Number of Pages: 296

Publisher: 4th Estate, an imprint of Harper Collins Publisher, 2020

Genre: Nonfiction

Personal Rating: 10/10

This is probably one of those books I have read for the longest time. Mostly because I was making notes, highlighting excerpts, recording my reviews of the book in three parts for our YouTube Channel and partly, because I took a break from reading for Christmas. Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion by Jia Tolentino is a collection of 9 essays, which will make you question how society works and if it’s worth it or not to conform to some societal norms and particularly, if you are a woman.

The author does not shy away from tackling issues affecting the modern day Americans ranging from the internet, to reality TV, to student debt, to drug usage and to fraternity houses in university campuses just to name a few. The most refreshing thing is that the topics are equally relatable to a non-American and I often found myself having a lot to say after each essay. There is also some level of self-reflection on the Author’s part, who questions the religiosity she grew up surrounded with in her family and the community and gives her reasons why she is not that keen to officiate things with her long-term boyfriend.

I personally appreciated the fact that these are well researched essays complete with references from other sources, background information and history. It was in this book that I found out about Thomas Jefferson and his association with the University of Virginia, which the author attended. While reading the book, it’s clearly evident to any reader that it was written during the Trump administration, judging from the couple of situations in relation to the then president of the United States, which are equally analyzed by the author.

Jia Tolentino comes across as someone who is not only talented in essay writing but a professional in it. I mean, she’s a Staff Writer at The New Yorker, previously worked as a Deputy Editor for Jezebel and as a Contributing Editor at The Hairpin, so expected. Another plus for me was the fact that the entire book has not a single grammatical error, evidence of thorough editing.

I would be interested in reading more from Jia and would not hesitate in buying her next book.

If you would like to watch my video reviews of the book you can find Part 1 here Part 2 here and Part 3 and final, here

As reviewed by Lorna Likiza

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