Most Anticipated YA Releases of January 2022

It’s a brand new year and it’s finally, finally time to bring back an old favorite. The monthly most anticipated ya releases! I know it’s been absolutely ages since I did this. 2021 was definitely a year, but 2022 is one I want to be one of the best. So I want to start off right and continue with the monthly celebrations of new releases! 

Without further ado here they are: 

Serendipity by Various Authors 

“Love is in the air in this is a collection of stories inspired by romantic tropes and edited by #1 New York Times-bestselling author Marissa Meyer.  

The secret admirer.

The fake relationship. 

The matchmaker. 

From stories of first love, unrequited love, love that surprises, love that’s been there all along, ten of the brightest and award-winning authors writing YA have taken on some of your favorite romantic tropes, embracing them and turning them on their heads. Readers will swoon for this collection of stories that celebrate love at its most humorous, inclusive, heart-expanding, and serendipitous. 

Contributors include Elise Bryant, Elizabeth Eulberg, Leah Johnson, Anna-Marie McLemore, Marissa Meyer, Sandhya Menon, Julie Murphy, Caleb Roehrig, Sarah Winifred Searle, and Abigail Hing Wen.”

This sounds like an adorable little collaboration. Stories of love are always exciting. 

It Will End Like This by Kyra Leigh

“For fans of The Cheerleaders and Sadie comes a psychological thriller that reminds us that in real life, endings are rarely as neat as happily ever after. A contemporay take on the Lizzie Borden story that explores how grief can cut deep.

Charlotte lost her mother six months ago, and still no one will tell her exactly what happened the day she mysteriously died. They say her heart stopped, but Charlotte knows deep down that there’s more to the story. 

The only person who gets it is Charlotte’s sister, Maddi. Maddi agrees—people’s hearts don’t just stop. There are too many questions left unanswered for the girls to move on.

But their father is moving on. With their mother’s personal assistant. And both girls are sure that she’s determined to take everything that’s theirs away for herself.

Now the only way to get their lives back is for Charlotte and Maddi to decide how this story ends, themselves.”

This book sounds like a ride. From what the girls look like on the cover they really had been going through it and it feels like it’ll be a wild journey through the story. 

The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman 

“In this epic YA fantasy debut, magic, a prized resource, is the only thing between peace and war. When magic runs out, four estranged royal siblings must find a new source before their country is swallowed by invading forces. The first in an Indian-inspired duology that’s perfect for fans of There Will Come a Darkness, The Gilded Wolves, and We Hunt the Flame.

Vira is desperate to get out of her mother’s shadow and establish her legacy as a revered queen of Ashoka. But with the country’s only quarry running out of magic–a precious resource that has kept Ashoka safe from conflict–she can barely protect her citizens from the looming threat of war. And if her enemies discover this, they’ll stop at nothing to seize the last of the magic. 

Vira’s only hope is to find a mysterious object of legend: the Ivory Key, rumored to unlock a new source of magic. But in order to infiltrate enemy territory and retrieve it, she must reunite with her siblings, torn apart by the different paths their lives have taken. Each of them has something to gain from finding the Ivory Key–and even more to lose if they fail. Ronak plans to sell it to the highest bidder in exchange for escape from his impending political marriage. Kaleb, falsely accused of assassinating the former maharani needs it to clear his name. And Riya, a runaway who cut all family ties, wants the Key to prove her loyalty to the rebels who want to strip the nobility of its power. 

They must work together to survive the treacherous journey. But with each sibling harboring secrets and their own agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family–and their world–for good.”

This sounds like a fun and magical fantasy. It sounds like things are going to get very complicated and it’ll be interesting to see who to root for. 

Waking Romeo by Kathryn Baker 

“What if Juliet Capulet met someone who made her doubt true love? What if Wuthering Heights was a message to a time traveller? A cosmic reimagining of Romeo and Juliet and homage to two literary classics in a compelling novel about fate, love and time travel from an award-winning author.

YEAR: 2083. LOCATION: LONDON. MISSION: WAKE ROMEO.

It’s the end of the world. Literally. Time travel is possible, but only forwards. And only a handful of families choose to remain in the ‘now’, living off the scraps that were left behind. Among these are eighteen-year-old Juliet and the love of her life, Romeo. But things are far from rosy for Jules. Romeo is in a coma and she’s estranged from her friends and family, dealing with the very real fallout of their wild romance. Then a handsome time traveller, Ellis, arrives with an important mission that makes Jules question everything she knows about life and love. Can Jules wake Romeo and rewrite her future?

A highly original mashup that delights as it disorients … and asks what would have happened if two great literary love stories were somehow intertwined.”

This sounds so interesting. I love a good retelling and this one sounds so neat and original. 

Echoes and Empires by Morgan Rhodes 

“A snarky seventeen-year-old must team up with an enigmatic criminal to cure herself of dangerous forbidden magic in the first book of a new fantasy duology from Morgan Rhodes, the New York Times bestselling author of the Falling Kingdoms series.

Josslyn Drake knows only three things about magic: it’s rare, illegal, and always deadly. So when she’s caught up in a robbery gone wrong at the Queen’s Gala and infected by a dangerous piece of magic—one that allows her to step into the memories of an infamously evil warlock—she finds herself living her worst nightmare. Joss needs the magic removed before it corrupts her soul and kills her. But in Ironport, the cost of doing magic is death, and seeking help might mean scheduling her own execution. There’s nobody she can trust.

Nobody, that is, except wanted criminal Jericho Nox, who offers her a deal: his help extracting the magic in exchange for the magic itself. And though she’s not thrilled to be working with a thief, especially one as infuriating (and infuriatingly handsome) as Jericho, Joss is desperate enough to accept.

But Jericho is nothing like Joss expects. The closer she grows with Jericho and the more she sees of the world outside her pampered life in the city, the more Joss begins to question the beliefs she’s always taken for granted—beliefs about right and wrong, about power and magic, and even about herself.

In an empire built on lies, the truth may be her greatest weapon.”

This book sounds like pure magical fun. A full on entertaining fantasy and I’m excited for it. 

African Town by Irene Latham and Charles Waters 

“Chronicling the story of the last Africans brought illegally to America in 1860, African Town is a powerful and stunning novel-in-verse.

In 1860, long after the United States outlawed the importation of enslaved laborers, 110 men, women and children from Benin and Nigeria were captured and brought to Mobile, Alabama aboard a ship called Clotilda. Their journey includes the savage Middle Passage and being hidden in the swamplands along the Alabama River before being secretly parceled out to various plantations, where they made desperate attempts to maintain both their culture and also fit into the place of captivity to which they’d been delivered. At the end of the Civil War, the survivors created a community for themselves they called African Town, which still exists to this day. Told in 14 distinct voices, including that of the ship that brought them to the American shores and the founder of African Town, this powerfully affecting historical novel-in-verse recreates a pivotal moment in US and world history, the impacts of which we still feel today.” 

The fact that this is a historical novel in verse makes this book a need for me. I crave these kinds of uniquely told novels and I know I’ll love this. 

One True Loves by Elise Bryant 

“From the author of Happily Ever Afters, comes the highly anticipated companion novel, One True Loves, another irresistible YA romantic comedy full of self-discovery, Black love, and a dreamy European cruise.

Lenore Bennett has always been a force. A star artist and style icon at her high school, she’s a master in the subtle art of not giving a . . . well, you know what. But now that graduation is here, she’s a little less sure.

She’s heading to NYU in the fall with a scarlet U (for “undeclared”) written across her chest. Her parents always remind her that Black kids don’t have the luxury of figuring it out as they go—they have to be 110 percent prepared. But it’s a lot of pressure to be her ancestors’ wildest dreams when Lenore’s not even sure what her dreams are yet.

When her family embarks on a post-graduation Mediterranean cruise, her friend Tessa is sure Lenore’s in for a whirlwind romance. But Lenore knows that doesn’t happen in real life. At least not to girls like her.

Then she meets Alex Lee. After their parents bond over the Cupid Shuffle, she ends up stuck with him for the remainder of the cruise. He’s a hopeless romantic and a golden boy with a ten-year plan. In short, he’s irritating as hell.

But as they get to know each other during the picturesque stops across Europe, he may be able to help her find something else she’s been looking for, even if she doesn’t want to admit it to herself: love.”

This sounds like a fun slow burn will they won’t they romance. I haven’t watched a fun little romance like this in too long. 

Horror Hotel by Victoria Fulton and Faith McClaren 

“This addictive YA horror about a group of teen ghost hunters who spend the night in a haunted LA hotel is The Blair Witch Project for the TikTok generation. 

When the YouTube-famous Ghost Gang—Chrissy, Chase, Emma, and Kiki—visit a haunted LA hotel notorious for tragedy to secretly film after dark, they expect it to be just like their previous paranormal huntings. Spooky enough to attract subscribers—and ultimately harmless.

But when they stumble upon something unexpected in the former room of a gruesome serial killer, they quickly realize that they’re in over their heads.

Sometimes, it’s the dead who need our help—and the living we should fear.”

The Kindred by Alecia Dow 

“Once upon a time, to save a planetary empire from revolution, Kindred mind-pairings were created to ensure each and every person would be seen and heard, no matter how rich or poor….

THE NOBLE AND THE COMMONER.

Joy Abara knows her place. A commoner from the lowly planet Hali, she lives a simple life—apart from the notoriety that being Kindred to the nobility’s most infamous playboy brings.

Felix Hamdi has a plan. Exasperate his noble family to the point that they agree to let him choose his own future, and finally meet his Kindred face to face.

Then the royal family is assassinated, putting Felix next in line for the throne…and accused of the murders. Someone will stop at nothing until he’s dead, which means they’ll target Joy, too. Meeting for the first time as they lift a spacecraft and flee amidst chaos might not be ideal…neither is crash-landing on the strange and backward planet called Earth. But hiding might just be the perfect way to discover the true strength of the Kindred bond and expose a scandal—and a love—that may decide the future of a galaxy.”

AHHHH! This sounds like such a cool sci-fi romance concept. I’d be obsessed with this book. 

At the End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp 

“From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of This Is Where It Ends comes another heartbreaking, emotional and timely page-turner that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center is ironically named. No one has hope for the delinquent teenagers who have been exiled there; the world barely acknowledges that they exist.

Then the guards at Hope start acting strange. And one day…they don’t show up. But when the teens band together to make a break from the facility, they encounter soldiers outside the gates. There’s a rapidly spreading infectious disease outside, and no one can leave their houses or travel without a permit. Which means that they’re stuck at Hope. And this time, no one is watching out for them at all.

As supplies quickly dwindle and a deadly plague tears through their ranks, the group has to decide whom among them they can trust and figure out how they can survive in a world that has never wanted them in the first place.”

I’ve really liked other books by this author and that makes me excited to see another book from her. 

Murder of Crows by K. Ancrum 

“Tig Torres investigates Hollow Falls’ horrific history in this original novel based on the hit podcast Lethal Lit from Einhorn’s Epic Productions and iHeartRadio!

Lethal Lit follows Tig Torres, a Cuban American teen detective, in her hometown of Hollow Falls. In season one of the hit podcast, Tig used her smarts and fearlessness to track down the infamous “Lit Killer,” a serial killer who staged his murders after death scenes from famous books. But there’s no rest for courageous, mystery-solving teens in a place like Hollow Falls, and though the Lit Killer is now behind bars, his protégé, Tig’s classmate and crush Oly, has disappeared!

