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Gut Feelings by C G Moore - Review

Thursday, March 4, 2021

 



I saw C G Moore talk about this book as part of NYALitfest back in January, and I liked the sound of it, so I bought this and three more from that weekend from the bookshop that was part of the conference. I think there was like 10% off RRP - I know I got all four books for around £30. 

Okay, so this book is told in verse, in poetry, like The Black Flamingo and Sarah Crossan's book. I think it'll be compared to both, and I think it's a fair comparison in both cases. It has really, really gorgeous illustrations that I think added a lot to the story, and I think they deserve praise.

I think this book is all a true story. At the conferece, Chris was talking about living with a chronic illness, which is what piqued my interest in the book. The book details his disease - a condition called Familial Adenomatous Polyposis - where polyps form on the large intestine. Chris was diagnosed aged 11. His mum and grandma also had the condition. Chris had surgery to remove the large intestine and had a stoma, and an ileostomy bag. He had this reversed later, but had a bag for five years. At the end of the book he is a student in Dublin. He is gay and has come out to his family by that point - which were some of my favourite although heartbreaking poems within the whole thing. A lot of the poems talk about being disabled, and how that feels, and about having an invisible illness and how Chris sometimes gets abuse for using disabled toilets because he doesn't 'look' disabled. This is obviously something that often happens - it has happened to me! - and I liked that the book highlighted it.

The early poems talked a lot about surgery, and about what being in hospital was like. I thought that the pain and misery really came across here; the poems were really well written.

In all, I liked this book and would read something else by the author. I'm giving this four out of five. 

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