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I Love You, Call Me Back: Poems

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From one of the most-viewed spoken word poets of all time, a collection exploring loneliness, anxiety, and longing--and finding peace, and even joy, in unexpected places Sabrina Benaim, author of Depression & Other Magic Tricks, has connected deeply with readers and reached millions of viewers through her poetry, breaking down the stigma around mental illness. Now, she dive From one of the most-viewed spoken word poets of all time, a collection exploring loneliness, anxiety, and longing--and finding peace, and even joy, in unexpected places Sabrina Benaim, author of Depression & Other Magic Tricks, has connected deeply with readers and reached millions of viewers through her poetry, breaking down the stigma around mental illness. Now, she dives into challenging and universal territory: grief over a relationship's end, loneliness in a world under lockdown, and the anxiety of caring for a loved one from afar in the wake of a serious diagnosis. Unfurling over the course of one month in 2020, in seventy-five original poems, I Love You, Call Me Back grapples with mental health struggles and the uncertainty of the moment and beyond. In isolation, Sabrina dares to embrace loneliness in all its permutations: the sorrow of getting your mother's voicemail when you call to say "I love you; the bitter-sweetness when your dog takes up your ex's side of the bed; the joys of eating ice cream for dinner and singing badly, loudly. In her raw and deeply relatable style, Sabrina reminds us to love our whole selves: you can't have joy without sorrow, and being anxious or depressed doesn't mean you can never be happy. In her words, "Sometimes self-care is just surviving." And that's okay. Sabrina shows us that there's beauty and courage in that, too.


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From one of the most-viewed spoken word poets of all time, a collection exploring loneliness, anxiety, and longing--and finding peace, and even joy, in unexpected places Sabrina Benaim, author of Depression & Other Magic Tricks, has connected deeply with readers and reached millions of viewers through her poetry, breaking down the stigma around mental illness. Now, she dive From one of the most-viewed spoken word poets of all time, a collection exploring loneliness, anxiety, and longing--and finding peace, and even joy, in unexpected places Sabrina Benaim, author of Depression & Other Magic Tricks, has connected deeply with readers and reached millions of viewers through her poetry, breaking down the stigma around mental illness. Now, she dives into challenging and universal territory: grief over a relationship's end, loneliness in a world under lockdown, and the anxiety of caring for a loved one from afar in the wake of a serious diagnosis. Unfurling over the course of one month in 2020, in seventy-five original poems, I Love You, Call Me Back grapples with mental health struggles and the uncertainty of the moment and beyond. In isolation, Sabrina dares to embrace loneliness in all its permutations: the sorrow of getting your mother's voicemail when you call to say "I love you; the bitter-sweetness when your dog takes up your ex's side of the bed; the joys of eating ice cream for dinner and singing badly, loudly. In her raw and deeply relatable style, Sabrina reminds us to love our whole selves: you can't have joy without sorrow, and being anxious or depressed doesn't mean you can never be happy. In her words, "Sometimes self-care is just surviving." And that's okay. Sabrina shows us that there's beauty and courage in that, too.

30 review for I Love You, Call Me Back: Poems

  1. 4 out of 5

    aly ☆彡

    “While walking toward you, for what was the last time, I came across a swarm of bees in the middle of an intersection. I stood in awe of the buzzing, honey spilt from my eyes. I knew it could not last, this sweetness between us, it was always going to sting.” I enjoyed reading some of the poems, especially the ones from Belle to Beast and Beast to Belle. The story was poignant, and I could discern the author's emotions poured into this book. To stay afloat during the pandemic, to deal with “While walking toward you, for what was the last time, I came across a swarm of bees in the middle of an intersection. I stood in awe of the buzzing, honey spilt from my eyes. I knew it could not last, this sweetness between us, it was always going to sting.” I enjoyed reading some of the poems, especially the ones from Belle to Beast and Beast to Belle. The story was poignant, and I could discern the author's emotions poured into this book. To stay afloat during the pandemic, to deal with heartbreak, grief and mental health. Benaim reminds us that sometimes self-care is just surviving and that's okay. I resonate with that wisdom and courage. However, this book didn't fully reach out to me. I wanna be touched and imbued myself with the poems but somehow I didn't. Not sure why though; probably the many different styles become the hindrance to help me feel connected or it simply doesn't. At the end of the day, only Benaim knows what she writes and feels which is totally cool and par for the course. Poetry isn't written for readers and if I'm not the right audience for it, I think that's fine too. The right person would find this beautiful and cherish it.

