Book review: Burn the Fairy Tales by Adeline Whitmore

Burn the Fairy Tales by Adeline Whitmore
Rating: ★☆☆☆☆
Links: AmazonTBDGoodreads
Publication Date: July 29, 2017
Source: Borrowed
Kill the prince. Give the princess a sword. Send her into battle. Watch her win. This poetry book is a work of feminist self-empowerment for women and of understanding for men. It deals with love, loss, self discovery, self love, grief, and inspiration.

In case you hadn’t noticed, I went from reading no poetry over the course of my life to reading a ton of poetry in 2018. I’m not sure what happened, really, other than I started using my library a lot more and I have made more bookish friends. Anyway, Gerry recommended that I read this, not in a “wow, I really loved it” way but more in a “hmm, I didn’t like it and I think you won’t like it either but I’d like to hear your thoughts” kind of way. In other words, I was basically advised to hate-read this, and if that’s not my favorite, I don’t know what is. Thank god this was free via the Kindle Owners Lending Library.

Anyway, I decided that the best way to review this collection is to just type whatever comes to mind while reading, so here you go. My more-or-less linear thoughts while reading Burn the Fairy Tales.

Some sections of some poems are okay:

were whole before him

are still whole without him

do not
define yourself by him

define yourself by yourself


But also some have grammatical errors and holy hell, if that doesn’t drive me crazy:


let me peak
into the depths of your soul



(A “peak” is a high point, like the top of a mountain. A “peek” is a glimpse, a look, a view.)

Some non-poems (remember, sentences with line breaks aren’t poetry):

if a man
has sex
with a woman who is

or doesn’t
actively consent

it’s rape
end of story

— sex part 2

(I appreciate the sentiment but this is a sentence, not a poem.)

if he apologizes but doesn’t change the apology
means nothing

— sorry

Again, this is true, but it’s literally just a sentence with one line break, I don’t understand how this is poetry.

tiny detail about you
is beautiful

— beautiful

And yet again, this is just! a! sentence! with! line! breaks!

And now I feel really awkward because I am hating this book and I just got to this poem:

i don’t want
to keep putting in hours for someone else

i want
this book
to sell well
and i want
to live my life
in financial freedom

so please
post about this book tell your friends leave reviews

is my future on the line

and it
is in
your hands

— independent


Another non-poem:

not everything you lose is a loss

— loss

(This one doesn’t even have a line break??)

Oh, it’s done. I mean, I’m not like a poetry connoisseur or anything, but I feel like this wasn’t good. It’s also really weirdly formatted, which shouldn’t really figure into my rating, but it does. The title of the next poem was often smashed into the last line of the previous poem, which was just weird and confusing.

It’s definitely got the same vibes as the two collections I read by Amanda Lovelace: it’s a little angrier than the princess saves herself in this one and not quite at the anger level of the witch doesn’t burn in this one. I think Amanda Lovelace’s poetry is more poetic than this, which is mostly just sentences with line breaks.

I’m glad I didn’t pay for this.

Have you read Burn the Fairy Tales
Let’s talk in the comments!

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25 thoughts on “Book review: Burn the Fairy Tales by Adeline Whitmore

  1. inknpaper85046788 says:

    Just curious to know….. do you think ….Intentional/unintentional grammatical errors from the author of the book, or grammatical errors from the Kindle version? I am not intrigued by this book and its feminist self -empowerment message. You can promote self-empowerment in so many different ways, without using cliches’…and this book is loaded with cliches’….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Leslie says:

    “If a man has sex with a woman, who is unconscious, drugged, drunk or doesn’t actively consent, it’s rape. End of story.” – That is in no way a poem. I would be very frustrated with this book! lol.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Gerry@TheBookNookUK says:

    Hahaha! Oh dear! I feel guilty that I sort of made you read it but at the same time I am very pleased to share some hate-reading!

    You know I’d completely forgotten about that awful ‘poem’ in the middle where she is trying to get people to buy her books and spread the word about her books because she doesn’t want to do her current job anymore. It’s just…. I have no words. It’s appalling.

    I want to read some more of Nikita Gill’s poems because I quite like what she has done so far. I think this is what Adeline Whitmore has *tried* to do but it just isn’t poetry.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sara @ The Bibliophagist says:

      Oh no! Don’t feel guilty! I’m happy to hate-read whenever, as long as I know what I’m getting myself into. 🙂

      And that poem in the middle! I almost felt bad for a minute but then I didn’t. I haven’t read anything by Nikita Gill, but I’ll check her out!

      Liked by 1 person

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