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Don't Let It Get You Down: Essays on Race, Gender, and the Body

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A powerful and provocative collection of essays that offers poignant reflections on living between society’s most charged, politicized, and intractably polar spaces—between black and white, rich and poor, thin and fat. Savala Nolan knows what it means to live in the in-between. Descended from a Black and Mexican father and a white mother, Nolan’s mixed-race identity is obvi A powerful and provocative collection of essays that offers poignant reflections on living between society’s most charged, politicized, and intractably polar spaces—between black and white, rich and poor, thin and fat. Savala Nolan knows what it means to live in the in-between. Descended from a Black and Mexican father and a white mother, Nolan’s mixed-race identity is obvious, for better and worse. At her mother’s encouragement, she began her first diet at the age of three and has been both fat and painfully thin throughout her life. She has experienced both the discomfort of generational poverty and the ease of wealth and privilege. It is these liminal spaces—of race, class, and body type—that the essays in Don’t Let It Get You Down excavate, presenting a clear and nuanced understanding of our society’s most intractable points of tension. The twelve essays that comprise this collection are rich with unforgettable anecdotes and are as humorous and as full of Nolan’s appetites as they are of anxieties. The result is lyrical and magnetic. In “On Dating White Guys While Me,” Nolan realizes her early romantic pursuits of rich, preppy white guys weren’t about preference, but about self-erasure. In the titular essay “Don’t Let it Get You Down,” we traverse the cyclical richness and sorrow of being Black in America as Black children face police brutality, “large Black females” encounter unique stigma, and Black men carry the weight of other people’s fear. In “Bad Education,” we see how women learn to internalize rage and accept violence in order to participate in our culture. And in “To Wit and Also” we meet Filliss, Grace, and Peggy, the enslaved women owned by Nolan’s white ancestors, reckoning with the knowledge that America’s original sin lives intimately within our present stories. Over and over again, Nolan reminds us that our true identities are often most authentically lived not in the black and white, but in the grey of the in-between. Perfect for fans of Heavy by Kiese Laymon and Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay, Don’t Let It Get You Down delivers an essential perspective on race, class, bodies, and gender in America today.


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A powerful and provocative collection of essays that offers poignant reflections on living between society’s most charged, politicized, and intractably polar spaces—between black and white, rich and poor, thin and fat. Savala Nolan knows what it means to live in the in-between. Descended from a Black and Mexican father and a white mother, Nolan’s mixed-race identity is obvi A powerful and provocative collection of essays that offers poignant reflections on living between society’s most charged, politicized, and intractably polar spaces—between black and white, rich and poor, thin and fat. Savala Nolan knows what it means to live in the in-between. Descended from a Black and Mexican father and a white mother, Nolan’s mixed-race identity is obvious, for better and worse. At her mother’s encouragement, she began her first diet at the age of three and has been both fat and painfully thin throughout her life. She has experienced both the discomfort of generational poverty and the ease of wealth and privilege. It is these liminal spaces—of race, class, and body type—that the essays in Don’t Let It Get You Down excavate, presenting a clear and nuanced understanding of our society’s most intractable points of tension. The twelve essays that comprise this collection are rich with unforgettable anecdotes and are as humorous and as full of Nolan’s appetites as they are of anxieties. The result is lyrical and magnetic. In “On Dating White Guys While Me,” Nolan realizes her early romantic pursuits of rich, preppy white guys weren’t about preference, but about self-erasure. In the titular essay “Don’t Let it Get You Down,” we traverse the cyclical richness and sorrow of being Black in America as Black children face police brutality, “large Black females” encounter unique stigma, and Black men carry the weight of other people’s fear. In “Bad Education,” we see how women learn to internalize rage and accept violence in order to participate in our culture. And in “To Wit and Also” we meet Filliss, Grace, and Peggy, the enslaved women owned by Nolan’s white ancestors, reckoning with the knowledge that America’s original sin lives intimately within our present stories. Over and over again, Nolan reminds us that our true identities are often most authentically lived not in the black and white, but in the grey of the in-between. Perfect for fans of Heavy by Kiese Laymon and Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay, Don’t Let It Get You Down delivers an essential perspective on race, class, bodies, and gender in America today.