  2. 5 out of 5

    destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]

    I Love You, Call Me Back is perhaps the singular most depressing collection of poems I've ever read, and I think a part of me regrets reading it, honestly. I more or less liked Sabrina Benaim's last poetry collection a while back, and I thought her writing had a lot of potential, so I decided to give it another try. I do think her writing itself improved since then, and these poems are well-written, but something about them didn't click with me. I'm not sure if it's because the subject matter wa I Love You, Call Me Back is perhaps the singular most depressing collection of poems I've ever read, and I think a part of me regrets reading it, honestly. I more or less liked Sabrina Benaim's last poetry collection a while back, and I thought her writing had a lot of potential, so I decided to give it another try. I do think her writing itself improved since then, and these poems are well-written, but something about them didn't click with me. I'm not sure if it's because the subject matter was so miserable, and I wasn't in the right head-space for it, or what, but I actually originally DNFed this book at the halfway point a month ago before finally caving and deciding to finish it. Topics covered in this collection include obvious things like grief, loss of a relationship, coping with life in the COVID-19 pandemic, and fear of her mother's health problems, but it also delves into eating disorders, self-harm, and emotional abuse. One last note: let me be very clear and say that I'm no fan of toxic positivity and my less-than-stellar review has nothing to do with the topics, just with the writing itself. I'll probably call it quits here for my relationship with Sabrina Benaim's writing as I just don't think it's for me, but this collection will hold a lot of value for the right reader. ✨ Content warnings for: (view spoiler)[grief, anxiety, depression, eating disorders, self-harm, emotional abuse from a parent, a family member (mother) with severe life-threatening medical problems, loss of a relationship, COVID-19, lockdown, loneliness (hide spoiler)] Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with this review copy in exchange for an honest review! ——— twitter | booktok | bookstagram | blog

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tyffany

    I have loved Sabrina Benaim’s work ever since a YouTube video of her reciting “explaining my depression to my mother: a conversation” popped onto my feed. Her words resonated with me in such a powerful way, and when I heard she was releasing another book I was thrilled! And this beauty did not disappoint. Sabrina has a magical talent for pouring emotion into words and creating impactful poetry that resonates even when it isn’t about something I necessarily am or have dealt with. She beautifully c I have loved Sabrina Benaim’s work ever since a YouTube video of her reciting “explaining my depression to my mother: a conversation” popped onto my feed. Her words resonated with me in such a powerful way, and when I heard she was releasing another book I was thrilled! And this beauty did not disappoint. Sabrina has a magical talent for pouring emotion into words and creating impactful poetry that resonates even when it isn’t about something I necessarily am or have dealt with. She beautifully captured the feelings that flowed around the pandemic, around heartbreak, around grief and mental health. I can’t recommend her work enough. Extra thanks to Plume Books for providing me with an early review copy.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Annissa Joy Armstrong

    I listened to the audio of this book and the author is the narrator. I enjoyed her poems!!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin Conlon

    In “I Love You, Call Me Back” Sabrina Benaim writes about mental health, hope, and fear with precision and grace. Much like her first book, she moves through depression in a way that’s familiar, like talking to a friend about how hard it’s been lately, how you miss the way it was before. Pair that with the worry and grief that comes with a loved one having medical issues, and this collection took me out. Sabrina is an important voice in contemporary poetry, and I am so grateful to have read it.

  6. 4 out of 5

    smalltownbookmom

    Another great collection of poems by Canadian spoken word poet Sabrina Benaim about her struggles with mental health, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, self-love and dealing with her mother's health scare and the complicated relationship she has with her father. Her range and the breadth of topics covered were impressive. Highly enjoyed this newest collection and recommend for poetry fans and anyone struggling during the pandemic. Much thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and the author for my a Another great collection of poems by Canadian spoken word poet Sabrina Benaim about her struggles with mental health, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, self-love and dealing with her mother's health scare and the complicated relationship she has with her father. Her range and the breadth of topics covered were impressive. Highly enjoyed this newest collection and recommend for poetry fans and anyone struggling during the pandemic. Much thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and the author for my advance review copy.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Poptart19 (the name’s ren)

    3.5 stars Reflections on living with mental illness, relationships, family, uncertainty, loss. Some of the poems are brief & free form, some are prose-poem journal entries, some are somewhere in between. Not all the poems are exactly my style, but all of them have important things to declare. [What I liked:] •The arrangement of the poems in this collection is really neat. There are poems titled “July 1st” through “July 31st”, one for each day of the month that record that day’s struggles, accomp 3.5 stars Reflections on living with mental illness, relationships, family, uncertainty, loss. Some of the poems are brief & free form, some are prose-poem journal entries, some are somewhere in between. Not all the poems are exactly my style, but all of them have important things to declare. [What I liked:] •The arrangement of the poems in this collection is really neat. There are poems titled “July 1st” through “July 31st”, one for each day of the month that record that day’s struggles, accomplishments, fears, & survival. There are other poems in between these daily (almost like journal) entries, but the day-by-day path mapped through living out each one gives a precious sense of the survival that’s won moment by moment, a momentum to live & live fiercely. •There is so much love in this book. The love that longs for a former lover yet still exists alone. The love, the sweet bond, of mother & daughter. The struggle to love yourself & live. They help me want to keep living. •I appreciate how the poet talks openly about mental illness. How she doesn’t portray living with it as a smooth trajectory forward towards permanent healing. How she doesn’t take the difficult days & lapses as failures & keeps trying to live healthy despite them. How she addresses the helpfulness of psychotropic medications, but also the downsides she experiences. [What I didn’t like as much:] •Sone of the poems are formatted as dense pages of text with no line breaks & no punctuation. That made it hard for me to follow. It’s not the stream of consciousness style I struggled with, mainly just the formatting. CW: mental illness, eating disorders, suicidal ideation, self harm [I received an ARC ebook copy from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. Thank you for the book!]

