FREE STALLION by Amber Tamblyn


Age Range: 14 & up
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Tamblyn, probably best known to teens as a TV and screen actress, professes to have been a poet long before she became an actress. Unfortunately, this anthology of poems does not reflect years of training as a creative writer and, in fact, is rather sophomoric. While reading, one gets the sense that Tamblyn tried too hard, intentionally obscuring meaning in an effort to create “art.” She admits that “this book is a teenage timeline of sorts,” but the poems’ subjects range so widely—from the abortion debate, to body image, to tributes to Woody Guthrie and Thelonious Monk—that the collection suffers without a cohesive theme or style. “Beyond the Pale” and “Dear S.” are the highlights of the work, mostly because they seem the most genuine. In his foreword, poet Jack Hirschman assesses Tamblyn’s talent, saying, “I hope readers will recognize that this is the work . . . of an exceptional young woman whose development as a poet must be both nurtured and anticipated.” One can only hope that this means better work is forthcoming. (Poetry. YA)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 1-4169-0259-7
Page count: 96pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2005