[Reading] ➷ Infandous Author Elana K. Arnold – Varanus.us

InfandousSephora Golding Lives In The Shadow Of Her Unbelievably Beautiful Mother Even Though They Scrape By In The Seedier Part Of Venice Beach, She S Always Felt Lucky As A Child, She Imagined She Was A Minor But Beloved Character In Her Mother S Fairy Tale But Now, At Sixteen, The Fairy Tale Is Less Disney And Grimm And She Wants The Story To Be Her Own Then She Meets Felix, And The Fairy Tale Takes A Turn She Never Imagined Sometimes, A Story Is Just A Way To Hide The Unspeakable In Plain Sight

    10 thoughts on “[Reading] ➷ Infandous Author Elana K. Arnold – Varanus.us


  1. says:

    Infandous something that s too terrible to be spoken aloud I really dig Elana K Arnold s novels, and love how she connects horrors of ancient fairy tales and myths to the lives of contemporary young women.But every book of hers I ve read so far made me want to vomit Infandous something that s too terrible to be spoken aloud I really dig Elana K Arnold s novels, and love how she connects horrors of ancient fairy tales and myths to the lives of contemporary young women.But every book of hers I ve read so far made me want to vomit


  2. says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here Spoiler Alert I got this out of the library because the blurb had a bit about a mermaid and a wolf and the mother being a supermodel So I presumed silly me that this was your typical lighthearted YA Urban Fantasy designed to spend a couple hours immersing the reader in an exotic life at Venice Beach with a girl who is half mermaid and her glamourous mother Well, fast forward This is actually a book about a girl who is seduced and raped by her birth father She copes with it by t Spoiler Alert I got this out of the library because the blurb had a bit about a mermaid and a wolf and the mother being a supermodel So I presumed silly me that this was your typical lighthearted YA Urban Fantasy designed to spend a couple hours immersing the reader in an exotic life at Venice Beach with a girl who is half mermaid and her glamourous mother Well, fast forward This is actually a book about a girl who is seduced and raped by her birth father She copes with it by telling grisly versions of fairy talesall of them centering around rape This entire book is about rape People keep comparing it to Lolita, probably because it is written in a voice that s half magical realism and half pondering introspection not unlike Humbert Humbert The writing shows skill I have no qualms with the writing itself I have SERIOUS qualms with the way the book was marketed I m an avid reader I read A LOT of books I read across genres This is not a scenario where I refuse to read anything other than YA Paranormal Romance But if I m in the mood for a fun paranormal romance about a mermaid at Venice Beach in the early days of August, then that s what I expect a book with this blurb to be about Yes, there is some stuff about reality being different from the fairy tale but that could mean and usually does in YAParRom something like the boy she likes won t like her back and her mom won t let her hang out with her best friend and go surfing It seldom means girl seduced and raped by her father, has mental and emotional break and spends book basically in the throes of breakdown I know the blurb was crafted for the exact reason I ended up reading the book They wanted people to pick it up and be swept up in the good writing and not mind that THIS IS A BOOK ABOUT A GIRL SEDUCED AND RAPED BY HER FATHER The thing isI do mind I mind very much I mind so much that I m writing a review so that other people like me who mind can have someone out there saying hold up This is not the droid your looking for


  3. says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I remember reading a blog years ago about a girl who slept with her father at first, by accident she didn t know he was her ddd the first time , but later on they slept together AGAIN And the girl enjpyed it.My face was twisted into this expression of intense disgust the whole time I remember the blogger writing don t judge me at some point but all I could think when I saw that was, um, yeah, I m judging the hell out both of you and your creepy father and the wack incest relationship I remember reading a blog years ago about a girl who slept with her father at first, by accident she didn t know he was her ddd the first time , but later on they slept together AGAIN And the girl enjpyed it.My face was twisted into this expression of intense disgust the whole time I remember the blogger writing don t judge me at some point but all I could think when I saw that was, um, yeah, I m judging the hell out both of you and your creepy father and the wack incest relationship you have, ya freak This book reminded me of that awful blog I ve been trying to forget ever since I read it I mean, wtf did I just read Yep, that s the first thought I had when I read THAT PART The bit where she slept with her dad Gross I don t have any other words for this book right now


