unlock your storybook heart by amanda lovelace

unlock your storybook heart by amanda lovelace

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The 52 Book Club 2022 Challenge: 10. A book based on a real person

Other Possible Prompts: 11. A book with less than 2022 Goodreads ratings, 26. Has an author’s note, 52. Published in 2022

I love amanda lovelace!! I’m so honored I got a chance to read unlock your storybook heart before it hit shelves, especially because this book resonated with me more than any of her others.

This poetry collection is based on the fairy tale of Beauty & The Beast, but of course, with lovelace’s twists. Our main character is a perfectionist, held to high expectations, a reader and an academic. She lost her mother and works through pain by binging. Destined to find her soul mate by finding the match for the keyhole in her heart, she escapes into books to stave off real life until she finds her knight in shining armor…who isn’t who you would expect.

amanda lovelace’s collection of poetry has always been one of my favorites. I’ve loved reading her evolution in attitude toward herself and the world, and how it’s gotten lighter and more hopeful over time. And that’s why I’ve chosen to use this prompt, based on a real person, because there’s a little piece of amanda in every collection – as she states herself in the author’s note.

While the witch doesn’t burn in this one has always been one of my favorites, lighting a fire in me for change and anger with the way things are, unlock your storybook heart spoke to who I am and to the advice I typically get and never heed. It was an artful reinterpretation of who I am and who I could be, and it’ll be amongst my favorites now. Beauty and the beast is one of my favorite fairy tales. I liked the play on our princess’ character as not only a reader and academic but a perfectionist and “gifted”. lovelace has a talent for twisting these tales to show you a new side of things.

Also, these illustrations?? Stunning. The addition of illustrations to her novels has been amazing. I loved in particular when they were fan-created, but these were stunning and cozy all the same. It just adds a touch more magic to her poetry and helps visualize the fantasy element of her art. It’s just the bump the pages need.

I sometimes find myself feeling lovelace to be repetitive; she can drone too much on the same thoughts in her stories. This one wasn’t as bad, but you can still see it in here. All the same, I really like her work and I would highly recommend it, especially to young women – there are a lot of themes in her stories that you can resonate with. However, there’s a trigger warning in just about every book, and be sure to be mindful of those as needed.

Even as not-a-huge-poetry-fan, I love amanda lovelace, and I loved unlock your storybook heart. Thankful to NetGalley and Andrews-McMeel for the advance readers copy! You can get a copy of your very own on March 15th, next Tuesday!