had exams during January, I did really well on those, but with everything that was going on, my anxiety got a bit out of hand after a few months of being in very low levels, which sucks.
  • Still, overall it was a good month, I love the fact that I started the year traveling and I’m so grateful I got that chance!

What I Read 

This year I’m participating in a few reading challenges, so I’ll be lkeeping track of that with some emojis!

                     🌸 =Reading Women Challenge 🌿= Catch Up on Classics                                    ⭐= Dancing with Fantasy and Sci-fi Challenge 🌻= Year of the Asian

In An Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire (4,3 stars): my favorite book in the series so far! I found the goblin market so interesting and the characters were so complex! This entire book was so bittersweet and I loved it! (review)  – ⭐

A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle (3 stars): This was disappointing; the writing style wasn’t for me, I didn’t found the case interesting and the only really good thing was the characters. (review) – 🌿

A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro (5 stars):  Lovely, flawed, amazing characters and a really interesting relationship and dynamic between them.  (review coming this week!) – 🌿🌸

Tangled Like Us by Krista & Becca Ritchie (4 stars): This was really good, Thatcher is not my favorite but I love Jane and they work as a couple and I liked that we got to see more of the Cobalts. Honestly,  I can’t wait until we get a Sulli and Akara book. I NEED IT! – 🌸

Hi Fi Fight Club by Carly Usdin (4 stars): I really liked this, I think the characters are amazing and the art and color pallet are so lovely! (review)

Lumberjanes by Various Authors (4 stars): This was so much fun! The perfect amount of spooky and mysterious to make want to continue with the other issues. (review)

Lumberjanes: 2016 Special by Various Authors (3,4 stars): Didn’t really enjoy this story as much, I think it was a little too ridiculous and not spooky enough. But the art was pretty. (review)

Mental Health Book Bingo 

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan (4 stars): Beautifully written, I loved the romance and seeing the evolution of the father/daughter relationship. I wasn’t even 10% into this and it had me tearing up. My only problem with this is that it dragged a little. It has depression rep, so trigger warning for that and for suicide.  (review) – 🌻 🌸

Beneath the Citadel by Destiny Soria (4,5 stars): I loved all the characters in this book so much and I had a lot of fun reading this story until the moment when my heart was broken. Besides that, I really liked that this was a Fantasy standalone, which we need more of, and it’s a fantasy with anxiety rep, which we need even more –  ⭐

Darius the Great in Not Okay by Adib Khorram (4,5 stars): This was fantastic, the family relationships were the main focus of this book and there were so many complex and interesting characters that even when there’s not much plot, I still found this absolutely compelling. The friendship part of the story was also really sweet and i loved that it was set in Iran and mostt of the main characters were iranies. Also, this was the second book this month that made me tear up, which is so unusual for me! Trigger warnings for depression- 🌻

You Are Here by Dawn Lanuza (3,5 stars): The writing style wasn’t that great, but I really liked the themes this addressed, like depression and  second love, and I found a lot of what the author was trying to say relatable. (review coming this week!)

Blog Posts 

Here are some of my favorite blog posts I wrote in January:

Have you read any of the books I mentioned? Did you enjoy them? Do you want to read any of them?

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