Aphrodite Made Me Do It

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Member Reviews

This book was INCREDIBLE. It spoke directly to my heart as a woman, a feminist, a reader, as a woman. For a shorter poetry collection, it contains so much power and strength. Fans of Greek mythology and the Gurlesque aesthetic of poetry will LOVE this book. It reminded me of a cross between Matthea Harvey and Danielle Pafunda. The illustrations and artwork are gorgeous and truly help to set a mood for reading. The relationship between The Poet and Aphrodite is done in such a way that, while distinct voices as characters, they often blend into an ethereal everywoman. (Fans of Madeleine Miller's CIRCE will definitely love these poems!) This is a collection I will happily return to again and again to find new depths. The best collection I've read in quite some time.
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Aphrodite Made Me Do It is a beautiful, honest, raw collection of poems written both from the poet’s perspective as well as “Aphrodite’s”. They comment on their experiences with men and touch upon extremely sensitive topics that are unfortunately quite relatable to many people, so please be cautious of trigger warnings before reading this. There are also poems about less sensitive things like love, both with another and with(in) yourself. 

Mateer truly impressed me with this stream-of-consciousness approach to poetry and I found a lot of these poems resonating deeper than I anticipated them to. Their writing reminded me of things I’ve written in my own journal and it was healing to know that I am not alone in some of my personal feelings on things. 

I enjoyed this very much and I recommend it to people, but especially women, who are looking to self-assess, heal, and work toward self-love.
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I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, or how much I would enjoy it, as I don’t often read poetry. In fact, I didn’t enjoy much poetry when I did my English Literature degree, but I’ve come to realise that I don’t hate poetry, it’s just a matter of finding the words that sing to you. 

This book has a varied style, with some written in more poetic form and other sections written in more of a prose style. The mixture makes it more accessible, and although I personally would have enjoyed more of the fragmented poetry sections, I think this does give it appeal to a wider audience. You don’t have to like poetry to like this book. 

The topics covered are very relatable, put in simple terms that everyone can understand, but those words are put together in a beautifully lyrical way. Subject matter such as body image, assault, love, coming out, abuse and family are all explored in a very honest way. Using mythology as a way to tell the story and explore the themes of the book was an interesting and effective choice. It does help that I’ve always had an interest in mythology. Aphrodite is given a voice and the book gives an interesting perspective on how the love goddess is represented in literature and culture. 

It was a very quick read, and I almost wished there had been more (which I guess is a good thing), but at the same time it is nice to read something compact for a change. There is certainly an encouragement for self-care and healing, and I did feel uplifted having finished it.  

The experience of this book would be even better in paperback, and I would urge you to get a hard copy of this book rather than an ebook. There are illustrations interspersed through the poetry, and I would have loved to be able to see them in colour and the words all laid out on the page as intended. 

Even if you think poetry isn’t your thing, I would encourage you to give this book a go!
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*Received via NetGalley for review*

An interesting premise, but it felt very amateur. The interspersed photos, the discussion of sexuality and gender, the handwritten portions - it all felt clunky and like I was reading someone's actual journal rather than something ready for publication.
The formatting wasn't exactly there (maybe my fault for reading the Kindle edition).
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It was like reading someone’s personal journal as they move through healing from their trauma, whether inflicted by themselves or others. There are two "main characters": the poet, writing about her own experience with love and life, and Aphrodite, talking about her own life and giving advice/having a conversation with the poet. We are enough is the message in this poetry, no matter your trauma, family history or romantic relationship history As far as the themes of women empowerment and self-love and self-care... these are topics that we can never get enough. Told in poetry and prose, Aphrodite Made Me Do It is a beautiful collection of work. It's raw and powerful, encompassing the perspectives of both the goddess and the poet relevant pictures that are beautiful and empowering
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A special thank you to the publishers as well as NetGalley for the early copy in exchange for an honest review!

This book features poetry, prose, and artwork. Mateer goes through her own experiences with broken love, self-love, and moving on. She writes from her own point of view and from the point of view of Aphrodite. Mateer shows another side of love through her honesty and art.

I've mentioned before that I'm very interested in Greek mythology. When I saw that this book had a focus on Aphrodite, I had to get it. She made me. But seriously, I was really excited about this book. I really love Amanda Lovelace's work, and she follows Mateer on Instagram, so I've scrolled through Mateer's profile a lot. I really enjoyed what I read, and this book went above and beyond.

I really like how the artwork brought a different facet to the topics and feelings. The artwork also offered a reprieve from my own feelings, cause I felt A LOT. Mateer both called me out for the pain I have kept from bad love and encouraged me to be okay with who I am and how I am growing, no matter how messily. Poetry to me should make you feel, make you question, and make you connect. Mateer absolutely did all of that.

I loved her focus on Aphrodite and how she wrote from point of view. She brought a new view of Aphrodite: a powerful and dreadful version that I greatly appreciated. Love is more complicated than feelings and sex. It's powerful and dangerous.