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cory

    I've been a fan of Sabrina Benaim for a while, probably since before her last book came out, but I somehow missed the news that this collection was coming out until the YouTube channel "Ours Poetica" posted a video of her reading her poem "In Praise of Tomorrow." Needless to say, I had to have the book (which had luckily just released). Much like Depression & Other Magic Tricks, this collection moved me in a way that I can't quite put to words. My best comparison would be that it, as a whole, ma I've been a fan of Sabrina Benaim for a while, probably since before her last book came out, but I somehow missed the news that this collection was coming out until the YouTube channel "Ours Poetica" posted a video of her reading her poem "In Praise of Tomorrow." Needless to say, I had to have the book (which had luckily just released). Much like Depression & Other Magic Tricks, this collection moved me in a way that I can't quite put to words. My best comparison would be that it, as a whole, made me feel similarly to the way I felt after watching Bo Burnham's masterful Inside special earlier this year. I related to Sabrina's depiction of the lockdown very much, on the condition that I didn't have to worry about my mother potentially dying spontaneously. This book is pure heartbreak, but made with beautiful language that evokes a seemingly asinine hope in the midst of *gestures broadly*. As with all poetry collections, not everything resonated with me here, and some works came off a bit too unorthodox, messy, etc. (mainly the sequence on "Dream a Little Dream of Me" in the middle-ish of the book) for me to really enjoy. However, the bulk here is anxious quarantine melancholy (a mood I've gotten to know exceptionally well) through and through, so I have a deep appreciation for it and was effected greatly by Sabrina's poems yet again.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Zibby Owens

    Millions of viewers know her spoken poetry, Sabrina Benaim’s new collection of essays was significantly inspired by the pandemic. Part autobiographical and part fiction, her day-by-day writings over a single month’s time touch on how she coped with Covid isolation, her mother’s serious medical diagnosis, the end of a relationship, and her mental health battles. This book got to me with its raw intensity. I identified with it because it painted a picture of a year of Covid’s effect on us all. Esp Millions of viewers know her spoken poetry, Sabrina Benaim’s new collection of essays was significantly inspired by the pandemic. Part autobiographical and part fiction, her day-by-day writings over a single month’s time touch on how she coped with Covid isolation, her mother’s serious medical diagnosis, the end of a relationship, and her mental health battles. This book got to me with its raw intensity. I identified with it because it painted a picture of a year of Covid’s effect on us all. Especially touching were the parts where Sabrina deals with her anxiety, something I also deal with. In one chaotic page, she captured anxiety perfectly. She wrote: "The Good News. The good news is spring came. Came anyway. Hyacinths and strawberry begonias bloomed. Myrtle spilled over concrete corners. Those little lime-green plants, the ones that look like Shrek ears, sprouted into high-rise bushes. The robins built nests, their perfect blue eggs nuzzled in Desiree's mailbox. I checked on their well-being via Instagram. I open the windows to be part of the world outside. The world is outside. It is unfathomable. I stay inside repotting plants, baking banana bread, learning unnecessarily complicated TikTok dances." To listen to my interview with the author, go to my podcast at: https://zibbyowens.com/transcript/sab...

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rachel | What’s Rachel Reading

    Having been a fan of Sabrina Benaim work, I did not enter into I Love You, Call Me Back without knowing how well Sabrina writes about emotions. I was pleasantly surprised with her newest collection. I Love You, Call Me Back is a collection of poems that explore a range of emotions during the month of July 2020. Sabrina Benaim captures a range of emotions that so many people can relate to, especially during the pandemic lockdown. While Sabrina Benaim captures heavy, difficult emotions, she surpri Having been a fan of Sabrina Benaim work, I did not enter into I Love You, Call Me Back without knowing how well Sabrina writes about emotions. I was pleasantly surprised with her newest collection. I Love You, Call Me Back is a collection of poems that explore a range of emotions during the month of July 2020. Sabrina Benaim captures a range of emotions that so many people can relate to, especially during the pandemic lockdown. While Sabrina Benaim captures heavy, difficult emotions, she surprised me when describing the relationship between her and her mother. A wonderful collection of poetry. Thank you to Netgalley and Plume for the advanced copy.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    I Love You, Call Me Back is an ode to mental health. If you have wondered what depression or anxiety feels like or struggled to explain how your mental health impacts you, this book is the answer you have been seeking. It is a brutally honest look into multiple mental health concerns, all in the form of beautiful poetry. Panic Attack is accurate AF and I am kicking myself for not writing it. I love You, Call Me Back is a quick collection of poems taking place over the span of one month. It is a I Love You, Call Me Back is an ode to mental health. If you have wondered what depression or anxiety feels like or struggled to explain how your mental health impacts you, this book is the answer you have been seeking. It is a brutally honest look into multiple mental health concerns, all in the form of beautiful poetry. Panic Attack is accurate AF and I am kicking myself for not writing it. I love You, Call Me Back is a quick collection of poems taking place over the span of one month. It is a must-read for all. 4.5 stars

