Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts
Author: Christina Strigas
Publisher: Christina Strigas; first edition (12.02.2016)
Page Count: 172 Pages
Genre: Literature & Fiction > Poetry > Love Poems
My Rating: 5 Stars
About the Author: (From Christina Strigas Amazon Author Page)
“Christina Strigas is trilingual, raised by Greek immigrants, and has written three poetry books. Her latest, Love & Vodka, has been featured by CBC Books in, “Your Ultimate Canadian Poetry List: 68 Poetry Collections Recommended by you.”
Christina Strigas holds a BA in English Literature from Concordia University and a Teaching Certificate from Universite de Montreal. She teaches English and French in an elementary school, and at McGill University.
Author of five novels, three poetry books, and one self-help/poetry book based off of her popular quotes that went viral on Twitter. She is currently working on her fourth upcoming poetry book, Love & Metaxa.
Christina Strigas’s most recent book is A Book of Chrissyissms: The Only Way to Find Art is to Lose Touch with Reality. This book portrays Christina Strigas’s inner perspectives, explaining her viral quotes, popular poems, and an evolving outlook on life. Based off reader commentary, journal entries, social media, and life, Strigas depicts what it all means: being a writer, a mother, a friend, a confidant, a mentor, a teacher, a wife, and a member of society.
In her spare time, Christina enjoys foreign cinema, reading the classics, and cooking traditional Greek recipes that have been handed down from her grandmother.
She is also co-founder of @ArielPoets on Twitter with Alexandra Meehan where they inspire poets to believe in the power of poetry.”
Book Description (From Amazon Author Page):
“Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts is Christina Strigas’ third poetry book. This book is written for all the hearts that shatter, that are transparent, that crack, rebuild and see truth. This is for the souls that connect through words. The poems in this book will make you breathless from their honesty. This poetry collection is full of poems that will make you contemplate the magic of connections disconnections, rejection, love, drinking, pain, marriage, loneliness, honor and the perils of living so many lifetimes in one. Delve into poetry head first and read passages over again to connect. This book has a modern feel with an ancient way of writing. Inspired by Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath and modern poets such as Mary Oliver and Billy Collins to name a few, Christina Strigas uses stream of consciousness to devour themes and words and spurt them forth into a poem. A contemporary poetry book that will not disappoint you and that will restore your faith into the power of poetry again.”
Other books by Christina Strigas:
THE WANTING (02.17.2018): “The Wanting is an intimate account of Serena and Teddy’s sexual awakening. They undeniably have a magnetic pull and connection that leads them to each other. It is an erotic tale of relationships and their internal struggles as told through dialogue with themselves. One night, Serena and Teddy are out at a bar and they both meet and fall for another person. Serena meets Ben, an attractive eBook writer and Teddy meets Melina, a sexually charged school teacher. The story that unfurls, is a roller coaster ride of two erotic journeys. Questions arise…Are two people meant to be together? What is serendipity? Do soulmates exist? The Wanting is a book about the confusion between sex and love. It is a modern romance into the mysterious world of sex and the power it holds over our minds.”
A BOOK OF CHRISSYISMS (08.17.2018): “A BOOK OF CHRISSYISMS portrays Christina Strigas’s inner perspectives; explaining her viral quotes, popular poems, and an evolving outlook on life. Based off of reader commentary, journal entries, social media, and life, Christina depicts what it all means: being a writer, a mother, a friend, a confidant, a mentor, an editor, a teacher, and a member of society. Part confessional, part quirk, CHRISSYISMS includes essays and a variety of creative writing. It is a fun, idiosyncratic page-turner which readers and writers can learn from, enjoy, and best of all, relate to. You can read my review of A BOOK OF CHRISSYISMS on my blog Book Reviews & Musings.”
YOUR INK ON MY SOUL (06.15.2016): “Christina Strigas writes with elegance but she sometimes injects such grittiness and truth into her lines about the melancholy of the past and of relationships. This is honest poetry. Her work is so honest and personal that you feel that she’s writing about you and your own experiences. She is a serious talent, a contemporary poetic voice that reminds me of the honest and sensual work of Ellen Bass.” – Nicholas Trandahl, author and poet “Her poem 1973 literally brought me to tears. I connected with her words and the story woven within. Ms. Strigas’ book is beautiful, emotionally raw and completely captivating.” -Paris Andren, author of Pointe of Darkness “I have never read a poet who speaks my thoughts right back to me the way Christina Strigas does. Whether she’s writing about drinking shots of Metaxa and Greek coffee for six days straight or how his words were like scissors snipping the thread to let out her soul, I can feel every word.” -Chrissi Sepe, author “Your Ink on My Soul reached in and tugged at emotions I had forgotten ever existed within me. And now, like any great poetry book, I find something new, something much deeper, each time I read it and I want more.” – April Green, poet, author of Earthsong This chapbook is an introduction into the work of Christina Strigas. Her full-length poetry book In My Own Flood is soon to be released. This poetry collection stems from concrete-form to event-form, to list-form, to free-form/verse to prose. The poems are raw and unpredictable. Themes in this chapbook include; romance, hope, aging, depression, feminism, childhood and the list goes on. It is a refreshing read that will challenge the reader and make you stop to think about your own decisions and indecisions. This is a fifty-three-page chapbook that will be a collection to cherish.”
