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Pillow Thoughts – Book review

Pillow Thoughts by Courtney Peppernell.
(Published October 2016).

Pillow Thoughts is a book similar to Milk and Honey and The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur. I read both of Kaur’s books and wasn’t the biggest fan (I rated them 3.5 and 3 stars), so it was a bit risky for me to choose a poetry and prose collection in the same style. And I’ll cut right to the chase: I didn’t care that much for Pillow Thoughts either.

At first I thought I didn’t like it because I simply couldn’t relate to Peppernell’s writings. Maybe the poems in the chapter If you are heartbroken weren’t for me because I’m not heartbroken and the bits in If you are dreaming of someone didn’t leave a lasting impression on me because I’m not dreaming of anyone. But then again, I’ve read other poems and novels, listened to music, and watched films and television shows that I did love, even though I couldn’t personally relate to whatever it was they were about. I can still see the power and the beauty in things, even if they aren’t about something I’ve been through myself. But then they have to be meaningful and good, and (most of) the poems and prose in Pillow Thoughts weren’t.

The book is filled with pieces of text that seemed to be random and basic thoughts the author had and however important they may have been (/be) to her, I wondered if they’re worthy of having been put in a published book. To me, they’re merely notes to be written down in a personal diary.
And besides random and basic, the poems and prose were often also cringeworthy and insipid and a lot of them could have been written by a lovesick teenager. For example:

“Of all the maps in the world, the only one I will follow is the map to your heart.”

“in the end
we
as in you and me
were never meant to be

“Make a list. 
Write down the most important things.
I will give you the first:
You.”

“Here I am after all this time, hopelessly and madly in love with you.”

I mean…

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It’s just much too cheesy and dull to me and even though I still found one or two poems in Kaur’s books I did genuinely like, in Peppernell’s Pillow Thoughts I discovered nothing that resonated with me or stood out to me. Some bits were better than mediocre (like: “You spend your whole life convincing yourself you are a chapter worth following, and then someone comes along and doesn’t want to read the ending and suddenly the whole story falls apart.”), but there was nothing worth remembering.

If you’re a fan of Rupi Kaur’s work or of instapoetry, Pillow Thoughts may be for you, but otherwise I wouldn’t recommend it.
I dislike giving low ratings, because I know authors put a lot of effort into their work and bad reviews are never fun, but this book just isn’t my cup of tea and I can’t give it more than 2.5 out of 5 stars.

This review can also be found on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3031763991

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