And that’s not the only game afoot. Tig has caught the attention of the town’s local armchair detective group, the Murder of Crows. They’re obsessed with Hollow Falls’ dark past and fixated on a dangerous search for the missing body of the town’s founder. There are rumors about what’s buried with the body that could be life-changing for whoever finds it, and with a mission like that underway, it’s not long before a member of the Murder of Crows turns up dead.

Tig, along with her friends Max and Wyn, steps in to help, but the stakes are getting higher and the hunt more deadly. Someone’s willing to kill to keep the town’s secrets buried, and if Tig’s not careful, she’ll be the Murder of Crows’ next victim.

This original Lethal Lit story takes place between Seasons 1 and 2 of the podcast, and features a brand-new, never-before-told story starring Tig Torres and her sleuthing friends!”

This is super interesting to me because this was originally a podcast. It makes me wonder if it’ll read more like someone telling you a story or if it’ll have a more typical book feel. 

Nightrender by Jodi Meadows 

“Kingdoms will fall, gods will die, and hearts will be broken in this sprawling new fantasy from New York Times bestselling author Jodi Meadows.

In the middle of nothingness is the Island of Salvation.

Reality bends easily here. Villages disappear. Forests burn forever. Pockets of inconsistent time are everywhere, their boundaries strung with yellow ribbon. And the three kingdoms of Salvation have been at war for a thousand years.

But the greatest threat is the Malice, an incursion from the demon plane slowly tearing its way through the world’s weakest seams. Seams that–once split–will lead to the total unraveling of night and day, light and dark, life and death.

Not that the human world takes much interest. Of more concern is the upcoming marriage of Rune Hightower, Prince of Embria, and Johanne Fortuin, Princess of Embria–the serpent bride, a girl of famous cunning–which offers a possible end to the ancient conflict. But Rune has noticed the growing darkness, and he is determined to summon mankind’s only defense: Nightrender, the hammer of the gods, an immortal warrior more weapon than girl.

There is only one problem. The last time she was summoned, she slaughtered every royal in Salvation, and no one knows why. Will she save humanity from the Malice… or plunge it deeper into the fires of eternal war?”

A fun fantasy concept and I’m all for it. 

Love Somebody by Rachel Roasek 

“Becky Albertalli meets Julie Murphy in this joyful, #ownvoices, queer YA rom-com about miscommunication, evolving identities, and falling in love with someone else’s words, with a subtle nod to Cyrano de Bergerac.

Sam Dickson is charismatic, popular, and she’s not about to let anything get in the way of her big plans for the future — not even the people she cares about.

Ros Shew must be Sam’s inverse: a loner, a wallflower, and uninterested in fame or popularity. But both girls are wickedly smart and secretly long to be seen and understood.

Enter Christian Powell, the darling of the Northeastern soccer team, and Sam’s ex and current pet project. He’s not the best with words, but he makes up for it with his genuine big heart.

When Christian falls for Ros on first sight, he’s desperate to get to know her. After a disastrous first interaction, Christian enlists the help of Sam who, after a bad review from Ros over her latest play, is only too happy to agree. But things can’t stay that simple forever. Ros starts to suspect that Christian is acting differently around her, and behind the scenes, Sam realizes that her own feelings for Ros are much more complicated than simple rivalry. With so much to lose if their secrets are discovered, all three teens are forced to confront not just their feelings, but themselves, to keep their fragile new relationships from completely falling apart.” 

Disaster bisexuals. Hell yeah! 

Vinyl Moon by Mahogany L. Brown

“A teen girl hiding the scars of a past relationship finds home and healing in the words of strong Black writers. A great companion for readers of Nic Stone, Amy Fellner Dominy, and Renee Watson. 

When Darius told Angel he loved her, she believed him. But five weeks after the incident, Angel finds herself in Brooklyn, far from her family, Darius, and the California life she has known.

Angel feels out of sync with her new neighborhood. At school, she can’t shake the feeling everyone knows what happened–and how it was her fault. The only place that makes sense is Ms. G’s class. There, Angel’s classmates share their own stories of pain, joy, and fortitude. And as Angel becomes immersed in her revolutionary literature course, the words from novels like The Bluest Eye, The House on Mango Street, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and Push speak to her and begin to heal the wounds of her past.

Award-winning author Mahogany L. Browne weaves together prose, poems, and vignettes to tell the story of Angel, a young woman whose past was shaped by domestic violence but whose love of language and music and the gift of community grant her the chance to find herself again.”

The way this story is told sounds so good. I love the idea of this and I really want to pick this book up. 

Medusa by Jessie Burton 

“A dazzling, feminist retelling of Greek myth from the internationally bestselling author of The Miniaturist, stunningly illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill.

Exiled to a far-flung island by the whims of the gods, Medusa has little company except the snakes that adorn her head instead of hair. But when a charmed, beautiful boy called Perseus arrives on the island, her lonely existence is disrupted with the force of a supernova, unleashing desire, love, betrayal . and destiny itself.

Filled with glorious full-colour illustrations by award-winning Olivia Lomenech Gill, this astonishing retelling of Greek myth is perfect for readers of Circe and The Silence of the Girls. Illuminating the girl behind the legend, it brings alive Medusa for a new generation.”

This graphic novel sounds so damn gorgeous! I want it so bad. 

My Fine Fellow by Jennieke Cohen 

“Culinary delights abound, romance lingers in the air, and plans go terribly, wonderfully astray in this cheeky and charming historical tale, perfect for fans of Bridgerton or Dickinson.

It’s 1830s England, and Culinarians—doyens who consult with society’s elite to create gorgeous food and confections—are the crème de la crème of high society.

Helena Higgins, top of her class at the Royal Academy, has a sharp demeanor and an even sharper palate—and knows stardom awaits her if she can produce greatness in her final year.

Penelope Pickering is going to prove the value of non-European cuisine to all of England. Her contemporaries may scorn her Filipina heritage and her dishes, but with her flawless social graces and culinary talents, Penelope is set to prove them wrong.

Elijah Little has nothing to his name but a truly excellent instinct for flavors. London merchants won’t allow a Jewish boy to own a shop, so he hawks his pasties for a shilling a piece to passersby—but he knows with training he can break into the highest echelon of society.

When Penelope and Helena meet Elijah, a golden opportunity arises: to pull off a project never seen before, and turn Elijah from a street vendor to a gentleman chef.

But Elijah’s transformation will have a greater impact on this trio than they originally realize—and mayhem, unseemly faux pas, and a little romance will all be a part of the delicious recipe.”

This sounds adorable and so fun! I’d love to read this. 

The Storyteller by Kathryn Williams 

“With the mystery of Maureen Johnson and Brittany Cavallo and the historical intrigue of Romanov, this enthralling story follows a teenage girl’s quest to uncover the truth behind her secretive great aunt Anna, who just might be the long lost Russian princess Anastasia.

It’s not every day you discover you might be related to Anastasia…or that the tragic princess actually survived her assassination attempt and has been living as the woman you know as Aunt Anna.

For Jess Morgan, who is growing tired of living her life to please everyone else, discovering her late aunt’s diaries shows her she’s not the only one struggling to hide who she really is. But was her aunt truly a Romanov princess? Or is this some elaborate hoax?

With the help of a supremely dorky, but undeniably cute, local college student named Evan, Jess digs into the century-old mystery.

But soon Jess realizes there’s another, bigger truth waiting to be revealed: Jess Morgan. Because if she’s learned anything from Aunt Anna, it’s that only you can write your own story.

Part mystery, romance, and historical fiction, this genre-bending YA will pull readers into one girl’s journey of discovering the impossible tale of a long-lost aunt—and through her, the importance of being true to yourself.”

Fun adorable mystery and a bit of romance, count me in!

The Bone Spindle by Leslie Vedder 

“Genderflipped Sleeping Beauty x Indiana Jones with ruins, riddles, battle axes, cursed princes, and snark.

The prince sleeping in the Forest of Thorns has waited a hundred years for the one who will break the curse. Or so the story goes…

Seventeen-year-old Fi is a treasure hunter with a knack for ruins and riddles. She considers the curse ancient history—until she pricks her finger on a bone spindle and comes face to face with the mysterious spirit of Prince Briar Rose. 

Shane is an ax-wielding huntswoman from the northern islands, perpetually on the run from trouble. She partners with Fi for the score of a lifetime, but gets a lot more than she bargained for when she finds herself dragged along on the dangerous quest and falling hard for a mysterious girl in red.

Fi never wanted a partner. Now she’s stuck with two of them—and a destiny to break the curse and save the fallen kingdom of magic.

Dark magic, Witch Hunters, and treacherous exes all stand in their way, but Fi and Shane won’t stop until they reach the heart of the Forest of Thorns.”

This story combo sounds so good. Fantasy and adventure and magic I want all of it. 

The Helheim Princess by Tana Warner 

“A thrilling, intricate, and romantic #OwnVoices LGBTQ fantasy that builds on Norse mythology into a beautiful story all its own.

For as long as Sigrid could remember, she’s wanted to become a mighty, fearless valkyrie. But without a winged mare, she’s a mere stable hand, left wondering who her parents were and why she’s so different. So when the Eye shows her a vision where she’s leading a valkyrie charge on the legendary eight-legged horse Sleipnir, she grabs the possibility of this greater destiny with both hands, refusing to let go.

Too bad that the only one who can help her get there is Mariam, an enemy valkyrie who begrudgingly agrees to lead her to Helheim but who certainly can’t be trusted―even if she does make Sigrid more than a little flustered. As they cross the nine worlds, battling night elves, riding sea serpents, and hurtling into fire to learn the truth about Sigrid’s birthright, an unexpected but powerful bond forms.

As her feelings for Mariam deepen into something fiery and undeniable, Fate has other plans for Sigrid. What happens when the one thing you think you were meant to do might end the nine worlds?”

Norse fantasy hell yeah! 

Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves by Meg Long 

“A captivating debut about survival, found family, and the bond between a girl and a wolf that delivers a fresh twist on classic survival stories and frontier myths.

After angering a local gangster, seventeen-year-old Sena Korhosen must flee with his prize fighting wolf, Iska, in tow. A team of scientists offer to pay her way off her frozen planet on one condition: she gets them to the finish line of the planet’s infamous sled race. Though Sena always swore she’d never race after it claimed both her mothers’ lives, it’s now her only option. But the tundra is a treacherous place, and as the race unfolds and their lives are threatened at every turn, Sena starts to question her own abilities. She must discover whether she’s strong enough to survive the wild – whether she and Iska together are strong enough to get them all out alive.”

Sounds like a fun adventure with intense aspects. Sounds like a great story. 

Unedited by Barry Lyga 

“The companion piece to Mike and Phile and All the World in all its +1,000 page glory.

This is a book. It is written by Barry Lyga. Yes, we know it’s a very long book. We tried to get him to cut it, but he wouldn’t. So there was nothing we could do about it. We understand if the length turns you off. A long book like this one represents a commitment, and if it isn’t good, you’ll feel like you’ve wasted your time and your money. Still, we published it because we think it’s a good book. Could it be shorter? Maybe. That’s a very difficult call. Each person will have his or her own opinion. Some will read it and think, “It could have been shorter.” Others will think, “It was just right.” And maybe some people will wish it was longer. Isn’t that the highest compliment you can pay a book, to wish it would never end?

