April Releases

Hello world!

I hope everyone is enjoying their April so far. We had some snow, which wasn’t fun to drive in. Nor was it fun to walk on campus with snow blowing at you at 8:30 in the morning. But it was just as not-fun walking to class later in the day while I sweat from the sunshine, so, I mean . . .  shrug. That’s a really long way of saying I hate fickle weather. I hope the start of your April was better than that.

I know I’m massively late, later than usual even on this, but it’s time for Monthly Book Releases: April Edition.

You know how every month I say that it’s going to be a great book month? This month is no exception. However, this might be a particularly squeal-y month for me, since there are a couple of books I’ve been waiting MANY MONTHS for finally coming out this month. Hint: one of them comes from the same author who brought you this (in book form) –

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I don’t think I ever gushed about my love for Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda, but I’m 99% sure I jumped up and down over here over The Upside of Unrequited (metaphorically)(okay literally)(I love Becky Albertalli y’all).

ANYWAY my little comments aside, there are (as usual) a bunch of awesome books coming out this month. Should we look at them? I think we should.

Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody A YA Fantasy that follows Enne, a proper young lady who is trying to find her missing mother. Her only lead? A trail leading to New Reynes and the name Levi Glaisyer. But Levi isn’t a gentleman; he’s a conman. The pair must go on adventures throughout the city to find Enne’s mother and maybe even save one another. Release Date: April 10th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: AmazonB&N

Dread Nation by Justina Ireland Jane McKeene is in training to become an Attendant–one of the elite who are trained to protect the well-off in an America ravaged by walking dead. It’s one of the better opportunities for a black girl like her in Civil War-era US. But all Jane wants is to get back to her family in Kentucky. When families around Baltimore start disappearing, though, it’s up to her to find out what’s happening–and figure out how to fight an enemy that makes the undead the least of her problems. YA Fantasy. Release Date: April 3rd (Already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: AmazonB&N

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian Ten years after seeing her mother murdered and her kingdom taken over, mocked Ash Princess Theodosia is forced to kill off her last hope of escape. In return, she vows vengeance, pledging to seduce the Kaiser’s son. She doesn’t count on falling for the Prinz. And she really doesn’t count on the rebels who’ve had her back turning on her unless she hands over her heart’s sister, Cress. A YA Fantasy about finding out how far you’ll go to get back what yours–and how much of yourself you’re willing to lose in the process. Release Date: April 24th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli A YA Contemporary that follows Leah, a drummer and bisexual girl who knows what she’s doing behind a drum kit but ask her about the rest of her life and she has no idea. She hasn’t told anyone she’s bi other than her mom, despite that her best friend Simon Spier is openly gay. She’s just not sure what to do, and with graduation looming and her formerly tight-knit friend group growing farther and farther apart, she’s got to decide soon. Release Date: April 24th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young Eelyn is a warrior for the Aska clan, sworn enemy to the Riki. In this YA Fantasy she battles against those who would do her clan harm–until one day she sees her brother among those people. Her brother she thought died five years before. Now she must survive among the Riki while dealing with her brother’s betrayal. But when an enemy clan everyone thought to be a myth attacks, she must try and unite the peoples to fight side by side, or they’ll all be slaughtered. Release Date: April 24th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Love Songs & Other Lies by Jessica Pennington A YA Contemporary following Virginia and Cam, two years post-breakup. The two haven’t seen each other since but now have to spend the summer on a tour bus while trying to promote Cam’s band. An entire summer on a reality-show battle of the bands tour . . . Vee and Cam can handle it, right? But with the cameras rolling 24/7 and Cam’s relentless pursuit of Vee’s forgiveness some secrets might get shared that were better left unsaid. Release Date: April 24th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

