Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: Instant Karma, 11/3

In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer, which should probably be a surprise to zero people who are familiar with my reading habits and this book.
Expected release: November 3, 2020

Why wait on this one?

  • A judgy girl has to challenge her own prejudices. Plus, come on, who doesn’t sometimes just want life to be more fair? Good deeds rewarded? Or at least, bad deeds aren’t punished?
  • Enemies to lovers? Yes please! Sometimes I end up choking on it when the people are both actually terrible people. But I always go in hoping that I’ll enjoy it.
  • It’s Marissa Meyer. It’s really hard for me to resist Marissa Meyer. Plus I think it will be interesting to read her first go at a contemporary book, albeit with still a bit of magic involved.

Summary:
Chronic overachiever Prudence Daniels is always quick to cast judgment on the lazy, rude, and arrogant residents of her coastal town. Her dreams of karmic justice are fulfilled when, after a night out with her friends, she wakes up with the sudden ability to cast instant karma on those around her. Pru giddily makes use of the power, punishing everyone from public vandals to karaoke hecklers, but there is one person on whom her powers consistently backfire: Quint Erickson, her slacker of a lab partner and all-around mortal enemy. Soon, Pru begins to uncover truths about Quint, her peers, and even herself that reveal how thin the line is between virtue and vanity, generosity and greed . . . love and hate.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

BOOK ALERT: Series finale ARCs on NetGalley from Wednesday Books!

Hey y’all! I got a very exciting email this morning, and wanted to spread the news for anyone else who would be pumped to hear it! Until 10/17/20 (EST) three series finale books are available to read immediately on NetGalley — no request needed! Wednesday Books is spreading the love for all us readers. 🥰

If you’re not familiar with NetGalley, it’s a site used by publishers to give advanced digital copies of books to readers of all kinds for early reviews and promotion. You can sign up for free at netgalley.com, and click on the links below to read the books once you’re all set up! The site is only available in some countries, and not all books are available in all places, so if any below are not available for you I’m terribly sorry for getting your hopes up, but you can still find other great reads on NetGalley! 😓😭

If you loved FABLE

I know I personally saw this book cover ALL OVER for a few months before release, because dang is it stunning! This female-led pirate adventure that began with Fable is concluding in Spring of 2021 with Namesake by Adrienne Young, but you can read a digital copy early below!

Continue reading “BOOK ALERT: Series finale ARCs on NetGalley from Wednesday Books!”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

The perfect dark and lyrical read: FOUL IS FAIR!

So I had put together my spooky TBR list for October, and debated hard about including Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin or not. I decided not to, just because I had so many books I’ve not read at all yet that I wanted to get to.

And yet… today I pulled this book up to read for a few minutes while I had a quick lunch, and who knows how long later my S.O. came out to ask what I was doing. I got so sucked in!

There’s never going to be a day when I don’t love this Macbeth-y witchy vengeance story. The writing is so poetic and lyrical that reading every line is sheer pleasure just for the way the words dance and the images they bring. What emotion packed into this!

So, okay, yes… I’m probably pushing another book off the list so I can indulge my dual loves of Hannah Capin and William Shakespeare. 🥰

Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: Hush, 10/6!

In contrast to Throwback Thursdays, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release I’m excited about! Today’s is one I stumbled upon quite randomly and feels very mysterious to me: Hush by Dylan Farrow.

Why wait on this one?

  • Honestly, reading the blurb for this book doesn’t give me much substance of what to expect from it plot-wise. The one thing that’s very clear to me, though, is that there will be magic. When benign words suddenly get a capital letter, you know they carry some weight. So personally I’m excited to know why Bards and Telling get that honor.
  • The blurb also hints at the MC, Shae, having some newly discovered powers of her own. I have no idea what that might look like, but I am rarely disappointed by someone becoming a badass and learning what they’re capable of!
  • And with great power comes great responsibility, right? So secrets and conspiracies are just part of the package. I”m really hoping that this blurb is so vague because there’s SO MUCH packed into the story that they really don’t want to give anything away. And oh, I can’t wait to find out what it is.

Summary:
Seventeen-year-old Shae has led a seemingly quiet life, joking with her best friend Fiona, and chatting with Mads, the neighborhood boy who always knows how to make her smile. All while secretly keeping her fears at bay… Of the disease that took her brother’s life. Of how her dreams seem to bleed into reality around her. Of a group of justice seekers called the Bards who claim to use the magic of Telling to keep her community safe.

When her mother is murdered, she can no longer pretend.

Not knowing who to trust, Shae journeys to unlock the truth, instead finding a new enemy keen to destroy her, a brooding boy with dark secrets, and an untold power she never thought possible.