  4. says:

    Infandous Too odious to be expressed or mentioned.There are those books that grab you by the throat and don t let go Infandous is one such book This is a short review of a short novel that is perfectly concise in its telling, beautiful in its writing, featuring a narrator with a strong voice and a story that is moving, discomfiting and ultimately healing.Following young narrator Sephora Golding, we follow her through the summer before senior year The story, taut and precise, follows the te Infandous Too odious to be expressed or mentioned.There are those books that grab you by the throat and don t let go Infandous is one such book This is a short review of a short novel that is perfectly concise in its telling, beautiful in its writing, featuring a narrator with a strong voice and a story that is moving, discomfiting and ultimately healing.Following young narrator Sephora Golding, we follow her through the summer before senior year The story, taut and precise, follows the tentative steps of a young girl in the journey to womanhood from her relationship with a beloved mother, their fraught livelihood in a one bedroom apartment, Seph s creative pursuits and friendships, to her sexual awakening and experimentations moving toward a sense of self determination The latter I feel, is very important here and is expertly dealt by the author in the way that Sephora, in spite of things outside her control and the complicated choices she makes, is shown with sympathy, care and undeniable agency.Seph s world is populated with hardships and poverty, casual sexism and misogyny Interspersed throughout are Seph s musings on fairytales and mythology from Sleeping Beauty to Demeter and Persephone, Procne and Philomela All stories centred on young women and agency.A myth is not in the telling but in the endless retellingFrom the opening pages, we know something is not quite well with Sephora There is a feeling that runs through her musings as a narrator, that hint at trauma and unease which she is trying her hardest to work through.Thus, one of the best and most affecting aspects of Infandous is exactly this in the telling of the stories, in the creating of her art, lies the cathartic process of working through something infandous as a storyteller and artist in an attempt to come out on the other side To be able to breathe.Infandous is a superb contemporary YA novel It reminded me a lot of the way that Stephanie Kuehn builds her stories like in Charm and Strange It is also in the tradition of other recent feminist works by Courtney Summers, Rhiannon Thomas, Sarah McCarry and Laura Ruby


  5. says:

    3.5 stars INFANDOUS is frustrating to me because it is almost a great book It has a terrific narrator, Sephora Golding, who is unaware of just how unreliable she is She s preoccupied with fairytales and myths, stories of women and sexuality and the terrible things that can happen She s preoccupied with her mother s sexuality She claims to be totally cool with her mom being gorgeous and desired and dating, but she s uncomfortable with her mom s newest beau, who is only twenty five and closer 3.5 stars INFANDOUS is frustrating to me because it is almost a great book It has a terrific narrator, Sephora Golding, who is unaware of just how unreliable she is She s preoccupied with fairytales and myths, stories of women and sexuality and the terrible things that can happen She s preoccupied with her mother s sexuality She claims to be totally cool with her mom being gorgeous and desired and dating, but she s uncomfortable with her mom s newest beau, who is only twenty five and closer to Sephora s age.Part of her preoccupation is something that happened not long ago This is revealed early in the book, but you may want to skip it if you hate knowing any details Sephora was picked up on the beach by a fortysomething man named Felix She told him she was nineteen and in college and she thought he was amazing in bed, better than anyone else she d ever slept with But there s a reason for statutory rape laws Sephora isn t really sure how she feels about what happened She s only sixteen in reality, and Felix keeps calling even though she s never answered in months It s a complex, thorny situation that Sephora can only think about indirectly And then there is a ludicrous soap opera reveal that Sephora never really reacts to with any strong emotion.But INFANDOUS isn t all sex There s also Sephora s art, mostly sculptures she makes out of found objects and then photographs with interesting shadows There s her relationship with Jeremy, her mom s boyfriend, who gets her a job and is pretty supportive, all things being said There s also a detour with her richer aunt and cousins Sephora calls her and her mother broke and poor, but it s fairly obvious that they re just lower middle class I liked the tales Elana K Arnold retold between chapters of INFANDOUS I like how the different strands of the story wove together, all held together by the things Sephora doesn t say and how she s too young to know that she s got a big blindspot about her own insight But I felt like the story just got goofy and ended I think it needed to cook a little longer