White Rabbit by Caleb Roehrig When Rufus’s ex-boyfriend Sebastian shows up out of nowhere wanting to talk, he thinks things can’t get much worse than that. But then his sister calls, begging for help. When he and Sebastian find her covered in blood and standing next to the body of her boyfriend, he knows he was wrong. She swears she didn’t do it but Rufus knows she’s hiding something. Now he and Sebastian have to work together for one night to prove his sister’s innocence or there could be dire consequences. YA Mystery/Thriller. Release Date: April 24th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Picture Us in the Light by Kelly Loy Gilbert A year after a tragic accident shook up his life, Danny Cheng seems to have it all together. He’s ready to leave for art school but the idea of leaving his best friend Harry Wong behind is daunting. And when family secrets come to light and the world Danny thought he had starts to unravel around him, he starts questioning everything–including his best friend’s love for his girlfriend. With everything spinning out of control it’s time Danny faces up to the past to make sure he has a future. YA Contemporary. Release Date: April 10th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Summer of Jordi Perez by Amy Spalding Abby Ives just wants to focus on her plus-size fashion blog. She’s perfectly willing to be the sidekick in other peoples’ lives. Then she makes the mistake of falling for her co-worker, Jordi, and when her photography starts shifting the attention Abby’s way she doesn’t know if she likes the spotlight. To top it off, she’s somehow agreed to help the local lacrosse jock, Jax, eat his way across the LA burger scene. Will she be able to reconcile the person she wants to be with the one she’s becoming? YA Contemporary. Release Date: April 3rd (Already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Diminished by Kaitlyn Sage Patterson In a world where nearly everyone is born with a twin, to be born without makes you royalty. That’s where Bo Trousillion comes in. A singleborn he is destined to rule the empire, even if he doesn’t feel quite ready for it. While most are born with a twin, sometimes those twins die. That’s where Vi Abernathy is at. Her sister died in infancy, leaving Vi with a life she dreams to escape after her family disowns her. Two different people on very different paths in life–until their sixteenth birthdays approach, when fate reveals just how much of a twist it has in store for them. Release Date: April 10th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

I actually had more titles lined up to show you guys, but figured since I’m so late as it is I’ll get these to you now. If you have any suggested books or books you’ve read this month you don’t see on the list comment them below! And, as always, feel free to talk to me anytime here or on twitter.

Gotta go. Sorry again for the lateness.

Kailey

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Miles Away From You – Review

NOTE: I won this ARC in a charity auction and was unaware of the views the novel promoted at the time. I apologize for any harm or discomfort I may have caused because of this. I will still be reviewing the novel honestly, and without bias.

Hey everyone!

As you can tell from the picture and title of this post, it’s time for another review! Unfortunately, it’s not going to be an easy one.

Before I get started, I wanted to say how sorry I am for my promotion of this novel. Initially when I won the ARC, I was very excited and thought it sounded interesting, but after reading it I feel it has the potential to be harmful to some readers and for that I apologize. I had not yet read the book when I listed it on my March Releases (it has since been removed from the list with a note explaining why).

Now that I’ve said this, let me get into my reasoning for saying so. First, as always, the description. From Amazon:

From debut voice A.B. Rutledge comes a quirky and completely fresh story of young love, loss, and the drastic distances we sometimes have to travel in order to move on, perfect for fans of Adam Silvera and Jandy Nelson. Explores gender identity and the spectrum of sexual preference in an authentic way.

Also, from Goodreads (it explains a little more):

It’s been three years since Miles fell for Vivian, a talented and dazzling transgender girl. Eighteen months since a suicide attempt left Vivian on life support. Now Miles isn’t sure who he is without her, but knows it’s time to figure out how to say goodbye.

He books a solo trip to Iceland but then has a hard time leaving the refuge of his hotel room. After a little push from Oskar, a local who is equal parts endearing and aloof, Miles decides to honor Vivian’s life by photographing her treasured Doc Martens standing empty against the surreal landscapes. With each step he takes, Miles finds his heart healing–even as he must accept that Vivian, still in a coma, will never recover.

Told through a series of instant messages to Vivian, this quirky and completely fresh novel explores love, loss, and the drastic distances we sometimes have to travel in order to move on.

So, before I get into all of the reasons why this book put me off, let me start by saying there were actually some good things about it. Almost the entire cast of characters is LGBTQ+.  The main character, Miles, is pansexual. A pansexual main character is not super common in YA, so that was a plus for me.

