BLOG TOUR: The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo | Poetry Influences + GIVEAWAY!

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo blog tour

**A massive thanks to HarperCollins International for giving me the opportunity to host this blog tour and for providing us ARCs and eARCs. This, by any means did not affect nor influence my thoughts about this book.**

CoverReveal_ThePoetXISBN: 978-0-06-274931-4

Title: The Poet X

Series: —

Author: Elizabeth Acevedo

Publisher: HarperTeen

Publishing Date: March 6th, 2018

Format: ARC

Number of Pages: 368

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary, Poetrypicsart_10-17-10.23.40.jpg

A young girl in Harlem discovers slam poetry as a way to understand her mother’s religion and her own relationship to the world. Debut novel of renowned slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo.

Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking.

But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself.

So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out, much less speak her words out loud. But still, she can’t stop thinking about performing her poems.

Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent. 

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“We’re different, this poet and I. In looks, in body, in background. But I don’t feel so different when I listen to her. I feel heard.”

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This is easily one of my best reads of 2018. I’m honestly not sure how to start because I feel like this book just knocked me off my feet because of the slam of its words to me that I couldn’t get back up.

The moment I’ve read the first chapter, I instantly felt the power of Elizabeth Acevedo’s words. It felt so powerful, meaningful and raw. I felt that there will be no holding back in this book. And I was right, Acevedo poured her heart and soul in this and never ever once held back until the end.

The first thing I fell in love with in this book was Xiomara. She is strong, independent and tough but deep inside she is passionate, thoughtful and loving. She has a strong voice. She felt so real. And I connected to her in such a deep level. She made me feel heard and understood. She’s the typical teenager who is questioning most of the thing around her and still finding her place and importance in this world. I also did not just see her as a fictional character. I saw her as a girl, as a Latina and as a poet.

Acevedo wrote a character-driven story without making the plot suffer. Never have I ever got bored and complained about anything about the story. And even though things leading up to the end felt suddenly fast, it was still great.

The Poet X is an important read. It tackles important issues or topics such as gender roles, sexualization, societal expectations, religion, homophobia, body shaming, and parenting and see all of these through the point of view of a teenager who’s still figuring things out about herself made this book so timely and necessary for readers especially teens.

This did not just show us what it is for a girl to live in a strict household and have a religious parent but gave us also a glimpse on what it is for a gay to live in a strict household and have a religious homophobic parents through the character of Xavier – Xiomara’s twin brother, although it did not focus on him that much because this is his sister’s story. I am just aching for Xavier’s own book, for Xavier’s own story to be told because I’m pretty sure it will be just as worth it as The Poet X.

This is also one of the very few books in YA that asks question about religion and faith that is being asked by some teenagers in real life too but wasn’t really being listened to. And despite we’ve seen Xiomara having questions with regard to her religion and the church, we eventually went to a conclusion that I wasn’t really expecting. And I think that’s so beautiful. I felt like that conclusion wasn’t just for Xiomara but for me as well. I just couldn’t think of any other better way of drawing conclusion to that than what Acevedo did.

Elizabeth Acevedo is definitely now one of my go-to authors. This made me admire her so much, not just as a writer, but as a poet and as a woman.

Overall, I love everything in this book. This is the book that should be studied at school, the book that should be in the hands of young readers. If you’re finding a book that is powerful, meaningful, boundless, will introduce you to other culture, tackles important issues, about a poet, and about finding your voice, I highly recommend The Poet X!

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5-flowers

Author Guest Post

Poets I’m Influenced By

Lucille Clifton

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This poet has been so important in my life; she’s a fantastic writer and so generous even though her writing is quite spare. She really made me realize poetry can be simple, and short, and still contain worlds. I read one of her most famous poems, won’t you celebrate with me when I was a teenager and it was so powerful for that moment in my life. The last lines read:

won’t you celebrate with me/that everyday/something has tried to kill me/and has failed.”

Natalie Diaz

Natalie-Diaz

Natalie Diaz is a contemporary poet that has had a big influence on my writing. Her poetry is exploratory and asks big questions about the utility of language, how to navigate familial relationships, and what it means to write about joy and love. Through the use of mythic symbolism pulling from Greek and Aztec mythology, as well as her own experience growing up on a tribal reservation in the United States, Diaz fills entwines her work with vivid imagery and narrative that  keeps a reader poring over every word.

