Reader ¸ Starfish 340 pages ↠ Akemi dawn bowman

Mobi Starfish

Reader ¸ Starfish 340 pages ↠ Akemi dawn bowman ↠ ❮BOOKS❯ ✬ Starfish Author Akemi Dawn Bowman – Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half Japanese heritage she doesn’t uite understand Jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life Kiko learns life changing truths about herself her past and how to be brave Trigger warnings for emotional and sexual abuse incredibly toxic relationship suicidide attemptThis is definitely a story that will stay with me I remember reading the blurb and immediately wanting to dive into the book It sounded like something I could relate to and I did It brought me back to my high school and college days Heck even uni The anxiety the insecurity not being someone that is social but so desperately wanting to fix that about yourself because people kept pointing it out about you It all hit a bit close to home The family aspect in this book is hard to read It is toxic in every sense of the word and this really shapes the mentality of our main character She's half white half Japanese and being a teenager you already tend to suffer from a identity crisis Add an unstable home to that and you are in for a mental state that is unhealthy to the fullest The author really did an amazing job at bringing those aspects to life of what it means to be a teenager and trying to find yourself It was painful to be in Kiko's head A whole range of topics are discussed; social anxiety being Asian but not fully knowing your roots being picked on for your looks race parenting standards of beauty and fighting and following your dreams I wish it was longer I do wish some aspects were even developed Not that anything was missing but I just felt the need to have as I was enjoying the book so much and it would've felt even fulfilling I highly recommend this book and I can't wait for the author to release Thank you to Black and White Publishing House for sending me a review copy