  6. says:

    This is a dark, gritty, unflinching, and fearless story about girlhood and womanhood and coming of age in a very specific, very female way.Interspersed between Sephora s story of growing up in the rough part of Venice Beach with her beautiful mother are the fractured, un Disneyed fairy tales and myths about the ways men have raped and pillaged women for their own benefit These are not sanitized, ugly, and brutal they are the perfect metaphor for Seph s own story, where the glistening images This is a dark, gritty, unflinching, and fearless story about girlhood and womanhood and coming of age in a very specific, very female way.Interspersed between Sephora s story of growing up in the rough part of Venice Beach with her beautiful mother are the fractured, un Disneyed fairy tales and myths about the ways men have raped and pillaged women for their own benefit These are not sanitized, ugly, and brutal they are the perfect metaphor for Seph s own story, where the glistening images of the beach and her mother s beauty are but superficial representations of the darkness in her own life and experiences.Arnold plays on LOLITA here a bit, too but knowledge of that book is not necessary to wholeheartedly understand this story Something terrible has happened in Seph s life, something disgusting, even, and she s wrestling with how to pack it away as part of who she is and what experiences she s had Except view spoiler when an older man takes advantage of a younger girl, despite how much she may have enjoyed it, he s still at fault hide spoiler That s what s at the crux of the story it s about how men feel entitled to women and how women can too easily blame themselves for it More to come This is outstanding and tough Not for every reader, but those who love the realism of Stephanie Kuehn and the twisting of mythology of Sarah McCarry s All Our Pretty Songs series will eat this up


  7. says:

    This review was originally posted on It Starts at MidnightEver finish a book and think um, what exactly did I just read That sums up this book Good day.Fine, fine A few things before we begin This book is kind of insane There is a twist too, that was just WHOA Like, if you saw that coming too early, you and I might not want to speak any.I don t usually do content warnings because I don t think they re usually necessary, but this one kind of needs a warning It is definitely for a This review was originally posted on It Starts at MidnightEver finish a book and think um, what exactly did I just read That sums up this book Good day.Fine, fine A few things before we begin This book is kind of insane There is a twist too, that was just WHOA Like, if you saw that coming too early, you and I might not want to speak any.I don t usually do content warnings because I don t think they re usually necessary, but this one kind of needs a warning It is definitely for a very mature YA, and if you are easily offended by things of a sexual nature, then this is probably not the book for you.Okay then Now, this book had some really big positives for me, but also some pretty significant negatives We ll start with positives, because that makes me happier.The Good Holy twist, Batman Like I said before, if you saw this coming somehow then I seriously am not sure what that says about your psyche I didn t necessarily like the twist I am not saying either way, read it for yourself , but I didn t expect it either I like being caught off guard, I really do.The dark and messed up fairy tales were really fascinating I think I may have liked some of themthan the actual story at hand They were dispersed throughout the book, but they were very unsettling versions of stories we know on a much tamer level I don t even know how to describe these stories because they were so often horrifying and gruesome, but they certainly were unique and got my attention.Sometimes, I really liked and felt for Sephora There were moments that I really connected with her, and could sympathize with some of her plights There was one really lovely quote that hit home for me that Sephora says Have you ever had the feeling that you aren t the main character in the story of your life That you fill aminor role supporting cast, maybe, comic relief, or even antagonist There was some hope in an otherwise dismal setting The backdrop was a beach, but that was about the only sunshine in this place But there were glimmers of hope to make the tough stuffbearable.The not so good Sometimes, I didn t understand Sephora at all She had a very weird relationship with her mother, and it kind of creeped me out Sephora was almost jealous of her, but at the same time craved her She also had a very weird fascination with her mother s body, and that just plain old grossed me out, because I really don t think people do that I mean, maybe a very young child is fascinated by an adult s different body, but not a teen.I didn t like most of the other characters in the book These people all just made some horrible life choices, and I simply couldn t understand why I understand when some of the characters can t get it together, but I don t really understand how none of them can Like they need one big Dr Phil intervention, perhaps This is a very character driven novel Usually, I am fine with that, but when it is a character driven book and you either can t connect with or don t like most of the characters, things can get ugly That said, it is a short book, so even the slower parts don t drag too much.Bottom Line While I may not have liked this book, I am glad I read it It certainly threw me for loops on several occasions, and was interesting enough to keep my attention for sure Obviously, I have mixed feelings, so it gets a middle of the road rating.2.5 Quote taken from uncorrected proof, subject to change Copy provided from publisher for review