Some of the characters were written beautifully and painted in such a complex light, too. I know that Oskar is a favorite among others from reviews I’ve seen, and I can see why. He’s one of the few characters in the novel I actually liked.

The story being told through emails was fun as well. I love novels that don’t follow traditional novel form, though I don’t get to read many of them. The writing was entirely accurate to a teenage boy mind as well. That, combined with the pop-culture references being almost perfect for Miles’ age felt right to me, as far as the writing goes.

That’s about it on the “good” front from me. Here’s why I didn’t like the novel.

So, the premise is that a guy’s black, trans girlfriend, Vivian, tries to commit suicide and ends up in a coma. He’s struggling with it, so his moms (one is bisexual so that’s a woo) send him on a trip to Iceland so he can try to move on. From there we see his interactions and adventures as he tries to find himself after his relationship with Vivian, and even gets close with Oskar, a local boy.

Okay. So. I’m a white, cis woman, so I can’t speak to the experiences of transwomen or black women, but I can say that the descriptions weren’t done well. There were at least a few instances where misgendering occurred, and Vivian’s family is the only PoC family in the entire novel. Not to mention, they are painted in the light of negativity, with her parents entirely unsupportive of their daughter and insisting that she’s not a woman. Meanwhile, Miles’ white moms are painted as the doting, loving parents who take Vivian in when she needs a place to stay. She’s absorbed into their family.

Look, I’m all for people helping people out, but really? The only black family in the entire novel and it’s going to show them as the bad guys? That’s problematic, to say the least.

Vivian herself is not meant to be liked either. She’s viewed as sort of selfish (even though Miles is the one who’s really selfish, but whatever) and secretive and this bad person because she tries to kill herself. There are other reasons, but that’s the gist of what I got out of it anyway.

The rep is not looking good right now my friends. It did not get better either.

Miles himself is also . . . annoying is too mild. He’s a teenage boy. While he’s very accurately written for a teenage boy, it’s also grossly played up. As is his obsession with sex. Seriously, this guy basically only talks and thinks about sex, when he’s not bemoaning the fact that his girlfriend is in a coma. Because, of course, let’s make it all about Miles! Everything is about Miles in this book. Yes, I know it’s a book about Miles. But, come on, the guy is so selfish and gross. He doesn’t seem like he actually cares about her, just the fact that now he’s without her. This is not romantic. It’s more like he’s trying to find a way to make an attempted suicide all about him. And did I mention he’s obsessed with sex? It’s excessive. Sadly, that’s the most interesting thing about him. He’s a basic hipster white boy other than that.

There were moments in this novel that I actually enjoyed, but they were far outnumbered by the rest of the time. It was probably an 85/15 split, with the majority being Not Good. Not the writing itself. If you look at it purely from a craft perspective it’s actually put together pretty well. Yeah, everything definitely feels very neat, and I don’t buy into things falling into place like that, but it’s not badly written in the strictest sense. The content is just not there. I genuinely feel bad about promoting this book so much here before, knowing what I do now about the content of it.

I do not recommend this book and I gave it a 2/5 stars on Goodreads. I can’t stop you from picking it up yourself, and maybe you’ll find something totally different than what I did, but I’m not going to tell you to read it. There are better books to read, and I suggest picking those up. If you’re looking for releases from PoC this month Children of Blood and Bone and Tyler Johnson Was Here are out and Aru Shah and the End of Time comes out on March 27th. I’ve heard only good things, and plan to dive into them myself once I get through my ARCs. I suggest those over Miles.

I think this is my first really negative review on here. I’ve posted only positive reviews thus far, because I genuinely enjoyed the books and thought they were worth reading. I feel like this book, had it been written differently, could have been good. But it wasn’t for me.

I hope you found this review helpful. If you’ve read this and want to share your opinions on it, feel free to comment below! I’m open to discussing the novel, or any others you may want to talk about. I’ll see everyone soon!

Kailey

March Releases

Hey all!