Usually, this text here (it’s called “flap copy”) is sexy marketing-talk, designed to get you to buy the book. Did you know that most people look at the cover, then the back cover, then the flap copy, and only then do they bother even to flip to a page in the book? So you probably haven’t even read any part of the book yet, but you might decide to buy or not buy it anyway. Without having read a word of it.

So, we’ll just say this: This book is a love story. We hope you’ll give it a shot.” 

The description of this is something else. I have to read this. I’m too curious. Call me sold. 

Lawless Spaces by Corey Ann Haydu 

“Perfect for fans of Deb Caletti, this poignant coming-of-age novel in verse follows a teen girl who connects with the women of her maternal line through their journals and comes to better understand her fraught relationship with her mother.

Mimi’s relationship with her mother has always been difficult. But lately, her mother has been acting more withdrawn than usual, leaving Mimi to navigate the tricky world of turning sixteen alone. What she doesn’t expect is her mother’s advice to start journaling—just like all the woman in her family before her. It’s a tradition, she says. Expected.

But Mimi takes to poetry and with it, a way to write down the realities of growing into a woman, the pains of online bullying, and the new experiences of having a boyfriend. And all in the shadows of a sexual assault case that is everywhere on the news—a case that seems to specifically rattle her mother.

Trying to understand her place in the world, Mimi dives into the uncovered journals of her grandmother, great-grandmother, and beyond. She immerses herself in each of their lives, learns of their painful stories and their beautiful sprits. And as Mimi grows closer to each of these women, she starts to forge her own path. But it isn’t until her mother’s story comes to light that Mimi learns about the unyielding bonds of family and the relentless spirit of womanhood.” 

Novel in verse so I need it now! 

Icebreaker by Al Graziadei 

“A. L. Graziadei’s Icebreaker is an irresistible YA debut about two hockey players fighting to be the best—and the romance that catches them by surprise along the way.

Seventeen-year-old Mickey James III is a college freshman, a brother to five sisters, and a hockey legacy. With a father and a grandfather who have gone down in NHL history, Mickey is almost guaranteed the league’s top draft spot. 

The only person standing in his way is Jaysen Caulfield, a contender for the #1 spot and Mickey’s infuriating (and infuriatingly attractive) teammate. When rivalry turns to something more, Mickey will have to decide what he really wants, and what he’s willing to risk for it.

This is a story about falling in love, finding your team (on and off the ice), and choosing your own path.”

This book sounds so adorable and fun and I love that. 

The Chosen One by Echo Brown 

“Echo Brown testifies to the disappointments and triumphs of a Black first-generation college student in this fearless exploration of the first year experience.

There are many watchers and they are always white. That’s the first thing Echo notices as she settles into Dartmouth College. Despite graduating high school in Cleveland as valedictorian, Echo immediately struggles to keep up in demanding classes. Dartmouth made many promises it couldn’t keep. The campus is not a rainbow-colored utopia where education lifts every voice. Nor is it a paradise of ideas, an incubator of inclusivity, or even an exciting dating scene. But it might be a portal to different dimensions of time and space—only accessible if Echo accepts her calling as a Chosen One and takes charge of her future by healing her past. This remarkable challenge demands vulnerability, humility, and the conviction to ask for help without sacrificing self-worth.

In mesmerizing personal narrative and magical realism, Echo Brown confronts mental illness, grief, racism, love, friendship, ambition, self-worth, and belonging as they steer the fates of first-generation college students on Dartmouth’s campus. The Chosen One is an unforgettable coming-of-age story that bravely unpacks the double-edged college transition—as both catalyst for old wounds and a fresh start.”

This book sounds like it’d give me a new perspective on the first year college experience and I feel like it’ll be really interesting. 

The Red Palace by June Hur 

“June Hur, critically acclaimed author of The Silence of Bones and The Forest of Stolen Girls, returns with a third evocative, atmospheric historical mystery perfect for fans of Courtney Summers and Kerri Maniscalco.

To enter the palace means to walk a path stained in blood…

Joseon (Korea), 1758. There are few options available to illegitimate daughters in the capital city, but through hard work and study, seventeen-year-old Hyeon has earned a position as a palace nurse. All she wants is to keep her head down, do a good job, and perhaps finally win her estranged father’s approval.

But Hyeon is suddenly thrust into the dark and dangerous world of court politics when someone murders eight palace nurses in a single night, and the prime suspect is Hyeon’s closest friend and mentor. Determined to prove her beloved teacher’s innocence, Hyeon launches her own secret investigation.

In her hunt for the truth, she encounters Eojin, a young undercover police inspector also searching for the killer. When evidence begins to point to the Crown Prince himself as the murderer, Hyeon and Eojin must work together to search the darkest corners of the palace to uncover the deadly secrets behind the bloodshed.”

I want to read everything from this author even though I haven’t gotten to read one of her books yet. I just know I’ll adore them. 

The Temperature of Me and You by Brian Zepka 

“Sixteen-year-old Dylan Highmark thought his winter was going to be full boring shifts at the Dairy Queen, until he finds himself in a fiery first love, literally.

Dylan has always wanted a boyfriend, but the suburbs surrounding Philadelphia do not have a lot in the way of options. Then, in walks Jordan, a completely normal (and undeniably cute) boy who also happens to run at a cool 110 degrees Fahrenheit. When the boys start spending time together, Dylan begins feeling all kinds of ways, and when he spikes a fever for two weeks and is suddenly coughing flames, he thinks he might be suffering from something more than just a crush. 

Jordan forces Dylan to keep his symptoms a secret. But as the pressure mounts and Dylan becomes distant with his closest friends and family, he pushes Jordan for answers. Jordan’s revelations of why he’s like this, where he came from, and who’s after him leaves Dylan realizing how much first love is truly out of this world. And if Earth supports life that breathes oxygen, then love can only keep Jordan and Dylan together for so long. 

THE TEMPERATURE OF ME AND YOU is the story of first love, and the lengths we’ll go to figure out our hearts. What starts as an electric, chance encounter at a Dairy Queen leads to first love, a journey of trust and identity, and a ticking clock for survival.” 

Adorable first love story I need to warm my heart. 

Loveboat Reunion by Abigail Hing Wen

“This companion novel to Abigail Hing Wen’s New York Times bestselling debut, Loveboat, Taipei, follows two fan favorite characters—Sophie and Xavier—as they reconnect and write their own futures on a wild, unexpected Loveboat reunion.

Sophie Ha and Xavier Yeh have what some would call a tumultuous past.

It’s a classic tale of girl-meets-boy, boy-meets-other-girl, heart-gets-broken, revenge-is-plotted, everything-blows-up. Spectacularly.

At least they’re friends now. They’ve left the drama behind them back in Taipei—at their summer program, Loveboat—forever.

Now fall is here, and it’s time to focus on what really matters. Sophie is determined to be the best student Dartmouth’s ever had. Forget finding the right guy to make her dreams come true—Sophie is going to make her future happen for herself. Xavier, on the other hand, just wants to stay under his overbearing father’s radar, collect his trust fund when he turns eighteen, and concentrate on what makes him happy, for the first time ever.

But the world doesn’t seem to want Sophie and Xavier to succeed. Sophie’s college professor thinks her first major project is “too feminine.” Xavier’s father gives him an ultimatum: finish high school or be cut off from his inheritance.

Then Sophie and Xavier find themselves on a wild, nonstop Loveboat reunion, each trying to resist the chemistry that originally led to them to combust. As they grow closer, they hatch a plan to take control of their own futures. Step one? Break all the rules.

Expansive and romantic, glamorous and tender, Loveboat Reunion takes readers back to Taipei through the eyes of Sophie and Xavier, on an unforgettable journey of glittering revelry and self-discovery that’s perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Mary H. K. Choi.” 

I want a good romance book! I’ve not read them for way too long. 

In Every Generation by Kendare Blake 

“The first in an all-new series by New York Times best-selling author Kendare Blake continues the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer featuring the next generation of Scoobies and Slayers who must defeat a powerful new evil.

A new Slayer for a new generation…

Frankie Rosenberg is passionate about the environment, a sophomore at New Sunnydale High School, and the daughter of the most powerful witch in Sunnydale history. Her mom, Willow, is slowly teaching her magic on the condition that she use it to better the world. But Frankie’s happily quiet life is upended when new girl Hailey shows up with news that the annual Slayer convention has been the target of an attack, and all the Slayers—including Buffy, Faith, and Hailey’s older sister Vi—might be dead. That means it’s time for this generation’s Slayer to be born.

But being the first ever Slayer-Witch means learning how to wield a stake while trying to control her budding powers. With the help of Hailey, a werewolf named Jake, and a hot but nerdy sage demon, Frankie must become the Slayer, prevent the Hellmouth from opening again, and find out what happened to her Aunt Buffy, before she’s next.

Get ready for a whole new story within the world of Buffy!” 

Magic buffy world novel! Sounds so fun! 

The Greatest Thing by Sarah Winifred Searle 

“With breathtaking art and honest storytelling, Sarah Winifred Searle delivers a moving graphic novel about love, self-acceptance, and the life-saving power of teen friendships.

It’s the first day of her sophomore year, and Winifred is going to reinvent herself. This isn’t by choice—she was perfectly comfortable with the way things were when she was a freshman and a member of a well-established three-person clique. But now that her two best (and only) friends have transferred to a private school, Win must navigate high school on her own.

But she isn’t alone for long. In art class, she meets two offbeat students, Oscar and April. They don’t look or act like the typical teenagers in her small New England town: They’re creative, a little rebellious, and seem comfortable in their own skin in a way that Win can only dream of. 

Through clandestine sleepovers, thrift store shopping, and zine publishing, Winifred finally breaks out of her shell. But there’s one secret she can’t bear to admit to April and Oscar, or even to herself—and this lie is threatening to destroy her newfound friendships.”

This looks like an adorable graphic novel. 

Anything But Fine by Tobias Madden 

“After a decade of dedicated ballet practice, one missed step on a flight of stairs lands Luca in the hospital with a titanium plate screwed into his foot. Without ballet, he loses his friends, his school, and his perfect future. 

As Luca settles into his new life, he strikes up an unlikely friendship with the least popular (and nicest) girl in his new school, Amina, and the gorgeous, popular, and (allegedly) straight, Jordan Tanaka-Jones. 

With his dancing dreams dead on their feet, Luca has to figure out who he is without ballet. And to do that he’ll have to unlearn his prejudices about the school on the “bad” side of town, make friends who aren’t always competing against him, and figure out if love is worth being a skeleton in someone else’s closet.”

This sounds like an emotional and beautiful story. I feel I’d become so attached to the story. 

Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler 

“From the New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award finalist, a biography in verse and prose of science fiction visionary Octavia Butler.

Acclaimed novelist Ibi Zoboi illuminates the young life of the visionary storyteller Octavia E. Butler in poems and prose. Born into the Space Race, the Red Scare, and the dawning Civil Rights Movement, Butler experienced an American childhood that shaped her into the groundbreaking science-fiction storyteller whose novels continue to challenge and delight readers fifteen years after her death.”

This sounds like a beautiful tribute to a novelist and I’d love to read this. 