Posted in Release Day!

Just Published: Pretty Funny for a Girl by Rebecca Elliott!

Hey y’all! Just a reminder that Pretty Funny for a Girl by Rebecca Elliott (⭐⭐⭐) published today! Grab a copy from Book Depository or check out the full review here.

Recommended: sure
for a lighthearted YA novel, for an MC who works on being okay with her body image, for an MC with a fairly unusual goal of being a standup comedian

Summary:
Haylah Swinton is an ace best friend, a loving daughter, and an incredibly patient sister to a four-year-old nutcase of a brother. Best of all, she’s pretty confident she’s mastered making light of every situation–from her mom’s new boyfriend to unsolicited remarks on her plus-sized figure. Haylah’s learning to embrace all of her curvy parts and, besides, she has a secret: one day, she’ll be a stand-up comedian star.

So when impossibly cool and thirstalicious Leo reveals he’s also into comedy, Haylah jumps at the chance to ghost-write his sets. But is Leo as interested in returning the favor? Even though her friends warn her of Leo’s intentions, Haylah’s not ready to listen–and she might just be digging herself deeper toward heartbreak. If Haylah’s ever going to step into the spotlight, first she’ll need to find the confidence to put herself out there and strut like the boss she really is.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

The book cover made me do it

Hey y’all!

About two years ago, I stumbled on a book on Hoopla called A Touch of Gold by Annie Sullivan. It was billed as a sort of King Midas story, but where his daughter is the one still suffering from his past curse. I was pretty intrigued, and the book had no wait, so I gave it shot!

It was solidly ok. I finished it, but it’s not one I recall very fondly. Even right after finishing it, I remember feeling pretty underwhelmed. I wish I remembered the exact reasons better now, but alas, I wasn’t so good about recording my book thoughts back then. 🙂 It was probably because it was a seafaring adventure, and that just doesn’t usually do it for me.

Cue a few days ago when something shiny caught my eye: the pretty new cover for the unexpected sequel, A Curse of Gold. And I found myself checking it out, considering it, even though I distinctly remember being not that into the first one. 😂 Why does this happen? Why am I returning to considering a sequel (that isn’t really exciting me, by the way) of a book that I was lukewarm on at best?

In a rare ocurrence for me… I blame the cover.

Look at the shine and sparkle! I can just picture a lovely embossed cover… When I finished the first book, I thought I certainly wouldn’t be reading a sequel. And yet, here comes the sequel, and here comes me checking out the sequel. 😂 TBD on if I actually decide to go for it…

Continue reading “The book cover made me do it”
Posted in Reviews

Review: Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust
Verdict: a good enough one-time read with an interesting folklore basis

Recommended: sure
For a fairy-tale-esque read that actually has a few surprises, for an MC who is actually pretty dark but without being too whiny about it, for some pretty dope myth and folklore inclusion

Summary:
There was and there was not, as all stories begin, a princess cursed to be poisonous to the touch. But for Soraya, who has lived her life hidden away, apart from her family, safe only in her gardens, it’s not just a story. As the day of her twin brother’s wedding approaches, Soraya must decide if she’s willing to step outside of the shadows for the first time. Below in the dungeon is a demon who holds knowledge that she craves, the answer to her freedom. And above is a young man who isn’t afraid of her, whose eyes linger not with fear, but with an understanding of who she is beneath the poison. Soraya thought she knew her place in the world, but when her choices lead to consequences she never imagined, she begins to question who she is and who she is becoming…human or demon. Princess or monster.

Thoughts:
My biggest takeaway from this book is that it was much better than I expected, but still not particularly mind-blowing because I had low expectations. I know that might sound weird: why did I write a whole post months ago about how I was anticipating this book if my expectations were kind of low? And to that I say that even if I don’t expect a book to blow my mind with originality, it can still fill a pleasant role as a somewhat predictable but still enjoyable read.

Continue reading “Review: Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

The fated encounter of Marie Lu’s SKYHUNTER

the book

Hey y’all! I imagine by now if you’re a reader of young adult fiction or fantasy, you’ve probably seen this striking cover in a promo somewhere by now:

fascinating font. props to the designer!

Well, I’ve seen this cover for Skyhunter by Marie Lu often in the last several months and been quite torn over it. While it seemed like a no brainer book I would love — it’s by Marie Lu! It’s got a badass female MC! There are SECRETS, and maybe even a sinister plot to uncover! — for some reason I just… couldn’t commit to it. I felt so wary, like there’s something in the blurb making me think that this one, this one time, is just not for me.

fate intervenes

So since I was torn on this book — would I love it or hate it? — I didn’t request an ARC from any sites. However, then I did see a giveaway on Goodreads, and figured I would enter and leave my decision to chance. If I happened to win the giveaway, I would give it a shot. Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t bother unless reviews and more info post-publication changed my mind.