I hope y’all enjoyed my Sightwitch review earlier this week (last week? I don’t know. Depends on when you consider the week to start). I also recently finished People Like Us by Dana Mele and will hopefully have that review for you soon. I will say I recommend both books!

Of course, the reason I’m writing this post is not to remind you that I post book reviews (but hey here and here are the reviews I posted before Sightwitch if you want to maybe check them out)(side note I will be posting more writing content soon I swear). The reason I’m writing this is because it is time for . . .

MARCH BOOK RELEASES!!

Was that showing proper excitement? That’s about right for how I feel. I know I’m four days late (and I suck) but this is a good book month. I’m so serious. There are some killer books coming out this month you guys. I am so excited to tell you all about them!! Starting now.

Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough A YA Historical novel in verse inspired by the life and trials of famous painter Artemisia Gentileschi. Set in Rome in 1610, the young woman faces a choice after she is raped: she can keep quiet or speak up, consequences be damned. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Children of Blood & Bone by Tomi Adeyemi A YA Fantasy debut about Orïsha, a land formerly filled with magic, and Zélie, the girl who is going to bring it all back. She is determined to overthrow the monarchy that ordered magi like her mother murdered. But she only has one shot and doesn’t need growing feelings getting in the way of taking it. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Tyler Johnson Was Here by Jay Coles A YA Contemporary about Marvin, a young boy whose brother Tyler went to a party and then promptly went missing. A video later surfaces that shows Tyler was killed by a police officer after they’d raided the party he was at. Now Marvin needs to learn how to cope with this loss while watching his brother turn into a symbol. Release Date: March 20th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X. R. Pan When Leigh’s mother committed suicide, she’s absolutely certain that she turned into a bird. This YA Contemporary follows her on her journey to Taiwan to meet her maternal grandparents and find her mother, the bird. Along the way she must learn how to cope with her loss and forge new relationships. Release Date: March 20th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

the witch doesn’t burn in this one by Amanda Lovelace This book of poetry is the second in the “women are some kind of magic series”. Lovelace explores what it means to be a powerful woman and how they are often demonized, but not here. She creates empowering and vividly bold poems that her readers can relate to in countless ways. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Nothing Left to Burn by Heather Ezell A YA Contemporary spanning the course of an action-packed 24 hours. Sixteen-year-old Audrey is forced to evacuate her home after the wildfires sweeping through California get too close. While trying to come to terms with potentially losing her family home, she also has to deal with Brooks, the volunteer firefighter who may have a darker past than he initially let on. Release Date: March 13th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Not If I Save You First by Ally Carter A YA Contemporary about Maddie, daughter to a secret service agent and formerly the president’s son’s best friend. But after six years in the Alaskan wilderness, she’s not too concerned about him anymore. Until he shows up, and brings trouble right to her door. She wants to kill him, but when he gets kidnapped, it looks like she’ll have to save him first. Release Date: March 27th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Beauty that Remains by Ashley Woodfolk A YA Contemporary that follows Autumn, Shay, and Logan as they each watch their lives unexpectedly crumble around them. Music is just not enough anymore, until they can come back together as a band and see that sometimes when the smoke clears there is beauty left behind. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo A YA Fantasy about Lira, a deadly siren princess who collects the hearts of princes. When she’s forced to kill one of her own, though, her mother the Sea Queen forces her to live as a human. The only way to return to her home is to bring her mother the heart of Prince Elain by the winter solstice. But Prince Elain is determined to wipe out the sirens, and with Lira’s promised help he can. Too bad he doesn’t trust her. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Olivia Twist by Lorie Langdon This YA Historical retelling of Oliver Twist follows Olivia Brownlow, formerly raised among London’s street gangs but now a high society debutante who can’t seem to forget her past–or the people still living like she did. Enter Jack MacCarron, the “nephew” of a high society woman who is helping her rob people blind. He can’t seem to figure out why Olivia looks so familiar, but he wants to. And he’s willing to go pretty far to find out. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Final Six by Alexandra Monir A YA Sci-Fi about Leo and Naomi, two very different people who were both chosen to attend International Space Training Camp after climate change has ravaged the earth. Leo wants is to help save humankind after he lost his family to the floods in Rome. Naomi wants to find out what the ISTC is hiding. They form a friendship, but among the 24 teens present, only six can make it to the end. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw Every summer, the ghosts of three murdered sisters rise up and claim the bodies of weak-hearted girls in order to drown local boys for revenge for their deaths. Penny Talbot knows this, and accepts it, until Bo Carter arrives. Now she’s got a choice to make–save herself, or save him. YA Fantasy. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo In this YA novel in verse, Xiomara Batista pours everything she has into her poetry. But she can never let anyone know. When she’s invited to perform at her school’s slam poetry club, she can’t think about anything else. And maybe this time she’s done keeping her thoughts to herself. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Midnights by Sara Nicole Smetana A YA Contemporary about Susannah, who just wants to follow in her rock star father’s footsteps. But when he dies unexpectedly, it destroys her. In the aftermath, her mother moves them to a new city, where she reinvents herself and leaves the past in the past. But her secrets might catch up with her, and she’s not the only one keeping them. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Time Bomb by Joelle Charbonneau This YA Contemporary features an eclectic cast of characters who are thrown together by extreme circumstances–namely a bomb. Now they’re trapped in a school together trying to find out who the bomber is, and looking at each other for answers. Release Date: March 13th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Honor Code by Kiersi Burkhart This YA Contemporary follows Sam as she excitedly navigates Edwards Academy–only to learn there’s more than a little hazing involved with being a new student. And when she’s paired with an older student and something happens, she’s forced to figure out if the future she’s always dreamed of is worth keeping her mouth shut and losing the justice she deserves. Release Date: March 1st (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