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

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A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik: A Review

A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik

My Rating: 5 stars!

Cover Rating: 6/10 it’s a pretty cover, but also kinda basic for my tastes. I feel like I get a feel that the story is magical and school related, but I think the styling isn’t completely for me.

Publisher: Del Rey Books

Publish Date: September 29th, 2020

Number of Pages: 336

Received: My boyfriend bought it for me as a blind date with a book. I was surprised and curious about it when I got it and then reading it absolutely blew me away. It was also amazing cause I realized this was the second blind date book he’d gotten me and it was randomly the same author as the previous one he’d gotten for me ‘Spinning Silver’.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of Uprooted and Spinning Silver comes the first book of the Scholomance trilogy, the story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic.

FINALIST FOR THE LODESTAR AWARD • “The dark school of magic I’ve been waiting for.”—Katherine Arden, author of the Winternight Trilogy

I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.

Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I’m concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I’m not joining his pack of adoring fans.

I don’t need help surviving the Scholomance, even if they do. Forget the hordes of monsters and cursed artifacts, I’m probably the most dangerous thing in the place. Just give me a chance and I’ll level mountains and kill untold millions, make myself the dark queen of the world.

At least, that’s what the world expects. Most of the other students in here would be delighted if Orion killed me like one more evil thing that’s crawled out of the drains. Sometimes I think they want me to turn into the evil witch they assume I am. The school certainly does.

But the Scholomance isn’t getting what it wants from me. And neither is Orion Lake. I may not be anyone’s idea of the shining hero, but I’m going to make it out of this place alive, and I’m not going to slaughter thousands to do it, either.

Although I’m giving serious consideration to just one.

Opening Sentence: “I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.”

Musings:

I finished this book a good while back and I feel so bad I didn’t review this sooner because this book is just so amazing! I adore this book. I want to live in this book. Actually I’d rather not the Scolomancy is actually terrifying, but the idea of the magic and the school was so unique and wonderful! GAHHHHH! I have so many feelings for this book.

What I LOVED:

Actually everything. The pacing was amazing. The characters quirky and interesting to read about. The magic system S tier. The setting mindblowingly interesting and cool. The way this book made me think about current issues with capitalism was shocking to me. The conversations I had about this book with my boyfriend were amazing. There were times this book made me smile so big and want to chuckle. The way that magic and the school itself had its own personality was amazing. The detail and the lushness of this book was stunning. I couldn’t rave about this book more.

Novik created a world of her own. I think there’s so many typical interpretations of magic that have been done over and over, but in ‘A Deadly Education’ that is definitely not the case. The magic is so alive and the danger and systems in place so unique to this world it was delightful. It truly is a deadly eduction. Surviving this school would be a tough order for most anyone.

Galadriels view of her own power. Galadriel is so powerful. Intensely powerful. Yet, her reasonings for staying under the radar are admirable. I don’t know if I can speak more on this without spoiling something really powerful about this book. So I’ll leave it like this for you all to discover this on your own.

How real the world felt. Even though this book is 100% fantasy. The world uncovers itself in such a way that you’re learning about it, but it feels like you’ve always known it to be that way. It’s so easy to be sucked in and you don’t feel like your being told how the world is, the world simply is. Which shows just how much care Naomi put into crafting this story.

How messed up Enclaves are. Enclaves and enclaves dynamics are so important to this story and it adds to the messed up system this world is built upon. Yet, everyone wants to be in an enclave and everyone wants the protection it provides. Which is the part that made me think of our worlds capitalism and being rich and how it screws over so many people, but yet everyone wishes they were well off. This cycle of a system fundamentally broken and often insidiously so.

The fights. The battles in this book are so well paced and fun to read. You feel the danger of it. It sucks you in immediately.

Galadriel and Orion as people. These two have some super unique personalities yet, the way they were brought up and the more you learn about them the more their thought processes and quirks make a lot of sense. Very well fleshed out characters in ‘A Deadly Education’.

Language being so integral to the magic. The learning of languages and the value of languages in this school and magic is so interesting. The more language you know the more spells you have access to and the more unique the language the more unique the spells. I loved the library scenes in this book. So cool.

All in all:

You should stop reading this review and go and pick up a copy of this book right now. It was so good and amazing. I loved this. I’ll always love this book it’s definitely a new favorite.

About the Author

Naomi Novik is the acclaimed New York Times-bestselling author of the Nebula Award-winning novel Uprooted, Spinning Silver, and the nine-volume Temeraire series, as well as a founder of the Archive of Our Own. Her upcoming book A Deadly Education is the first of the Scholomance trilogy, and will be available September 2020.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

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Wonderful Women of the World: A Review

Wonderful Women of the World

Edited by Laurie Halse Anderson

My Rating: 5 stars

Cover Rating: 10/10 it’s a beautiful cover that exactly tells you what this comic is and what it’s about. It’s a celebration of women and all the wonder women of the world.

Publisher: DC Comics

Publish Date: September 28th, 2021

Number of Pages: 208

Received: Dc comics provided a digital copy in exchange for an honest review

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

Women change the World…

…they’ve been doing it for centuries. Now New York Times bestselling author Laurie Halse Anderson has gathered female and nonbinary writers and artists to reveal the women making our world better day by day. Real-world heroes who exemplify the best of Wonder Woman herself: her strength, compassion, and commitment to truth, equality, and justice.

Read the stories of Beyoncé (by Mikki Kendall and A.D’Amico), Keiko Agena (by Sarah Kuhn, Lynne Yoshii, and Carrie Strachan), Márcia Barbosa (by Corinna Bechko and Anastasia Longoria), Brené Brown (by Louise Simonson and Nicole Goux), Mariana Costa Checa (by Melissa Marr and Marcela Cespedes), Mari Copeny (by Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, Sharee Miller, and Silvana Brys), Teara Fraser (by Traci Sorell and Natasha Donovan), Ruth Bader Ginsburg (by Lilah Sturges, Devaki Neogi, and Triona Farrell), Judith Heumann (by Marieke Nijkamp and Ashanti Fortson), Marsha P. Johnson (by Jadzia Axelrod and Michaela Washington), Leiomy Maldonado (by Magdalen Visaggio and Emma Kubert), Ellen Ochoa (by Cecil Castellucci and Carina Guevara), Francisca Nneka Okeke (by Dr. Sheena C. Howard and Laylie Frazier), Greta Thunberg (by Kami Garcia and Igzell), Naomi Watanabe (by Jody Houser and Michiums), Serena Williams (by Danielle Page, Brittney Williams, and Caitlin Quirk), Edith Widnsor (by Amanda Deibert and Cat Staggs), Malala Yousafzai (by Son M. and Safiya Zerrougui), and Khatijah Mohamad Yusoff (by Amanda Deibert, Hanie Mohd, and Shari Chankhamma).

Musings:

The feeling of empowerment that I felt reading this was really powerful. I wasn’t expecting the depth of feeling that it would inspire in me. Seeing all these amazing women who pushed past boundaries and thrived to be major successes in their individual lives.

The individual art that went with each story was so beautiful too. It really gave a sense of each individual person and gave them a color and feel of their own.

I really enjoyed Mari Copeny’s story being so young and deciding that she would be a voice for change. There’s something about children that makes them see things for what they really are. A innocence that makes them confident that they can go out there and really make a difference. Something that many adults lose in themselves. But, reading her story made me feel like why am I stopping myself from doing the things I’m passionate about? The only person holding me back is me.

My other favorite story was about Naomi Watanabe. I love her because she’s all about loving yourself for who you are. Making jokes that have nothing to do with putting herself down and being incredibly successful being a positive icon. I think she has such a beautiful soul.

All in all:

This comic is a great must have for all the women in your family. It’s empowering and a beautiful read. It did Wonder woman’s anniversary proud.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

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Beast Boy Loves Raven: A Review

Beast Boy Loves Raven

Written by Kami Garcia

Illustrated by Gabriel Piccolo

My Rating: 4 stars!

Cover Rating: 10/10 always with these the artwork is so stunning. It tells the story instantly and any teen titan fan would sure pick this up!

Publisher: DC Comics

Publish Date: September 28th, 2021

Number of Pages: 208

Received: DC Comics sent me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

From #1 New York Times bestselling author KAMI GARCIA (Beautiful Creatures) and artist GABRIEL PICOLO, the creative duo behind the New York Times bestselling graphic novel Teen Titans: Raven, comes the romantic meet-up we have all been waiting for! 

It seems like years, but it’s only been a few days since Raven Roth recovered her memories, trapped her demon father, Trigon, into her amulet, and had her heart broken for the first time. But she doesn’t have time to think about the past…she has to focus on finding a way to get rid of Trigon for good.

Garfield Logan still can’t believe he has powers that allow him to change into different animals, but the price of knowing that his parents kept this secret hidden from him just feels too high. And what’s more, his difficulty controlling these abilities could have unexpected consequences.

Both are seeking answers from the one person who seems to have them all figured out: Slade Wilson.

When their paths converge in Nashville, Raven and Gar can’t help but feel a connection, despite the secrets they both try to hide. It will take a great amount of trust and courage to overcome the wounds of their pasts. But can they find acceptance for the darkest part of themselves? Or maybe even love?

Opening Page:

Musings:

Beast Boy Loves Raven tells the story of how Beast boy, Robin, and Raven all meet. This is the first appearance Robin makes in these comics.

Robin is a mostly serious character who knows what he is doing. He is smart and tactical and very practical. I’m very interested to see how his character is fleshed out in the next comic.

Beast Boy and Raven meet in the same area while they both wait separately for their meetings with Slade. Beast Boy is immediately attracted to Raven and tries to charm her. It takes a while for her to trust him, but she comes around. They make a really cute couple already.

This is my favorite artwork of the whole story. The pain and intensity with the uniqueness of beast boy starting to transform. It’s stunning and also builds up the dynamic of the relationship between Beast Boy and Raven as she tries to figure out what she can do to save him.

All in all:

I really enjoyed reading this! It’s a fun read that makes me want so much more of these stories and I really hope that they do continue this well into the future. I want to see how the Teen Titans assemble in this new storyline.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

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Mental Health Book Tag

Yesterday while I was reading some others blog posts for the day I came upon this post from ‘My Book World’ called Mental Health Book Tag. My own mental health has been iffy lately. I’ve been angry and sad and incredibly anxious. My mind has been so on edge I’ve cried at work worrying about my dad and I’ve made little excuses about things that aren’t going to happen to be worrying to my boyfriend and I’ve felt like a mess. Life these days has felt so fragile and yet so precious and I’m keeping in my mind that my dad told me to think positive. So I will.

So today, I would like to share with you all my answers on this Mental Health Book Tag. I want to share some awesome books that don’t shy away from something that touches everyone’s lives at some point and in some way in one shape or form or another.

What’s a book or series that features a strong support system?

In ‘Spinning Silver’ Miryem’s parents are a strong support system not only for her, but for Wanda who comes to work for them. When Miryem is first taken to live with the Staryk king Wanda doesn’t know what to do, thinking she wouldn’t have a job anymore. However, Miryem’s parents step up and reassure her continuing having her help and even adding an extra job for her brother to keep them safe and afloat. They are always making sure Wanda is fed and that she has a safe place to be while making her feel like she’s doing something that gives her purpose. They are an amazing support system.

