Posted in Books

Pride Month Book Recommendations, Week 2: Fantasy

Happy Thursday, bibliophiles! 🏳️‍🌈

Continuing with my Pride recommendations, I’ve decided to devote this week to fantasy novels featuring LGBTQ+ characters and themes. In times like these (and all the time), it’s incredibly important to support LGBTQ+ authors and inform yourself about the community, and literature is a vital vessel for learning about such topics, whether it’s fiction or nonfiction.

So let’s begin, shall we?

PRIDE MONTH RECS, WEEK 2: FANTASY

  1. Reign of the Fallen duology, Sarah Glenn Marsh

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Bisexual protagonist, lesbian love interest wlw relationship, several gay side characters

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Not only is Reign of the Fallen a fascinating and action-packed fantasy novel, it boasts one of the most accurate (personally) depictions of bisexuality in YA literature. Odessa will always have a special place in my heart.

2. Simon Snow series, Rainbow Rowell

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Both protagonists are gay, mlm relationship

MY RATING:

Based off of a Harry Potter-like fan fiction written in Fangirl, the Simon Snow series is if you took Harry Potter and made Drarry canon. Even though book 2 was a little disappointing, Simon and Baz are always wonderful.

3. The Brilliant Death, Amy Rose Capetta

Amazon.com: The Brilliant Death (9780451478443): Capetta, Amy Rose ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Both the protagonist and the love interest are genderfluid, queer relationship

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I read this a little over a year ago, and there’s no doubt that Amy Rose Capetta is a veritable champion in the world of LGBTQ+ YA literature. The sequel to this one (and the conclusion to the duology), The Storm of Life, just came out this January, and I’m so excited to read it!

4. Girls of Paper and Fire, Natasha Ngan

Amazon.com: Girls of Paper and Fire (9780316561365): Ngan, Natasha ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: wlw relationship

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Although I found book 2 to be quite disappointing, this is an immensely powerful novel, not only discussing LGBTQ+ themes, but it mainly tackles the trauma of sexual assault. Gotta love Lei and Wren. 💗

5. Mask of Shadows, Linsey Miller

Mask of Shadows (Mask of Shadows Series #1) by Linsey Miller ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Protagonist is genderfluid

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

[smacks self in forehead] I still can’t BELIEVE that I haven’t gotten around to reading Ruin of Stars (book 2), because this novel was SUCH FUN TO READ! And though I can’t speak to how good/bad the genderfluid representation is (as I’m a cisgender person), Sal’s depiction seemed both accurate and well-written.

Tell me what you think! Did you like these novels? Do you have any LGBTQ+ fantasy novels that you loved? Tell me in the comments!

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As always, a great resource for finding LGBTQ+ novels is here at Queer Books for Teens, so check out their website for more great recommendations!

Today’s song:

Soccer Mommy–night swimming (demo)

Another song from her Soccer Mommy & Friends singles, this one is just as dreamlike as the original song! 🙂

That’s it for this week’s pride month recommendations! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Book Tags, Books

Mid-Year Freakout Book Tag

Happy Tuesday, bibliophiles!

I found this tag over at One Book More, and it looked like a lot of fun! I can’t seem to find who created the tag, so if you know who originally created it, please let me know so I can tag them! 🙂

Let’s begin, shall we?

WHAT IS THE BEST BOOK YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2020?

Amazon.com: Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle) (9781524720926 ...

I think everybody saw this one coming, but seriously, Aurora Burning was PHENOMENAL in every sense of the word.

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WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE SEQUEL OF THE FIRST HALF OF THE YEAR?

Amazon.com: The Survivor: A Pioneer Novel (9780062658098): Tyler ...

Since I probably shouldn’t put Aurora Burning in twice, I’d say The Survivor. What a beautiful end to an inventive and underrated series!

IS THERE A NEW RELEASE THAT YOU HAVEN’T READ YET BUT YOU’RE REALLY EXCITED FOR?