A Kiss in the Dark by Gina Ciocca When the lights go out at her high school’s football game, Macy finds herself on the receiving end of a kiss. When the lights come back on, though, the kisser is gone. Still, Macy thinks there’s something familiar about the kisser. Trying to figure out just who this guy is leads to the reopening of some old wounds. And all to find out that her mystery kisser might not be the same person she’s falling for in the light of day. YA Contemporary. Release Date: March 6th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner In this YA Contemporary Cameron just wants to perfect her costume portfolio and get into the CalTech costume department. Once her cosplay starts getting her attention, she’s forced to disguise herself as a boy to work in the local comic book shop. But it’s hard to keep up once she joins a D&D campaign, and it’s even harder when she starts to get feelings for one of the other players. Release Date: March 13th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Reflection: A Twisted Tale by Elizabeth Yim When Captain Shang is taken to the Underworld after being wounded in battle, Mulan travels down to find him. King Yama isn’t so quick to give him up, though. Now Mulan, disguised as Ping, must scour the Underworld in search of him. And when she finds him, she must decide if she should tell him the truth about her identity. If she finds him. A YA Fantasy retelling. Release Date: March 27th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

March 6th and March 20th are going to be busy days, just saying. Also, I did warn you guys that March was going to be a longer post. There are just a lot of good books coming out this month you guys. WARNING: A LOT OF THESE DEAL WITH SENSITIVE CONTENT AND I WOULD CHECK FOR TRIGGER WARNINGS BEFORE READING. I won’t be able to read any of them until later this week (thanks midterms) but if you read any of them comment your thoughts! Or come talk to me on twitter!

Alright, sadly I have to go. Studying waits for no one and my Greek midterm is not going to go well unless I actually, you know, look at the Greek. Bye!

Kailey

3/21/18 UPDATE: I have removed Miles Away From You from this list due to harmful content as explained in my review. My deepest and most sincere apologies for its placement here in the first place.

Sightwitch – Review

Hi people. I hope everyone is doing well.

It’s been a somewhat busy month. At least, it’s been an annoying one for sure. I’m currently dealing with some personal stuff that has been stressing me out all month. Plus a bunch of writing for my creative writing seminar. Which is also stressing me out. But that’s a whole other situation that has unfortunately led to me not getting any real work done on my current WIP. (I’ve had to move my self-imposed deadline back . . . twice. Cue the self-disappointment and frustration).

