Monday, May 29, 2017

A Review of 'New American Best Friend' by Olivia Gatwood

"One of the most recognizable young poets in America, Olivia Gatwood dazzles with her tribute to contemporary American womanhood in her debut book, New American Best Friend.  Gatwood's poems deftly deconstruct traditional stereotypes.  The focus shifts from childhood to adulthood, gender to sexuality, violence to joy.  And always and inexorably, the book moves toward celebration, culminating in a series of odes: odes to the body, to tough women, to embracing your own journey in all its failures and triumphs."

I was first introduced to this collection of poetry through a video shared on Facebook.  Olivia Gatwood was performing her piece 'Manic Pixie Dream Girl.'  I was enthralled right away.  I got the Kindle book right away.  I didn't expect to read such an all-consuming book of poems about what it means to be a woman at different points in life and in different contexts too.

These are poems about growing up, about how women see themselves as they go through life.  This is a book of poems that were empowering for me to read and eye-opening for me.  I'm surrounded by amazing women in my life.  Some of these women have gone through hard things in life that they should not have gone through, but they emerge strong.  There are times when these poems helped me better understand them.  They helped me think about my own life.

I can't wait to read these poems again.

I give 'New American Best Friend':
Thanks for Reading!


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