What’s a book, series, or genre that you turn to when you need to take care of yourself? What’s something that you do—other than reading—to take care of your mental health?

Magical realism books like ‘The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender’ make me feel so curious and fascinated. Magical realism strikes me. Reading these kind of books when my mental health isn’t doing well helps me to distract my mind. However, if I’m having a crisis I talk to my boyfriend or my friends. My boyfriend always listens and is kind and understanding to me about everything I’m going through. When I see him and stuff is still going through my mind he’ll just hold me and tell me everything will be ok. It means the world to me.

What’s a book that features a character that is relatable to your mental health or illness?

I have never felt more understood by a book before I read this one. Kiko’s relationship with her mom is almost the exact relationship I had with my grandmother. ‘Starfish’ was such a raw read for me. Narcissistic abuse is no joke.

What’s a book that depicts a bad representation of a mental difference or mental illness?

I read this book years ago before I really understood representation and really mental illness at all. However, looking back this isn’t a good representation of mental illness. Also, it glorifies mental illness. Which is why the book and tv show has been criticized many times by many people to shed light on its misrepresentation.

What’s a book that depicts a good representation of a mental difference or mental illness?

Speak ’ is a good representation of a girl dealing with the trauma of sexual assault. She is isolated by her peers to be on her own causing her to withdraw into her own mind. She has no support and her grades slip and the only place she find solace is her art class. It feels real to how it feels when you went through something difficult and are in a place where no one is supporting you. There feels like there is nowhere to go.

What’s your favorite book that features mental difference or mental illness?

I know I’m using this book a lot in this tag, but it was just so beautifully written and so relatable to my own experiences and feelings. It’s not just my favorite mental health work, but it’s also one of my all time favorite books in general.

What’s your least favorite book that features mental difference or mental illness?

So this is another book I read that at the time I really enjoyed and didn’t really understand that it was a bad representation of mental illness at the time. Love saving these two characters from their mental health problems is something that even isn’t safe to imply. Looking for someone outside of yourself to save you and cure you from your problems isn’t really going to do anything but put a bandaid on your problems. Sure, love will happen if your mentally struggling or not, but it isn’t going to cure it. Books like this might give readers the wrong impression.

What’s a book that takes you to your happy place? When you are dealing with mental health struggles, what is your happy place?

I have read and reread ‘The Giver’ so many times. I’ve been attached to this book since elementary school and it has been my favorite for years. It makes me think of how important emotion and color is to make our lives beautiful. To inspire our compassion for ourselves and for others. It puts me in a mood of appreciation for life.

Honestly, my happy place and what I need a lot when I’ve been struggling during the week is my time with my boyfriend. Being held by him. Being held by someone that you know loves you and who knows who you are and you hat your going through feels like a weight being lifted. He helps me to feel at peace with myself and to know that everything will be ok. Also his constant jokes always put a smile on my face.

What’s your favorite quote from a book that features mental difference or mental illness? What’s something you want other people to know about mental difference or mental illness?

‘But some people are just starfish–they need everyone to fill the roles that they assign. They need the world to sit around them, pointing at them and validating their feelings. But you can’t spend your life trying to make a starfish happy, because no matter what you do, it will never be enough. They will always find a way to make themselves the center of attention, because it’s the only way they know how to live.’ -Akemi Dawn Bowman (Starfish)

Nothing better describes the selfishness of living with someone who expects you to live and be exactly the way they want you to all the time. If you don’t fit into their box you face their wrath. So many traumas from this abuse caused me to want to people please and to have this deep feeling that I’m going to mess up and hurt someone I love badly. However, I am not broken. There isn’t anything wrong with me and it’ll all be ok. So, that’s what I want everyone to know. Wherever you are and however dark a place you find yourself you will get to a better place and it will all be ok.

Tag your it!

One Book More

Books and Bakes

Wonderfilled Reads

&

Red-haired Ash Reads

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

Check out THE SISTERS OF TWILIGHT WEBSITE.

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Whistle by E Lockhart and Manuel Preitano: A Review

Whistle by E Lockhart and Manuel Preitano

My Rating: 4 stars!

Cover Rating: 10/10 the cover is stunning. The color scheme, the dynamic duo front and center. It’s beautiful.

Publisher: DC comics

Publish Date: September 7th, 2021

Number of Pages: 208

Received: I received a physical copy in partnership with DC comics.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

From New York Times bestselling author E. Lockhart (Genuine FraudWe Were Liars) and artist Manuel Preitano (The Oracle Code) comes a new Gotham City superhero in this exciting YA graphic novel.

Sixteen-year-old Willow Zimmerman has something to say. When she’s not on the streets protesting City Hall’s neglect of her run-down Gotham neighborhood, she’s working nights at the local dog shelter. But despite how much she does for the world around her, she’s struggling to take care of her sick mother at home. She’s got no time for boys (though there’s one she really likes), and no means to adopt the amazingly loyal stray Great Dane, Lebowitz, that follows her around. 

Without health insurance and with money running out, a desperate Willow reconnects with an estranged family friend E. Nigma–party promoter, and real estate tycoon. Nigma opens the door to an easier life, offering Willow a new job hosting his glamorous private poker nights with Gotham City’s elites. Now Willow is able to afford critical medical treatments for her mother and get a taste of the high life she’s never had. 

Then everything changes: Willow and Lebowitz are attacked by one of Gotham’s most horrific villains, the monstrous Killer Croc. When they wake after the fight, they can understand each other. And Willow has powers she never dreamed of. 

When Willow discovers that Nigma and his poker buddies are actually some of Gotham’s most corrupt criminals, she must make a choice: remain loyal to the man who saved her mother’s life, or use her new powers to save her community.

Opening Page:

Musings:

Whistle shows how easy it can be to see things in a grey area. Willow is a girl that cares very much about the environment and often goes to protests and volunteers. Her job helping animals doesn’t pay so much, but she loved helping the dogs everyday. She also worries a lot about her mom who has cancer and is worried that they can’t pay the bills so when ‘E. Nigma’ (a.k.a the riddle (also her uncle)) offers her a job that’ll pay her well enough to easily take care of all expenses, she easily says yes.

Very soon her new job begins to change her and setting up these illegal gambling parties starts to turn her into this new person who never has time to volunteer or help a cause and her crush notices.

An encounter with Killer Croc changes all that. Willow and the stray dog she’d cared for get injured by killer croc and their DNA gets tied together. With their new found powers, Willow decides on what kind of hero she’d like to be.

I really enjoyed seeing poison Ivy in this story. The ultimate understandable villain trying to save the ecosystem who makes herself known by greening buildings.

In this really neat way it’s like poison Ivy reminds Willow of who she always was:

A person who worked towards making the world better for the environment and the people and creatures who live there. The person that her crush really loved being around.

I love how rich it’s been to discuss the story. Yet, one of my favorite things about this comic is the art. It’s such a consistent and gorgeous style throughout. My absolute favorite panel is this one:

The artwork is stunning. There’s a bit of green to everything almost always. The parts without it are the parts where she hasn’t been touched by villainy and I found that to be a really neat touch.

All in all:

I really had a great time reading this! I very much recommend ‘Whistle’. Willow is a hero whose adventures I’d love to see continuing on in the future.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

Check out THE SISTERS OF TWILIGHT WEBSITE.

If you would like to support me directly here’s a link to BUY ME A KOFI! 

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

Trans Equality 

The Trevor Project

Transgender Law Center 

Some BLM resources:

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Spinning Silver: A Review

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novak

My Rating: 5 stars!

Cover Rating: 7/10 it’s a very solid and pretty cover. I think the only thing about it that throws me off is how the winter king looks a little like there’s been white out put over him and he looks kinda blank as a result.

Publisher: Del Rey

Publish Date: July 10th, 2018

Number of Pages: 465

Received: my lovely boyfriend bought it for me as a part of a blind date with a book.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “One of the year’s strongest fantasy novels” (NPR), an imaginative retelling of the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale from the bestselling author of Uprooted.

NEBULA AND HUGO AWARD FINALIST • NAMED ONE OF PASTES BEST FANTASY BOOKS OF THE DECADE • NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY AND ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • NPR • Time • Tordotcom • Popsugar • Vox • Vulture  Paste • Bustle • Library Journal

With the Nebula Award–winning Uprooted, Naomi Novik opened a brilliant new chapter in an already acclaimed career, delving into the magic of fairy tales to craft a love story that was both timeless and utterly of the now. Spinning Silver draws readers deeper into this glittering realm of fantasy, where the boundary between wonder and terror is thinner than a breath, and safety can be stolen as quickly as a kiss.

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father’s inability to collect his debts has left his family on the edge of poverty—until Miryem takes matters into her own hands. Hardening her heart, the young woman sets out to claim what is owed and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold. When an ill-advised boast draws the attention of the king of the Staryk—grim fey creatures who seem more ice than flesh—Miryem’s fate, and that of two kingdoms, will be forever altered. She will face an impossible challenge and, along with two unlikely allies, uncover a secret that threatens to consume the lands of humans and Staryk alike.

Opening Sentence: “The real story isn’t half as pretty as the one you’ve heard.”

Musings:

Spinning Silver is a dense fantasy full of detail and different perspectives. It felt like as your reading the book evolves from one book into another much like Miryem’s gift of turning silver into gold. Though my one little critique would be that this book should have had little character names put in the front of each perspective change. It took me tell well towards the end to finally get ahold of each name and perspective and it’s lucky that the writing was so good because it did take me out of the book a bit every-time to figure out who I’m reading about.

The beginning is the tale of Miryem the moneylender, cunning and with all the amount of self-respect it takes to assure that her dues always get paid back to her. I had so much fun and interest just with that part of the story, but with the arrival of the Staryk riding white through the forest, the fear and awe of magic arrives in this novel.

The king of the Staryk comes into Miryem’s life and forces her to perform a duty for him. Make his silver turn to gold on three different occasions and he would make her his queen. Miryem has no interest in being a Staryk queen, but she doesn’t want herself or anyone she loves to die so she goes through with it.

The second main point of view in this novel is that of Wanda. Wanda is a village girl who deals with having an abusive father who wants to sell her off to be married for money he can use to buy his alcohol. Miryem goes to collect a debt at her house one day and because they cannot pay it she has Wanda come work for her everyday till the debt could be paid.

The third main point of view is Irina’s she’s the daughter of a duke who plans to make her the Tsarina with the silver jewelry made from Staryk silver that Miryem makes to sell them. I can’t say how much I love Irina. She’s so strong and cunning. She has this understanding of politics that is amazing and at first she seems unassuming, but no she has so much wit about her.

‘Spinning Silver’ is such a dense fantasy. Every section has its time till the very end. There’s always a main story woven with smaller situations and it’s woven tightly to make a beautiful quilt of words. I loved the world building. Especially the Staryk’s castle and world. The frigid cold and high magic. It had me in awe the entire time reading. There’s this one part that had my eyes glued to the book for how magical it was. Sadly, it’s pretty late into the book so I won’t be detailing it here.

Overall:

This book is about the care we have for our loved ones and how far we will go to save them. It’s full of magic, loyalty, and fights against great foes. One will become bigger then they ever dreamed in order to attempt to defeat a great evil. That is something I think is beautiful. If you haven’t already, read ‘Spinning Silver’. This review barely scratches the surface of all there is to explore in this book. It’s a book worthy of loving.

