Posted in Book Tags, Books

My Life in Books Tag

Hi again, bibliophiles! I have a little bit of extra time, and I haven’t done a book tag in what feels like ages, so I’ve decided to do this one!

I found this tag over at Bookshelf Life, and I haven’t been able to find the creator of the tag, so if you know, please let me know 🙂

Let’s begin, shall we?

FIND A BOOK FOR EACH LETTER OF YOUR NAME

M: Monstrous–MarcyKate Connolly

A: Aurora Rising–Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (you all knew this was coming, didn’t you?)

D: Dune–Frank Herbert

E: Even the Darkest Stars–Heather Fawcett

L: The Life Below (The Final Six, #2)–Alexandra Monir

I: I Wish You All the Best–Mason Deaver

N: Night Music–Jenn Marie Thorne

E: Everything Grows–Aimee Herman

PICK A BOOK SET IN YOUR CITY/COUNTRY

All the Impossible Things: Lackey, Lindsay: 9781250202864: Amazon.com: Books

I’ve lived in Colorado for most of my life, and that’s where All the Impossible Things is set. There’s even a scene at the Denver Aquarium, one of my favorite places to go in Denver.

PICK A BOOK THAT REPRESENTS A DESTINATION THAT YOU WOULD LOVE TO TRAVEL TO

The Case of the Missing Marquess (An Enola Holmes Mystery): Springer,  Nancy: 9780142409336: Amazon.com: Books

I’ve always wanted to travel to England, and Enola Holmes, along with Harry Potter (among other things) may or may not have spurred that on. (Oh, and David Bowie and the Beatles…)

PICK A BOOK WITH YOUR FAVORITE COLOR ON THE COVER

Amazon.com: Under Shifting Stars eBook: Latos, Alexandra: Kindle Store

I love teal and turquoise, and Under Shifting Stars has that in no short supply.

WHICH BOOK DO YOU HAVE THE FONDEST MEMORY OF?

Amazon.com: Heart of Iron (9780062652850): Poston, Ashley: Books

I read Heart of Iron for the first time just over two years ago. I was on a plane ride to Chicago, and I spent most of the ride eagerly reading through this one. It was my favorite book for a while, and I highly recommend it!

WHICH BOOK DID YOU HAVE THE MOST DIFFICULTY READING?

Amazon.com: The Odyssey (9780140268867): Homer, Robert Fagles, Bernard  Knox: Books

We had to read The Odyssey for English in my freshman year. I liked it, but I had to read it in…[ahem] small chunks because I just kept getting tired…

WHICH BOOK ON YOUR TBR WILL GIVE YOU THE BIGGEST SENSE OF ACCOMPLISHMENT WHEN YOU FINISH IT?

Amazon.com: To Sleep in a Sea of Stars eBook: Paolini, Christopher: Kindle  Store

I started reading To Sleep in a Sea of Stars last night. It’s about the same length of my edition of Dune, which took me a solid week to read, so it’ll be a relief to finish all 880 pages. (I’m about 200 pages in now, and…it went from “draws heavily from Aliens” to “wait, is this an Aliens fanfic?” very quickly, but we’ll see how it goes…)

I TAG:

& anyone else who wants to participate!

30 Animated Book Reading Gifs - Best Animations

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

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

Posted in Books, Top 5 Saturday

Top 5 Saturday (7/4/20)–Coming of Age Books 🌱

Happy Saturday, bibliophiles, and a happy Fourth of July to my fellow Americans! If I’m being completely honest, most of the country is a disaster, but I believe that dissent and the wish to change one’s country for the better is true patriotism. I celebrate the good parts of the country, and IF YOU’RE OF VOTING AGE, PLEASE VOTE. WE NEED TO GET THE RACIST, MISOGYNIST, HOMOPHOBIC SOGGY CHEETO OUT OF OFFICE AT ALL COSTS.

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Anyway, it’s 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 coming-of-age books.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE FOR JULY: 

7/4/20 Coming of Age

7/11/20 — Hyped Books

7/18/20 — Books You Own

7/25/20 —  #OwnVoices Books

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?

TOP 5 SATURDAY (7/4/20)–COMING OF AGE BOOKS

Everything Grows, Aimee Herman

Amazon.com: Everything Grows: A Novel eBook: Herman, Aimee: Kindle ...

A beautiful and underrated novel that follows a new high schooler as she grapples with her sexuality and the suicide of a classmate.

Under Shifting Stars, Alexandra Latos

I recently got this one as an eARC (it’s coming out in late September of this year), and it’s a wonderfully poignant novel of navigating grief, mental illness, friendships, and sexual and gender identity.

Kiss Number 8, Colleen A.F. Venable and Ellen T. Crenshaw (illustrator)

Amazon.com: Kiss Number 8 eBook: Venable, Colleen AF, Crenshaw ...

A relatable exploration of family, friendships, and relationships–plus, the art style is super cute!

Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now, Dana L. Davis

Amazon.com: Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now (9781335994134): Davis ...

A cleverly-written and poignant exploration of family ties.

The Midnights, Sarah Nicole Smetana

Amazon.com: The Midnights eBook: Smetana, Sarah Nicole: Kindle Store

A heart-wrenching tale of grief and finding your voice.

