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Original Essays | July 24, 2014

Jessica Valenti: IMG Full Frontal Feminism Revisited

It is arguably the worst and best time to be a feminist. In the years since I first wrote Full Frontal Feminism, we've seen a huge cultural shift in... Continue »
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CZola-Mo has commented on (5) products.

The Hound of Rowan: Book One of the Tapestry (Tapestry #01) by Henry H. Neff
The Hound of Rowan: Book One of the Tapestry (Tapestry #01)

CZola-Mo, January 1, 2013

This first book in the Tapestry series proves to be a true page-turner. Henry Neff is a beautiful writer, smart and engaging showing imagination while prompting the reader to engage in deep moral questions such as the nature of fear, the discernment of courage, and the development of power and knowledge as weapons to wield or as gifts to cultivate. Neff's characters evolve organically as if the author's pen only transcribed their growth rather than forcing it. The story, though, keeps the reader on the edge of his/her seat with imaginative and exciting twists and revelations, setting up the rest of the series to be as engaging and brilliantly conceived as this first novel. This is a definite "must-read" for heroic adventure and fantasy enthusiasts alike.
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The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

CZola-Mo, August 4, 2012

Not only is this another delightful William Joyce story, but it is a profound commentary on literacy and how readers absorb, transmit, and are transformed by the stories they read. The illustrations are lovely and clever, infused with beauty and charming wit. The story itself reminds us that we all have our own story to tell, influenced and composed by the event of reading other tales. What a profound message to bring to readers of all ages, but especially to young readers first setting out on their own journey of literacy.
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(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)

The Devil All the Time by Donald Ray Pollock
The Devil All the Time

CZola-Mo, January 2, 2012

Haunting, rich, fierce, and totally enthralling! Pollock has a way of making you feel ashamed and quietly proud all at once; he pierces your soul and pulls out the essence of humanity in all its degrees. A book that moves you past comfort and challenges you to rethink the world.
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The Ring of Solomon (Bartimaeus) by Jonathan Stroud
The Ring of Solomon (Bartimaeus)

CZola-Mo, September 7, 2011

As with the previous Bartimaeus books, Stroud offers a witty, intelligent, and remarkably deep character in the djinn, Bartimaeus. While ever trying to secure his release from servitude, Bartimaeus out-smarts, manipulates, and manages to escape and succeed in his various tasks and assignments. Although he proclaims repeatedly that he has no time for humans or their machinations, he actually reveals a profound care and soft-spot for them, at times to his detriment. In any case, each of his adventures in this book, particularly, allow Stroud to turn the basic questions of good and evil, free will and servitude, and the dilemmas of personal values over blind obedience. Stroud is a magnificent writer whose voice gets stronger and more nuanced with each book. This book is a must-read for children and adults alike; it's a page-turner that will leave you smiling and yearning for more.
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Knockemstiff by Donald Ray Pollock

CZola-Mo, January 6, 2010

Painfully beautiful. Pollock picks at the inner core of humanity and exposes the essential struggles, both the light and the dark (sometimes gruesomely dark)that we all face. This is a book that you have to put down to regather your strength before pushing forward again, but the journey through these stories edifies and rewards you along the way. Brilliant writing.
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(2 of 5 readers found this comment helpful)

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