Amazon.com: The Sound of Stars (9781335911551): Dow, Alechia: Books

The Sound of Stars came out in late February, and it sounds like an incredible novel!

WHAT IS YOUR MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASE FOR THE SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR?

Amazon.com: The Burning Kingdoms (The Smoke Thieves ...

The Burning Kingdoms is the final book in the Smoke Thieves series, and I am SO EXCITED TO GET MY HANDS ON IT. I requested an eARC of it and it got declined, but I requested it again, so we’ll see how that goes…

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WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT SO FAR?

Girls of Storm and Shadow (Girls of Paper and Fire Series #2) by ...

After the groundbreaking masterpiece that was Girls of Paper and Fire, Girls of Storm and Shadow failed to pack the punch that its predecessor had.

meh gifs | WiffleGif

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST SURPRISE SO FAR?

Amazon.com: The Scorpion Rules (Prisoners of Peace) (9781481442725 ...

I had low/average expectations for The Scorpion Rules, but it ended up blowing me away! I really want to read the sequel soon…

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE NEW TO YOU/DEBUT AUTHOR?

The Invisible Library (The Invisible Library Novel): Cogman ...

I just discovered The Invisible Library series and Genevieve Cogman this April, and I’m so excited to read more of her novels! I have The Burning Page on hold, and it shouldn’t arrive for a few more weeks, but I can’t wait…

WHAT ARE 6 BOOKS THAT YOU WANT TO READ BY THE END OF THE YEAR?

Excluding some of the TBR ones that are already on here…let’s see…

Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston

Ashley Poston has never disappointed me, and I am ECSTATIC to read Among the Beasts and Briars!

Amazon.com: The Good for Nothings (9781250311252): Banas, Danielle ...

Even though the art style of the cover kinda makes me angry, The Good for Nothings sounds like it’s right up my alley! I also requested an eARC of this one, so we’ll see how it goes…

Amazon.com: A Song Below Water: A Novel (9781250315328): Morrow ...

Not only does A Song Below Water sound like a timely and beautiful novel…SIRENS. SIRENS!

Amazon.com: Goddess in the Machine (9781984835925): Johnson, Lora ...

Another eARC I requested (and was declined, and that I requested again…), Goddess in the Machine sounds absolutely FASCINATING.

Amazon.com: Honor Lost (Honors Book 3) eBook: Caine, Rachel ...

The final book in the Honors series, I’m eagerly awaiting to read Honor Lost! (My school librarian got to read it before me…kind of jealous, not gonna lie…)

Amazon.com: Kingsbane (The Empirium Trilogy) (0760789267772 ...

After finishing Furyborn recently, I can’t wait to see how the series continues in Kingsbane!

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS TAG!

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Since I’ve already posted once today, check out today’s Book Review Tuesday for today’s song.

That’s it for this lovely book tag! Have a wonderful day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Book Review Tuesday, Books

Book Review Tuesday (6/9/20)–Hollow Kingdom

Happy Tuesday, bibliophiles!

This one hasn’t been on my TBR for very long, but I did a Goodreads Monday on it back in January. Aside from the fact that…well, the book basically deals with the zombie apocalypse (forgot about that when I put it on hold), I figured it would be a good read for quarantine. And I was not disappointed in the least! All at once irreverently funny and a beautiful testament to the power of nature.

Enjoy this week’s review!

Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton

Hollow Kingdom–Kira Jane Buxton

S.T. is a crow, living a comfortable life after being rescued as a chick by a man named Big Jim. Along with Big Jim’s dim-witted bloodhound, Dennis, they live in peaceful harmony just outside of Seattle. But when Big Jim begins acting strangely and lashing out, S.T. faces an unfortunate truth–Big Jim will never be the same again.

With Dennis at his side, S.T. must venture outside the comfort of his home and into the wild. Will they be able to find a cure for Big Jim’s malady–and potentially save the human race?