About the Author

Naomi Novik is the acclaimed New York Times-bestselling author of the Nebula Award-winning novel Uprooted, Spinning Silver, and the nine-volume Temeraire series, as well as a founder of the Archive of Our Own. Her upcoming book A Deadly Education is the first of the Scholomance trilogy, and will be available September 2020.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

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If you would like to support me directly here’s a link to BUY ME A KOFI! 

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The Extraordinary Part: A Review

The Extraordinary Part by Ruppert and Mulot

My Rating: 5 stars

Cover Rating: 9/10 The cover is amazing! It is what drew me to the comic in the first place. The only reason this isn’t a 10 out of 10 is because after reading the comic I think there were other imagery that would be even better as a cover.

Publisher: Europe Comics

Publish Date: July 27th, 2021

Number of Pages: 156

Received: Netgalley provided an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis: “Nineteen-year-old Orsay lives an uneventful life in the French countryside, until the day he gains extraordinary powers in his hands after an encounter with a mysterious creature known as a whol. On a trip to Paris in search of a cure, he meets and falls for Basma, a passionate activist for whols’ rights. But Orsay isn’t convinced that whols should be considered equal to humans. Especially once Melek, another human with the same powers, embarks on a murderous rampage to avenge those she sees as her kin.”

Opening Sentence: “Hi dad.”

Musings:

From the start I kept thinking that this comic was really cool. I loved the imagery and the ideas it has. The Whol’s are these really beautiful large art piece like creatures that how up all over cities in Paris.

They are for the most part harmless. However, If you get in contact with a Whol and water it combines with you and the body part attached to the Whol become Whol like.

This comic while featuring teens definitely feels like its aimed more at adults. It can be pretty graphic and there’s a bit of explicit sexuality featured in it. However, I feel that it doe fit the tone and the story this first installment is starting to flesh out.

What made me really attached to this comic is the imagery. It’s beautiful. Yet, the stark contrast of great beauty and the grotesque red of murder makes this novel a pull between right and wrong and how far one should go for what they believe in. Many of the characters in this comic I would say go way too far.

All in All:

I had a blast reading this comic. I remember when I first started it immediately texting my boyfriend and saying “Whoah! Look at this! It’s so cool I’m obsessed!” Talking to him all about it. I definitely recommend this to anyone who loves unique imagery and a unique sci-fi.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Check out my INSTAGRAM and TWITTER

Check out THE SISTERS OF TWILIGHT WEBSITE.

If you would like to support me directly here’s a link to BUY ME A KOFI! 

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

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I Transgender Law Center

Most Anticipated Ya Releases: August 2021

Hello and welcome back to one of the most classic posts on my blog that I haven’t done in ages. My monthly most anticipated releases! So without further ado, The Most Anticipated Ya Book Releases of August 2021!

The Perfect Place to Die by Bryce Moore 

“Stalking Jack the Ripper meets a YA Devil in the White City in this terrifying story of a girl trying to save her sister from one of the most notorious mass murders in history

When Zuretta’s sister, Ruby, travels to Chicago, and disappears, Zuretta leaves home to find her. She has a little bit of money from her Utah church, an abiding fandom of the legendary Pinkertons, and a deep hope and faith of finding Ruby soon.

After a series of mishaps, she claws her way forward, taking a job in the very place her sister Ruby last worked—a hotel owned by notorious serial killer Dr. H. H. Holmes.

But Zuretta’s efforts to find out what happened to her sister don’t go unnoticed, and before long, she finds herself up against one of the most infamous mass murderers in American history—and his custom-built death trap.” 

This book sounds like so much fun! I love the idea of it so much and it’s right up my alley. 

The Silent Unseen by Amanda McCrina 

“A mesmerizing historical novel of suspense and intrigue about a teenage girl who risks everything to save her missing brother.

Poland, July 1944. Sixteen-year-old Maria is making her way home after years of forced labor in Nazi Germany, only to find her village destroyed and her parents killed in a war between the Polish Resistance and Ukrainian nationalists. To Maria’s shock, the local Resistance unit is commanded by her older brother, Tomek―who she thought was dead. He is now a “Silent Unseen,” a special-operations agent with an audacious plan to resist a new and even more dangerous enemy sweeping in from the East. When Tomek disappears, Maria is determined to find him, but the only person who might be able to help is a young Ukrainian prisoner and the last person Maria trusts―even as she feels a growing connection to him that she can’t resist.

Tightly woven, relentlessly intense, The Silent Unseen depicts an explosive entanglement of loyalty, lies, and love during wartime, from the acclaimed author of Traitor Amanda McCrina.”

Sometimes you need a good wartime love story. This one sounds so intense and twisted too! I’ll love to read it. 

Dangerous Play by Emma Kress 

“Propulsive, electrifying, and high-stakes…

Zoe Alamandar has one goal: win the State Field Hockey Championships and earn a scholarship that will get her the hell out of Central New York. She and her co-captain Ava Cervantes have assembled a fierce team of dedicated girls who will work hard and play by the rules.

But after Zoe is sexually assaulted at a party, she finds a new goal: make sure no girl feels unsafe again. Zoe and her teammates decide to stop playing by the rules and take justice into their own hands. Soon, their suburban town has a team of superheroes meting out punishments, but one night of vigilantism may cost Zoe her team, the championship, her scholarship, and her future. 

Perfect for fans who loved the female friendships of Jennifer Mathieu’s Moxie and the bite of Courtney Summer’s Sadie.”

This book sounds both heavy and fun. Females taking something difficult to deal with into their own hands and maybe messing stuff up a little, but doing the best they can anyway and that’s what matters. 

The Devil Makes Three by Tori Bovalino 

“Tess Matheson only wants three things: time to practice her cello, for her sister to be happy, and for everyone else to leave her alone.

Instead, Tess finds herself working all summer at her boarding school library, shelving books and dealing with the intolerable patrons. The worst of them is Eliot Birch: snide, privileged, and constantly requesting forbidden grimoires. After a bargain with Eliot leads to the discovery of an ancient book in the library’s grimoire collection, the pair accidentally unleash a book-bound demon.

The demon will stop at nothing to stay free, manipulating ink to threaten those Tess loves and dismantling Eliot’s strange magic. Tess is plagued by terrible dreams of the devil and haunting memories of a boy who wears Eliot’s face. All she knows is to stay free, the demon needs her… and he’ll have her, dead or alive.”

I can’t stress enough how fun this book sounds. I adore the premise. I want to see what trouble this book gets into. 

The Last Words We Said by Leah Scheier 

“Nine months ago, Danny disappeared and everything changed for his friends. Rae’s pouring herself into rage-baking. Deenie’s deepening her commitment to Orthodox Judaism. And Ellie—Danny’s best friend and girlfriend—is the only one who doesn’t believe he’s dead.

Because she still sees him.

Moving back and forth between past and present, the story of Ellie and Danny unspools, from their serendipitous meeting to Danny and Ellie falling for each other. In the past, they were the perfect couple—until it all went wrong. In the present, Ellie’s looking for answers. Her friends are worried about her mental health, but Ellie’s certain that the tragedy that’s rocked their modern Orthodox community isn’t as simple as they all believe. She’s determined to uncover the truth about what happened to the love of her life. But to do that, she’ll have to be more honest with herself.”

I’m so curious about this book. Is it a true ghost story that she’s still seeing him? Or is it more that it has everything to do with her mental health? Either way I have questions only reading could fulfill. 

The Wild Ones by Nafiza Azad 

“From William C. Morris Finalist Nafiza Azad comes a thrilling, feminist fantasy about a group of teenage girls endowed with special powers who must band together to save the life of the boy whose magic saved them all.

Meet the Wild Ones: girls who have been hurt, abandoned, and betrayed all their lives. It all began with Paheli, who was once betrayed by her mother and sold to a man in exchange for a favor. When Paheli escapes, she runs headlong into a boy with stars in his eyes. This boy, as battered as she is, tosses Paheli a box of stars before disappearing.

With the stars, Paheli gains access to the Between, a place of pure magic and mystery. Now, Paheli collects girls like herself and these Wild Ones use their magic to travel the world, helping the hopeless and saving others from the fates they suffered.

Then Paheli and the Wild Ones learn that the boy who gave them the stars, Taraana, is in danger. He’s on the run from powerful forces within the world of magic. But if Taraana is no longer safe and free, neither are the Wild Ones. And that…is a fate the Wild Ones refuse to accept. Ever again.”

This sounds like a fun superhero rescue story, but also intense too. The way these girls were hurt sounds painful to read about. 

The Dark Way Down by Chelsea Ichaso 

“A gripping new psychological thriller from the author of Little Creeping Things—can a grieving girl discover the twisted truth behind her sister’s hiking accident?

Piper Sullivan never should have been at Suicide Point the day she fell. Her older sister, Savannah, knows this with all her heart—just as she knows that Piper’s “accident” was entirely her fault. Savannah did something awful, something she can barely stand to think about, and now Piper is in a coma.

But just as Savannah’s guilt threatens to swallow her whole, she finds something strange in Piper’s locker: a note inviting Piper to a meeting of their school’s wilderness club…at the very place and on the very day she fell. Which means that there’s a chance Piper wasn’t alone.

Maybe it isn’t Savannah’s fault, after all. Someone in the club might know what really happened. Someone might have done something. But why? If Savannah wants to find out the truth about that tragic day, she’ll have to join the club on their weekend long camping trip…on the very same mountain where her sister fell. And with everyone in the club a suspect, she’ll need to be careful or she might follow her sister into the dark.” 

I have read and enjoyed ‘Little Creeping Things’ and I think it’d be fun to try this book out too. 

The Dead and the Dark by Courtney Gould 

“The Dark has been waiting for far too long, and it won’t stay hidden any longer. 

Something is wrong in Snakebite, Oregon. Teenagers are disappearing, some turning up dead, the weather isn’t normal, and all fingers seem to point to TV’s most popular ghost hunters who have just returned to town. Logan Ortiz-Woodley, daughter of TV’s ParaSpectors, has never been to Snakebite before, but the moment she and her dads arrive, she starts to get the feeling that there’s more secrets buried here than they originally let on.

Ashley Barton’s boyfriend was the first teen to go missing, and she’s felt his presence ever since. But now that the Ortiz-Woodleys are in town, his ghost is following her and the only person Ashley can trust is the mysterious Logan. When Ashley and Logan team up to figure out who—or what—is haunting Snakebite, their investigation reveals truths about the town, their families, and themselves that neither of them are ready for. As the danger intensifies, they realize that their growing feelings for each other could be a light in the darkness. 

Courtney Gould’s thrilling debut The Dead and the Dark is about the things that lurk in dark corners, the parts of you that can’t remain hidden, and about finding home in places—and people—you didn’t expect”

This sounds so interesting! I wonder what the paranormal investigators have to do with the disappearances and if they will help or hinder Ashley’s quest to find out what happened? 

The Woods Are Always Watching by Stephanie Perkins 

“Stephanie Perkins returns with another blood-chilling contemporary horror novel, the perfect companion to her New York Times bestseller There’s Someone Inside Your House, soon to be a Netflix feature.

A traditional backwoods horror story set–first page to last–in the woods of the Pisgah National Forest in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Two girls go backpacking in the woods. Things go very wrong. 