30 review for Don't Let It Get You Down: Essays on Race, Gender, and the Body

  1. 4 out of 5

    Roxane

    I like the voice and intelligence with which these essays come together. I wanted more heft and length from many of the essays. They felt like previews rather than the main attraction. But on the whole this is a vibrant and thoughtful collection of essays.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Sara Broad

    "Don't Let It Get You Down" by Savala Nolan is a collection of essays that are part memoir and part social commentary, and the intersection thereof. As the daughter of a white mother and a Black and Mexican, Nolan navigates her adolescence, college and law school years, and career as an attorney (and writer) from the lens of being not sure where she fits, but clearly finding success nevertheless. Research into Nolan's family and her experience growing up with them is shaped by two polar opposite "Don't Let It Get You Down" by Savala Nolan is a collection of essays that are part memoir and part social commentary, and the intersection thereof. As the daughter of a white mother and a Black and Mexican, Nolan navigates her adolescence, college and law school years, and career as an attorney (and writer) from the lens of being not sure where she fits, but clearly finding success nevertheless. Research into Nolan's family and her experience growing up with them is shaped by two polar opposite worlds: her mother's family being former slaveholders and her father having served time in prison and living for survival. Nolan's traversal from her childhood classrooms to esteemed law firms is layered with analysis and the lived experiences of being a woman of color in America. This book is really excellent!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Rajiv Srinivasan

    I typically don't read books that are just collections of essays. But I made an exception for Savala after reading several of her periodical pieces. She takes notable stories of the black experience to new heights. Other stories in the same vein seem to either underwhelm me in the quality of writing (e.g. "The Hate U Give"), or be so disturbingly raw and cruel that it's hard to see the forest through the trees ("Heavy", "Precious", etc). Just like being the only minority in the room makes us the I typically don't read books that are just collections of essays. But I made an exception for Savala after reading several of her periodical pieces. She takes notable stories of the black experience to new heights. Other stories in the same vein seem to either underwhelm me in the quality of writing (e.g. "The Hate U Give"), or be so disturbingly raw and cruel that it's hard to see the forest through the trees ("Heavy", "Precious", etc). Just like being the only minority in the room makes us the example by which the majority will judge our entire class, being a black memoirist in a field of white (and predominantly male) writers means that the work serves as a beacon for how outsiders might view--and judge-- the minority experience. Sometimes the "shock & awe" overwhelms the message of inequity and systematic bias...but I suppose we all read for different reasons. Savala's essays are different. They are BEAUTIFULLY written. Absolutely fantastic narratives that I could not recommend highly enough. Each word is deliberate. She makes the concepts of gender, weight, and racial insecurities seem relatable. She shares these through short stories on her relationships with men, her father, and friends insensitive to the symbols of Black America. Thse experiences elicit raw, yet thoughtfully described reactions which I never knew could come in the form of an "essay". Read it. It's short, interesting, and worthy of your attention!

  4. 5 out of 5

    sarah

    review to come!

  5. 5 out of 5

    USOM

    (Disclaimer: I received this book from the Libro.fm. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Don't Let It Get You Down exists in between spaces. In spaces where belonging is never singular. Personal and lyrical, this essay collection is full of anecdotes that echo and sentences that stop you in your tracks. Dating preferences turn into reflections on self-erasure and coping mechanisms. Don't Let It Get You Down haunted my thoughts long after finishing. About the instances (Disclaimer: I received this book from the Libro.fm. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Don't Let It Get You Down exists in between spaces. In spaces where belonging is never singular. Personal and lyrical, this essay collection is full of anecdotes that echo and sentences that stop you in your tracks. Dating preferences turn into reflections on self-erasure and coping mechanisms. Don't Let It Get You Down haunted my thoughts long after finishing. About the instances of being overlooked by people then being gaslit. full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/revi...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kenda

    A must-read for 2021. Full of gorgeous language and stunning insights about being human in this complicated world, particularly when you don’t fit neatly into the inadequate categories that society uses to divide us.