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Hollow Kingdom was such a unique book! A wonderful deviation not only from your garden variety zombie apocalypse book, but very different from many written from the perspectives of animals.

S.T. has the most clever, irreverent voice–often colorful in language, but capable of deep reverence and wisdom as well. The intellect and mannerisms of these intelligent birds made for no shortage of hysterical interactions and observations between him and the other creatures he encounters, be it the language he picks up from Big Jim or his commentary on other types of animals. I don’t think I’ve laughed as much at a book since I read Good Omens last year.

Buxton clearly put so much detail into the lives and familial structures of all the animals, from the domestic ones to the murders of crows that S.T. and Dennis encounter on their travels. There’s even some little tidbits from other animals across the world, from a Polar bear in the Arctic Circle to a maniacal house cat not far from where S.T. used to live. Buxton’s reverence and love for the animal kingdom truly shines in this novel.

As someone who has grown up with a myriad of pets and watched David Attenborough’s documentaries almost religiously, I connected so much to this book. I haven’t read any books from the perspective of an animal in ages (mostly because I’ve moved over from more MG-leaning novels to YA ones, and animal POVs are incredibly rare in the latter), and Buxton does such an incredible job building this multilayered world of animals, wild and tame alike.

My only criticism is that part of the theme got a bit lost in the writing. Buxton mentions something about the cause of the zombie virus coming from technology, which is an obvious critique of our disconnection from nature and our coddling of electronics. However, the topic doesn’t resurface afterwards, which left me a little confused as to what Buxton was trying to say otherwise.

However, my criticism really ends there. All in all, a clever novel that strikes a perfect balance between flippant and reverent writing and shows a true respect for the natural world. 4.25 stars for me!

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Hollow Kingdom is a standalone, and Kira Jane Buxton’s debut novel. At the moment, she has nothing else out, but I look forward to anything else she writes 🙂

Today’s song:

(Woke up with this song stuck in my head…)

That’s it for this week’s Book Review Tuesday! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in ARC Reviews, Books

eARC Review: Under Shifting Stars

Happy Monday, bibliophiles!

Out of all the eARCs I’ve received so far, this is my favorite so far! A beautiful story about sisterhood, grief, self-expression, mental illness, and exploring one’s gender identity and sexuality. A perfect read for pride month!

Under Shifting Stars–Alexandra Latos

Audrey and Clare used to be inseparable. As twin sisters, they were each other’s best friends. But the recent death of their older brother has driven a rift between them, and both sisters struggle to grapple with their inner demons.

After the shift to a school for non-neurotypical kids like herself, Audrey is determined to be seen as normal. Tired of letting her mental illness define her, she will stop at nothing to return to her twin sister’s school. But in her striving for normalcy, she realizes that being a freak isn’t as bad as the other kids have made it out to be.

Clare has always been the more popular and sociable of the twins, but lately, she has begun to question her identity and status in the school. Not only has she realized that she’s genderfluid, but she’s started to have feelings for Taylor, her new, nonbinary classmate. As social pressure grows ever higher, she must choose between her popular friend group and being true to herself.

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Thank you to Edelweiss+ and HMH Books for Younger Readers for sending me this eARC in exchange for an honest review!

Under Shifting Stars is such a powerful novel. The whole cast of characters felt so, wonderfully real, and I found myself relating to both the main characters in some respects. Latos nails the confusing feelings of being a teenager who doesn’t fit in with their peers, for one reason or another.

First off, this representation! As I said in the summary, Clare is genderfluid, and her love interest, Taylor, is nonbinary. Audrey also has ADHD. While I can’t speak to how well they were represented, Latos made them both wonderfully relatable and well-written, human characters. And while I’m not genderfluid, one aspect of the novel that was so well done were all of Clare’s confusion in discovering her sexuality/gender identity. So A+ for Alexandra Latos in that respect!

