This review is spoiler free.
“If they cannot have me for who I am
then maybe here is not
where I am meant to be.”
Published: 2020, by Ebury Press.
Format: eBook/ARC from Netgalley
Genre: Poetry, Fantasy, Mythology, Adult, Fiction
Contains: Anxiety, Homophobia, Biphobia, Body Image, Bullying, Child Abuse, Depression, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Sexism, Racism, Sexual Assault, Violence, Anger, War
I received a copy of this book from Ebury Press through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
‘The Girl and the Goddess’ follows Paro, a girl with a strong will, a full heart and much to learn. Born into a family reeling from the ruptures of Partition, we follow her as she crosses the lines between childhood, teenage discovery and realising her adult self.
Nikita Gill is one of my all-time favourite poets, exploring so many different themes and journeys through her works, and this collection was no different; however, this one might be my new favourite.
Gill explores poetry in a unique, fresh way with ‘The Girl and the Goddess’, going deeper into the art and telling a narrative from the first page to the last about a girl named Paro who is journeying through life. Along the way, we discover new things about Paro, from her background to her discovered sexuality, as we go throughout her life. It makes for an incredibly inspiring read, Paro being someone we immediately side with and encourage to continue with her life regardless of the trauma and tragedy that follows behind her.
Paro made for a brilliant storyteller, with varied forms such as prose and verse, we discover her characteristics and personality as she moves through childhood, her desires through teenage years, and then her self acceptance into adulthood. It made for a breath-taking read, one that I’m going to be returning to again and again. Paro was a sheer delight to read about, one which I paced myself as much as I could to ensure the story would never end. However, Gill’s works are addictive, and I simply couldn’t put the book down.
Gill’s writings as a whole were raw and emotional, leaving a scar on you long after you’ve finished reading, and this book was no exception. Simplistic and yet so beautiful, her poems continue to awe and inspire you, guiding you through the tale and empowering you at the end.
Overall, I adored this book. I highly recommend it to anyone who’s intrigued by poetry, and maybe even those who aren’t. It’s a beautiful introduction to modern poetry and the cover makes a gorgeous addition to your bookshelves.