the mermaid's voice returns in this one

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 05 Mar 2019

Member Reviews

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

I have been reading this series of poems since book one. I loved the first 2 books , but this one didn’t seem to hold my attention like the first two. Not to saw it wasn’t good, it was and it is important to be heard .
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Goodreads review:
This is the first poetry book I read from Amanda Lovelace and I did enjoy it for the most parts. 
There were some poems I really liked but overall I don't think it's my cup of tea.
The poems covered some heavy topics like sexual abuse. I could really feel the emotion behind the poems.

I did like this poetry book but it wasn't my favorite. I'm really in the middle about it. It covers some topics that are really important to talk about but I had the feeling some poems were a bit the same. Definitely want to read her other poetry books to see what they're like.
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Amanda Lovelace graced us with her lovely way of describing some of the most horrible things that can happen to a person which leads to grace and healing. I really enjoy the flow of her poems and the way they are divided into sections. It's almost like reading a novel with a beginning, middle, and end. You want to get to the end because you want to know the ending. I appreciate the contributions from the other authors and poets, especially my favorite - Lang Leave. 

I do think that her first book will be my favorite and had a higher impact in my life. The book's title makes it sound like the poems will center around mermaids and the like (as in her previous books) but I barely got anything that had to do with mermaids. I would have enjoyed a bit more mermaid or sea imagery involved in the poems so that the third book could continue with the theme of the first two (princess and witches, respectively). 

Either way, if you liked her first two books, you will enjoy this one as well! Thank you NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing me with the ebook! 
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I chanced upon an ARC of this book because I was browsing through the poetry section of Netgalley on the right day, at the right time. And I'm so glad I found it!

The Mermaid's Voice Returns In This One is the third book in the Women are Some Kind of Magic series, and I loved it just as much as the other two books, maybe even more.

The Mermaid's Voice was about speaking up, about getting through the pain and still continuing to live, about fighting your demons. It was a collection of poems that inspired me, at the same time bringing me face to face with the reality. 

i love the way
i look in
my sundress
& it's not
someone else 
me to."

This is one of the many beautiful pieces in the book. And what's more? There are even poems by some really amazing poets, including one of my favourites, Nikita Gill.

All in all, The Mermaid's Voice Returns In This One was a power-packed collection of poems that left me breathless and in awe.
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A powerful and empowering conclusion to the Women Are Some Kind of Magic trilogy. I wasn’t too sure about this reading especially since I didn’t particularly enjoy the second book that much, but I knew it would bug me to not complete a series that is short like this one. The one thing I liked the most about Lovelace’s work is how she uses the concepts of fairy tales, subverting traditionally submissive stories about women and reinventing them in her own way. I guess, and it isn’t Lovelace’s fault, the style really doesn’t do much for me anymore. I can’t really fault her on this structure being so overused in popular poetry books.
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When I saw that there was an advanced reading copy for amanda lovelace’s last poetry collection in her series “women are some kind of magic” I was extremely excited. I first found lovelace’s work through a friend of mine who kindly gifted me the first book in the series.

Her first book in the series is probably my favourite as it came to me at a time when I needed to be reminded of my own strengths and abilities. The collection of poetry is something I often return to in times of struggle and I find lovelace’s words comforting and uplifting.

Her third collection aligns with her previous works and centres on themes of self (re-)discovery, how to find your own voice again, and the struggle with remembering and letting go of the past. The four part collection (the sky, the shipwreck, the song, and the surviving) starts, interestingly, with a swan song—which comes from the ancient Greek belief that swans sang beautiful songs as they died. Whilst this is the last book in her series, I doubt that this will be the last we will here from lovelace. This swan song, therefore defies narrative norms where the end—the swan song—is actually just the beginning.

lovelace’s honesty and poetic style proffer the question again and again, How do we come to terms with the past? On the one hand, talking about the past is vital to heal, yet on the other hand it can be extremely dangerous in that the past can creep into the now and take over our present and future selves. Healing also just takes a lot of time and it isn’t easy. With poetic lines like when will it be my turn to be “the gem/ of the deep/ not the rubble of pompeii” (p36) we see the way lovelace contemplates healing, learning, and growing from the past, but also being frustrated with how long everything takes.