Mateer deals with a lot of sensitive and important topics in her book: sexuality, assault, abuse, insecurities, and fear. She looks at her wounds and acknowledges that others could have similar wounds. She takes us to the darker parts of love, but she doesn't leave us there. One of her last poems is all about not writing another poem about hurting or bad love. She leaves us in a hopeful place where love has room to be good and to grow.

I really appreciated how Mateer handled difficult topics and made me feel both good and the bad. I've already recommended it to a friend. This is an important work of art, prose, and poetry that will be a part of changing how people view love and heal from bad love.
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Part autobiographical, part self-help, and part exploration of Greek mythology through the lens of the titular Aphrodite, Trista Mateer's brand-new feminist poetry/prose/art collection is a story of assault and survival, depression and joy, despair and desire, introspection and discovery. Fierce, angry, and ultimately hopeful, Aphrodite Made Me Do It shines a light on society's issues while still promising that there is hope.
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Welcome Back,

Being totally 100% honest I have not read a lot of poetry collections of poetry in general. As a kid, I loved those Shel Silverstein books that were his big bind ups of his poetry works and they were fun silly poems. I would check them out of the library again and again. As I have gotten older I have had more of an interest in reading more poetry and have put the Princess Saves Herself in This One and others on my Amazon book wish list (meaning I will purchase them at some point). But other than this I really have not had much experience with poetry as a whole. Recently, on Netgalley I was given a copy of Aphrodite Made Me Do It in exchange for an honest review. So I was really excited to get to finally try some more poetry. 


In this poetry collection, the authors uses a lot of imagery both with pictures and words to create not only empowering poems but empowering images that tell a story. Now I am not sure if this story is about the author but I will say a lot of these poems were very empowering and amazing and helped to feel like it was okay to let go of things. Also, the illustrations in this collection weather they were just images or images with a mix of words were probably my favorite thing. If I could I would literally get prints of these for my home. I felt like the images spoke so loudly about the poems, the author, and important things in today's world that maybe I have felt or greatly understood at some point in my life. Overall, I really enjoyed this poetry collection, and I have already gone back and looked at some of the images again. I am definitely giving this five stars on Goodreads. Also, I am sorry if this review seems a little scattered compared to normal, I did not want to say too much or too little but I did want to express how much I truly enjoyed this. 

**Received an ARC in Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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This is a beautiful, angry, tender collection of poetry, prose, and art. It is split into different sections, some from Aphrodite's perspective and some from the author's, some about war and some about love and some about healing. It's a very quick read, but I found it quite lovely and affecting-- the artwork really elevates the work as a whole. There were several I'd love to have prints of.
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Abuse. Survival. Healing. These are themes you come across with many poets, but the way she weaves this together with mythology empowers the reader. The art is also beautiful in this collection. 

“You forgive your mother for the things she did wrong, because of the things that were done wrong to her. You expect your children to do the same. Everyone’s backs ache under the weight.”

“I stole the chariot of Ares and rode it into battle. I did not stay behind to bandage wounds. I raised armies. I hefted spears. They sang of me in Sparta and in Troy.”
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Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an earc copy.

I really enjoyed reading the poems in Aphrodite Made Me do it. I gave it a four out of five stars I liked the images and illustrations in it as well. I would hang them up on my walls if I could. There were so many lines that I highlighted sometimes I highlighted whole passages. I connected with a lot of the parts in it. There's some parts I highlighted a different color because I connected with it even more so then the parts I already connected with.
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I got "Aphrodite Made Me Do It" from Netgalley for free in exchange for a honest review.

It's underlining message is I think of hopeful inspiration, as well as acknowledging fears and past abuse with art. It's popular in media to imagine the artist or poet having a Muse, but with Aphrodite and Trista it's like being invited to sit in a personal conversion between intimate friends, you get to know them in ways that you might not have been aware of as they share experiences and swap stories. Trisia's Aphrodite is a goddess of war who has experienced rape and who's experiences are more modern feminist than myth.
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Thank you to NetGalley and Central Avenue Publishing for the digital advanced reader's copy of this book! All my thoughts are my own. 

     "Aphrodite Made Me Do It" is a poetry collection speaking about the journey towards self-love after trauma, told from two alternating perspectives over the course of eight sections: the perspective of the author, known as "The Poet," as well as from the perspective of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess. 

     All trigger warnings: body image, sexual assault, rape, eating disorders, queerphobia, emotional abuse, physical abuse, gore, blood, death, fire. 

     The emotions form the author are completely alive on the pages from the very beginning: anger, hurt, fear, as well as the will to survive their past traumas, the will to love themselves, within both perspectives throughout the entire collection. It felt as if Mateer was speaking directly to me as I read this book. 