  12. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Forsyth

    Sabrina Benaim has always been able to make me cry. And smile. And vow to hug my loved ones more often. She’s done that all again here, and she’s also made me blush a little, too. She’s solidly reestablished herself as one of my favourite poets.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Iz

    This book was amazing. I normally don't love reading but this book is the best one I've read yet. I loved it so much, I read it in 30 minutes! This book is in verse which made it a quick read. This book was amazing. I normally don't love reading but this book is the best one I've read yet. I loved it so much, I read it in 30 minutes! This book is in verse which made it a quick read.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Elyssa

    "I feel like I am living myself back alive." Thanks for making me cry on a Saturday afternoon at work, Sabrina. No really, thank you. I loved the format of this collection and being on a journey with Sabrina over the course of 31 days. These poems are just as relatable and full of heart as every piece I have read and heard from Sabrina before them. The struggle with mental health and grappling with loneliness and the end of a relationship are so universally felt—there is something for everyone to "I feel like I am living myself back alive." Thanks for making me cry on a Saturday afternoon at work, Sabrina. No really, thank you. I loved the format of this collection and being on a journey with Sabrina over the course of 31 days. These poems are just as relatable and full of heart as every piece I have read and heard from Sabrina before them. The struggle with mental health and grappling with loneliness and the end of a relationship are so universally felt—there is something for everyone to hold onto on these pages. For me, it was the pieces about her mother's diagnosis that struck me. As someone who has faced the possibility of losing my mother, I know that specific fear and anxiety so well. I felt Sabrina's words deeply and found myself back in those moments when I felt like I was drowning in anticipatory grief. I still have my mom. I made sure to tell her I love her today. Thank you to Plume, Sabrina, and NetGalley for the ARC.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sanda

    Maybe it just seems that way to me but I love that over the past few years modern poetry has become more accessible and started reaching wider audience. One of the more pleasant side effects of that trend is that there are more poets being published. Poets like Rupi Kaur and Tyler Knott Gregson have become a must buy for me. And now I'm adding Sabrina Benaim to that list. I Love You, Call Me Back took me on an emotional roller-coaster ride and I loved every minute of it. I have to admit I misund Maybe it just seems that way to me but I love that over the past few years modern poetry has become more accessible and started reaching wider audience. One of the more pleasant side effects of that trend is that there are more poets being published. Poets like Rupi Kaur and Tyler Knott Gregson have become a must buy for me. And now I'm adding Sabrina Benaim to that list. I Love You, Call Me Back took me on an emotional roller-coaster ride and I loved every minute of it. I have to admit I misunderstood the title before I started reading the poems. At first glance it sounded almost humorous and quirky but once I understood the meaning behind the title, it hit me differently. More than just beautiful words and colorful imagery, this collection is a collage of poet's life taking place over the course of July 2020. For me one of the key ingredients of good poetry is a combination of the depth of emotions I experience as a reader, as well as the emotional vulnerability of the poet. And Sabrina Benaim delivers exceptionally on both of those fronts. Exploring topics such as mental health, loneliness especially in the context of the pandemic lockdown, breakups, separation from loved ones, she created the kind of collection that I ended up reading twice and I have a feeling I will be returning to it again and again. I can't recommend this book enough both to those who appreciate and love modern poetry, as well as to those looking to dip their toes into poetry waters. I am very grateful to NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with an Advanced Copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Taryn Boyd