  8. says:

    I wouldn t say that I enjoyed this novel it wasthat I appreciated it It is all jagged edges, the brusque tone like sandpaper to the skin and that s why it was so strong It is the impeccably woven story of Sephora, a girl coming into her own identity as an artist and a woman Her relationships are fascinating and grotesque a parasitic yet loving connection with her beautiful mother, her prickly yet loyal attachment to her best friend, and her own self loathing yet self preserving natu I wouldn t say that I enjoyed this novel it wasthat I appreciated it It is all jagged edges, the brusque tone like sandpaper to the skin and that s why it was so strong It is the impeccably woven story of Sephora, a girl coming into her own identity as an artist and a woman Her relationships are fascinating and grotesque a parasitic yet loving connection with her beautiful mother, her prickly yet loyal attachment to her best friend, and her own self loathing yet self preserving nature But what I truly appreciated about this story was the way that Elana Arnold retold fairytales and Greek myths to build up the plot The book was steeped in sexuality, but it wasn t sensual Rather it takes you by a fistful of your hair and drags you into the painful, embarrassing and awkward journey to self discovery I wasn t surprised by Sephora s secret, but I don t think that was the point I was swept up in the narrative, amused by her snark and heartbroken by her pain In the end, it s not about enjoying it s about understanding, and that s why I liked it so much This was a great read with a killer title.More reviews atA Story Addict


  9. says:

    A myth is not in the telling but in the endless retelling.


  10. says:

    This tough, gritty, and unflinching story about girlhood and womanhood and coming of age in a very specific, very female way, is fearless Infandous is the story of Sephora growing up in the rough part of Venice Beach with her beautiful mother, a horrific secret of what happened to her haunting the back of her mind Between the chapters of her story are dark, un Disneyed fairy tales and myths about the ways men have raped and pillaged women for their own benefit These are ugly, brutal stories This tough, gritty, and unflinching story about girlhood and womanhood and coming of age in a very specific, very female way, is fearless Infandous is the story of Sephora growing up in the rough part of Venice Beach with her beautiful mother, a horrific secret of what happened to her haunting the back of her mind Between the chapters of her story are dark, un Disneyed fairy tales and myths about the ways men have raped and pillaged women for their own benefit These are ugly, brutal stories, and the perfect metaphor for Seph s own life, where what looks like it should be nice and glistening on the surface is anything but Arnold s novel, which weighs in at just over 200 pages, is mucha study in character than it is plot driven, but the way she explores gender dynamics and sexuality is knock out good Fans of Francesca Lia Block s weaving of the magical and fantastical with reality will eat this up Kelly JensenFrom The Best Books We Read In February

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