Reviews

Bruised, by Tanya Boteju

sarah200619's review against another edition

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2.0

this book was... eh. i don’t like sad books in general tbh but lgbtq+ roller derby caught my eye and this was sorta cute at times and yeah kat was sort of a bitch and daya could be an asshole and honestly the only character who i really liked was shanti but yeah this book was boring for a good majority for it tbh, also the people in this book are the exact type of people i pointedly avoid irl because they terrifying me. OH and the romance came outta nowhere tbh, like literally one second they were eh the next they were having sex?

mayareadsxo's review

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i’m coming back but i wanted to read something else 🤪

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theybedax's review against another edition

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4.0

Hurt people hurt people - kind of the motto of this book. Survivor's guilt can be an all encompassing feeling. Drowning out a belief in oneself and the worthiness of your own continued existence. Add the erosion of any trust that others won't just leave too [whether by choice or death]. Better to depend only on yourself, never let anyone in, and therefore you can't get hurt... Daya just might start to learn that letting others in, being a part of a team, and not choking and beating down all emotions except rage; just might be the real ticket to healing.

All of that is to say that this is a deeply emotional book that really showcases why some folx self harm and about letting people in. Add roller derby, skateboarding, and some truly comical and lovely characters elders and you get a book that will warm your heart. Yay for stories that include elder lesbians, living loud, proud, and still kicking butt!

bindick's review against another edition

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5.0

this was So Good. just, breathtaking. daya is such a multifaceted character who you just love and everyone in her life is so wonderfully interesting and lovable. i love learning about new things and now i’m kinda obsessed with roller derby hahaha. anyways, this book made me feel so warm inside, it was just written sooooo well

fieldfarmer's review

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dark emotional sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

My main issue with Bruised is that I felt like I was promised sad roller derby gals, and I did not receive enough of the roller derby itself because honestly my favorite part of sports books is the sport. However, I loved Daya's development so much. Grieving your parents is such a difficult task, especially when you're as young as she is, and I loved seeing her be able to open up both to her family and her new and old friends. Boteju's portrayal of grief was so real and raw that it took me longer to go through this book than I normally would've. I thought the love interest was kind of giving off "manic pixie dream girl who has a spine" vibes, but I still loved her and their relationship. Also, I'm a sucker for anything with queer grandmas. 

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rapidan_'s review

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emotional funny medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

kayleypew's review against another edition

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3.0

This was MUCH darker than Kings, Queens and Inbetweens and if you’re searching for queer joy, search elsewhere. Characters are well developed, there is continued growth throughout and you really see where most of the change comes from. Heavy topics, dealt with well.

Characters don’t over-explain their gender or sexuality and it’s clear it’s written for the lgbt community, by someone in the lgbt community. It was slow and heavy to start, but not boring. The end could have been longer to spread out a lot of growth rather than one event catapulting months of trauma into a simple fix, but it all felt good.

Obvious but technically spoiler; she doesn’t make the team until about halfway through the book, so although you need good understanding of Derby (provided in the back) you’re still going through the whole process, so you can understand the CULTURE.

bibisuzanne's review against another edition

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3.75

I definitely didn't like the narrator, Daya, at first. she was very unlikeable even though some of her behaviour can be traced back to what she has been through. what kept me reading was the roller derby aspect, which was new to me and definitely fun. it luckily got better and I got to see Daya's character development. the amount of diversity and representation in this story was great; characters of colour, non binary, queer and a deaf person. so overall would recommend!

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lunaballz's review against another edition

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4.0

Took a bit for me to get into it but I enjoyed it more than I thought I would at first. I thought Daya was really well written and I totally understood the tough exterior she forced out in order to protect herself.

LGBTQ+ Rep: MC is bi, there's lesbian, gay, and non-binary side characters; v. gay

isthisakissingbook_'s review

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dark emotional funny sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0