    unsurprisingly i spent much of my time reading this absolutely leaking from my tear ducts, like MANY times to the point where i could no longer see this was stunning. absolutely, positively, stunning. sabrina's poems cover a variety of different topics, all of which are deeply relatable in some form or another. her relationship with & how she views her mother, a breakup, her relationship with herself & her body, mental health, isolation during the pandemic and more. i loved how many different style unsurprisingly i spent much of my time reading this absolutely leaking from my tear ducts, like MANY times to the point where i could no longer see this was stunning. absolutely, positively, stunning. sabrina's poems cover a variety of different topics, all of which are deeply relatable in some form or another. her relationship with & how she views her mother, a breakup, her relationship with herself & her body, mental health, isolation during the pandemic and more. i loved how many different styles she used and some even read as spoken word which was an incredible experience to read. i always find it wild when people ~seriously~ review poetry books & collections, even going so far as to give it a quantitative rating (like a star rating for example). quantitatively rating books in general is such an odd concept to me but poetry??? rly???? nah miss me with that poetry isn't written for the reader. poetry like this is written for the writer/poet and if you're lucky, they may allow you to read it in the form of a collection or a book or a post online. your only job at that point is to read, not critique. if it makes you feel something, amazing, but if it doesn't that doesn't mean it's... bad lmao poetry is a piece of someone that could never be judged, especially quantitatively now that i've introduced you to yet another hill i will happily die on, this is officially out today and i HIGHLY recommend this collection if you want to feel something bc i promise you will ------ tysm to @doubledayca and @penguinrandomca for the gifted copy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Summer 2021 (August); ~ Netgalley Arc Thank you to Sabrina Benaim, Penguin Group Dutton, Plume, and Netgalley for this free arc for an honest review. I was amazing delighted when I found Sabrina would be putting out a new book. A big fan of both her spoken word button poetry performance, and her first publication, Depression & Other Magic Tricks, I absolutely ran for this one when I saw it. Sabrina's work remains sharp and deep, unflinching about the problems, needs, and wants once faces amid dep Summer 2021 (August); ~ Netgalley Arc Thank you to Sabrina Benaim, Penguin Group Dutton, Plume, and Netgalley for this free arc for an honest review. I was amazing delighted when I found Sabrina would be putting out a new book. A big fan of both her spoken word button poetry performance, and her first publication, Depression & Other Magic Tricks, I absolutely ran for this one when I saw it. Sabrina's work remains sharp and deep, unflinching about the problems, needs, and wants once faces amid depression. The surprise of this book was the flowering fullness of seeing the deep relationship between Sabrina and her mother. How supportive of each other they are, how often they talk, how hard it is to maintain that close relationship in the wake of terrible news from doctors that could cause a death at any moment between being told and the time of treatment. It, also, gives us some beautiful glimpses into her friendship with those who know and support her process with depression. I see so much growth in her work from the first publication to this one, and I hope she goes on putting out even more poetry volumes.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Gicely

    4.5/5🌟: I absolutely adored this book so much. I mean her debut collection will always have a special place in my heart but this one hit different (for those that understand what that means). This poetry collection was so strong in terms of soundwork and imagery. I loved how it flowed more than the average collection. Like a general poetry book has overarching themes but sometimes the poems feel a little bit of a mix bag i.e random but this one really felt cohesive. But all the poetry was amazin 4.5/5🌟: I absolutely adored this book so much. I mean her debut collection will always have a special place in my heart but this one hit different (for those that understand what that means). This poetry collection was so strong in terms of soundwork and imagery. I loved how it flowed more than the average collection. Like a general poetry book has overarching themes but sometimes the poems feel a little bit of a mix bag i.e random but this one really felt cohesive. But all the poetry was amazing on it's own as well which is crucial when reading poetry for them to be standalone. So this is an impressive feat to have a collection be so in sync yet solid (if that makes sense). I also really enjoyed that while some of the poetry had titles, the author had each of them dated. At first, I was a little confused but the dates actually serve a nice purpose that is conveyed well to the reader. The themes of grief, fear, depression, and the bond of a mother and daughter shined throughout the entire piece. My personal favorite poems were "Red Dress", "On Progress" and "Voicemail from my Mom". I loved it so much that I could not put it down. I read it in almost one sitting. I would recommend to anyone a fan of poetry and their mom. ---My ARC copy of the book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a fair, unbiased review.----

  19. 5 out of 5

    AmandaMagdic Magdic

    Having read and liked Benaim's previous book " Depression and other magic tricks", I was excited to receive an advanced copy of her newest collection of poems. In " I love you, Call me back" we get a collection of verse for the month of July, as she documents her thoughts and feelings like a diary. We get a wide range of emotions and topics from mental illness, loss of love, potential loss of family, complicated parental relationships. and self hate and love. As with her previous works the writi Having read and liked Benaim's previous book " Depression and other magic tricks", I was excited to receive an advanced copy of her newest collection of poems. In " I love you, Call me back" we get a collection of verse for the month of July, as she documents her thoughts and feelings like a diary. We get a wide range of emotions and topics from mental illness, loss of love, potential loss of family, complicated parental relationships. and self hate and love. As with her previous works the writing is on point and beautiful. I love how open she is about the struggle of of mental illness and how she copes. And in this work, her discovery and journey back to self love. The amazing imagery on loneliness and and self worth really stood out and spoke to me as something I struggle with myself. The only real negative I found in the book for me personally, was I wasn't a fan of the long, whole page monologue style verses that had no punctuation or breaks. The formatting just didn't work for me as reader. But that being said all poetry is subjective and these few poems may be everyone else's cup of tea. And I respect that was how she needed to express herself at that moment. The general stream of consciousness to get out her emotions. "I feel like I am living myself back alive." This was a powerful ode to mental health and coping with life's difficulties through beautifully written prose. My copy is full of tabs of lines and verses that stood out to me. A definite read for any contemporary poetry fans.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nancy