     The poems from Aphrodite's perspective are stories spun from both the original histories we know of the Greek Goddess as well as stories Mateer has made herself that fit within the origin tales, making these sections very entertaining, coming off like ancient myths themselves. Aphrodite's poems also mention other villanized and typically negatively-seen mythical and religious woman within the poems, such as Eve, Pandora, and Medusa. Adding more mythical female figures created a mini fictional world, told from a females gaze, giving these myth-like poems extra dimension. 

     While Aphrodite's sections are shaped from original tales, modern feminism, and the anger that is the backbone of this collection, "The Poet" sections contain Mateer's own experiences and feelings with no myths to embellish them, making the experience of reading them incredibly raw, and sober, clear-headed, taking on their past by the horns and laying them out for the reader to feel and digest for themselves. One of my favourites: "I knew love could draw blood/ and I still never went into it/ with bandages in mind."

     The art Mateer has made for this book is absolutely incredible, made with mixed media consisting of photographs (with diverse faces), collage, and illustrations. The artwork screams in sync with the poems, reflecting the mood of the poems it was placed near in the book using words, colour and the subjects of the artwork (one of my favourites: "change is normal" written in blue over a black background, surrounded by illustrated phases of the moon). 

     Overall, this collection of poems is incredible. The author's emotions leap out off the page and grab you the moment you begin reading, whether from the Poet of from Aphrodite. "Aphrodite Made Me Do It" hurt to read at times, but is worth it, and I will be writing several of the poems in this book in my notebooks just because they're that amazing.
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This book is  an interesting concept, lyrical in its prose with many beautiful illustrations and photographs. I don't feel that I am perhaps the intended audience - I prefer my poetry to be more traditional.
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This was an absolutely beautiful poetry collection. I love the artwork and inspirational quotes. I held back tears multiple times reading this because it hit so deep for me personally. Definitely recommend and would love to get the physical copy of this masterpiece.
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Aphrodite is a Greek goddess associated with love, beauty, pleasure, passion and sex. The mother of Eros and lover of Adonis, she is a character of mythology that many would say they are familiar with.

And yet, Mateer presents a different side to the goddess we think we know.

If you love the feminine power that Lovelace portrays in her own poetry collections, you will love this gorgeously written collection of poems. The poetry is split between prose from Aphordite's POV, as well as from the author, written to the goddess of love.

It speaks of love in every sense of the word - for yourself and others; living with or without; yearning for it; having it; losing it.

It is a collection that is both strong and delicate, powerful yet raw. This is absolutely a new favourite in the world of poetry for me.
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Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an e-copy for an honest review.

TRIGGER WARNINGS: rape, abuse, sexual assault, death, eating disorders, gore, blood, queerphobia.

I wanted to read this book for a while, so I was very happy when I saw that was approved for an advance reader's e-copy, and this did not disappoint. This felt so personal, both from Aphrodite pov and the poet pov. The voices felt different, but at the same time, Aphrodite felt like an alter ego of the poet (which I loved). There was so much rawness too this, that I couldn't but to tear up at certain part. And yes, this talks about trauma and abuse, but it also speaks of healing and about knowing your worth. It also uses art in the form of mixed media which made the reading experience gratifying.

I can't wait to own this physically!
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Equal parts self-help guide and collection of poems, which was confusing and a bit disappointing. The poems were raw and beautiful, but just as much, if not more, of the book was taken up with Instagram-style self-help posters. Those were cute, but I was reading on my black-and-white Kindle, and it lost quite a bit of the impact as a result. 2.5 stars for the Kindle edition, as the poems really were lovely (especially the ones about Aphrodite herself, and the one about fear); likely 3.5 or 4 stars for the physical book, had I read that instead and gotten the full effect of the artwork.
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Loved this collection of poetry! It really packed an emotional punch. I was worried I wouldn't enjoy it because it was categorised as YA but I thought it was great. I would recommend this to women of all ages. It's a treat.
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Thank you Netgalley and Central Avenue Publishing for providing me an ARC of this book, in exchange for an honest review.

Aphrodite Made Me Do It is another great poetry book by Trista Mateer, full of anger and sadness, but hopeful.

I have read two other poetry collections by Trista Mateer (Small Ghost and [redacted]) before and I really liked them, so I was excited to read her new book.

And I was not disappointed! It's full of really powerful poems about assault, recovery, family, love, and hope, so much hope. It has alternating chapters between Aphrodite and the poet's story, which I think was really well done. Aphrodite talks about her own experiences with men, violence, love, war and erasure, but also tells Pandora and Medusa's stories, everything in such a powerful way.

I admit I just didn't like the mixed media portraits that appeared between poems. Some of them were powerful, but mosto f them just alienated me and took me away of the whole story of the collection.

Nonetheless, I really enjoyed this poetry collection. There were a few poems that I was meh about, but there are some really powerful poems and it's a good poetry book, overall.
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