book reviews by Althea

Review: Natural Skin

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Natural Skin
Natural Skin by Alyssa Wong
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When she awakes one night to find her sister sneaking out, Xuemei knows what her sibling is up to: she’s a plastic surgery addict, always going to back alley providers to change her appearance, although, of course, she claims to be all “natural.”

As the story progresses, we unfold layer upon layer of not just physical dissatisfaction, but the subtle damages of social inequity, familial favoritism, poverty – and plain old psychotic resentment and jealousy.

Of course, we know not to trust any illicit surgeon further than you can throw them – but the end of this piece still got me like a punch to the gut. (Maybe, though, it was just a little bit too unexpected? I wanted just a little bit more to make the decision feel more convincing.)

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