And, then, their paths collide with a serial killer.” 

Since this is making its way to Netflix I’d love to read the book and watch the movie! 

Beyond the Mapped Stars by Rosalyn Eves 

“A sweeping adventure, set in the late 19th century, about science, love, and finding your place in the world, perfect for fans of Ruta Sepetys and Julie Berry.

Seventeen-year-old Elizabeth Bertelsen dreams of becoming an astronomer, but she knows such dreams are as unreachable as the stars she so deeply adores. As a Mormon girl, her duty is to her family and, in a not too far away future, to the man who’ll choose to marry her.

When she unexpectedly finds herself in Colorado, she’s tempted by the total eclipse of the sun that’s about to happen—and maybe even meeting up with the female scientists she’s long admired. Elizabeth must learn to navigate this new world of possibility: with her familial duties and faith tugging at her heartstrings, a new romance on the horizon, and the study of the night sky calling to her, she can’t possibly have it all…can she?”

The journey of a girl’s love for science! Count me in! 

House of Glass Hearts by Leila Siddiqui

“Maera and her ammi never talk about the Past, a place where they’ve banished their family’s heartache and grief forever. They especially never mention the night Maera’s older brother Asad disappeared from her naana’s house in Karachi ten years ago. But when her grandfather dies and his derelict greenhouse appears in her backyard from thousands of miles away, Maera is forced to confront the horrors of her grandfather’s past. To find out what happened to her brother, she must face the keepers of her family’s secrets—the monsters that live inside her grandfather’s mysterious house of glass. 

Seamlessly blending history with myth, HOUSE OF GLASS HEARTS follows a Pakistani-American teen’s ruthless quest to find her missing sibling, even if the truth would reveal her grandfather’s devastating secret and tear her family apart. In a narrative that switches between colonial India and present-day America, this ambitious debut explores how the horrors of the past continue to shape the lives of South Asians around the world.” 

I’ve never read a book about a Pakistaní American teen before. I know so little about the culture I’m very curious to see what this book could teach me. 

The Girl With the Hickory Heart by Lauren Nicolle Taylor 

“Luna, the girl with the hickory heart, can’t feel.

Lye, the girl with all the power, can’t forget.

Together, two teens from warring tribes hold the fate of their torn worlds. One is destined to destroy. The other is desperate for deliverance.

For Luna, the price of peace in a time of war is a heart of hickory. But to have a hickory heart leaves no room for love. When the lives of her three brothers are tied to refugee siblings from the warring tribe, Luna must test the limits of her wooden heart to trust those she’s been taught to hate.

Seventeen-year-old Lye is the Shen keeper. There’s only one. Ripped from her village as a child to perform the sacred task of awakening elements in every Shen soldier, she’s become an unwilling instrument of violence and death. And it’s starting to dismantle her conscience.

In an island nation akin to a wooden Hong Kong, two Asian girls from warring tribes must put aside their pasts in order to move forward.”

I mean look at that cover!?!? Couldn’t not want to pick this up. 

Take Me With You When You Go by David Leviathan and Jennifer Niven 

“From the New York Times bestselling authors of All the Bright Places and Every Day comes a story of hope, siblinghood, and finding your home in the people who matter the most.

Subject: You. Missing.

Ezra Ahern wakes up one day to find his older sister, Bea, gone. No note, no sign, nothing but an email address hidden somewhere only he would find it. Ezra never expected to be left behind with their abusive stepfather and their neglectful mother—how is he supposed to navigate life without Bea?

Bea Ahern already knew she needed to get as far away from home as possible But a message in her inbox changes everything, and she finds herself alone in a new city—without Ez, without a real plan—chasing someone who might not even want to be found.

As things unravel at home for Ezra, Bea will confront secrets about their past that will forever change the way they think about their family. Together and apart, broken by abuse but connected by love, this brother and sister must learn to trust themselves before they can find a way back to each other.”

This book sounds like a hard and emotional read. Sometimes those are the most inspiring and wonderful books. 

The Endless Skies by Shannon Price 

“Shannon Price’s The Endless Skies is a breakout standalone epic fantasy about shapeshifting warriors perfect for fans of Adrienne Young and Wonder Woman. 

Sixteen-year-old Rowan is about to become one of the famed Leonodai Warriors—the elite magical fighters who protect the floating city Heliana from the world of Men. Until disaster strikes the city’s children.

Against orders from the king, Rowan sets out on her own and tracks down one of the Warrior teams—only to find herself face to face with both the man she loves and the one who holds the dark secrets of their past. With time running out and Men on their tail, Rowan must risk everything to save her beloved city.”

There’s not too many stand-alone fantasies out there and I’d love to check out this one! 

In the Wild Light by Jeff Zetner 

“From the award-winning author of The Serpent King comes a beautiful examination of grief, found family, and young love.

Life in a small Appalachian town is not easy. Cash lost his mother to an opioid addiction and his Papaw is dying slowly from emphysema. Dodging drug dealers and watching out for his best friend, Delaney, is second nature. He’s been spending his summer mowing lawns while she works at Dairy Queen.

But when Delaney manages to secure both of them full rides to an elite prep school in Connecticut, Cash will have to grapple with his need to protect and love Delaney, and his love for the grandparents who saved him and the town he would have to leave behind.”

Another heartbreaker I am very much interested in. 

Eyes of the Forest by April Henry 

“After a bestselling fantasy author disappears, only his biggest fan believes he’s in danger and has the courage to uncover the truth in this fast-paced mystery with a chilling psychological twist.

Bridget is RM Haldon’s biggest fan. His epic fantasy series, Swords and Shadows, created a lifeline between Bridget and her mom as she lost her battle with cancer. When Bridget met Haldon at his only book signing, she impressed the author with her encyclopedic knowledge of the fantasy world he’d created. Bridget has been working for him ever since as he attempts to write his final book. Now, Haldon is missing, and Bridget is the only person who seems concerned. Can Bridget piece together Haldon’s clues and save him before it’s too late?

Master mystery-writer April Henry weaves another heart-stopping young adult thriller in this story that seamlessly blends suspense with fan culture. For readers of Courtney Summers and Karen McManus.”

Haven’t read a mystery in ages! I would love this. 

Bad Witch Burning by Jessica Lewis 

“For fans of Us and The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comes a witchy story full of black girl magic as one girl’s dark ability to summon the dead offers her a chance at a new life, while revealing to her an even darker future.

Katrell doesn’t mind talking to the dead; she just wishes it made more money. Clients pay her to talk to their deceased loved ones, but it isn’t enough to support her unemployed mother and Mom’s deadbeat boyfriend-of-the-week. Things get worse, when a ghost warns her to stop the summonings or she’ll “burn everything down.” Katrell is willing to call them on their bluff, though. She has no choice. What do ghosts know about eating peanut butter for dinner?

However, when her next summoning accidentally raises someone from the dead, Katrell realizes that a live body is worth a lot more than a dead apparition. And, warning or not, she has no intention of letting this lucrative new business go.

But magic doesn’t come for free, and soon dark forces are closing in on Katrell. The further she goes, the more she risks the lives of not only herself, but those she loves. Katrell faces a choice: resign herself to poverty, or confront the darkness before it’s too late.”

This books sounds like it has the most kickass disaster protagonist and I love it! 

The Great Destroyers by Caroline Tung Richmond 

Vampires, Hearts, and Other Dead Things by Margie Fuston 

“In this heart-wrenching debut YA novel that’s The Coldest Girl in Coldtown meets They Both Die at the End, a teen girl takes a trip to New Orleans with her estranged best friend to find a vampire to save her dying father.

Victoria and her dad have shared a love of the undead since the first vampire revealed his existence on live TV. Public fear soon drove the vampires back into hiding, yet Victoria and her father still dream about finding a vampire together. But when her dad is diagnosed with terminal cancer, it’s clear that’s not going to happen. Instead, Victoria vows to find a vampire herself—so that she can become one and then save her father.

Armed with research, speculations, and desperation—and helped by her estranged best friend, Henry—Victoria travels to New Orleans in search of a miracle. There she meets Nicholas, a mysterious young man who might give her what she desires. But first, he needs Victoria to prove she loves life enough to live forever.

She agrees to complete a series of challenges, from scarfing sugar-drenched beignets to singing with a jazz band, all to show she has what it takes to be immortal. But truly living while her father is dying feels like a betrayal. Victoria must figure out how to experience joy and grief at once, trusting all the while that Nicholas will hold up his end of the bargain…because the alternative is too impossible to imagine.”

Adorable vampire novel! Hell yes! 

Me (Moth) by Amber McBride 

“A debut YA novel-in-verse that is both a coming-of-age and a ghost story.

Moth has lost her family in an accident. Though she lives with her aunt, she feels alone and uprooted.

Until she meets Sani, a boy who is also searching for his roots. If he knows more about where he comes from, maybe he’ll be able to understand his ongoing depression. And if Moth can help him feel grounded, then perhaps she too will discover the history she carries in her bones.

Moth and Sani take a road trip that has them chasing ghosts and searching for ancestors. The way each moves forward is surprising, powerful, and unforgettable.

Here is an exquisite and uplifting novel about identity, first love, and the ways that our memories and our roots steer us through the universe.” 

I will always love a novel in verse. Always. 

Living Beyond Borders: Growing Up Mexican in America by various authors 

“Authors (Philmonel)

Twenty stand-alone short stories, essays, poems, and more from celebrated and award-winning authors make up this YA anthology that explores the Mexican American experience. With works by Francisco X. Stork, Guadalupe Garcia McCall, David Bowles, Rubén Degollado, e.E. Charlton-Trujillo, Diana López, Xavier Garza, Trinidad Gonzales, Alex Temblador, Aida Salazar, Lupe Ruiz-Flores, Sylvia Sanchez Garza, Dominic Carrillo, Angela Cervantes, Carolyn Dee Flores, René Saldaña Jr., Laura Perez, Justine Narro, Daniel García Ordáz, and Anna Meriano. 

In this mixed-media collection of short stories, personal essays, poetry, and comics, this celebrated group of authors share the borders they have crossed, the struggles they have pushed through, and the two cultures they continue to navigate as Mexican American. Living Beyond Borders is at once an eye-opening, heart-wrenching, and hopeful love letter from the Mexican American community to today’s young readers.” 

This anthology looks so damn amazing! Would love to read it! 

Dagger Hill by Devon Taylor 

“Stranger Things meets One of Us Is Lying in this creepy paranormal mystery about four friends who find themselves hunted by a malevolent presence in their sleepy hometown.

It knows your fear…

Summer, 1989. Four best friends—Gabe, Kimberly, Charlie, and Sonya—are preparing for their last summer together before senior year, after which they’ll all be splitting up to start college in different parts of the country. They make a promise to always find their way back to each other, no matter how far away from their sleepy Pennsylvania hometown they get.

But their plans are destroyed when a plane crashes right on top of their favorite hangout outside of town—and right on top of them.

In the catastrophic aftermath of the incident, Gabe, Sonya and Charlie are plagued by eerie visions and messages from an unknown watcher. They soon realize that the plane crash was no accident, and now they are being hunted by a sinister presence. And everyone is still searching for Kimberly, who has been missing ever since Gabe saw somebody wearing a gas mask carry her out of the woods the day the sky fell down on them…” 

Not only would I cover buy this, but the description sounds awesome! It sounds so mysterious and so cool! 