Throughout the collection, lovelace also twists the meanings and narrative conventions of traditional fairytales and love stories like The Little Mermaid and Romeo and Juliet. She looks for new meanings and interpretations as well as coming up with alternative endings. In doing so, she asks the reader to question the status quo and to also demand different endings for themselves. Her poetry is also helpful in the way that it reminds the reader to trust their instincts and to learn “how to/ recognize/ the warning/ flares” of toxic and dangerous people. Her new alternate interpretations of tried and true stories therefore, goes a step further by asking the reader to be aware of not just toxic people, but also toxic narratives.

lovelace slips between first and third person blurring the lines of self and other as she recounts some of her past. By doing so she distances herself from her experiences, but also takes hold of her own narrative. Her musings on the terms victim/survivor and which one is more ‘appropriate’ also ties in with the ending of her collection where she states that there is no one way to be a survivor/victim. Often times, people can be both and that is okay. She embraces the multifaceted nature of her identity and this is accentuated throughout the (re-)telling of her own stories.

In the last section of her collection, lovelace mixes the poetry of other authors with her own and creates a mini-anthology of survivor stories. By including these new voices she further reinforces the idea that there is no one way to remember, survive, or talk about assault. And in the final pages of the collection she asks the reader to “take my words,/ but/ expand upon them.” in her poem ‘- make them yours.’ (p171).

Overall, lovelace’s poetry is important in a time of #MeToo where more and more people are talking about sexual violence and stigma. I still believe that her first collection in the series was her best, but I can also appreciate the way that each poem builds on the ones from before creating new meanings and interpretations of remembering trauma.

Are you a fan of poetry? Will you be picking up lovelace’s poetry collection when it hits the shelves? As always, share the reading love.

NOTE: This novel was was accessed through Netgalley and Andrew McMeel Publishing for review purposes. Expected publication is 5th March 2019.
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I have read and own every single one of Amanda Lovelace's poetry books. The emotion, truth, and personal experience she transcends in every verse, sentence, word, and poem is truly magnificent. 

The Princess Saves Herself in This One was my all time favorite.. until now. So much of this novel resonated with me as a female in todays society. The comparisons to mermaids was a fantastical element that added so much vision and imagery to her collection. I can NOT wait to purchase this novel and annotate/document all of the poems I loved. 

Thank you NetGalley for giving me an advanced reader copy for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Title:  The Mermaid's Voice Returns in This One
Author:  Amanda Lovelace
Pages: 210
Release Date: March 5, 2019
Genre: Poetry
Series or Stand Alone: Can read as a stand-alone with no problems, but is #3 in the "Women are Some Kind of Magic" series that I cannot recommend enough
Bechdel Test: Yes!
Trigger Warning: healing from the trauma of a sexual assault is in the background of some of these poems. I found it cathartic but others should be aware of the prevalence of the topic.

I received a free eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Visit for more.

Amanda Lovelace gives birth to a set of beautiful, fierce, and vulnerable poems. She rereads stories and fairytales that give women their voices back and does not force them to say anything they do not want to say.  For instance, she has a short poem on the women in the Chronicles of Narnia that was absolutely fantastic! She gives a voice back to a woman who was silenced and never given her day in court. I have loved the CoN since I was very young, but it never occurred to me how Lewis stifles what it means to be brave and good when it comes to women. She can do more with a few sentences then many can in an essay.  She has several of these that are brilliant critiques and powerful poems. All women are worthy of a voice whether you wear lipstick or hide between book pages.

Lovelace also speaks to past acts of violence against her that she is still healing from. It's cliche to say she is "brave" to do this, but I am in awe of her vulnerability and willingness to share the eternal process of healing.

Though I was given this book as an eArc to review, I will be buying a copy for myself. I suspect it will also become a gift for many friends in the future. Although this is the third and final installment of "Women are Some Kind of Magic" series, I hope she will continue to bless us with more of her work. I will strive to live my life as the mermaid-witch-princess her series envokes.

I would recommend this to anyone who loves poetry. This is also a great book for those who aren't "into" poetry. Fans of Rupi Kaur and Nikita Gill will love this work.
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This was a strong conclusion to the Women Are Magic series and I love Amanda Lovelace's voice. This is the pick me up many survivors could use to just face another day. 

*Thank you to Netgalley for this review copy. All opinions expressed are my own"
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is the story
of how
they tried
to quiet her
& how her screams
the moon."

the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is the final volume of poetry in Amanda Lovelace’s women are some kind of magic series. Unlike Lovelace’s previous title, the witch doesn’t burn in this one, which was engulfed in the flames of woman-rage-fire this volume, instead, harbors handfuls of poetry as smooth, cool and colorful as shards of seaglass plucked from the shore. These poems aren’t all jagged edges, or outrage and the fury Lovelace exuded before has transformed. There’s still discontent, there’s still a refusal to be silenced and accept the abuse and injustices we women face on the daily. The rhythm and voice, though, is more like waves of incoming tides rolling in rather than a monstrous inferno ready to scorch everything to ash like in witch. This last installment takes a gentler approach. the mermaid’s voice returns in this one casts its attention, its purpose, on mending.

the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is composed of four acts -- I. the sky, II. the shipwreck, III. the song, and, IV. the surviving. Although the narrative structure very loosely exists here Lovelace continues to share her truth and female experience with her signature brand of thoughtfulness, resiliency, and courage.

