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By SAMAMA, Mar 28 2021 11:12AM

A Prom to Remember promised me a lot of fun and entertaining teenage drama - something that’ll lift my mood up, and I am so infuriated to say that it did not, at all. The book revolved around the seniors planning the activities of the most awaited prom night of their high school - something I always fantasized about attending to but never got around going as my school never held prom nights. So I’d always ask my friends from America how their prom nights usually went, and they’d always answer me with ‘it’s not like in the movies, Sam!’ So forgive me if I was ecstatic to read exclusive details on Prom nights from this book. Fast forward to the last page of this book – I learned nothing.

I did not get what I was promised from this book – a Prom to freakin’ remember. As I was reading this badly scripted book, I wondered, did I do a mistake by picking this up? Because it wasted 45 days of my life and I was nowhere near done finishing it! I did not get the desire to pick this book up and read because I wasn’t finding it interesting enough.

The characters! Oh the characters, I cannot go ahead without bitching about them.

- There were so many characters to catch up to that it was outright confusing from the very beginning.

- They all gave me stuck up and annoying vibes.

- I did not feel giddy as I had expected I would from this YA novel. Tsk, disappointed.

- There were many, many characters but none of them had any special effects on me.

Their conversations did not sound anything like a teen’s, nor did their problems sound like real problems even for a teenager, and my God their lack of emotions annoyed the hell out of me. I was a teenager too, but I was never this annoying and I know it. This girl wants to break up, and that guy wants to cancel a date he promised. Just freakin’ do it!!! Just do it!! Why are you bothering us??

If you’re read this book, I hated Cora, she was a stuck up bitch who broke his perfect boyfriend’s heart and that too on prom night because she felt like she couldn’t ‘explore’ life with him by her side….. *Pinching my nose in frustration.*

There’s so much I want to bitch about her but I will leave it to this for now.

Amelia – the famous girl - wasn’t nearly as bitchy as Cora or any other girls in the book, and yet, because she was liked by other guys, spoke confidently and liked dressing up, she was the bad one from them all and apparently deserved all the insiders hate.

Henry and Cameron were complicated, and I couldn’t get a valid explanation on why they were like that.

2/5 stars, because I’m a very kind person.

By SAMAMA, Mar 10 2021 10:38AM

Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep was a sweet, soothing book of poetry, and the illustrations within made it even better. In fact, I heard the birds chirp and fly away in flocks, and heard the winds blow and the raindrops pitter-patter on puddles as I read through the book in a warm and sunny side of the world.

It was also a quick read – 2 minutes, exactly, so I read it a few more times to enjoy the soothing, sad-happy feeling it immersed me in.

The poem wasn’t heartbreaking at all; in fact it felt quite uplifting. It was written by an author who is still unknown to this day. The only thing we know about him is that he was a soldier and he had left this poem for his loved ones before he was killed by an exploding mine near Londonderry in 1989. These were simple, raw emotions of a stranger, so I don’t think I can put a specific rating or stars on it.

“Do not stand at my grave and weep –

I’m not there,

I do not sleep.”

By SAMAMA, Mar 10 2021 10:26AM

Reading Shamed by Sarbjit Kaur Athwal horrified me. It horrified me to know that there are people in this world who are so cruel, so disgusting and utterly terrifying. It frightened me so much that at a point I was genuinely scared to read ahead, I was conflicted between keeping it aside to never know what happened next or finishing it up so I could finally sleep at night without constantly thinking about it.

All Sarbjit’s sister-in-law Surjit wanted was freedom from her cruel and abusive in-laws, and the only way she could achieve that was by getting a divorce. But what would the so-called society think? Thought the in-laws, a divorce would tarnish their reputation, so it was decided; she had to be ‘honor killed’. Sarbjit could do nothing but wait in horror as her mother-in-law took Surjit away from Hayes to India to ‘get rid of her.’ If Sarbjit dared to say a word, her fate would be as horrifying as her late sister-in-law: strangled and thrown into a river near a neighboring country – never to be found again. How would she ever find justice for Surjit while being surrounded by the murderers inside her own home?

Sarbjit was never allowed to make friends when she was young, nor was she allowed a basic freedom during her childhood, and if it wasn’t for the British law, she couldn’t have gotten into school, either. She spent her childhood in taking care of her siblings and cousins, or cooking and cleaning. If that wasn’t enough, she was sent to India to get an ‘extensive training’ on how to be a good wife by relatives she barely knew. I felt sorry for her, especially when she realized how she missed out on all the bright prospects in her life because of the strict rules given by her family.

This book made me realize how privileged I was while growing up. In fact, I always thought everyone else grew up the same way as I did, but I was so wrong.

The courage Sarbjit Kaur Athwal summed up to write this book was worth admiring. For someone who grew up by the opinions of the society, this book was a major step into expressing the harsh truth. Her bravery has been underrated, though. I had to use the word ‘underrated’ because, I couldn’t believe what some book reviewers wrote about this memoir on Goodreads. They were blaming the author for not doing things she clearly explained why she couldn’t do. I mean, this book wasn’t a work of fiction; she couldn’t have changed the story’s course the way she would’ve wanted. That’s not real life, so stop being naïve.

Ouff…. This book was a lot to take it. I need a break. 5/5 stars.