Bite-Size Corner

Bite-Size Corner – ‘Ponies’ by Kij Johnson

First, a note on bite-size reviews: I was reading a short story today – when I say short, I mean literally a handful of pages – and whilst reading it, I realised that I had a lot to say on the content, but not enough to pad out a full review. This is where the bite-size corner comes in. If I have a book/novella where I do not have enough to say to create a full review, I will create a ‘bite-size’ review, stating simply its rating, what I loved and did not love and any miscellaneous thoughts about the book in a compact and brief manner. These can be found collected in the ‘bite-size corner’ category, and their images will go on the reviewed books list in a separate section. This way, you get to hear my thoughts on a wider selection of stories. On with the review!

If you want to be friends with TheOtherGirls, you’re going to have to give something up; this is the way it’s always been, as long as there have been Ponies.

4.5 stars (Rounded to 4)

As this short story is only a couple of pages long, it’ll take you no time at all to read, and boy do I recommend you read it. About a young girl and the sacrifices she chooses to make to ‘fit in’, this story shows the brutal truth of the lengths we go to in order to be someone. Honest and unflinching, it may be short but it packs a punch.

  • It summarises exactly the feelings of a young girl determined to get noticed in a sea of more popular peers.
  • It is so short that it takes only a couple of minutes to read.
  • It is honest – it doesn’t shy away from the truth or mask anything.
  • It is definitely identifiable: everyone would have felt this way at some point or another.
  • It merges a brutal reality with childish fantastical elements seamlessly.
  • If you’re expecting a nice, fluffy little story based on the title, it will probably shock you.
  • The writing tends to get a tad list-y at times, but it doesn’t matter.
  • Merging words together (‘TheOtherGirls’ and ‘TopGirl’ etc.) frustrated me a bit, but that’s personal preference.

Would I recommend? – YES, to anyone who has ever felt the pressure of wanting to fit in.

Read ‘Ponies’ for free here

Twitter @emmathereader




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