Love & MisadventureLove & Misadventure by Lang Leav
My rating: 1/5 cats
One Star

this book has an average rating of 4.34 with 2,119 ratings. that’s really high.

and it’s terrible.

and i’m not one of these assholes that likes to trash something that other people like. usually i try to figure out who would like it, even if i didn’t myself, because i’m just one reader yadda yadda ranganathan, but in this case, the only people i can see actually enjoying it are 13-year-old girls who are all starry-eyed over some boy. and that’s fine – nothing wrong with little girls reading and writing love poetry in their diaries. but that’s exactly where it should stay.

i am notorious for not knowing what happens in the Great Wide World. and after reading this book and being utterly baffled as to why anyone would publish it, let alone give it such high star-ratings, i had to find out: “is this chick on glee or something??” “is she some rock star’s kid??” “is this a little mattie situation where people tell him he’s good because he’s, you know, terminal?” why does she have a book that people are so delusional about? so i poked around the internet and apparently this chick got famous through tumblr?? and pinterest?? and all those sites you young’uns use these days??

and i looked at her artwork, and it’s pretty good

although i feel like mark ryden should be writing her a letter, because ahem


so, the artwork is fine, if a kind of watered-down and less delightfully d(m)ark ryden. but it’s not good enough to brainwash people in that “oh, james franco, you want to write books now?? you want to have a cooking show?? you want to fly a commercial airline?? go ahead, superfine one, we will stand by you” way. it’s not good enough to make me accept that this is a good poem:

Heart on the Line

Love is good,
it is never bad –
but it will drive you mad!

When it is given to you,
in dribs and drabs.

and it’s all like that – barfy-sweet in the happy ones, emo-woe in the sad ones. and rhyming! it made me want to tear my hair out. i bought this book because of the high ratings on goodreads, and because it is an attractively-designed book, and i flipped through and saw it had some decent art, but it just really made me wince. maybe someone else can tell me what the appeal is??

Soul Mates

I don’t know how you are so familiar to me – or why it feels less like I am getting to know you and more as though I am remembering who you are. How every smile, every whisper brings me closer to the impossible conclusion that I have known you before, I have loved you before – in another time, a different place – some other existence.

The Girl He Loves

There was a man who I once knew,
for me there was no other.
The closer to loving me he grew,
the more he would grow further.

I tried to love him as a friend,
then to love him as his lover;
but he never loved me in the end –
his heart was for another.


You were you
and I was I;
we were two
before our time.

I was yours
before I knew,
and you have always
been mine too.


Your hand reaches for mine.
We kiss tentatively, passionately
and then, tenderly.

You brush my hair away from my face.
“You’re beautiful.”
I wrinkle my nose in protest.
“You are.”

am i too cynical?? it this sweetie-pie greeting card stuff what people want in their poetry? because i know shit from poundcake about poetry, really, but to me, this is a love poem:

from The Bridge: Southern Cross

I wanted you, nameless Woman of the South,
No wraith, but utterly—as still more alone
The Southern Cross takes night
And lifts her girdles from her, one by one—
High, cool,
wide from the slowly smoldering fire
Of lower heavens,—
vaporous scars!

Eve! Magdalene!
or Mary, you?

Whatever call—falls vainly on the wave.
O simian Venus, homeless Eve,
Unwedded, stumbling gardenless to grieve
Windswept guitars on lonely decks forever;
Finally to answer all within one grave!

And this long wake of phosphor,
Furrow of all our travel—trailed derision!
Eyes crumble at its kiss. Its long-drawn spell
Incites a yell. Slid on that backward vision
The mind is churned to spittle, whispering hell.

I wanted you . . . The embers of the Cross
Climbed by aslant and huddling aromatically.
It is blood to remember; it is fire
To stammer back . . . It is
God—your namelessness. And the wash—

All night the water combed you with black
Insolence. You crept out simmering, accomplished.
Water rattled that stinging coil, your
Rehearsed hair—docile, alas, from many arms.
Yes, Eve—wraith of my unloved seed!

The Cross, a phantom, buckled—dropped below the dawn.
Light drowned the lithic trillions of your spawn.

and i know – it is a problematic example for a number of reasons, but that is a poem that gets my romantic juices flowing. i have never been into frosting romance. i like my romance to be all red wine and very rare meat. but even frosting should have more substance than these poems.

sorry, world, but i am not with you this time.

read my reviews on goodreads

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