Flash Fiction – Let Go

Sometimes fear is a crippling thing, operating as an inescapable veil of inaction. But sometimes, just sometimes, it is the undesired push you need to take back what is yours.

Stephen knew this, but to admit the latter would be the unraveling of the toxic world he had built, and he wasn’t quite ready for that.

He loved her. He knew he did.

Her smile was more potent to him than the most illicit of drugs, her presence was a blessing that he counted everyday and her words were a monument he would cling to selflessly.

That was where the problem lay. He held so tightly to the words and actions of the one he loved that at some point he forgot where he ended and she began.

He’d searched. He really had. But all he found was a twisted contortion of his own emotions and a rancid ego that hungered for his despair. His own self lost among it all.

He waited and waited. He clung and clawed. Too afraid to let go and acknowledge that his house of cards had already fallen.

If only he had. If only he let go.

He might have found himself.

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The Book I wish Was Written Ten Years Ago – The Book of Knowing – Gwendoline Smith

Battling with mental health issues and depression can be a daunting and sometimes insurmountable task. People haphazardly throw around the words “I know how you’re feeling”, when really, they don’t have a clue. Those words, whilst coming from a good place, can often make you feel inadequate and frustrated. Because, lets be real, nobody really knows what you are battling in your own self depreciating brain. Well, that’s what I thought until I read this book.

The Book of Knowing, by Gwendoline Smith, offers you your own personal tour of that complex and often unforgiving entity that is the human brain. With its content built on the premise of CBT (Cognitive behavioural Therapy), The Book of Knowing explores strategies and ideas to help individuals take control of their own emotions and thought patterns in day to day life. Whilst targeted at teens and adolescents, the book offers insights that are valuable to any individual or demographic who struggle to keep on top of their emotions and thoughts. Furthermore, the book is littered with helpful diagrams that illustrate more complex ideas in comfortable and humorous ways.

The book’s real value lies in it’s propensity or ability to empower the reader. Personally, It’s helped me to realise the true power I have regarding my own wellbeing. To be completely honest, it has been a saving grace. I have actually found it more valuable than any counselling or therapy session I’ve taken part in.

So please, if you are in need of some help in navigating your way through troubling times, read this book. You really won’t regret it.

Arohanui

Novel Thoughts

Book Review – My Grammar and I – Caroline Taggart

I picked this book up at a second-hand store for a few dollars in the hopes it could help me to correct some of the discrepancies in my writing.

One afternoon a few weeks later, I sat bored in the living room, thinking hard about nothing at all. I looked over at my bookcase and thought I might as well crack into something. Anticipating I wouldn’t last long reading that day, I picked up the small grammar guide and jumped into page one. It was about 100 pages and an hour and a half later when I put the book down.

Initially, I expected a dry informative book, which demanded an unhealthy passion for apostrophes. So I was surprised when I was instead confronted with an engaging and witty exploration of grammar that genuinely made the topic feel fun!

I ended up finishing the book that day; it was that engaging.

While I can’t claim the book has made my grammar particularly perfect. It has reignited some of my passion for the subject and left me with a few handy tips to take away.

Would definitely recommend.

Arohanui

Novel Thoughts

Death of an Artist – Toni Morrison – Thoughts

Isn’t it sad that often for artists and writers, recognition comes posthumously? If you asked me to make a list of my top ten albums or books, I could confidently assure that at least half, or a comfortable majority, of those I mentioned, were produced by someone who no longer sits top side of the soil. But maybe it’s not sad. Perhaps that is the real beauty of an artists death; they can continue to inspire, educate and influence from beyond the grave.

Recently the American author Toni Morrison passed away, and I saw her death mourned across multiple media outlets. Morrison, by no means, went unnoticed in her lifetime. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Morrison enjoyed great recognition for her literary and storytelling talents. But when she died, I felt guilty. I felt guilty that I had never read one of her works.

I’ve now come across a copy of Beloved, and have begun reading. I’m only a chapter or two in. But already I feel a great sense of loss. I’ve lost a voice in this world that I had never heard until now. The same feeling, I remember noticing the first time I listened to Jeff Buckley, knowing that nothing more than the finite recordings of a marvellous mind was all that remained.

Just a Thought.

Aroha nui

Book Review – Canal Dreams – Iain Banks

One of my favourite books of all time is The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks. I remember reading the novel in Highschool and being amazed and intrigued by the disturbing and sadistic mind of the protagonist. Bank’s imagination was like none I had ever encountered. Eight years later, and I’ve just made it through Canal Dreams. My initial impression of Banks’ skill remains unchanged.

At first, I found the novel a little slow in its development, with Banks carefully introducing the Hisako, the novel’s protagonist. A Japanese cellist with a crippling fear of flying, Hisako immediately made me feel like I was reading a Murakami novel. This feeling further instilled by the dream sequences throughout the story. However, the slow start of the book established a sense of comfort in me as a reader, which worked well to leave me shocked and enthralled, when Banks’ pulled no stops in his details of bloodshed at the end of the novel.

While not a recommendation for the light-hearted or squeamish reader, Canal Dreams is a confronting depiction of what we can be when we have nothing left to lose. Hisako’s journey from a classical cellist to a Ramboesque heroine, illustrating that at heart, we can all be killers.

4/5 

Peace & Love

Novel-Thoughts

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