And, well, I lost. Which really wasn’t surprising for such a popular book that had 8471 people enter. Which made my chances of winning 0.006 percent. 😂

So I entered again. And, I think, a third time. And I went to enter a fourth time —

the error

I got an error! Filled with mild indignant outrage, I scoured the page for the reason. Why am I being blocked from entering? Are they telling me to just give up on this book already??

“Sorry, you can’t enter this giveaway —

Continue reading “The fated encounter of Marie Lu’s SKYHUNTER”
Posted in Reviews

Review: Pretty Funny for a Girl by Rebecca Elliott

Pretty Funny for a Girl by Rebecca Elliott – ⭐⭐⭐
Expected Release: October 1, 2020

Recommended: sure
for a lighthearted YA novel, for an MC who works on being ok with her body image, for an MC with a fairly unusual goal of being a standup comedian

Summary:
Haylah Swinton is an ace best friend, a loving daughter, and an incredibly patient sister to a four-year-old nutcase of a brother. Best of all, she’s pretty confident she’s mastered making light of every situation–from her mom’s new boyfriend to unsolicited remarks on her plus-sized figure. Haylah’s learning to embrace all of her curvy parts and, besides, she has a secret: one day, she’ll be a stand-up comedian star.

So when impossibly cool and thirstalicious Leo reveals he’s also into comedy, Haylah jumps at the chance to ghost-write his sets. But is Leo as interested in returning the favor? Even though her friends warn her of Leo’s intentions, Haylah’s not ready to listen–and she might just be digging herself deeper toward heartbreak. If Haylah’s ever going to step into the spotlight, first she’ll need to find the confidence to put herself out there and strut like the boss she really is.

Thoughts:
Okay, I feel like the #1 question about this book should be “the main character wants to be a stand up comedian, so is the book funny?” and I can report that it’s more or less a yes. The plot itself is a standard YA coming of age sort of read, but the moments of specific comedic routines are funny enough. They’re delivered by high school students, so that’s the experience the material focuses on, but if you can pass yourself back to that age you can probably get a chuckle or two.

Continue reading “Review: Pretty Funny for a Girl by Rebecca Elliott”
Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: Smash It!, 9/22

In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is one that I think people will probably have heard of before now because it’s getting a good amount of attention. if you haven’t had the pleasure yet, let me introduce you to Smash it! by Francina Simone.
Expected Release: September 22, 2020

Why wait on this one?

  • This is pitched as a story concept that is pretty familiar, but one I never get tired of hearing. When someone — particularly a young woman — stops being quiet and meek and starts standing up for herself and doing what she wants without unwarranted fear or societal shame? That is like my favorite read ever.
  • I think this will be one of those books that makes you cheer for the main character and get a burst of pure community and support for another person. It also makes you want to take life by the horns and just do all the things you’ve ever been nervous to do. Quit your job! Move to Korea! Ask out your cute coworker! These may or may not be personal examples. Let’s move on.
  • Honestly, the cover and description and tagline and title — they did a great job marketing this!!! Zoom in on that cover. The detail is incredible and you can really see it on her fingers and hair and face. The tagline is “mistakes were made” and I’ll be damned if that doesn’t make me grin and smile indulgently and want to know for all the life of me what mistakes were made. And come on, a title with an exclamation point? I am all about it. We do not have enough of those. Marketing team: seriously, well done, because this is a perfect example of how to do it right.

Olivia “Liv” James is done with letting her insecurities get the best of her. So she does what any self-respecting hot mess of a girl who wants to SMASH junior year does…

After Liv shows up to a Halloween party in khaki shorts–why, God, why?–she decides to set aside her wack AF ways. She makes a list–a F*ck-It list.

1. Be bold–do the thing that scares me.

2. Learn to take a compliment.

3. Stand out instead of back.

She kicks it off by trying out for the school musical, saying yes to a date and making new friends. Life is great when you stop punking yourself! However, with change comes a lot of missteps, and being bold means following her heart. So what happens when Liv’s heart is interested in three different guys–and two of them are her best friends? What is she supposed to do when she gets dumped by a guy she’s not even dating? How does one Smash It! after the humiliation of being friend-zoned?

In Liv’s own words, “F*ck it. What’s the worst that can happen?”

A lot, apparently.