  7. 4 out of 5

    M Moore

    A solid collection of essays that share the author's unique perspective as a mixed-race woman finding her place in a society that wants to categorize and label. I appreciated her candidness and found some of observations about white people and behavior very convicting. I'm still reflecting on her assertions regarding women watching Law & Order: SVU and I need to discuss! Great, short read that will leave you with lots to ponder. A solid collection of essays that share the author's unique perspective as a mixed-race woman finding her place in a society that wants to categorize and label. I appreciated her candidness and found some of observations about white people and behavior very convicting. I'm still reflecting on her assertions regarding women watching Law & Order: SVU and I need to discuss! Great, short read that will leave you with lots to ponder.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Wade Snowden

    Largely essays and part memoir - this was good. Not great, but insightful & important. The execution of some of the topics could have been stronger.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    I need to mull over this one. I did enjoy it, but some essays felt too short, other felt a bit too clustered with so many different ideas that I forgot what was even the point at the beginning. Still, I did enjoy these essays and I loved her intersectional point of view. As a fat latina who has lighter skin, I could definitely relate to parts of her essays, and the rest was very in your face so you couldn't look away from her experience. I will definitely need to take a moment to write up a prope I need to mull over this one. I did enjoy it, but some essays felt too short, other felt a bit too clustered with so many different ideas that I forgot what was even the point at the beginning. Still, I did enjoy these essays and I loved her intersectional point of view. As a fat latina who has lighter skin, I could definitely relate to parts of her essays, and the rest was very in your face so you couldn't look away from her experience. I will definitely need to take a moment to write up a proper review, but I'm glad I read Savala Nolan's essays.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Del Angel

    4.5 stars. “It dawned on me later that equals do not need validation.”

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shana

    ***Thanks to NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for my honest review*** I will never tire of reading the memoirs of other multiracial individuals. Each time I read one, I feel validated in my own experience and reaffirms my connection to others, even if we are not of the same races. This book was no exception. Savala Nolan is so self aware, and it is a gift that she allows us into her own reflections in such an open way. As a Black, Mexican, and white woman in a larger body, she describes what it ***Thanks to NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for my honest review*** I will never tire of reading the memoirs of other multiracial individuals. Each time I read one, I feel validated in my own experience and reaffirms my connection to others, even if we are not of the same races. This book was no exception. Savala Nolan is so self aware, and it is a gift that she allows us into her own reflections in such an open way. As a Black, Mexican, and white woman in a larger body, she describes what it is like to live at the intersection of these identities as a whole person. She is self-deprecating at times, yet also very much aware of all that she brings to the world. Just based on her writing, she seems like the kind of person I'd want to call my friend.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Simone

    This book was so necessary for me to read. And simultaneously gutting. I believe pretty much everyone should read this book - so many need to. So many won’t. And this is one of too many reasons why we are where we are as a country.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Read an ARC, but it seemed pretty complete except for missing the "about the author" section. A really interesting read. The author is a gifted writer and has really elegant words and imagery. There are essays on all of the topics in the title, but most focus on race, and even areas about gender and body image are also connected back to race. She provides an important and unique perspective as someone who grew up with her mother in very priveleged white culture yet who herself is a light skinned Read an ARC, but it seemed pretty complete except for missing the "about the author" section. A really interesting read. The author is a gifted writer and has really elegant words and imagery. There are essays on all of the topics in the title, but most focus on race, and even areas about gender and body image are also connected back to race. She provides an important and unique perspective as someone who grew up with her mother in very priveleged white culture yet who herself is a light skinned Black-Latina on her father's side. I'm going with 3.5 stars for this one, because I really did enjoy the writing style and her perspective, the tone often comes across as needlessly harsh or condemning. Example: snapping at a white lady in a grocery store who asked if she could hand her an item on a high shelf the author was standing in front of, because of the author's perception that the white lady could see she was Black and thus should be ready to leap to her service. Maybe. Or maybe this woman has difficulty reaching the spot, and a tall woman right by it easily could do so. I agree it is important to examine the ways that subtle racism permeates our culture, but I also feel that dwelling on it overmuch leads us to look for what might not necessarily be there instead of choosing to give people the benefit of the doubt when an individual situation is ambiguous. Automatically reacting with hostility causes more division and hostility, and that's not good for a society. That's not to say that there isn't cause to be furious with how white society has treated black and brown society both historically and to this day, because obviously there is plenty of cause, every single day. And it needs to be examined and brought to the light of day, but there needs to be a balance to the anger if it's going to be restorative. I don't know what that balance is, but I hope we can find it.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Zac Chavez-Kelleher

