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Customer Review

31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a smartly done one-poem volume that charms and inspires, November 29, 2011
This review is from: B (Hardcover)
When poet Sarah Kay took the TED2011 stage, she began her TED Talk with the poem that is the sole focus on this illustrated book. At the conclusion of the poem's performance, the audience gave her a standing ovation (one of two she would earn for her talk!) and it's easy to see why. "B" is a letter from the poet to a future daughter, but in its beauty & thoughtfulness, it is also a celebration of what it is to be a woman: to be a mother and a daughter.

In explaining how she would mother her own daughter, Kay gives insight to everything she has learned in her life -- both on her own and from her mother. "Getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way / to remind your lungs how much they like the taste of air." she explains in one section; "There's nothing more beautiful than the way / the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, / no matter how many times it's swept away," she offers in another. Kay is a storyteller who isn't afraid to make you laugh or smile, but is absolutely committed to being honest, to sincerity and authenticity. It makes for a fresh work, one that begs to be revisited -- which may explain why the talk has earned 1 million+ hits on the TED Talks website and another 500,000+ hits on YouTube (and surely growing).

After Kay's talk went viral and poetry lovers discovered both her & her work (numerous poems of hers appear on YouTube, earning her hundreds of thousands of hits), I am sure they went looking for print versions of her poetry. And there wasn't any -- until now. And I hope "B" is just the first in a series of books that the publisher, The Domino Project, will put out of Kay's work -- having just one poem available isn't enough!

Still, it's an absolutely worthy effort. As a spoken word poet, I'm sure it was a challenge to think of the best way to capture the bright energy that Kay brings to her performances and get it onto the page, but this smartly designed hardback book -- with its beautiful & delicately rendered pen & ink illustrations by Sophia Janowitz -- is a winner. It's a perfect way to experience the poem on page, as the illustrations and spacious layout allow each line and beat of the poem to be fully enjoyed and realized. And needless to say, it would make for a lovely gift as well!

I recommend this beautiful one-poem tome for anyone who is a fan of Kay or her work. Or anyone who needs a reminder that "this world is made / out of sugar: it can crumble so easily, but don't / be afraid to stick your tongue out and taste it."
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 7, 2011 12:06:51 PM PST
hi says:
I am wondering why all these reviews are written within 2-3 days of each other???????

Posted on Dec 7, 2011 12:08:00 PM PST
hi says:
I am wondering why all these reviews are written within 2-3 days of each other??????? I was going to buy, but have decided not to.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 7, 2011 1:56:10 PM PST
D. Bryant says:
The reason all of the reviews are within a few days of each other is that the book was not released until November 29, 2011, just over a week ago.
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Location: Austin, TX

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