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Other than that, Latos deftly explores so many topics, ranging from the relationships between siblings and the loss of a loved one. The reactions and growth of Audrey and Clare were both wonderfully written, believable, and poignant to read. No matter your background, you’re sure to get attached to both characters, and feel their struggles along with them.

All in all, a beautiful and touching novel about grief, sisterhood, and so much more. 4 stars!

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Release date: September 29, 2020

Since I’ve already posted once today, check out this week’s Goodreads Monday for today’s song.

That’s it for this review! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Goodreads Monday

Goodreads Monday (6/8/20)–The Sound of Stars

Happy Monday, bibliophiles!

Goodreads Monday is a weekly meme created by Lauren’s Page Turners. All you have to do to participate is pick a book from your Goodreads TBR, and explain why you want to read it.

Continuing on with LGBTQ+ books, this one’s been on my TBR for a while. And from the description, it’s virtually everything that I’d ever want in a sci-fi novel. I am on an eternal search for quality YA sci-fi, so I REALLY hope to read this one soon!

Let’s begin, shall we?

GOODREADS MONDAY (6/8/20)–THE SOUND OF STARS by Alechia Dow

Amazon.com: The Sound of Stars (9781335911551): Dow, Alechia: Books

Blurb from Goodreads:

Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deaths of one-third of the world’s population.

Seventeen-year-old Janelle “Ellie” Baker survives in an Ilori-controlled center in New York City. Deemed dangerously volatile because of their initial reaction to the invasion, humanity’s emotional transgressions are now grounds for execution. All art, books and creative expression are illegal, but Ellie breaks the rules by keeping a secret library. When a book goes missing, Ellie is terrified that the Ilori will track it back to her and kill her.

Born in a lab, M0Rr1S (Morris) was raised to be emotionless. When he finds Ellie’s illegal library, he’s duty-bound to deliver her for execution. The trouble is, he finds himself drawn to human music and in desperate need of more. They’re both breaking the rules for love of art—and Ellie inspires the same feelings in him that music does.

Ellie’s—and humanity’s—fate rests in the hands of an alien she should fear. M0Rr1S has a lot of secrets, but also a potential solution—thousands of miles away. The two embark on a wild and dangerous road trip with a bag of books and their favorite albums, all the while making a story and a song of their own that just might save them both.

So why do I want to read this?

Aliens

Music

Libraries

LGBTQ+/POC representation

this is everything i've ever wanted gif | WiffleGif

I might be setting my expectations too high, but I might have just found another dream book…

Like I said, I’m a huge lover of sci-fi, and the addition of a secret library and a shared love of music seems like the exact type of thing that I would immensely enjoy in a novel. A friendship between a human and an alien and bonding over secret art is just the kind of content that I’ve been wanting to read for ages.

And in times like these (and all the time), it’s so important to support POC/LGBTQ+ authors, so I encourage all of you to spread the word about such novels, review them, and recommend them to friends. 💗

black lives matter – GIF

Today’s song:

(Why yes, I did watch Baby Driver yesterday, why do you ask?)

That’s it for this week’s Goodreads Monday! Have a wonderful day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: June 1-7, 2020

Happy Sunday, bibliophiles!

Man, after last week’s reading, I just SPED UP for some reason this week, and I read almost double the amount that I did last week. Part of it’s probably due to the fact that I read several books that were on the shorter side, but I just found it sort of odd.

Adding onto that, I think this is the most I’ve posted in one week. Partially because I’ve been starting to review the eARCs that I’ve gotten so far, but since I have a few more to review, so expect more such momentum next week…wheeeeee…

200,000 units are ready with a million more well on the way Blank ...

I got approved for two more eARCs (4 so far) and I’ve been declined 3 [sad harmonica noises], but I’ve requested a bunch, so we’ll see what happens…

Other than that, it’s been a fairly nice week–warm weather, a bit of drawing, some writing, and I watched Rope. (There is absolutely nothing heterosexual about that movie, and I love it.)

WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

Emma–Jane Austen (⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: Emma (Penguin Classics) (9781439515822): Austen, Jane ...