How We Fall Apart by Katie Zhao 

“In a YA thriler that is Crazy Rich Asians meets One of Us is Lying, students at an elite prep school are forced to confront their secrets when their ex-best friend turms up deadand they’re the prime suspects in her murder. 

When Nancy Luo’s former best friend Jamie Ruan, the top ranked junior at Sinclair Prep, goes missing. Nancy is shocked. She’s even more shocked when Jamie is found dead. 

The police suspect murder, and Nancy and her three friends become the prime suspects-fhanks to The Proctor, someone set on publicdy incriminating them via the school’s social media app. The quartet used to be Jamie’s dosest friends – and she knew dangerous secrets about each of them that could ruin their reputations as the other top- ranking students. For Nancy, the stakes are even higher, because unlike her wealthy friends, she could lose her full ride scholarship, too. 

As the group struggles to dear their names while maintaining their perfect GPAS, they race to uncover Jamie’s true killer-before the Proctor exposes al of their darkest secrets. But Nancy can’t help but suspect that one of her friends is lying. Or is there a missing piece in her own memory that could expose the truth-not justabout Jamie’s fate, but also about herself?”

I’ve heard awesome things about this book! Plus, the description sounds so good! 

Mark of the Wicked by Georgia Bowers 

“A young witch tries to unravel the mystery of who is framing her for dark magic in Georgia Bowers’ creepy YA debut fantasy, Mark of the Wicked. 

Magic always leaves its mark.

All her life, Matilda has been told one thing about her magic: You use only when necessary. But Matilda isn’t interested in being a good witch. She wants revenge and popularity, and to live her life free of consequences, free of the scars that dark magic leaves on her face as a reminder of her misdeeds.

When a spell goes awry and the new boy at school catches her in the act, Matilda thinks her secret might be out. But far from being afraid, Oliver already knows about her magic – and he wants to learn more. As Oliver and Matilda grow closer, bizarre things begin to happen: Animals show up with their throats slashed and odd markings carved into their bodies, a young girl dies mysteriously, and everyone blames Matilda. But she isn’t responsible — at least, not that she can remember. As her magic begins to spin out of control, Matilda must decide for herself what makes a good witch, and discover the truth…before anyone else turns up dead.” 

Hell yes! A bad witch story? I can’t wait to pick this book up! 

A Lesson in Vengence by Victoria Lee 

“Felicity Morrow is back at Dalloway School.

Perched in the Catskill mountains, the centuries-old, ivy-covered campus was home until the tragic death of her girlfriend. Now, after a year away, she’s returned to graduate. She even has her old room in Godwin House, the exclusive dormitory rumored to be haunted by the spirits of five Dalloway students—girls some say were witches. The Dalloway Five all died mysteriously, one after another, right on Godwin grounds.

Witchcraft is woven into Dalloway’s history. The school doesn’t talk about it, but the students do. In secret rooms and shadowy corners, girls convene. And before her girlfriend died, Felicity was drawn to the dark. She’s determined to leave that behind her now; all Felicity wants is to focus on her senior thesis and graduate. But it’s hard when Dalloway’s occult history is everywhere. And when the new girl won’t let 

her forget.

It’s Ellis Haley’s first year at Dalloway, and she’s already amassed a loyal following. A prodigy novelist at seventeen, Ellis is a so-called “method writer.” She’s eccentric and brilliant, and Felicity can’t shake the pull she feels to her. So when Ellis asks Felicity for help researching the Dalloway Five for her second book, Felicity can’t say no. Given her history with the arcane, Felicity is the perfect resource.

And when history begins to repeat itself, Felicity will have to face the darkness in Dalloway–and in herself.” 

I follow Victoria on Twitter and she’s so cool! I’d love to read her book! 

Alright! After an hour and a half I finished this! So many great reads to look forward to! 

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

Trans Equality 

The Trevor Project

Transgender Law Center 

Some BLM resources: 

Link to bail funds to donate to!

Link to petitions to sign! 

Link to a video to watch if you can’t donate!

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!!

Check out my Instagram and Twitter

Check out the Sisters of Twilight website.

Watching BoJack Horseman: Season 1, Episode 3

I’m back at it again to talk about another BoJack Horseman episode! I am so excited! There’s so much nuance to this show and it is so worth exploring as much detail as possible.

Opening Scene: BoJack is on the set of ‘Horsing Around’ he’s doing a scene with Sarah Lynn. The family is having pancakes for breakfast and Sarah is hiding under the table. At first it starts out fun and Sarah makes a funny tv show joke about being afraid to pop from a pop quiz. Then the scene ends and BoJack gives a pep talk. It’s happy at first, but then it grows darker and the little girl looks horrified. This was the perfect way to showcase ‘Horsing Around’ and Bo Jacks headspace at the time. Also, to introduce his dynamic with Sarah Lynn as a very warped role model.

Favorite Part of the Episode: The whole episode and how it’s themed. This is introducing Sarah Lynn. It gives her background with BoJack. Deep nuances to their relationship and the tragedy that ‘Horsing Around’ caused her to become. All that in the third episode and in around 20 minutes. This show is art and so well written I am in awe every second I watch it.

Best Lines: “Well those boobs and jerkwads are the best friends you will ever have. Without them you are nothing. Remember that. Your family will never understand you. Your lovers will leave you or try to change you. But your fans you be good to them and they’ll be good to you. The most important thing is you got to give the people what they want; even if it kills you, even if it empties you out until there’s nothing left to empty. No matter what happens, no matter how much it hurts, you don’t stop dancing and you don’t stop smiling and you give those people what they want.” -BoJack to little Sarah Lynn opening scene

“But I do wonder as a third way feminist, if it’s even possible for women to reclaim their sexuality in this deeply entrenched patriarchal society, or if claiming to do so is just a lie we tell ourselves so we can more comfortably cater to the male gaze.” – Diane to BoJack (God, just God. This show it gets so deep and this is simply a quick quip and you could easily go past it and just enjoy the episode, but it says so much. Do women claim sexuality for themselves or is it truly for the male gaze? To me I think we can, but still this is such a deep thing that could be discussed, yet the line lasted a few seconds.

“You are not her father and you are not doing her any favors by refusing to set boundaries.” Diane to Bo Jack about Sarah Lynn taking advantage of him. God finally the truth. Someone said it! This show always does a great job at not condoning behavior and giving the facts even if it goes to that dark place there is always consequences, but also a sense of hope.

“I’m at a place right now where I never need to grow as a person or rise to an occasion, because I can constantly just surround myself with fans and enablers till I can die tragically young.” -Sarah Lynn to BoJack

Highlights:

Sarah Lynn is on the news. 12 years after being on ‘Horsing Around’ Sarah released a music single about being sexy and loving sex. Cut to 12 years after that and she is no longer relevant. Instead it’s all about Sextina Aquafina who is talking about how Sarah Lynn should go to the place famous people go where no one cares if they live or die.

BoJack and Todd are at the furniture store. Todd had broken Bo Jack’s bed and these girls come up freaking out, but not about them, about Sarah Lynn and Andrew Garfield who are also in the store. Of course hurting Bo Jack’s already bruised ego. They start talking and Andrew breaks up with Sarah and she starts taking way too many pills. The little girl from the tv show has definitely grown up and her mental health has been ruined from her time on the show. Then she ends up stabbing herself. It’s in public and Andrew didn’t want her to make a scene which of course makes it bigger and she ends up taking a dump on a sofa. It’s over the top dark humor and a really sad tragedy already. Sarah Lynn’s life is already feeling so far gone.

BoJack talking to Diane about the incident with Sarah. He says after seeing her crazy reactions he checked her into rehab. Diane talks about him seeing Sarah again and he says he is more of a before rehab friend, which really tells you all you need to know about him. He’s not a good influence on anyone. Then, Sarah reappears at his door. She talks to him about not needing rehab and then snorts pills in front of him. Instead of helping her and taking her back to rehab like a good friend and role model he lets her hide out with him. He’s even excited about it. I can’t help, but think about what’s to come later. Sarah Lynn’s story is only begun.

Sarah’s subtle manipulations. Sarah knows exactly how Bo Jack is and what she means to him. She is a memory of his fame. She wants to have him there because he’ll give in to anything she wants. At this point in her life she wants drugs and to party all the time and BoJack doesn’t have the sense to stop her and get her to get clean. He enables her and she comes back to him because she knows that. He never tells her no and it sucks cause it feels like he may be the one person that could.

A mini joke. At the party Sarah throws a group of guys passes carrying boxes that saw chips dips and then chains and whips. A super subtle very easy to miss joke, but in this show there’s so much of that. It’s so nuanced and I love it.

Introducing Sarah’s dream. From little Sarah wanted to be an architect. A dream that was immediately shut down by her mom and ignored by Bo Jack. It is the hope and the line that could be used to save Sarah.

BoJack spends the day with Sarah. It seems fun and wholesome for the most part. As the sun sets Sarah tell BoJack that Herb has butt cancer which upsets him. He looks guilty and later on in the show we find out why. He ends up distracting himself and Sarah by giving her his tv award. He says he would have given that to his kid if he had one, but he wanted Sarah to have it. Then he starts singing the end credits to ‘Horsing Around’. BoJack is using Sarah too. She’s there to feed into his memories and feel like he’s on that wholesome show again. For him to feel like a good father figure, but he isn’t and he never was.

BoJack’s final straw is Sarah pawning the tv award he gave her. Only time he stops things is when his ego gets hurt. It’s not about helping her, but soothing his ego.

BoJack kisses Sarah. Not only that, but he has sex with her. They may both be adults, but that was the last thing either of them needed. They both need help and instead they turn to drugs and sex and bonds that aren’t healthy and it only unravels them both further. Todd and Diane try to give Bo Jack reason. To be true friends to him, but he doesn’t listen. Yet they stay friends anyway. Diane tells Bo Jack that he’s now taking advantage of Sarah. She has substance abuse problems and Daddy issues and he knew that and still had sex with her. Again, this show always sheds that light that this is not good for anyone. It’s not even remotely about humor, but laying out mental illness and drug and substance abuse does and how it can be so destructive to peoples lives.

End Scene: BoJack finally says he will take Sarah back to rehab and instead she leaves. She doesn’t want to grow anymore. She says that it’s already too late. As she leaves she says her new catch phrase “Suck a dick, dumb shits” and walks out the door. BoJack takes advice Diane says as it being societies fault for the tragedy of Sarah’s predicament. That he’s not to blame for any part. He holds onto that deeply because to face the truth would be to face that he isn’t a good person and that he isn’t just a victim. So he does what’s easiest and that’s even sadder.

Turns out reporters were outside and they got pictures of the two having sex. The beginning of more pain later. And so it ends.

All In All: This episode was so powerful and good just on its own. It says a lot that you could watch this episode and know so much about BoJack and one of the biggest story lines in the show just on its own. This is BoJack and Sarah Lynn and their spiral into darkness together. This is one of the most important early episodes of BoJack. Also, one of the saddest, but it still is only the beginning.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

Trans Equality 

The Trevor Project

Transgender Law Center 

Some BLM resources: 

Link to bail funds to donate to!

Link to petitions to sign! 

Link to a video to watch if you can’t donate!

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!! 

Check out my Instagram and Twitter

Check out the Sisters of Twilight website.