    Mental Illness and Relationships in a World of Loneliness In 2020, a year of loneliness, illness ,and lockdowns, Sabrina Behaim’s poems explore the month of July. Fighting the problems of mental illness, she has the additional burden of her mother’s diagnosis of an aortic aneurysm when she is far away and can only be reached by the phone. She also has the sorrow of the end of a relationship and the need to move past grief. The poems are a testament to resilience. Even when things are dark, Sabrin Mental Illness and Relationships in a World of Loneliness In 2020, a year of loneliness, illness ,and lockdowns, Sabrina Behaim’s poems explore the month of July. Fighting the problems of mental illness, she has the additional burden of her mother’s diagnosis of an aortic aneurysm when she is far away and can only be reached by the phone. She also has the sorrow of the end of a relationship and the need to move past grief. The poems are a testament to resilience. Even when things are dark, Sabrina finds delight in eating ice cream for dinner and singing loudly. It’s good to remember that in darkness there can be light and moments to remember. I thought the poet did a good job making mental illness relate-able. We all face the same sort of problems and the loneliness of the lockdowns made it worse for everyone, but for someone struggling with mental illness it takes even more courage to find the bright spots. The poems are formatted in different ways. Some are formatted in lines of different lengths to emphasize words and feelings, others are great blocks of text. I admit I prefer the ones that are formatted. Dense block of text are off-putting, but they do convey a message. This is a book I think many of us can relate to after the trials of 2020. It’s good to have more freedom. I received this book from Dutton for this review.

  21. 4 out of 5

    The Voracious Bibliophile

    ***Note: I received a free digital review copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*** With I Love You, Call Me Back, Sabrina Benaim has gifted us with a collection that is both a blueprint for grief and a roadmap to help us find our way out of it. It’s not an easy task to meld hope and despair together in the same poem without coming off as maudlin or worse, melodramatic, but Benaim manages to do so with the grace and panache of an assured stylist. Her voice rings so clea ***Note: I received a free digital review copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*** With I Love You, Call Me Back, Sabrina Benaim has gifted us with a collection that is both a blueprint for grief and a roadmap to help us find our way out of it. It’s not an easy task to meld hope and despair together in the same poem without coming off as maudlin or worse, melodramatic, but Benaim manages to do so with the grace and panache of an assured stylist. Her voice rings so clear and true that while reading her new collection I felt like I was having a conversation with an old friend, one with whom I could share my highest hopes and biggest fears. After the past nineteen months of dealing with the isolation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, finally someone is saying that everything is not okay, but it will be eventually. And in the meantime, we can hold space for small joys, of which I count this poetry collection as one of them. I Love You, Call Me Back: Poems was released by Plume, a division of Penguin Random House, on October 19th, 2021 and is now available to purchase wherever books are sold. This review also appears on my blog The Voracious Bibliophile at https://thevoraciousbibliophile.com/2....

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kelli

    “The only thing we think we know for sure is the past, but our memories are stories we tell ourselves to sleep at night.” (126) In this collection, Benaim takes us on a journey that threads her grief over the end of a long relationship to her anxiety over her mother’s potentially impending death. The result is a complicated knot of fear with a solid core of acceptance and resilience holding everything together. Loneliness and loveliness, hope and panic, are two ends of one rope. This is such a comp “The only thing we think we know for sure is the past, but our memories are stories we tell ourselves to sleep at night.” (126) In this collection, Benaim takes us on a journey that threads her grief over the end of a long relationship to her anxiety over her mother’s potentially impending death. The result is a complicated knot of fear with a solid core of acceptance and resilience holding everything together. Loneliness and loveliness, hope and panic, are two ends of one rope. This is such a compelling collection that revolves around not letting yourself be swallowed up by your worst thoughts. Being kind and considerate to yourself is it’s own form of bravery, especially is a world that has become so increasingly isolating. It is far too easy to become disconnected from yourself and to internalize that coldness. Benaim encourages readers to cry and to grieve and to yell because you’re angry at something you can’t change. It’s okay to feel these things, to need help working through these feelings. Benaim also encourages readers to laugh and buy silly things because they make you happy and to call your mom first thing in the morning because you’re afraid and her voice soothes you. It’s okay. You’re enough. Definitely recommend!! I keep coming back to this work and wanting more~

