Elevate Difference

Reviews by Kelly Moritz

Kelly Moritz

Kelly Moritz has been reviewing books for over five years, first giving it a go as an intern at Altar in 2005. During the day (and sometimes night) Kelly works in publishing, helping authors make their book-writing dreams come true. Recently transplanted to Minnesota’s Twin Cities, Kelly tries to make time to dabble in enumerable hobbies and passions to varying degrees of success, including but not limited to fiction writing, “reading for pleasure,” messing around in the new garden, learning to sew, becoming a better vegetarian cook, trying not to watch the mind-numbing television that is her downfall, and just sitting back to toast the good life in her lovely little duplex, which she happily shares with her partner Nic and their crazy pup Bayou.

Skinny Bitch Ultimate Everyday Cookbook: Crazy Delicious Recipes That are Good to the Earth and Great for Your Bod

Assuming you’ve never heard of Skinny Bitch and its burgeoning franchise, here’s a quick primer. A diet book, marketed as a tough love, no-nonsense takedown of women who whine about their diets and think there is nothing they can do to change their bodies, ambushes its readers with a surprise crash course on the evils of eating animal products, meant to shock women into choosing a vegan diet.

Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles

Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles follows Finley, an investigator of sorts, as she fumbles her way through her latest mission and attempts to capture it all down on paper.


Steam is not a complicated film, in spite of the pseudo-complicated lives of its characters. It traces the trajectories of three female characters for a short while, seeming to span roughly six months, give or take a season.

Shea Butter Lotion Fruit Slices / Goats Milk Glycerin Soap Orange Sherbet

When you unwrap a package made, wrapped, and tied by another person’s hands, it’s immediately evident. It might be a splatter of color where there wasn’t one intended, or a crooked label, a smudge. But whatever the indication, it has always given me a moment’s pause and endeared me in a special way to whatever it is I’m holding. So it was with Norma’s Bath and Body Products—a sense of the person who’d put something of herself into making the thing I was about to enjoy.

Chiconomics 101: The Fun, Fabulous Girls’ Guide to Making Smart Money Moves

Chiconomics 101 is a pink-themed, Cosmo-drinking ladies-geared blog about basic money management seemingly written by and for the twenty-something set of singles with less money to burn now that they have “real world” bills to pay.

Cream Bird Pouch

Designs of the avian persuasion are undeniably ubiquitous on the fashion scene today. From quirky sparrows and stylized blackbirds to elegant peacocks and vintage-y pheasants, flighty, feathered friends can be found everywhere from jewelry to body art, stationary to head gear, and more. Now from The Wren Design comes the whimsical and functional Cream Bird Pouch*. The Bird Pouch is hand-crafted in a pretty textured cream colored linen, embossed with a faint paisley pattern.

Body Panic: Gender, Health, and the Selling of Fitness

Much has been made of representations of bodies, women’s bodies especially, in the media; this terrain is heavily traversed, particularly in feminist discourse. Magazines can be particularly insidious culprits of spreading rigid body doctrines, and for this they have been criticized and pulled apart in many ways. What makes Body Panic: Gender, Health, and the Selling of Fitness different is that Shari L.

Death by Leisure: A Cautionary Tale

Maybe the current economic meltdown the world-over has got me down, but I found Chris Ayres’ Death by Leisure: A Cautionary Tale a hard pill to swallow. Could it be that the time for cautionary tales has long passed? Every other fiction new release, it seems, touches upon environmental disaster, or endless war, or the disaster wrought by people living en masse beyond their means; this book touches upon all three.

Wannabes, Goths, and Christians: The Boundaries of Sex, Style, and Status

Labels—freak, geek, wigger, poser, prep, to name just a few—are plentiful and ever-expanding, flourishing in the fertile social grounds of high school and college. Often, labels are used against individuals, assigned and branded as tools of marginalization and preservation of social hierarchies. Amy C.

The Private Lives of Pippa Lee

What molding and stretching is required of a woman who chooses to better the quality of life of others over her own? Perhaps this type of self-sacrifice cannot be fathomed from the outside in. To be the devoted wife, the doting mother, the gracious hostess, the caring friend—where and when does she find the time to find herself? Within in her sharply defined world, Pippa Lee is everything to everyone who matters to her—to Herb, her husband thirty years her senior and a prominent publisher; to her grown children, twins; and to a small circle of friends, New York writers and artists.

Pin-Up Grrrls: Feminism, Sexuality, Popular Culture

No cheap thrills here: Maria Elena Buszek’s Pin-Up Grrrls is a welcome departure from the usual pin-up fare.

Chick Lit: The New Woman's Fiction

You’ve seen it. Unmistakably pink, highly stylized and adorned with images of contemporary (glamorized) femininity – martini glasses, stilettos and Prada handbags. If you’ve stepped foot inside a chain bookstore in the past five years or so, you’ve seen chick lit in all its glory, usually grouped in a flashy eye-catching bunch near the front of the store. Hailed by some as “the new woman’s fiction,” the phenomenon known as chick lit is storming North America, the UK and beyond.

Lady of the Palace

To hear it told by those who were there, Nazira Joumblat, the Lady of the Palace was nothing but extraordinary. This documentary presents an interesting cross-section of Lebanese history by telling her story. Her rise to power was a groundbreaking event, the first instance in three centuries of Druze history that a woman assumed any sort of power role. In the absence of any male heir old enough to hold sway, Nazira Joumblat stepped up, securing her family’s reign over the Moukhtara palace.

Breaking the Silence: French Women’s Voices from the Ghetto

In her recently translated book Breaking the Silence, Fadela Amara attempts to rework and redefine feminism as it relates to her specific time and place. As a Muslim girl of Algerian immigrant parents growing up in the projects, Amara’s experience of feminism as the term is traditionally defined by western academics was non-existent. In fact, her book critiques the very term as it exists now, perceived by her to be owned by the white middle and upper-class women who coined it.