Once again Lovelace confronts timely topics and speaks candidly about the sexual abuse and trauma she has experienced. If I wasn’t obvious in the first two volumes -- the princess saves herself in this one and the witch doesn’t burn in this one, it is here. 
An alternate title for mermaid? 
Amanda tells her story in this one.

But that’s not to say this collection ignores its readers. Lovelace packages up sensitive subjects such as gun violence (hooks encrusted in sand), child abuse (wanted) and intimate partner violence (bookends & knuckles) in a simplistic form so that the poems can be taken in and experienced by all readers. the mermaid’s voice returns in this one does take the effort to connect with readers but, it’s especially distinctive that the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is Lovelace’s personal healing project. There’s a journal like intimacy and vulnerability to the poems.

Although there’s a trigger warning the content isn’t especially alarming or, for me at least, emotionally devastating. As a reader, for me, these aren’t poems aren’t the weighty sort. They don’t use deep symbolism. They aren’t especially punchy. And, well, the short of it is they don’t require a lot of thought. the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is everything it appears to be on the surface level. It’s very literal, very true to reality but also somewhat lacks a lot of finesse and emotional depth. Personally, I enjoy poetry like this on the occasions when I want to take a break from focusing all my attention on novels and getting caught up in all the disturbing current events that go down on the reg. But some readers may be underwhelmed.

My favourite part of the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is how it features the writings of over a dozen other poets and contributors! Some readers may find them a bit jarring because they are extremely different tonally than Lovelace’s work but, they actually resonated the most with me! Their words are so genuine they elevate both the staying power and the soulfulness of the mermaid’s voice returns in this one. 

"she didn’t kiss frogs. 
she kissed great white sharks."

Now, for my least favourite parts of the mermaid’s voice returns in this one. 
and what didn’t go so swimmingly for me…

* the mermaid’s voice returns in this one isn’t quite a sequential narrative as the princess saves herself in this one and the witch doesn’t burn in this one 

*Several of the poems feel disconnected 

*Some of the stanzas are off and bizarre like “YOUR VOICE/COULD SINK SPACESHIPS” … umm, what?

*The language and voice is not very evocative or particularly striking 

*It's...well... not as... mermaidy as I envisioned it would be. 

*The structure and style feels like a repetitive rehash of princess and witch. 

*Despite the heart and honesty poured into these pages, many of the poems wade in the waters of the trite and cliche

*And we’re kinda just floating around in a sea off lowercase letters 
*Sometimes the poems are too simple and like before (re: rehash)

on the
instead of 

taking advantage
the enter key
and filling
as much
space as possible 

DESPITE this I LOVE what these volumes stand for, and the intent behind them even though I don’t full-on love all the poems. Even though I’m not completely captivated by her words I respect and admire Lovelace’s earnestness and bravery in expressing herself through her art and connecting with readers. She pours her heart into these pages, she fearlessly speaks her truth, and she celebrates the strength, the power of sisterhood, and yes, the magic inside us women!! the mermaid’s voice returns in this one is not mind blowing, life changing, or perfect... but I do believe this book and Lovelace’s future books are worth reading! Together with the other volumes in women are some kind of magic it’s a slice of life look at the female experience from a survivor-artist-feminist’s point of view.
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This third collection of poetry, and conclusion, to Amanda Lovelace's Women Are Some Kind of Magic series, did not disappoint.   I felt that this book was just as powerful as the first two in the series and I like the addition of guest poets.  It lent different voices to important topics in society and also proved the point that you are not alone.  I'm sad that this series is over.
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i really love this series. they definitely are some of my favorite poetry collections. i first read the first one, the princess saves herself in this one, last year and i really loved it. it was this strong, empowering, feminist poetry collection that spoke to you. i really loved every bit of it. i do think my ranking of the books are like, the third one as my favorite, then the first one, then the second one as my least favorite. nevertheless, i love this series so much and i would 100% recommend it to anyone looking for a fierce, quick read!
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3.5 stars (Rounded up to a 4)

I liked this better than The Witch Doesn't Burn In This One, but I'd consider The Princess Saves Herself In This One to be the strongest of the three books in this series. I appreciated the more personal aspect of this collection, similarly to how I appreciated that in the first book, but something about this just didn't feel quite right for me.

