Tag Archives: fiction

Her Hips Do Lie by Maura Yzmore

Things have been so crazy around here, I completely forgot I usually post a review of short fiction on Mondays. I did read a piece of short fiction, though, so I’m going to review it today. This was brought to my attention by Annorlunda Books who is also attempting to read at least one piece of short fiction a week. This was her pick from last week. I was tempted to read it because of the title. Go ahead and follow the link – it’s extra short so it won’t take you too long to read it.

Published: March, 2018 on Jellyfish Review (read it online for free at that link)

Genre: short fiction

Setting: a generic location, present day

Summary: Our narrator is Jen. She was an active child, but then puberty hit and her hips changed. Those wide hips drew lots of male attention and made it difficult to be as active. She let herself sink into a soft shell of herself and become that quiet mom who never speaks up. One day she had enough. One day, she decided she’d had enough and started walking. From walking, she moved into kickboxing. Now, she may still look soft on the outside, but a look in her eyes will let you know that she will no longer be pushed around.

Final thoughts: I found this to be a powerful and moving story. Jen, like so many girls, feels betrayed by her body. For a while, she accepts those changes and stops being active. Eventually, though, she’s tired of being tired and sore all the time and she starts moving again. Yes, it’s hard, but it’s worth it and her body becomes stronger. As her body becomes stronger, she takes a stronger stance in her life. People are no longer able to walk all over her, regardless of how soft she looks. A good message to take to heart – you can be more than your appearance. There’s no fat shaming in this story. In fact, all indications are that Jen still has lots of curves even after she starts to exercise. Instead, the focus is on being able to do the activities and not feel pain that is important.

Title comes from: It’s a play on the phrase “These lips do lie” (or something like that). In this case, Jen’s hips say she’s a soft, gentle mom that you can push around. But they are a lie, because she will no longer be pushed around.


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Pashmina by Nidhi Chanani

I’m not sure how I was made aware of this graphic novel, but it was an obvious choice once I saw it. I wish I could sort my library catalog by publisher because First Second (who published this book) has a lot of interesting graphic novels.

Published: 2017

Genre: fantastical graphic novel

Length: 166 pages

Setting: it felt like California, and parts of India, present day Continue reading

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The Fruit Bowl Project by Sarah Durkee

I saw this described somewhere and was intrigued. I thought it would make a good read aloud and picked it up from the library.

Published: 2006

Genre: middle grade fiction

Length: 153 pages

Setting: a New York City middle school, present day Continue reading

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I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

I was looking for an X, Y, or Z author (for one last book in my reading the alphabet challenge) and came upon this book. I chose it because Zusak also wrote The Book Thief, which I enjoyed.

Published: 2002

Genre: YA fiction

Length: 357 pages

Setting: I’m guessing England based on some of the nouns (like fish and chips or crisps), present day Continue reading

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Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi

Someone from book club was offering this book to anyone who wanted it. I took it because it was an O author, but knew absolutely nothing about the book when I started it.

Published: 2014

Genre: fiction

Length: 316 pages

Setting: Flax Hill, Massachusetts, 1953-1960s Continue reading

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Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume

This is a classic kid’s book that I decided to read to the kids before Christmas as a change of pace from The Golden Compass.

Published: 1972

Genre: children’s chapter fiction

Length: 120 pages

Setting: NYC, early 1970s Continue reading

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A Bend in the River by V. S. Naipaul

This was one of the Modern Library’s 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. I was reading my way through this list.

Published: 1979

Genre: fiction

Length: 278 pages

Setting: Mid-20th century Africa, somewhere north of Uganda Continue reading

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