Akemi Dawn Bowman Ì Starfish Kindle

Hool Prism her real life will beginBut then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast Kiko I read this book in September and wrote my review at the same time Then I rewrote my review in February It’s been two months since I rewrote my review but I couldn’t bring myself to ever post it before now And I’m not exactly sure why I think it’s because this book means a lot to me and writing my review was hard because I found so much of myself in Kiko that it hurt Because Kiko is a character who struggles for so long to find herself worthy or beautiful and her thoughts hit too close to home for me I don’t think I’ve ever put trigger warnings for my own reviews but uh There’s a lot of internalized racism talked about in this review So yeah 🌹 CHARACTERS Kiko is a biracial Japanese American girl with anxiety who loves to make art She’s honestly such a well written character I can’t remember much since I read this a couple of months ago but I remember that she was just a soft kind girl I just related to so SO much of her and she’ll always have a special place in my heart I literally feel all kinds of fuzzy warmness whenever I think of her I can’t speak about the biracial rep but from other ownvoices reviews I’ve read it seems pretty good The biracial rep is also ownvoices Jamie is a character I’m really mixed on On one hand he’s a very sweet guy who loves Kiko a lot And their relationship is slowburn friends to lovers whicH IS MY FAVORITE On the other hand he kind of seemed way too perfect and REALLY REALLY close to being a cure for Kiko It definitely was not a “love cures all” thing but it could have been and that makes me feel a little iffy Kiko’s mom is Kiko’s abuser and she says some horribly harmful and racist things that actually make me want to choke her especially being a part of the group of people she’s being racist to There were some issues with her being written as if she were mentally ill which is pretty problematic along with other things that I’ll later talk about The other side characters were fantastic I loved seeing the healthy female friendship between Kiko and Emy and I also loved the mentor student relationship between Hiroshi and Kiko I wish I could’ve seen from the side characters especially in how they played into Kiko’s healing but I think what we saw from them was really great 🌷 PLOT This book has a very character driven plot but I was super engaged the entire time It really to me is about Kiko trying to heal from her mother’s abuse and find herself—discover her identity There was something so poignant about Kiko’s story in trying to find who she was and learn that she was beautiful in her own way and doing all this while recovering from the effects of someone who told her that who she was really wasn’t worth it or beautiful 🌹 WRITING The writing KILLED ME Something about Bowman’s writing is so lyrical and beautiful and draws me in There were some lines especially the ones that were describing Kiko’s art that were just absolutely gorgeous and actually made me pause and reread the lines I draw five humans and one skeleton and it doesn’t matter that the skeleton has all the right bones and joints—he will never be the same as the others because he doesn’t have the right skin I don’t want to need him any I want to stand on my own two feet I want control of my own life and my own emotions I don’t want to be a branch in someone else’s life any—I want to be the tree on my own I draw a girl with arms that reach up to the clouds but all the clouds avoid her because she’s made of night and not day I am SO IN LOVE WITH HER WRITING🌷 REPRESENTATION a really long and super personal rant All right here we go What makes this book so so incredibly important to me is the Asian rep This book is literally THE best representation of myself as an Asian that I’ve read before and it captures so much of what it means to me to be Asian in a white society And I’m not even Japanese or biracial like Kiko It talks about how Kiko feels like she can’t be pretty because she isn’t white enough It talks about how beauty has been molded by her mother into something that can only belong to her if she isn’t Asian These ideas that an Asian person or any person of color has to be white to be deemed beautiful are messed up not true at all and horribly harmful But they’re things I’ve thought And it hurts so much because I KNOW I’ve thought these things and still continue to think them I recognize so many times in the past where I’ve caught myself thinking “it’d be better if I was white” or “I wish I was white” or “I’d be prettier if I was white” But I never actually thought they were harmful Which kind of makes me want to cry And I think that’s the part that hits me the most with the Asian rep These thoughts that Kiko have about beauty—they’re the thoughts I’ve had the thoughts I continue to have despite knowing they’re not true and hurtful things to be thinking And reading this book was putting words to something I was unable to say It was recognizing the harm I’d been unintentionally doing to myself influenced by other people but it was knowing that I wasn’t the only one to struggle through it Kiko was literally ABUSED for not being white enough and gradually healed to think herself as beautiful and that is so SO empowering Beauty is such a subjective matter and a pretty superficial matter but it’s extremely important in our society today And when you don’t fit into the conventional standards of beauty and everyone around you who is deemed pretty doesn’t look like you you can’t really think of yourself as “beautiful” And that’s exactly what resonates with me and makes this book one of my favorites Because these kind of things—not fitting in the people you see versus the person you are and how it all affects self esteem—make up the basis of not being white in a society where white is the norm and this book tackles it perfectly I even face different beauty standards in my own race East Asians who are the people who most think of when seeing or hearing the word “Asians” value light skin over darker skin I’m from Thailand which is in Southeast Asia and I have darker skin than what East Asians have My skin tone is literally viewed as not as beautiful in my own race Not being white is bad enough but some people of my own race thinking that I am not “as beautiful” because of the shade of my skin It sucks Not to mention that I still don’t really fit in with either Southeast Asians or East Asians skin color wise because I’m somewhere in between that light and dark skin tone Being a person of color in a society where white is what’s socially accepted is so difficult People will always be prejudiced towards me and every Asian and every person of color Even in certain cultures were Asian is the norm people will still be prejudiced towards me But this book shows us all that we are all beautiful even if it’s hard to believe even if you are told otherwise even if everyone societally deemed “pretty” doesn’t look even similar to you And that’s why this book is so empowering for every Asian and every person of color Of course there were other aspects of the rep that I found well done but this was what meant the most to me And I know it sounds kind of cliche or superficial to say “we’re all beautiful” but Western beauty standards made and STILL make me have low self esteem so Another note Most of what I was talking about above referred to SoutheastEast Asians since that’s how I identify as If West or South Asians—or any POC actually since we’re all affected by Western beauty standards—can find themselves represented in this book that’s amazing But this review is just talking about my personal experiences as a Southeast Asian In addition to the BEAUTIFUL Asian rep this book also had amazing anxiety rep also some of the best I’ve read Kiko’s anxiety was portrayed very realistically and I related so much to it This rep is ownvoices as well I also want to mention that there were uite a few problems with the abuse rep that I will fully admit to completely missing when I read this I can’t speak for how the abuse was portrayed but there were definitely unuestionably problematic aspects which Elise explains in a fantastically written review so please please read her review Note The abuse rep was ownvoicesThis book is a book that’s extremely close to my heart It of course has amazing characters and writing and is such a compelling beautiful story But most of all it has the best portrayal of an East Asian character I’ve ever read and it made me realize things about myself that I knew existed but never really recognized And that means the world to me rep biracial Japanese American socially anxious female MC abuse survivor other biracial Japanese American siblings Japanese art mentor content warning parental emotional abuse sexual abuse suicide attempt racism Thank you to Simon and Schuster for generously providing me with a beautiful review copy This did not affect my opinion in any way All uotes were taken from an advanced copy and may differ in the final publication

Book ✓ Ì Akemi Dawn Bowman

StarfishKiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half Japanese heritage she doesn’t uite understand Kiko prefers to keep her head down certain that once she makes it into her dream art sc this truly meant everything to metw racism sexual emotional abuse parental abuse suicide attempt