    I’d give it 4.2* overall. I loved the concept, so when I read the title of this book at the store I felt I would identify in some part, even though I’m a light-to-white, part Hispanic male. The idea of blending race, gender, and self-image in a fat-phobic culture was a new piece to other accounts I have read to try to be a better white ally in the fight to end systemic racism in our society. I wasn’t sure this was going to fill that expectation at first, but when I got to the sections: “To Wit, A I’d give it 4.2* overall. I loved the concept, so when I read the title of this book at the store I felt I would identify in some part, even though I’m a light-to-white, part Hispanic male. The idea of blending race, gender, and self-image in a fat-phobic culture was a new piece to other accounts I have read to try to be a better white ally in the fight to end systemic racism in our society. I wasn’t sure this was going to fill that expectation at first, but when I got to the sections: “To Wit, And Also,” and “State,” I found these two essays to blow me out of the water. It almost read poetically. I could feel the emotion lifting off the page and pouring into me. I recommend this book if for nothing else, than those two pieces, but the ending essays were highly relatable as well. In the end, this was slow to start, but highly worthwhile, and Savala Nolan successfully represents a voice that pulls together an intersectional experience that is too often dismissed. Her struggle with the image of the Mammy figure comes to its apex in “Fat In Ways White Girls Won’t Understand,” but it peeks up throughout other parts, and is truly a damaging caricature of a time that we should be long past, but in many ways still plagues the author to this day. It was eye-opening to share the author’s point of view through this “memoir” (as she puts it in the author’s note at the end), and I am grateful for her courage in sharing, and making this book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    In this memoir, Savala Nolan describes the historical and current forces that have shaped her life as the daughter of a Black, Mexican man, who didn't finish high school and was incarcerated several times before she was born and a white mother, who earned a graduate degree and descended from a Virginia family that owned enslaved Black people. One of the most moving essays in the book described Nolan's experience during her pregnancy when her white doctors repeatedly dismissed a series of concern In this memoir, Savala Nolan describes the historical and current forces that have shaped her life as the daughter of a Black, Mexican man, who didn't finish high school and was incarcerated several times before she was born and a white mother, who earned a graduate degree and descended from a Virginia family that owned enslaved Black people. One of the most moving essays in the book described Nolan's experience during her pregnancy when her white doctors repeatedly dismissed a series of concerning health symptoms. When Nolan was in labor, the doctors finally understood how dangerous these symptoms were to her life and they transferred her to the cardiac intensive care unit, where she gave birth. In speaking at Politics and Prose, Nolan said she hopes "readers will come away from this book with a deeper appreciation of the work that their body is doing in the culture. ... Our bodies are where it all happens and our bodies are the site of so much division and also so much power, so much complexity."

  16. 4 out of 5

    Meribah Knight

    Savala Nolan’s razor-sharp wit and breathtaking writing captured me from the jump. I found myself reading lines aloud, underlining them, rolling them around in my head as a made dinner and went about my day. This book sticks with you in all the best ways. As a white woman I don’t share in Nolan’s life experiences of race, but I hung on to her every word and I found myself feeling so included in her journey. I attribute this to her authenticity, her honesty and her ability to be her own harshest Savala Nolan’s razor-sharp wit and breathtaking writing captured me from the jump. I found myself reading lines aloud, underlining them, rolling them around in my head as a made dinner and went about my day. This book sticks with you in all the best ways. As a white woman I don’t share in Nolan’s life experiences of race, but I hung on to her every word and I found myself feeling so included in her journey. I attribute this to her authenticity, her honesty and her ability to be her own harshest critic, as we all are. This compilation of essays was such a thrill to read (I cried and laughed) and so thought provoking (I got plenty frustrated and angry at the world). It helped me understand how race, gender and the body are inextricably linked and I am so grateful for that understanding. Nolan has done the difficult work to make those connections, to reflect on them in her own life, to write about them beautifully, and to share them with us as readers. What a gift this book is!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jeni

    Nolan's series of essays was an excellent, beautifully written insight into her life as a multiracial, fat woman and the intersections of these identities. Additionally, Nolan comes from two completely disparate backgrounds, with her mother's family being having a history of owning slaves and her father's family having a history of incarceration and murder by white supremacist organizations. She also dabbles in discussions of class, as she was raised experiencing completely different experiences Nolan's series of essays was an excellent, beautifully written insight into her life as a multiracial, fat woman and the intersections of these identities. Additionally, Nolan comes from two completely disparate backgrounds, with her mother's family being having a history of owning slaves and her father's family having a history of incarceration and murder by white supremacist organizations. She also dabbles in discussions of class, as she was raised experiencing completely different experiences between her two homes. She has experienced living without electricity or running water, while also attending private schools. Overall, Nolan touches on so many aspects of intersectionality, giving a really crisp picture of how none of her identities can be teased apart from one another. While at times her essays were lengthy, her writing style is beautiful and evocative and kept me engaged.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Cookie

