The Bright Side of Going Dark by Kelly Harms

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Title:The Bright Side of Going Dark
Author:
 Kelly Harms
Genre: Literary, Contemporary, New Adult
Release date: May 12th, 2020

>>Content warning<<
 Suicide, panic attacks, mental illness, depression, fat-phobia, death.

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Description:

As one of the most popular influencers on social media, Mia Bell has lived her life online for years. With her celebrity dog and gorgeous fiancé, she is planning the ultimate virtual wedding—expensive, elaborate, and entirely paid for by sponsors. But off-camera, her world is far from picture perfect. After being jilted by her fiancé and faking her nuptials to please her sponsors, Mia finally has had enough. She heaves her phone off a cliff, ready to live—and maybe find love—offline for a change.

Mia’s sudden absence doesn’t go unnoticed, especially by techie loner Paige Miller, who hacks Mia’s account and begins impersonating the internet celebrity. Paige has her reasons. Her half sister, Jessica, idolizes Mia and desperately needs something to believe in. If taking over Mia’s online persona is Paige’s only means of connecting to her sister, so be it.

Creating a like-worthy life is more fun than Paige expected. But when she grows too bold and is caught in the act, a fiasco ensues that could forever change Mia, Paige, and the people who love them. Because somewhere amid the chaos is an invaluable lesson—one that only real life can teach.


The Bright Side of Going Dark questions our dependence and pervading feeling of entitlement towards influencers’ lives whilst also tackling themes of mental health, family relationships and grief. Though the novel successfully opens up discussions regarding these topics, it struggles to showcase subtle characterizations and leans towards exaggerated traits to portray the difference of opinion.

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Review: The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

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Title: The Bone Clocks
Author: David Mitchell
Genre: Literary Fiction, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Release date: September 2nd, 2014

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Description:

Following a scalding row with her mother, fifteen-year-old Holly Sykes slams the door on her old life. But Holly is no typical teenage runaway: a sensitive child once contacted by voices she knew only as “the radio people,” Holly is a lightning rod for psychic phenomena. Now, as she wanders deeper into the English countryside, visions and coincidences reorder her reality until they assume the aura of a nightmare brought to life.

For Holly has caught the attention of a cabal of dangerous mystics—and their enemies. But her lost weekend is merely the prelude to a shocking disappearance that leaves her family irrevocably scarred. This unsolved mystery will echo through every decade of Holly’s life, affecting all the people Holly loves—even the ones who are not yet born.

A Cambridge scholarship boy grooming himself for wealth and influence, a conflicted father who feels alive only while reporting from occupied Iraq, a middle-aged writer mourning his exile from the bestseller list—all have a part to play in this surreal, invisible war on the margins of our world. From the medieval Swiss Alps to the nineteenth-century Australian bush, from a hotel in Shanghai to a Manhattan townhouse in the near future, their stories come together in moments of everyday grace and extraordinary wonder.


The Bone Clocks is a journey spanning 60 decades all across the world. It is composed of several different stories that in the end come together as one. There are touches of fantasy and science fiction, but these aren’t the main focus of the novel – the characters and the theme of connection are. It was a very complex read and you have to pay attention to details, but it ultimately rewards you with a well crafted and bittersweet tale that stays with you.
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Review: The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

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Title: The Bell Jar
Author: Sylvia Plath
Genre: Literary fiction, Contemporary
Release date: January 14th, 1963

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Description:

Esther Greenwood is brilliant, beautiful, enormously talented, and successful, but slowly going under—maybe for the last time. In her acclaimed and enduring masterwork, Sylvia Plath brilliantly draws the reader into Esther’s breakdown with such intensity that her insanity becomes palpably real, even rational—as accessible an experience as going to the movies. A deep penetration into the darkest and most harrowing corners of the human psyche, The Bell Jar is an extraordinary accomplishment and a haunting American classic.


I had the hardest of times trying to rate this book. On one side, I enjoyed the writing, Esther’s feminist views and the honesty with which Sylvia Plath conveyed mental illness. Then, on the other, the protagonist varies drastically between refreshing and unlikable, the constant prejudiced comment put me off, and the other characters were not that powerful for me. Continue reading “Review: The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath”