14 Jun 2019

ARC #Review: TELL ME HOW YOU REALLY FEEL by Aminah Mae Safi

14 June 0 Comments

TELL ME HOW YOU REALLY FEEL

Author: Aminah Mae Safi
Series: N/A
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: June 11, 2019
Overall Rating:
Diversity Rating:

Summary:
Sana Khan is a cheerleader and a straight A student. She's the classic (somewhat obnoxious) overachiever determined to win.

Rachel Recht is a wannabe director who's obsesssed with movies and ready to make her own masterpiece. As she's casting her senior film project, she knows she's found the perfect lead - Sana.

There's only one problem. Rachel hates Sana. Rachel was the first girl Sana ever asked out, but Rachel thought it was a cruel prank and has detested Sana ever since.

Told in alternative viewpoints and inspired by classic romantic comedies, this engaging and edgy YA novel follows two strongwilled young women falling for each other despite themselves.
Purchase:
Amazon | Chapters | TBD

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

I liked a lot of this but found the beginning to be slow, the pacing to be a bit off, and some of the flow to not be logical. But the characters were well developed and the relationship was extremely sweet. Plus add in different cultures, family dynamics that I've seen more often than not, and a true coming of age story. It's everything you could want out of a lesbian romance novel.

I really liked the characterizations of the main characters and how they interacted with each other. I liked watching them grow together as they learned more about each other throughout working together. I think there was a lot of growth for Sana's character that was really important in this and I loved seeing her grow.

I had some issues with pacing throughout this one and never knew how long a scene was taking, what time it was, or how much time had actually passed. Sometimes it took me out of the story but I was always able to get back into it.

I highly recommend this one as your next read, especially during Pride Month!

12 Jun 2019

ARC #Review: HOW NOT TO ASK A BOY TO PROM by S.J. Goslee

12 June 0 Comments

HOW NOT TO ASK A BOY TO PROM

Author: S.J. Goslee
Series: N/A
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Publication Date: April 23, 2019
Overall Rating:
Diversity Rating:

Summary:
Nolan Grant is sixteen, gay, and (definitely) still a virgin. He's never had a boyfriend, or even been kissed. It's not like Penn Valley is brimming with prospects. And when his big sister stages an elaborate “prom-posal” so Nolan can ask out his not-so-secret crush, Nolan freezes. He's saved from further embarrassment by bad boy Bern, who, for his own reasons, offers to fake-date Nolan.

Nolan thinks it's the perfect way to get Daphne off his back and spend the rest of the year drawing narwhals, tending to plants, and avoiding whatever died under his bed a few weeks ago. What he doesn't think about is Bern's ex-girlfriend, who seriously wants to kill him.
Purchase:
Amazon | Chapters | TBD

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

I thought this was a little underwhelming. There were so many opportunities for this to be so much more than it was and it dropped them all. I wanted so much more from this queer, fake dating book and I'm sad we didn't get it.

There were a lot of really cute situations, characters, and moments, but they didn't feel as a full unit in this book. It felt like a compilation of moments that sort of lined up but didn't quite get me to where I needed to be. I never fully believed in the fake dating aspect because we didn't really see Grant and Bern do a whole lot of the fun fake dating things that they could have. It felt like that was a background aspect instead of what this book is sold on.

The characters were definitely not as fleshed out as they could have been, but I did enjoy all of them and the multiple representations in this one. The characters were probably the best part of this though and I wish we had spent more time with Mim and the Art Buddies in general.

Overall, this had a lot of cute moments and I am happy for the queer representation in this. But it just wasn't quite enough for me to be as satisfied as I could have been.

10 Jun 2019

#Discussion: My Next Five Reads

10 June 0 Comments

My Next Five Reads

Yikes y'all. I went from being 14 books ahead of my Goodreads challenge to being 2 books behind. These last few months have been so hectic in terms of work and other responsibilities. Although I'm not really complaining because I know how important it is for me to do the work I'm doing, but it does make me sad that I haven't been able to read as much. So I am committing myself to these five books...
My Next Five Reads banner

SORCERY OF THORNS

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson coverAuthor: Margaret Rogerson
Series: N/A
Source: Indigo
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Publication Date: June 4, 2019

Summary:
All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.

Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.

As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads
Purchase:

What I'm Excited For...

This is the Indigo Staff Pick of the Month for June, so thank you to Indigo for sending it my way! I am looking forward to seeing the magic and libraries and everything else! I have heard such good things about this one and I want to get to it ASAP.

THESE WITCHES DON'T BURN

Author: Isabel Sterling
Series: These Witches Don't Burn #1
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: May 28, 2019

Summary:
Hannah's a witch, but not the kind you're thinking of. She's the real deal, an Elemental with the power to control fire, earth, water, and air. But even though she lives in Salem, Massachusetts, her magic is a secret she has to keep to herself. If she's ever caught using it in front of a Reg (read: non-witch), she could lose it. For good. So, Hannah spends most of her time avoiding her ex-girlfriend (and fellow Elemental Witch) Veronica, hanging out with her best friend, and working at the Fly by Night Cauldron selling candles and crystals to tourists, goths, and local Wiccans. 

But dealing with her ex is the least of Hannah's concerns when a terrifying blood ritual interrupts the end-of-school-year bonfire. Evidence of dark magic begins to appear all over Salem, and Hannah's sure it's the work of a deadly Blood Witch. The issue is, her coven is less than convinced, forcing Hannah to team up with the last person she wants to see: Veronica.