  23. 4 out of 5

    Geoff

    My Recommendation: Benaim's work didn't really change my mind on written poetry, but that's on me, not on the author. She writes about experiences that many people think need to be swept under the rug or hidden behind closed doors. I appreciate that she's still breaking down those barriers and doing it in such a beautiful way. My Response: I'm not a big reading of poetry person. I just never have been, but as I've been trying to read more nonfiction and things that aren't my norm (HA! right), whe My Recommendation: Benaim's work didn't really change my mind on written poetry, but that's on me, not on the author. She writes about experiences that many people think need to be swept under the rug or hidden behind closed doors. I appreciate that she's still breaking down those barriers and doing it in such a beautiful way. My Response: I'm not a big reading of poetry person. I just never have been, but as I've been trying to read more nonfiction and things that aren't my norm (HA! right), when the publisher reached out it was a great opportunity to say yes.* I do love spoken word poetry and Benaim has millions of views on hers (like Explaining My Depression to My Mother) and found the two the publicist sent to be incredibly beautiful and moving. I'll probably spend some more time checking out some of her other spoken word because the delivery is perfection. Continue reading on my book blog at geoffwhaley.com. *I received a copy of I Love You, Call Me Back from the publisher via NetGalley in return for my honest opinion. No goods or money were exchanged.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    🌿 I am not afraid of the dark For a better look at the stars There are never enough Sweet home There is a stillness now Looked in the mirror & thought Look at you I love you I said I love you & if it weren't for my mother I wouldn't know how & I am gratful for that ~pg.121 • 🌿 ~THOUGHTS~ Happy Pub Week to this little gem! I always try to have a poetry collection on the go, even better if its Canadian poetry! I LOVE YOU, CALL ME BACK is a heartfelt collection of poems ruminating on grief, living with mental ill 🌿 I am not afraid of the dark For a better look at the stars There are never enough Sweet home There is a stillness now Looked in the mirror & thought Look at you I love you I said I love you & if it weren't for my mother I wouldn't know how & I am gratful for that ~pg.121 • 🌿 ~THOUGHTS~ Happy Pub Week to this little gem! I always try to have a poetry collection on the go, even better if its Canadian poetry! I LOVE YOU, CALL ME BACK is a heartfelt collection of poems ruminating on grief, living with mental illness, friendships, and family. Benaim wrote this over the course of a month back in lockdown which is impressive. She is also a spoken-word poet, so it was interesting to read her words while having this in the back of my mind. I loved how she combined so many poetic styles in this collection. It contributed to how I connected with the themes and I felt gave me the ability to see into her grief and metal state that much more. Not all of these poems resonated with me personally but many did and I look forward to revisiting them. Thank You to the publisher for sending me this book, opinions are my own. For more of my book content check out instagram.com/bookalong

  25. 5 out of 5

    BookstagrammingInNYC

    Thank you to Sabrina Benaim and Plume for my gifted copy of this book. Sabrina Benaim has nailed the poetry game again with her second collection "I Love You, Call Me Back". Sabrina, beautifully puts to words everything others (or is it just me) can't about certain topics; from depression, to anxiety, to family illness, and breakups, she is not afraid to share and be honest about her experiences, helping the reader connect to her and her poetry. Her writing style is free and distinct, and whether Thank you to Sabrina Benaim and Plume for my gifted copy of this book. Sabrina Benaim has nailed the poetry game again with her second collection "I Love You, Call Me Back". Sabrina, beautifully puts to words everything others (or is it just me) can't about certain topics; from depression, to anxiety, to family illness, and breakups, she is not afraid to share and be honest about her experiences, helping the reader connect to her and her poetry. Her writing style is free and distinct, and whether or not you have heard her spoken word, you can hear her voice as you read, her emotions and voice coming through in each stanza. This is 'pandemic poetry', which was not totally apparent, unless you pick up on minor details like the mention of purel everywhere; however, this is not important. The loneliness described and experienced by the author is something many of us can connect with as a result of depression and life in general--and certainly something we can all connect with because of the pandemic, for sure! This beautiful love letter to her mother, to herself, to her ex is everything I've felt and never been able to put to words. This is poetry. 5/5 stars

  26. 4 out of 5

    Erika Bucci | erikalaceyreads

    “𝒂𝒍𝒍 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒐𝒗𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖’𝒗𝒆 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒇𝒆𝒍𝒕 𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒍𝒍 𝒍𝒊𝒗𝒆𝒔 𝒊𝒏𝒔𝒊𝒅𝒆 𝒐𝒇 𝒚𝒐𝒖” I am a huge fan of spoken poetry and Sabrina Benaim is one of my absolute favorites. When she released her first collection of poems Depression & Other Magic Trick, I immediately bought it and purchased a surprise copy for my friend. The poem Explain Depression to My Mother was and still is relatable as fuck. I showed it to everyone (and still do to this day). Soooo when I knew Sabrina was releasing another collection, I knew I HAD to have “𝒂𝒍𝒍 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒐𝒗𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖’𝒗𝒆 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒇𝒆𝒍𝒕 𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒍𝒍 𝒍𝒊𝒗𝒆𝒔 𝒊𝒏𝒔𝒊𝒅𝒆 𝒐𝒇 𝒚𝒐𝒖” I am a huge fan of spoken poetry and Sabrina Benaim is one of my absolute favorites. When she released her first collection of poems Depression & Other Magic Trick, I immediately bought it and purchased a surprise copy for my friend. The poem Explain Depression to My Mother was and still is relatable as fuck. I showed it to everyone (and still do to this day). Soooo when I knew Sabrina was releasing another collection, I knew I HAD to have it. Luckily I was given the eARC through Netgalley and also happened to receive the finished book from Plume Books ~ but that wasn’t enough. I needed to HEAR Sabrina speak the poems so I also bought it on Audible. Yup, I’m obsessed. I already know. This collection is nothing short of amazing. It touches on grief, depression, loneliness and heartbreak. Once again, Sabrina puts out another relatable collection of poems. Also her multiple mentions of Mac Miller made me love her even more. I can’t wait for her next collection! READ THIS!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Hilary ☀️