The Masked City (The Invisible Library, #2)–Genevieve Cogman (⭐️⭐️⭐️.75, rounded up to ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

The Masked City (The Invisible Library Novel): Cogman, Genevieve ...

The Great Gatsby: A Graphic Novel Adaptation–F. Scott Fitzgerald and K. Woodman-Maynard (eARC) (⭐️⭐️⭐️.5)

The Great Gatsby: A Graphic Novel Adaptation by F. Scott ...

The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life–Dani Jansen (eARC) (⭐️⭐️)

The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life by Dani Jansen

Hollow Kingdom–Kira Jane Buxton (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton

Dandelion Wine (Green Town, #1)–Ray Bradbury (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: Dandelion Wine (Greentown Book 1) eBook: Bradbury, Ray ...

The Girl Who Could See–Kara Swanson (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

The Girl Who Could See: A Novella: Swanson, Kara: 9781542515481 ...

POSTS AND SUCH:

SONGS:

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

Under Shifting Stars–Alexandra Latos (eARC)

Amazon.com: Under Shifting Stars (9780358067757): Alexandra Latos ...

Dreamwalkers–Leslie Rush (eARC)

Dreamwalkers - Leslie Rush - Pre-Order - Filles Vertes Publishing, LLC

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week in blogging! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Books, Top 5 Saturday

Top 5 Saturday (6/6/20)–Books Set On or Near the Sea 🌊

Happy Saturday, bibliophiles!

Time for another Top 5 Saturday! This was originally started by Devouring Books, and it sounded like such a fun post to take part in. Today’s topic is books set by or near the sea.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE:

6/6/20 — Books Set Near/On the Sea

6/13/20 — Books with One Word Titles

6/20/20 — Books You’d Give a Second Chance

6/27/20 —  Books with Morally Grey Characters

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

Let’s begin, shall we?

Breaking Down The New Hopes And Shadowed Empires In Star Wars: The ...

Summer of Salt, Katrina Leno

Summer of Salt by Katrina Leno

Here’s a story set by the sea, in the island town of…wait for it…By-the-Sea.

Fear the Drowning Deep, Sarah Glenn Marsh

Amazon.com: Fear the Drowning Deep (9781510703483): Marsh, Sarah ...

Mystery, witches, and disappearances in a coastal town in 1913.

Daughter of the Pirate King, Tricia Levenseller

Amazon.com: Daughter of the Pirate King (9781250095961 ...

Pirates, sirens, and a certain powerful, teenage pirate captain. What else could you possibly want in this kind of book?

Songs from the Deep, Kelly Powell

Amazon.com: Songs from the Deep (9781534438071): Powell, Kelly: Books

I read this one a little over a month ago, and I loved the small-town mystery and sirens.

Ashes on the Waves, Mary Lindsey

Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey

This one was recommended to me by the president of my school’s book club last year, and it was an interesting retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s poem Annabel Lee.

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE!

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Today’s song:

NEW MUSIC FROM ERASURE

BOTTOM TEXT

That’s it for today’s Top 5 Saturday! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in ARC Reviews, Books

eARC Review: The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life

Happy Friday, bibliophiles!

This was my second eARC from Edelweiss+. I hadn’t heard of it beforehand, and it sounded like a cute rom-com. But while it delivered on some aspects, it ultimately fell incredibly flat for me.

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Enjoy this eARC review!

The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life by Dani Jansen

The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life–Dani Jansen

High school senior Alison Green is desperate for the title of valedictorian of her class, and this year, she’ll do anything to take the top spot. What she didn’t anticipate was her teacher’s offering for her to direct the yearly play–this year, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. From the beginning, the play is a disaster, with a limited budget, drama between the cast members, and her hopeless crush on the girl playing Queen Titania. Will she be able to pull together all the elements and make the play work?

⭐︎

Thank you to Edelweiss+ and Second Story Press for sending me this eARC in exchange for an honest review!

