[REVIEW] The Moonstone Girls by Brooke Skipstone

[REVIEW] The Moonstone Girls by Brooke Skipstone

I really, REALLY wanted to love this book. Queer girls, 60s/70s culture, and a road trip to Alaska? Sign. me. up. It had everything going for it in the summary.

Unfortunately, I had to DNF this book at about 65%.

What I liked:

  • Obviously, I love the queer girl representation. This book actually made me reflect a lot about my own queerness and my gender presentation. I think there is a lot of value to a story that discusses issues of identity.
  • There were parts where I really did like Tracy’s character and her story, especially at the beginning where she is exploring her newly discovered identity.

What I really didn’t like:

  • There was a lot of very uncomfortable comparison between the oppression faced by queer people in the United States and the oppression faced by Black Americans. Tracy would casually say things that suggested she thought life was much easier for Black Americans at the time than for queer people. I’m not sure if this was supposed to be a commentary on white feminism where Tracy is able to confront and correct her past remarks, but I highly doubt this happens in the short amount of pages left from where I DNF’d. I just did not see why this comparison was necessary.
  • The dialogue felt incredibly stilted and awkward. Every time Tracy had a conversation with someone else, especially with people in her family, it felt so incredibly forced. I can’t picture anyone saying most of the things Tracy and her family say to each other.
  • The pacing also just seemed… off. It felt like things were happening so fast with no pause to really get the full impact of the events. I get that it’s supposed to seem like Tracy is telling the story from the present and is going through the events of her life, but it just really did not work for me.

I’m definitely in the minority with my feelings on this book. Maybe it just wasn’t for me, but I gave it two stars for the queer representation.

Thank you to NetGalley and Skipstone Publishing for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: ★★

A Librarian’s Week in Review 1/29/22: Questions for the Curious

A Librarian’s Week in Review 1/29/22: Questions for the Curious

This week, I had a patron come to the desk looking for help with the printers. She started off by declaring her question as stupid and continued to apologize multiple times as I was helping her. I felt guilty. Was I not being welcoming enough? Did I look unapproachable at the desk? I don’t think this was it. She began our interaction apologetically.

How many times in the past have I been too afraid to ask question or apologized in advanced for sounding dumb? Most of my reference questions this week were directional–where is this building or how do I get to that classroom? I can’t say how happy I am when I receive a question, even one like these. I love that my patrons feel comfortable enough to walk up to a stranger and ask any question, big or small.

For me, and for many, it takes courage to ask for help. Saying out loud that you need help tells others you are vulnerable, that you are not fully self-reliant. There is a certain shame in doing this in our individualistic society which is why I love when people admit that they do need help, that they can’t meet all of their needs and need others in a community to aide them.

So, a question for the curious: how do you find the courage to ask for help? What can others do to make asking for help or asking questions seem less daunting? Librarians, what do you do to make your patrons more comfortable in seeking your services?

Books Read This Week

Rating: ★★★★★