IN MY OWN Flood (07.16.2016): “In My Own Flood is the first book of poetry by Christina Strigas. The poems collected in this volume are raw and human. They touch all aspects of love and loss, pain and relationships, death and family. They bring out the woman in you, the man in you, the mother, wife, husband, and lover. At times, the child in you. In the tradition of confessional poets, such as Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath, this poetry collection encompasses stream of consciousness and narrative poetry through illusions and reality. These poems will make you reflect and search deep within yourself to the places of your soul that the ocean within you travels. In My Own Flood feels like a ride inside the waves of a mind on the verge of drowning and gasping for words instead of air. Cover art and illustrations by Kate Theodosiou.”
Crush: “A Paranormal Romance Novel (03.10.2015): It was love at first sight when Maria met Jack on a beach all those years ago. But when Jack suddenly disappears, Maria is thrust closer to Hunter, their long-time friend, taking them on a journey that changes all three of their lives forever.
Maria is a lonely young woman who finds love and acceptance with Jack, a free-spirited musician. In Maria, Jack finally has the girl of his dreams by his side. When Jack introduces Maria to his best friend, Hunter, he feels an instant connection to Maria, but he buries his feelings—along with his secret that he’s a vampire—for the love of his friend.
Set in Saint-Tropez, Crush is a vampire tale with a twist. Spanning decades and delving into the past of each character in this thorny love triangle, it is about a woman who must choose between the man she’s in love with and the man who is her soul mate. Adventure, love, romance, and vampires all collide in this unique novel filled with powerful emotion, heartbreak, and the question of undying love.”
In the Book Description of Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts, we read, “This book has a modern feel with an ancient way of writing. Inspired by Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath and modern poets such as Mary Oliver and Billy Collins to name a few, Christina Strigas uses the stream of consciousness to devour themes and words and spurt them forth into a poem.” I want to begin my review by talking about the “stream of consciousness.”
Some may ask, “What is this stream of consciousness? As a writer, you have more than likely used this literary device without realizing there was a name or style for how you were writing. If you’ve ever sat down and started writing your thoughts, feelings, and observations that were traversing through your mind without thinking about whether a word was a word, your structure, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, spelling, length of sentence, et cetera, and you did so without stopping to edit, spellcheck or make corrections; you were transferring all your thoughts, feelings and observations from your head to paper. You were using the stream of consciousness literary device; you may also think of this as automatic or free writing. If you have a degree in English or Creative Writing, you have practiced the stream of consciousness writing style.
“what i miss most are all the things we never did.
– reality” – Christina Strigas
While Strigas uses the stream of consciousness flawlessly, giving her readers a visceral experience through emotions, this literary style is challenging and not the chosen writing style of the majority of fiction writers and poets. As I said when I reviewed Christina’s BOOK OF CHRISSYISMS, “If you are a writer, regardless of genre, then words and poetry or wordplay are very likely a part of your genetic makeup. Perhaps there was a poet’s heart within you that influenced the beginning of your writing life.” When I first began to write, I was drawn to poetry and chose to write acrostic poetry so I could write without the fear of another’s prying eyes. When I was older I played with the stream of consciousness when writing poetry. There is at least one stream of consciousness poem on my blog, from years ago. I tell you this to reaffirm the fact that the stream of consciousness is not an easy poetic form.
“Loving a Writer
loving a writer is only for the strong,
the ones who care to stare
at the sky with you. or at a locked door. you refuse to open. and this is why
love remains crazy. undefined. unbearable. irrational. because loving a writer
has no rules. it’s like seeing the
world for the very first time.” – Christina Strigas
If you want to see this form of poetry used through the mind of a poet with profound depth, you have to read Strigas’ Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts. As a modern-day romantic, she weaves love, loss, desire, passion, sex, suffering, sanity, memories, old souls, abandonment, vodka, et cetera into each of her poems, bearing her heart and soul to her readers. I also picked up on her hidden references where she used words in place of names of some of the poets that have influenced Strigas as a poet. In other poems, she will toss a name of one of these poets into her poems, such as Anne (Sexton) Nerudo and Plath. And she does so in a way that unless you have been exposed to these poets, you miss the connection; it’s rather genius.
“I am going to think without fear of what you will say let me breathe what air I admire let me paint on an empty canvas instead of burning me under dishes and wash.” – Christina Strigas
Poet or not, I give Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts my strongest recommendation. A note of caution, Love & Vodka: A Book of Poetry for Glass Hearts contains adult content.