Let’s start out with the good portions. First off, representation! Alison (protagonist) is a lesbian, her love interest is pansexual, there’s several gay side characters, and another side character is Korean-American. So props to Jansen for making an effortlessly diverse cast.

And on that subject, an aspect of the book I quite liked was the romance…while it lasted. Alison and Charlotte were ADORABLE together, and even though, without spoiling anything, things don’t go according to plan, it was still cute for a short while.

Now, for the rest of the book…

YIKES.

Right off the bat, all of the characters are flat, as is their dialogue. They were all but cardboard, unrealistic caricatures of what human beings are supposed to be like. As a result, there’s almost no way to connect with any of the characters. All the attempts at tackling certain issues ended up being weak and flat, and anything but thought-provoking.

Aside from this, The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life didn’t seem to have any sort of resolution. There wasn’t any real moment of learning from one’s mistakes on Alison’s part, which would have given the book far more meaning. In short, she failed (several times), but she didn’t do anything about it. There was pretty much no character development. At all. None.

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And other than that, I felt that Alison was so, needlessly self-destructive. What with her learning from none of her past faults, there are COUNTLESS moments where she pushes away her loved ones, and is surprised when they’re mad about it. Whether it’s the play, her family relationships, her actions toward her best friend, or her budding relationship with Charlotte, there is a BOATLOAD of selfishness and self-destruction. I get it, there’s usually some element of it in many rom-coms, but there was so much of it here that it only served to drag down the plot and make Alison all the more unlikable of a character.

All in all, rom-com that had some positive aspects, but ultimately was nearly as disastrous as the play adaptation in the novel. 2 stars.

Release date: September 22, 2020

Today’s song:

That’s it for this eARC review! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Books

Pride Month Book Recommendations, Week 1: Sci-Fi

Happy Thursday, everyone! 🌈

For this Pride Month, I’ve decided to do a batch of weekly recommendations of LGBTQ+ books. I’ll do a different genre each week (though they’ll all probably fall into the YA category), focusing on books with LGBTQ+ protagonists/casts of characters and themes. We’ve come quite a long way in YA, so why not celebrate it?

Let’s begin, shall we?

PRIDE MONTH RECS, WEEK 1: SCI-FI

  1. Once and Future, Amy Rose Capetta and Cori McCarthy
Once & Future by Amy Rose Capetta, Cori McCarthy |, Paperback ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Pansexual protagonist, some of the side characters are gay, genderfluid, and asexual, respectively, wlw relationship with protagonist

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.75 (rounded up to 5)

Once and Future is a genderbent, feminist retelling of the legend of King Arthur (set in space!), and it’s an absolutely WILD ride.

2. Heart of Iron duology, Ashley Poston

Amazon.com: Heart of Iron eBook: Poston, Ashley: Kindle Store

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: mlm relationship between two of the main characters, wlw relationship between some of the side characters

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I know I blab about this one quite a lot, but both Heart of Iron and Soul of Stars are truly masterpieces. Plus, Jax and Robb are one of my favorite couples in YA literature. Period.

3. Dreadnought, April Daniels

Amazon.com: Dreadnought: Nemesis - Book One (9781682300688 ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Protagonist is a trans woman/lesbian

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

A poignant and potent spin on the classic, superhero/coming of age story, as Danny comes to terms not only with her gender identity and sexuality, but with her newfound powers. I read this one a year or two ago and haven’t gotten around to reading book 2 (Sovereign), but I REALLY need to do that soon!

4. The Disasters, M.K. England

Amazon.com: The Disasters (9780062657671): England, M. K.: Books

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Protagonist is bisexual, gay love interest, trans woman side character

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Again, it’s been over a year since I’ve read this one, but it was very Guardians of the Galaxy-esque, and an absolute joy to read!