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE!

Cat Fun GIF by Ivo Adventures | Autumn leaves craft, Fall decor ...

Today’s song (bitter Fourth of July edition!)

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

Posted in Books

Pride Month Book Recommendations, Week 3: Contemporary

Happy Thursday, bibliophiles!

As far as LGBTQ+ YA literature goes, contemporary is the genre where such representation is most common, I think. Contemporary novels were where many people were first introduced to LGBTQ+ themes and issues, and as a genre that sticks to the more realistic side of things, it’s a straightforward vehicle for representation.

But with such a plethora of books, there’s a wider variety. So, I tried to compile some of my favorites from this genre, and the ones that stood out the most in the genre.

Let’s begin, shall we?

PRIDE MONTH RECS, WEEK 3: CONTEMPORARY

  1. I Wish You All the Best, Mason Deaver
Amazon.com: I Wish You All the Best eBook: Deaver, Mason: Kindle Store

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: protagonist is nonbinary (they/them), nonbinary side character

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

A heartrwenching and poignant novel. Ben’s journey to realizing their identity as a nonbinary person is beautiful and simultaneously heartbreaking to watch unfold. (Trigger warnings: LGBTQ+phobia, being thrown out of the house)

2. Under Shifting Stars, Alexandra Latos

LGBTQ+ representation: One of the protagonists is genderfluid, nonbinary love interest

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I can’t wait for this one to be released so that you all can experience this wondrousness! A beautiful and relatable novel about sisterhood, grief, and exploring one’s gender identity and sexuality.

3. Queens of Geek, Jen Wilde

Amazon.com: Queens of Geek eBook: Wilde, Jen: Kindle Store

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Bisexual protagonist, wlw relationship

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

A wonderful and diverse story about love, fame, and the uniting–and dividing–power of fandom.

4. The Art of Being Normal, Lisa Williamson

The Art of Being Normal: A Novel by Lisa Williamson, Paperback ...

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Trans woman protagonist, trans man side character

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Though it wasn’t without its flaws, The Art of Being Normal is a poignant exploration of grappling with gender identity and sexuality as an adolescent.

5. Summer of Salt, Katrina Leno

Amazon.com: Summer of Salt (9780062493682): Leno, Katrina: Books

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Lesbian protagonist, aro/ace side character, wlw relationship

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Even though this one’s a bit more on the magical realism side (hey, it’s shelved as contemporary on Goodreads though…right? Right?), this is, without a doubt, a gorgeously written novel and one of my favorite YA love stories.

6. Echo After Echo, Amy Rose Capetta

Amazon.com: Echo After Echo eBook: Capetta, Amy Rose: Kindle Store

LGBTQ+ REPRESENTATION: Protagonist is a lesbian, bisexual love interest, wlw relationship

MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Another winner from Amy Rose Capetta! Not only is it a wonderful love story, it’s also a fascinating mystery set in the world of the theater.

TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK IN THE COMMENTS! WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE CONTEMPORARY LGTBQ+ NOVELS?

Happy Pride Day GIF by pikaole - Find & Share on GIPHY

As always, Queer Books for Teens is a wonderful resource if you want to find more LGBTQ+ YA literature.

Today’s song:

MORE SOCCER MOMMY MORE SOCCER MOMMY MORE SOCCER MO–

(Also, Phoebe Bridgers released her new album a day early! Expect an album review next week…😄)

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

Posted in Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: June 8-14, 2020

Happy Sunday, bibliophiles!

All things considered, it’s been an…alright week. There hasn’t been anything super eventful, other than J.K. Rowling testing me ([screams] TRANS RIGHT ARE HUMAN RIGHTS, WHEN WILL YOU LEARN–). I’ve received a few more eARCs (more reviews to come next week!), but I checked Edelweiss yesterday, and I’d gotten declined 4 (four) eARCs all at once…whee…

But hey, I’ve just started out. And plus, I still have a bunch of pending requests, so things could start looking up next week.

My reading week’s been fairly hit-or-miss–it’s swung between four star and two star reads, for the most part, but I’ve found a few that I enjoyed. As far as writing goes, I’ve just finished writing the climax for my WIP (!!!), and I’m close to 300 pages! It’s the most I’ve ever written, so that’s been crazy. I’m also working away at an Iron Giant puzzle, which has given me a primal urge to go back and watch it again.

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WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

Under Shifting Stars–Alexandra Latos (eARC) (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Dreamwalkers–Leslie Rush (eARC) (⭐️⭐️⭐️)

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

Fourth World–Lyssa Chiavari (⭐️⭐️)

Fourth World (Iamos Trilogy, #1) by Lyssa Chiavari

Lyrics and Curses (Cursed Hearts, #1)–Candace Robinson (eARC) (⭐️⭐️)

Lyrics & Curses (Cursed Hearts, #1) by Candace Robinson

Ash–Malinda Lo (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Ash by Malinda Lo

The Girl who Was Convinced Beyond All Reason That She Could Fly–Sybil Lamb (eARC) (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

The Girl Who Was Convinced Beyond All Reason That She Could Fly ...

POSTS AND SUCH:

SONGS:

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek–Kim Michele Richardson

Amazon.com: The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek: A Novel ...

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 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!