While the pair attempt to smoke out the Blood Witch at a house party, Hannah meets Morgan, a cute new ballerina in town. But trying to date amid a supernatural crisis is easier said than done, and Hannah will have to test the limits of her power if she's going to save her coven and get the girl, especially when the attacks on Salem's witches become deadlier by the day.
Add These Witches Don't Burn to Goodreads
Purchase:

What I'm Excited For...

A mix of everything I want in a book, I cannot wait to start reading this one! Plus, Isabel made it sound amazing in my interview with her so I can't wait to check it out.

WILDER GIRLS

Author: Rory Power
Series: N/A
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: July 9, 2019

Summary:
It's been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty's life out from under her.

It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don't dare wander outside the school's fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.

But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there's more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads
Purchase:

What I'm Excited For...

The plot of this one has intrigued me from day one (aka the day I read the summary) so I am super excited to pick it up! There are a list of trigger warnings on the author's website so please take care while reading.

KINGSBANE

Author: Claire Legrand
Series: Empirium #2
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: May 21, 2019

Summary:
In this sequel to the instant New York Times bestseller Furyborn, two queens, separated by a thousand years, connected by secrets and lies, must continue their fight amid deadly plots and unthinkable betrayals that will test their strength—and their hearts.

Rielle Dardenne has been anointed Sun Queen, but her trials are far from over. The Gate keeping the angels at bay is falling. To repair it, Rielle must collect the seven hidden castings of the saints. Meanwhile, to help her prince and love Audric protect Celdaria, Rielle must spy on the angel Corien—but his promises of freedom and power may prove too tempting to resist.

Centuries later, Eliana Ferracora grapples with her new reality: She is the Sun Queen, humanity's long-awaited savior. But fear of corruption—fear of becoming another Rielle—keeps Eliana's power dangerous and unpredictable. Hunted by all, racing against time to save her dying friend Navi, Eliana must decide how to wear a crown she never wanted—by embracing her mother's power, or rejecting it forever.
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Purchase:

What I'm Excited For...

I absolutely loved FURYBORN and everything about it so I was super excited for the sequel. I should have picked this one up a while ago but I just never got to it before release day so now I am going to read it ASAP! I don't want to be too far behind or be spoiled.


AREA X: THE SOUTHERN REACH TRILOGY

Author: Jeff VanderMeer
Series: Southern Reach #1-3
Source: Borrowed from my boyfriend
Publisher: FSG Originals
Publication Date: November 18, 2014

Summary:
Annihilation is the first volume in Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy, Authority is the second, and Acceptance is the third.

Area X—a remote and lush terrain—has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilization. The first expedition returned with reports of a pristine, Edenic landscape; all the members of the second expedition committed suicide; the third expedition died in a hail of gunfire as its members turned on one another; the members of the eleventh expedition returned as shadows of their former selves, and within months of their return, all had died of aggressive cancer.

This is the twelfth expedition.

Their group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself.

They arrive expecting the unexpected, and Area X delivers—they discover a massive topographic anomaly and life forms that surpass understanding—but it’s the surprises that came across the border with them, and the secrets the expedition members are keeping from one another, that change everything.

After the disastrous twelfth expedition chronicled in Annihilation, the Southern Reach—the secret agency that monitors these expeditions—is in disarray. In Authority, John Rodriguez, aka “Control,” is the team’s newly appointed head. From a series of interrogations, a cache of hidden notes and hours of profoundly troubling video footage, the secrets of Area X begin to reveal themselves—and what they expose pushes Control to confront disturbing truths about both himself and the agency he’s promised to serve. And the consequences will spread much further than that.

It is winter in Area X in Acceptance. A new team embarks across the border on a mission to find a member of a previous expedition who may have been left behind. As they press deeper into the unknown—navigating new terrain and new challenges—the threat to the outside world becomes more daunting. The mysteries of Area X may have been solved, but their consequences and implications are no less profound—or terrifying.
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads
Purchase:

What I'm Excited For...

My boyfriend gave this to me to borrow and read because he wants to discuss it after I finish reading (so cute) so I am working my way through this one. It is the complete trilogy of work so I will have three books done in one!


What books are on your TBR?

1 Jun 2019

Stacking the Shelves (14): June 1, 2019

01 June 2 Comments
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks!
Okay! So I didn't actually get back to blogging! But I am going to try again! So here we are, me telling you about my life and giving you and update, and you telling me it is great that I am trying again and you can't wait to read my posts. All the same things, but more energy this time.

How has everyone's 2019 been going so far?

  • None! Life got away from me. Stay tuned for some in the future!

25 May 2019

Stacking the Shelves (13): May 25, 2019

25 May 3 Comments
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks!
Oof I thought things were getting better but apparently not. Work slammed me and I just didn't have the mental capacity to think about anything that wasn't work related. But then I did. And then I spent this week in Ottawa so I feel so refreshed and happy.

This weekend's shenanigans include going to a gala for the Brain Injury Awareness Windsor-Essex. Then hopefully some relaxing on Sunday.

How has everyone's 2019 been going so far?

  • None! Life got away from me. Stay tuned for some in the future!

4 May 2019

Stacking the Shelves (12): May 4, 2019

04 May 4 Comments
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks!
I am so glad April is over. April is always a really hard month for me in terms of mental health so I am glad that it is done and behind me. Onto bigger and better things!

How has everyone's 2019 been going so far?