5. Crier’s War, Nina Varela

Amazon.com: Crier's War (9780062823946): Varela, Nina: Books

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: wlw representation between the two protagonists

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Though I was initially hesitant about reading this one, it turned out to subvert all of my expectations and make for a lushly written novel with romance to DIE for! I suppose you could debate whether or not this is sci-fi or fantasy (I mean, there’s…androids? Basically…), but I’d say it’s a combination of both genres.

6. Aurora Cycle, Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Amazon.com: Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle Book 2) eBook ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: There’s 7 POVs/protagonists in the series (though it later gets knocked down to 6); one is bisexual, another is a lesbian

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

You all knew I was gonna put this one in here…but hey, this series is genuinely masterful, and spoke to me on so many levels.

If you want more YA LGBTQ+ novel recommendations, I highly recommend visiting Queer Books for Teens! They have all sorts of recommendations for LGBTQ+ books of all genres, but mostly YA.

TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK! WHAT ARE SOME LGBTQ+ SCI-FI BOOKS THAT YOU LOVED? TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS! 🏳️‍🌈

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week’s Pride Month recommendations! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in ARC Reviews

eARC Review: The Great Gatsby: A Graphic Novel Adaptation

Happy Wednesday, bibliophiles!

I recently signed up for Edelweiss, and I’ve gotten a few eARCs from them since. (Other than this one, I’ve been approved for 2 and declined 1.) So, this is my very first eARC review!

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After reading and enjoying The Great Gatsby in my English class last year, I was so interested to see what a graphic novel adaptation would hold. Though it didn’t quite live up to the source material, it was certainly an enjoyable and colorful interpretation of the graphic novel.

The Great Gatsby: A Graphic Novel Adaptation by F. Scott ...

The Great Gatsby: A Graphic Novel Adaptation–F. Scott Fitzgerald and K. Woodman-Maynard

Blurb from Goodreads:

From the green light across the bay to the billboard with spectacled eyes, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1925 American masterpiece roars to life in Katharine Woodman-Maynard’s exquisite graphic novel–among the first adaptations of the book in this genre. Painted in lush watercolors, the inventive interpretation emphasizes both the extravagance and mystery of the characters, as well as the fluidity of Nick Carraway’s unreliable narration. Excerpts from the original text wend through the illustrations, and imagery and metaphors are taken to literal, and often whimsical, extremes, such as when a beautiful partygoer blooms into an orchid and Daisy Buchanan pushes Gatsby across the sky on a cloud.

This faithful yet modern adaptation will appeal to fans with deep knowledge of the classic, while the graphic novel format makes it an ideal teaching tool to engage students. With its timeless critique of class, power, and obsession, The Great Gatsby Graphic Novel captures the energy of an era and the enduring resonance of one of the world’s most beloved books.

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⭐︎Thank you to Edelweiss and Candlewick Press for giving me this eARC in exchange for an honest review!⭐︎

This was an interesting adaptation of the classic novel! Personally, something about it didn’t quite live up to the glory of the source material, but it certainly came close.

The art style was cute, simple and stylized, but not overtly so. The interpretations of the characters and their thoughts were certainly faithful. I especially liked how Daisy and Tom were drawn; Daisy was as dollish as she appears in the novel, and Tom is especially imposing and stubborn. Daisy even has her own style of speech balloons that curve out at the edges when she spoke, which was a detail I loved.

I loved the watercolors that were used to color the graphic novel. The shifting color schemes were especially deft when it came to conveying the different moods of the scenes.

However, with that being said, I don’t completely feel like it was the right art style to adapt The Great Gatsby. Although I loved the watercolor and simple style, it failed to depict some of the lavish imagery (ex. with Gatsby’s parties) as well as the novel did. A bit more coloring and definition might have done the trick.

All in all, this was an inventive adaptation of The Great Gatsby. Though it wasn’t without its flaws, it was certainly enjoyable to read and explore. 3.5 stars! (I rated the original novel 4 stars.)

EXPECTED PUBLICATION: January 5, 2021

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That’s it for this eARC review! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!