    Savala Nolan shares her experiences and thoughts on race, gender, and body image in this collection of essays. As the daughter of a Mexican and Black father and a White mother, Nolan has felt that she was in between worlds. She discusses her personal experiences, including dating white men, traveling abroad as a mixed race woman, and her racialized pregnancy. I appreciate Nolan's perspective on these topics. She provides sophisticated critiques on her experiences and societal expectations and no Savala Nolan shares her experiences and thoughts on race, gender, and body image in this collection of essays. As the daughter of a Mexican and Black father and a White mother, Nolan has felt that she was in between worlds. She discusses her personal experiences, including dating white men, traveling abroad as a mixed race woman, and her racialized pregnancy. I appreciate Nolan's perspective on these topics. She provides sophisticated critiques on her experiences and societal expectations and norms and on everyday occurrences that most people wouldn't think twice about. Thank you to Simon & Schuster Audio and Libro.fm for a free ALC in exchange for an honest review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hella Jordan

    This book is nothing short of remarkable. It tackles incredibly difficult topics with raw honesty and powerful grace. Nolan is a stunning writer, and the words have a rhythm and an almost visceral feel that support the ebb and flow of intensity. Perhaps most remarkable is the clarity as she shines light on the messy, complex, beautiful, challenging, relentless tensions that arise at points of intersectionality. Her honesty as she uses her own experiences to illuminate the areas “between” is stun This book is nothing short of remarkable. It tackles incredibly difficult topics with raw honesty and powerful grace. Nolan is a stunning writer, and the words have a rhythm and an almost visceral feel that support the ebb and flow of intensity. Perhaps most remarkable is the clarity as she shines light on the messy, complex, beautiful, challenging, relentless tensions that arise at points of intersectionality. Her honesty as she uses her own experiences to illuminate the areas “between” is stunning and powerful. I can’t stop thinking about it and have already ordered multiple copies for others.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Kamai

    Don't Let It Get You Down was on my must-read list for 2021. I am so glad I had the opportunity to read this collection of essays when I did. This essay collection was beautiful and filled with complex ideas that are timely to 2021. At times, I wished the pieces were more concise. In the essays, there were so many subjects that Nolan touched on that sometimes I forgot what the main idea was. I found myself only able to read one essay a day. I wanted to mull over the themes Nolan wrote about befo Don't Let It Get You Down was on my must-read list for 2021. I am so glad I had the opportunity to read this collection of essays when I did. This essay collection was beautiful and filled with complex ideas that are timely to 2021. At times, I wished the pieces were more concise. In the essays, there were so many subjects that Nolan touched on that sometimes I forgot what the main idea was. I found myself only able to read one essay a day. I wanted to mull over the themes Nolan wrote about before moving on to the next complex piece. I am thankful to have received an advanced copy from NetGalley, and I am looking to add a physical copy to my bookshelves.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Lennese

    I was intrigued by the title of this book and had originally hoped that it was some sort of inspirational read on how to endure racism , sexism etc. It was more of an examination of all of the intricate ways in which these system of beliefs infiltrate the lives of black women ( even those that are multiracial/racially ambigious) on individual and multigenerational level. While i understand that so many women of color have had contorted themselves to assimilate and befriend whiteness in order to I was intrigued by the title of this book and had originally hoped that it was some sort of inspirational read on how to endure racism , sexism etc. It was more of an examination of all of the intricate ways in which these system of beliefs infiltrate the lives of black women ( even those that are multiracial/racially ambigious) on individual and multigenerational level. While i understand that so many women of color have had contorted themselves to assimilate and befriend whiteness in order to survive, i think I am ready more stories with a focus on what comes after that chapter in our lives is over.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Becky Hillary