At times I was almost... bored? Especially during the last chapter with the guest poets. I'm glad that those poets got a chance to be featured and I'm not saying any of their poetry was bad, but I went into this for Amanda Lovelace's poetry not anyone else's. But even ignoring their poetry I felt the same. Only two of the poems in the collection really inspired any emotion in me, while the rest were split between being poems I enjoyed distantly and just being meh.
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A wonderful conclusion to Women are Some Kind of Magic series by poetess Amanda Lovelace. Unlike the previous two books, The Princess Saves Herself In This One and The Witch Doesn't Burn In This One, the concluding book had poems from other poetess which was a lovely surprise and addition.

Enjoyed the three books a lot. Very poignant and contains truth in poetic verses.
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“i write what i write to heal me.”

The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One is the conclusion to her Women Are Some Kind of Magic trilogy.

This collection is about surviving sexual assault. Poems are center on the #MeToo movement. Some poems are not powerful enough but it was comforting.

It was a good wrap up to finish the trilogy.

I received a copy of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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Poetry isn’t something that I read an awful lot of and it’s definitely something I want to get into more. I’ve read the first two instalments in Amanda Lovelace’s Women Are Some Kind of Magic series and was incredibly excited about reading this powerful and inspiring third book.

Much like the previous books, the poems Lovelace creates are so emotional and raw. The poems are written in a very minimal way, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t pack a punch. So many of her poems have given me food for thought and I definitely felt the same with The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One.

While I did really enjoy this book, it did feel a little bit disconnected from the two I read previously. I didn’t connect with this one as much as I did The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One and for me it didn’t feel as powerful. Though still a thought provoking and timely read, I definitely preferred the first two books in this trilogy.

It’s been fascinating to read Lovelace’s work as she has grown and honed her craft with each book, It was also interesting to read the guest poems from a variety of guest poets. Some of these I liked more than others and I think this might be part of the reason I didn’t love this book as much.

Overall the Women Are Some Kind of Magic series is a hauntingly beautiful and thought provoking series and The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One is an excellent addition. If you’re a fan of poetry or interesting in feminist writing, this is a must read. I for one am excited to see what Amanda Lovelace does next.
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I read, and loved, amanda's first collection of poems, but I haven't yet read the second one. After reading this volume, I know that I need to go back and read them all together because they are amanda's story as she gains back the strength that was taken from her. Her writing is so powerful and I absolutely love the way she takes fairy tales and flips them on their end, giving the girls in the stories back the power that the traditional fairy tale has stripped away. Incredible poetry, absolutely incredible.
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I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. These thoughts and feelings are my own. 

This was another gelreat collection of poetry by Amanda Lovelace. I was so excited when someone told me her third book was available on Netgalley! 

I love that the central theme in this book was hope and healing. Yes, terrible, horrific things happened, but there’s always a chance for healing. It’s such a great message that’s so pertinent today. 

I did have a harder time connecting with this book, but I think that’s because the issues discussed have never happened to me. The poems were still beautifully written and I liked the inclusion of other poets. The subject matter did not take away from the book at all, even though it wasn’t something I had experienced. 

This was another amazing book of poetry that empowers women to take back their lives after tragedies and gives them hope to be able to heal. I would definitely recommend this book, along with her others.
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♥ "When I tell you i'm still waiting for my hogwarts letter, what I mean to say is i never meant to be here for so long" ♥
The reason why Lovelace's collections are so good and feel so comforting is because they are so relatable and so honest.
Even as someone that has never gone through an abusive relationship (at least not a romantic one) there is a lot of subjects that i really relate to and even the ones i don't are written in such a honest and brutal way that i still feel a lot.
It is a sad reality that most women can relate to Lovelace's experience but it is good to see that we aren't the only ones and to hear that it is okay to speak out and that everything will be okay
This book wasn't my favorite in this series but it was still a really good time and i would really recommend reading these.
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I have some mixed feelings regarding this book.

First of all, there were some poems which I liked and were very relatable, but other than that, I did not enjoy Lovelace's style very much. Most of the collection feels too literal and I enjoy poetry that is more symbolic or contains more imagery than these poems. 

In the third part of the book, I found myself enjoying the inserted poems more, which were written by other poets.
Moreover, the subject matter is really important and quite intense. However, there were very few mentions of mermaids, which was a bit disappointing as the title gives off the impression that it is the main image in the poetry collection. 

I think the reason why I did not enjoy this very much is the expectations I had for this book. 

If you have read Lovelace's preceding books in this series and liked them, then you will probably like this one as well.
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