Cover Image: Grey Matters

Grey Matters

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Member Reviews

As someone who deals with mental illness this book really interested me.
Beautifully written and definitely made me feel not alone.

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4 stars read !

I don't think I've ever read a poetry collection quite like this one
It is stunning !
I've found myself needing a few seconds to register the words, because of how impactful they were !
The anxiety section might be the best description of what it feels like I've ever read
My favorite poems : Performance - Fixation - Lost Leisure - Escape - Freeway
Definitely worth the read, and I'm very excited for her other book coming this year !

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I have not been an avid reader of poetry for quite some time. However, upon discovering Grey Matters by Kristen Costello, the title and premise resonated with me and compelled me to pick it up. The collection delves into various facets of mental illness. Please be aware of potential triggers for depression, self-harm, and eating disorders.

Costello's writing style struck a chord, mirroring how my mind processes and navigates mental illness. Early in the collection, certain poems evoke the sensations of floating and flying, contrasting the desire for stability and groundedness.

One poem, "L BS," reminded me of my personal encounters with medical professionals who failed to grasp what an eating disorder looks like. Among the many standout pieces, "Going To The Mailbox" perfectly encapsulates my experiences of the short walk to getting the mail becoming a trek up Mount Everest.
As the book progresses, the final section focuses on healing, which feels like a liberating and triumphant journey after having fought the battles of mental illness. The concluding poems beautifully convey themes of rebirth and flight, employing vivid and captivating imagery that lingers in the reader's mind. Grey Matters has rekindled my interest in poetry. I am grateful for the authentic, personal connection it has allowed me to make.

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Reading and reflecting on this collection of poems was an incredible experience. Each poem was insightful and thought provoking and I especially appreciated the courage it took to be as vulnerable as Kristen Costello was with her writing. So many of the poems in this collection made me seen - which in turn also helped me feel a little less alone. A number of the poems also gave me hope! My husband and I had some great chats around the topics of mental health, anxiety, and depression as a result of this book; it opened the lines of communication and helped each of us express ourselves more clearly on these topics. I can’t wait to purchase this book so that I can reread it and see what other treasures I uncover.

Thank you NetGalley for the advanced electronic copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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Poetry is one of my favorite writing styles and this was a nice collection on mental health.
I really enjoyed the section on mental health. For me it was very relatable and I felt understood.
I enjoyed the other sections too, they just didn’t resonate with me as much.

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This is a lovely collection of poetry and one I'll return to again and again. Many thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the advanced copy of the book.

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One of the few poetry books I will actually feature on my blog. 10 out of 10.
Really appreciated the content warnings and separating the poems by “trigger”
They were all beautifully written and hit home with me.

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I picked up Grey Matters on a whim when I saw it on NetGalley, and this far exceeded my expectations.

Costello's pieces are full of emotion, unfiltered honesty, and hope. I've grappled with all of the themes—depression, anorexia, self-deprecation, and eventual acceptance and healing—and she writes from the perspective of someone who has obviously lived through them all.

While many of the poems are only a sentence or two long, they are all beautiful and compelling in their own concise way.

I recommend this to anyone who's ever struggled with self-esteem, burnout, depression, or anorexia.

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****!!Trigger warnings: talks of mental health with themes on depression/anxiety, ED, and SH!!****

Struggle is common, but talking about the experiences is not. Kristen Costello shows courage in her works by not downplaying their reality for the reader. We travel with them on the journey through lowest lows, through messy mediums, and then back to a place where creation and living can thrive again in this collection of poems.
There are four sections relating to anxiety, depression, eating disorder, and healing. It proves that life can be ups and downs, but remember: It can always go up again.

I personally found multiple poems relatable, and was touched by all of them in some way. My favorite pieces are: Performance, Processes Power, Missing Out, and Destructive. Id like to leave an honorary mention to "Numeric Neuroses" which displays the imagery I believe many women have encountering any form of Healthcare, especially with an ED, and how it feels to go unseen and untreated, while being gaslight about being "just fine".

There are four sections relating to anxiety, depression, eating disorder, and healing. It proves that life can be ups and downs, but remember: It can always go up again.

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I really enjoyed this collection. It was a fast and easy read. I loved the way this collection was honest and portrayed mental illness the right way. I could relate to most of the poems and as a person with mental illness, it was comforting that someone feels the same way you do.
The poems Lost Leisure, Missing Out, Going to the Mailbox and Achievements are my favourite ones. These show you what living with depression really is and some things you just can't explain why they happen. But they do and these show you how it is.
I got a bit lost in the last section of the collection, but I liked the message of hope and that you can heal no matter what.

Thank you NetGalley for the free ARC.

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I liked how the poems began in darkness and ended in healing. The ones on eating disorders and healing definitely felt more heartfelt than the ones on anxiety and depression, and that's coming from someone who's struggled with the same since childhood. Some poems were two short--one was 2 lines, another 3 very tiny lines, and those are not poems in my opinion. They are fleeting thoughts that belong on social media and shouldn't be included in a book for sale. I would have been disappointed if I bought this, but that's a matter of personal taste. I know other poets, like Rupi Kaur, do this and still have quite a wonderful following. So don't let that deter you! Overall, I think the description is correct in that a lot of people will be able to connect with this collection, so I reviewed fairly at 4 stars, but I unfortunately didn't connect with it the way I hoped.

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