Why I read it: It’s been on my TBR for a long time, I follow Kat Savage on social media (instagram, twitter) so I was pretty sure I’d like her poetry, and she was recommended to me by a few people who are also into poetry.
Who I’d recommend it to: People who already like poetry. Maybe to those who think they might like it, and are looking for good places to start. If you liked milk & honey and/or the princess saves herself in this one, you might like this one.
My rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
What it’s about:
Author of Learning to Speak, Kat Savage, returns with Mad Woman whish is comprised of 40 pieces that capture her stream on conscious, her confessions, and her strange thoughts. In Mad Woman, she bears it all and embraces her madness driven by loneliness and disappointment.
This is one of the shortest collections of poetry I own, but you know what they say about great things and small packages.
First of all… That. Cover! I won’t lie and tell you the cover art didn’t immediately catch my attention when I first came across this book a year or so ago because it did and I have had serious cover lust about it ever since. (The artist is Ashley Elliot, and she also has an instagram.)
In the opening statement for this book (“Before You Read This”), Kat talks about how this book was for her. She didn’t set out to write a book for everyone else, she wrote about what was going on in her head, and how it doesn’t make sense (but it makes perfect sense for her). She also says,
“If you relate to any of this, you’re mad too. And that’s amazing. This is for all the mad women. Don’t change a damn thing. You are important to me.”
I feel like I read this book at the right time for me, because I’ve been working on a collection of poetry for about a year, and I’ve been having a lot of doubts about it. Especially the parts that are mine, written for me, about me, and what goes on in my weird little head. Reading Mad Woman, and relating to a lot of it, was therapeutic in a way, and also encouraging. I felt less alone, like someone else out there understands some of the feelings I have that are hard to talk about.
I remember reading, then re-reading, then re-reading “What Is Written” because I was struggling with exactly that (difficulty with writing about things that make me happy) at exactly the time I read it. There were several poems I had the experience of reading several times because they spoke to me so strongly, actually.
I took my time reading this, even though it’s a short book, because almost every poem struck a chord for me. Maybe this is all made up, or metaphorical, or something else that isn’t quite literal, but I came away from reading this feeling like I know Kat Savage, or at least know parts of her, and I think it’s obvious that these were very personal, raw but beautiful, poems.
This was my first experience with one of Kat Savage’s books, but thankfully I bought two others (Redamancy and Throes), and I’m very much looking forward to reading those, and eventually more of her work.