    Thank you @plume_books for this copy of Sabrina Benaim's I LOVE YOU, CALL ME BACK, which recently came out on October 19 💗 Benaim's collection of poetry chronicles one of these pandemic experiences during the month of July as she tries to cope with the pandemic and her mother's new diagnosis on top of her existing mental illnesses and day to day worries. Titled after a series of voicemails between her and her mother, this book candidly documents depression, eating disorders, panic, heartbreak, an Thank you @plume_books for this copy of Sabrina Benaim's I LOVE YOU, CALL ME BACK, which recently came out on October 19 💗 Benaim's collection of poetry chronicles one of these pandemic experiences during the month of July as she tries to cope with the pandemic and her mother's new diagnosis on top of her existing mental illnesses and day to day worries. Titled after a series of voicemails between her and her mother, this book candidly documents depression, eating disorders, panic, heartbreak, and self-discovery in a way that is both accessible and deeply emotional. Poems vary in structure; some are paragraphs of free-write and others carry more "traditional" form. Some interact with the other poems as we progress through July, playing off of the last word of the previous piece or touching on something mentioned a couple of pages back. This ordering is what really makes these poems feel authentic and lived in. While these poems log events specific to Benaim, she perfectly portrays the disarray of emotion I felt. For instance, the poem "Panic Attack" is just the line "I don't want my mother to die" repeated over and over again; it's devastating in its simplicity, literality, and repetition. When I read these poems, I think: I've been there. That was me. Full review: https://www.instagram.com/p/CV8ZFVUPtnK/

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jayden

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Sabrina Benaim does it again. I Love You, Call Me Back is a tender, soul-bearing collection of poems that evokes an almost unbelievable range of emotions that we have come to expect from Sabrina. This collection explores things such as the never-ending work that goes into mental health recovery, the author further explores the affects of depression and being medicated. She explores her own healing through beautiful, hopeful poems about her good days and the good people, as well as through poems a Sabrina Benaim does it again. I Love You, Call Me Back is a tender, soul-bearing collection of poems that evokes an almost unbelievable range of emotions that we have come to expect from Sabrina. This collection explores things such as the never-ending work that goes into mental health recovery, the author further explores the affects of depression and being medicated. She explores her own healing through beautiful, hopeful poems about her good days and the good people, as well as through poems about the sometimes mundane everyday effort that goes into healing. A large theme in this collection was grief of the author’s mother, who was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm. It is a unique kind of grief to grieve for someone who is still here, and this was heartbreaking but beautiful. These poems are vulnerable and honest and I feel better for having read them.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Darrian Warach

    "I have become the queen of the uninspired" 10/10, 5/5, love everything about this book and finally getting around to reviewing it!! I finished it in one sitting and it really resonated especially after this past almost two years we've all endured. There are so many quotes I have highlighted/bookmarked to hand letter on my art account, everything was so beautifully put and I really felt the author's melancholy & anxiety during quarantine. "Remember the day can be unspectacular & still a success" — "I have become the queen of the uninspired" 10/10, 5/5, love everything about this book and finally getting around to reviewing it!! I finished it in one sitting and it really resonated especially after this past almost two years we've all endured. There are so many quotes I have highlighted/bookmarked to hand letter on my art account, everything was so beautifully put and I really felt the author's melancholy & anxiety during quarantine. "Remember the day can be unspectacular & still a success" — wise words we all need to remember. Thank you Penguin Group Dutton, NetGalley & Benaim for this beautiful ARC.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Anna Papis

    Happy Pub day to I Love You, Call Me Back by @badass_sab 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 This was the first time in a long time that I connected on a deep personal level with a poetry book. @badass_sab wrote a beautiful book that describes loneliness, love, anxiety, grief, joy and sadness. There were moments where I was reading this book and had to stop to just bask in how relatable Sabrina’s words were to me. I encourage anyone who loves poetry or even if you are looking to start reading poetry to pick up this book! It wa Happy Pub day to I Love You, Call Me Back by @badass_sab 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 This was the first time in a long time that I connected on a deep personal level with a poetry book. @badass_sab wrote a beautiful book that describes loneliness, love, anxiety, grief, joy and sadness. There were moments where I was reading this book and had to stop to just bask in how relatable Sabrina’s words were to me. I encourage anyone who loves poetry or even if you are looking to start reading poetry to pick up this book! It was a joy to read💕

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