    I was moved by the author's vulnerability in these essays on hard topics such as race, gender, and body (focusing on weight stigma). The essay that was most impactful for me as a white woman, was "Dear White Sister" because she described her experience with appropriation of the black culture/community. In my life, I hear the word "appropriation" mostly from white people shaming other white people. Hearing her authentic voice was meaningful for me and I feel more able to turn inward and reflect o I was moved by the author's vulnerability in these essays on hard topics such as race, gender, and body (focusing on weight stigma). The essay that was most impactful for me as a white woman, was "Dear White Sister" because she described her experience with appropriation of the black culture/community. In my life, I hear the word "appropriation" mostly from white people shaming other white people. Hearing her authentic voice was meaningful for me and I feel more able to turn inward and reflect on ways I may be appropriating, in a way I was unable to before.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Alexis (hookedtobooks)

    Thank you Simon and Schuster Canada for the copy of this book. - Read if you like: essays on race, gender, and society; Roxane Gay. - In this book, Nolan writes essays as she explores her experiences being Black, white, and Mexican, being a Black woman, and her experiences with having a Black body that is considered too large by societies standards. - Their writing is mesmerizing and I really enjoyed reading each essay. I especially liked her essay about moving to Italy, learning Italian, and the perc Thank you Simon and Schuster Canada for the copy of this book. - Read if you like: essays on race, gender, and society; Roxane Gay. - In this book, Nolan writes essays as she explores her experiences being Black, white, and Mexican, being a Black woman, and her experiences with having a Black body that is considered too large by societies standards. - Their writing is mesmerizing and I really enjoyed reading each essay. I especially liked her essay about moving to Italy, learning Italian, and the perception of race being in Europe. I also loved her conversation around incarceration, the state, and the justice system. - CW: racism, sexism, fatphobia, incarceration, death of a loved one.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rujeko

    An incredible achievement that stays with you long after you’ve read the last word. Nolan’s essays cover a range of ideas and issues, all rooted in the deep specificity of her own lived experience. Her keen eye and moving evocation of her family’s pasts, presents, and futures - especially in essays relating to her father and young daughter - are powerful. All in all, an amazing collection of essays by a gifted and generous writer, thinker, and human!

  25. 4 out of 5

    RJ-Farias

    This collection of essays is (sometimes brutally) honest, timely, and eloquent. Each word challenged me to explore my own relationship to my education, career, romance, childhood, and parenthood and to love my whole self at those intersections. An important addition to literature by and for Black women, Nolan interrogates and warmly embraces each aspect of her identity. This is whole body literature and I am here for it!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    This book is essential reading for a country trying to understand and grappling with the intersections of race, gender, and diet culture. It is both deeply personal and resoundingly universal, and ties together the threads of the past with our present moment. Nolan is an expert at her craft--the writing is beautiful, often memorably so. I can't recommend it highly enough. This book is essential reading for a country trying to understand and grappling with the intersections of race, gender, and diet culture. It is both deeply personal and resoundingly universal, and ties together the threads of the past with our present moment. Nolan is an expert at her craft--the writing is beautiful, often memorably so. I can't recommend it highly enough.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Amy Utstein

    This book of essays is simply stunning...the writing is gorgeous and the essays were inspiring and affirming. Don't get me wrong - there is some serious important hard shit in there - but I am so happy I read it. It was exactly what I needed and I encourage all readers who are open to having their minds opened to run to the bookstore and get a copy! This book of essays is simply stunning...the writing is gorgeous and the essays were inspiring and affirming. Don't get me wrong - there is some serious important hard shit in there - but I am so happy I read it. It was exactly what I needed and I encourage all readers who are open to having their minds opened to run to the bookstore and get a copy!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Bluminberg

    A collection of essays dealing with the author’s experiences being a mixed race, large woman, who often straddles the worlds of privilege and poverty. Although she has achieved a huge amount of success as a lawyer and professor, she knows she has not moved away from her feelings of not being enough.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Wulff

    Each essay in this collection is worthy of its own review. A fantastic collection spanning topics from the carceral state to academic privilege to the female body. Each essay stops you in your tracks and makes you think and reflect. I can’t recommend highly enough!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    A witty, incisive perspective on topics relevant to all audiences. I found myself laughing, deeply moved, and nodding "YES!" throughout. Savala is a warm, intelligent voice and Don't Let it Get You Down is an enjoyable read. Highly recommend! A witty, incisive perspective on topics relevant to all audiences. I found myself laughing, deeply moved, and nodding "YES!" throughout. Savala is a warm, intelligent voice and Don't Let it Get You Down is an enjoyable read. Highly recommend!

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