“It’s all frivolous, meaningless. The only things that matter are already gone or almost gone. Already put aside in my safe, tidy compartment of lost things.”- Lena from ‘Who We Are Instead’
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we’re going to review a new book called ‘Who We Are Instead’ by Kyla Stone, which was provided by for review by ‘Paper Moon Press’. This is a very interesting book that touches on themes of loss, love, family, & finding your purpose in life. Fair warning this book does discuss mental illness, child abuse/neglect, drug/alcohol use, undetermined rape self-harm, & suicide, so if these issues are triggering to you, please don’t read this book, or proceed with caution. Now let’s get to the review. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
‘Who We Are Instead’ follows the dual perspectives of sisters Lena & Lux McKenna as they are forced to confront their individual personal demons when their father has a heart attack & is given a very small window of time to live. Lena must return home from her arts college where she is studying photography, & take on her role as “the responsible one”, while trying to resolve her issues with 18 year old “wild child” Lux. As we learn more about Lena, we see that issues from her childhood have cause her to become a more guarded & introverted person. Contrary to Lena, Lux has no desire to succeed in school, likes to party, smoke, do drugs, & drink a lot, & also leaves home for weeks at a time without informing anyone as to where she’s going.
So now we’ve reached the big question, is this book worth your time? Honestly the answer is a very loud yes! In this book we not only get to experience both girls perspectives, but also get a very strong sense of who they are as people, what has shaped them, & what’s important to them. We also get romance plots for both girls, & get introduced to Lux’s AMAZING childhood friends. I also really like that all of the characters we meet are flawed in some way of another, & the author does not attempt to redeem each of them which unfortunately does often mirror our own world very closely. With Lena & Lux’s stories we see how similar past experiences can cause different reactions in each person. We see that some people fight the past they are given to create the future they desire, while others run from their past in order to numb the pain & protect themselves. ‘Who We Are Instead’ gives us a very realistic & gripping tale of what can happen when a fractured family finally shatters, while also leaving the ending as ambiguous & open to promise as Lena & Lux themselves are. Definitely a 5 star read that’s will give you all the feels, but as also make you think about these very important issues.
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Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we are going to talk about a story I read last week on Facebook that I just had to share with y’all. Everyday we are constantly bombarded with terrible, often unimaginable crimes that happen in the world. In fact we have become a culture that in a lot of ways have become a bit unaffected by disaster. We’re so used to hearing about how dangerous and terrible the world is that it can be difficult to imagine a world were people do nice things just because they want to be nice. As I previously said, I read a story last night about a Starbucks barista that performed a simple small action that really affected a woman. So now let’s get to the story. Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
On October 20th, 2015 a woman from New Hampsire named Bekah Georgy wrote a piece for themighty.com about a recent trip to Starbucks. Now this may seem like the beginning of a really boring story, but I promise you it gets really good. In the piece Bekah explains that she has suffered from Anorexia Nervosa for half of her life. Her anorexia is so bad that she has to wear a feeding tube, because she explains that most days the most she can consume is coffee. Bekah also suffers from anxiety and depression and has attempted to commit suicide 5 times. She continues to explain in this post that she was having a particularly bad day, in which her suicidal thoughts were worsening, and she contemplated not even drinking the coffee that she had just bought from Starbucks. Then Bekah saw that the barista at the Starbucks had written the word ‘Smile!!’ on her cup. Bekah explained that this simple word helped her feel better about her day and stopped her from doing any harm to her body that day. I found this story to be really inspiring because we just don’t hear about these stories as often as we should. It really shows that ever little action we take has a more powerful reaction. I’ll link the article Bekah wrote below because I really think y’all should read it. This just shows that sometimes the biggest smiles, hide the deepest scars.