Jacqueline Woodson

Jacqueline Woodson.JPG

Through heartbreakingly lovely prose and poetry, Woodson depicts home, family, friendship, loss. She shows the many prism-like facets of being a girl and the light that women can pour into one another. Her depictions of women and their sisterhood is nuanced and speaks so clearly to the effects that rape culture, dysfunction in the family, racism, and a loss of self-determination can have on the psyche of a girl. Woodson allows readers in her gripping writing has helped me learn what it means to write with precision and brevity but make every word count.

Eve Ewing

eve_ewing_edit-2

Ewing’s poetry, fiction, and essays are wondrous, real, moving. In the vein of Octavia Butler and Gwendolyn Brooks, Ewing does an incredible job of writing work that is playful and magical while contemplating heavy subject matters like prejudice, beauty norms, and social justice. Her work makes me laugh out loud and ugly cry. She makes me increasingly question what it means to have someone see themselves in experiences potentially different than their own.

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elizabeth-acevedo_h2b_poet-1140x789ELIZABETH ACEVEDO is the youngest child and only daughter of Dominican immigrants. She holds a BA in Performing Arts from the George Washington University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland. With over fourteen years of performance poetry experience, Acevedo is a National Poetry Slam Champion, Cave Canem Fellow, CantoMundo Fellow, and participant of the Callaloo Writer’s Workshop. She has two collections of poetry, Beastgirl & Other Origin Myths (YesYes Books, 2016) and winner of the 2016 Berkshire Prize, Medusa Reads La Negra’s Palm (Tupelo Press, forthcoming). The Poet X is her debut novel. She lives with her partner in Washington, DC.

Find her on:

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IndieBound | Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

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Schedule

Date

Blog

Week 1

February 26

Afire Pages | Review & Author Guest Post – Poets I’m Influenced By

February 27

In Tori Lex | Review

February 28

Life of A Simple Reader | Review

March 1

Stay Bookish | Review & Art

March 2

The Clockwork Bibliophile | Review & Book Look

Week 2

March 5

Pretty Little Memoirs | Excerpt

March 6

Through Prose Tinted Pages | Review & Playlist

March 7

That Bookshelf Bitch | Review

March 8

A Book and a Cup of Coffee | Review & On Latinx Rep In YA

March 9

Book Huntress’ World | Review

Week 3

March 12

WOC Reads | Review & Author Q&A

March 13

Descendant of Poseidon Reads | Review

March 14

Dani Review Things | Review & Top 3 Favorite Elizabeth Acevedo Performance

March 15

The Cursed Books | Review & Mood Board

March 16

Book Freak Revelations | Review

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway is sponsored by HarperCollins International. It runs from February 26th to March 26th. No purchase necessary. The winner must reply to email within 48 hours. Open internationally.


Have you read The Poet X? What’s your favorite novel in verse? Are you a fan of slam poetry? Who are your favorite poets? What’s your favorite book with Latinx rep? Could you share one of your favorite slam performance? Share your thoughts below!

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40 thoughts on “BLOG TOUR: The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo | Poetry Influences + GIVEAWAY!

    1. Ahhh you have to read this! But if you still can’t, why not check out the author on Youtube in the meantime? Dani @ Dani Review Things (please refer to the schedule) shared her favorite performances by Elizabeth Acevedo. I swear, Ate Tin, you have to check them out. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

    1. INDEED. IT IS A MUST especially to our Latinx friends. Ahhh it is so great that you are listening to the audiobook because it is also narrated by the author. 😭 I badly want to listen to it as well! That would be a really great experience since Liz is really great is performing slam poetry. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I love books written in verse! They contain so much more emotion than a regular book. I just bought this book and I can’t wait to read it! I love that you say there is a lot of power and emotion in this book. That makes me so much more excited to read it! Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Same! I know right? That’s why I really am trying my best to discover more great verse novels to read. ❤ There really is a lot! I hope you'll enjoy it. Please let me know your thoughts. ❤ Thank you, Jenn!

      Like

    1. It doesn’t have mature content so I think it is, but it’s better if children will be guided and answered if something is new or confusing to them because of the issues being talked about. Further, I think this will be a good way to open the child’s mind and let them see other people’s culture.

      Liked by 1 person

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