HOWEVER I’ve made time for reading this month–a lot of it. It’s been my saving grace (not to mention my mental health). Aaaaaaaaaaand in my stolen reading time, I managed to finish Sightwitch!

I adored this book for many reasons (which, duh, I’ll list here)(well, the spoiler-free stuff anyway). But before I get into why everyone should read the amazing Susan Dennard’s latest work, let me tell you what the book is about.

From Amazon:

Before Safi and Iseult battled a Bloodwitch…

Before Merik returned from the dead…

Ryber Fortiza was a Sightwitch Sister at a secluded convent, waiting to be called by her goddess into the depths of the mountain. There she would receive the gift of foretelling. But when that call never comes, Ryber finds herself the only Sister without the Sight.

Years pass and Ryber’s misfit pain becomes a dull ache, until one day, Sisters who already possess the Sight are summoned into the mountain, never to return. Soon enough, Ryber is the only Sister left. Now, it is up to her to save her Sisters, though she does not have the Sight—and though she does not know what might await her inside the mountain.

On her journey underground, she encounters a young captain named Kullen Ikray, who has no memory of who he is or how he got there. Together, the two journey ever deeper in search of answers, their road filled with horrors, and what they find at the end of that road will alter the fate of the Witchlands forever.

giphy1

Are you excited yet? I’m going to pretend you’re nodding. I know I was excited. It was a good story and here’s why I think you should read it seventeen times.

The drawings create another layer to an already detailed story. For being a novella there’s a lot going on. I can’t really say much about specific artwork without getting a little spoiler-y (I mean mostly)(but this is also something that you really need to see for yourself). The drawings and diagrams add more depth to the different storylines. Plus they’re done very well.

In addition to the artwork, one of the main reasons I loved Sightwitch was the POVs. Where Ryber’s story is not as prominent in the other Witchlands novels, the whole point of this prequel is to learn about her, and what’s really going on in the Witchlands. Not only is it cool to hear from Ryber’s POV, but we hear a little from Kullen’s–whose introduction was hilarious, brilliant, and one of my favorite parts of the entire novella–and a few other characters who I can’t name (but who are definitely going to be important later on I think).

In line with those people I can’t tell you too much about (I know, I suck, but I have a bad habit of giving stuff away and I want you to read it too) I can tell you Ryber’s story is mirrored nicely to theirs. The parallels drawn to fill in the holes in the readers’ minds are beautifully done and one of my favorite structural parts of the novella.

While I will rave to anyone who will listen about Sightwitch and the other Witchlands books, I do have one bone to pick about it: IT WAS ONLY A NOVELLA.

Okay, that’s not a real bone to pick I guess. Truthfully it’s just me being selfish. I know Susan’s been working her butt off to get us this story, and next Bloodwitch, and to get them as perfect as she can. There were a few points I would’ve liked to know more, though. Some stuff was just a little ambiguous and (while it totally sucked me in deep) I wanted MORE! It’s the only real issue I had with the book, and it’s a pretty small and silly one considering we’re getting Bloodwitch next year where hopefully my questions will be answered. The length was probably perfect for the story itself, I just always want more when it comes to a Witchlands story. (I adore the Witchlands world you guys so much).

 

tangled-read-a-book

I’m very curious, knowing what I do now, about how these stories play out in the Witchlands series. I want to know if what we learn here has as far an impact as I think it will. I do think some of the questions left unanswered was a little frustrating, but not nearly enough to diminish my impressive love for Ryber’s story. Overall Sightwitch very much so stood up to the standard I hold Susan’s books to (and the drawings made it even better). I gave it 4 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.

So finally, this isn’t a part of my review, but I’m going to leave you with a couple of my favorite quotes from the novella:

“‘But maybe the marked path isn’t the right one. Maybe . . . there isn’t one set path at all.'” (159)

“You’ll understand once you’re Summoned? Well, is Summoned myself, and now I did understand: paths do not come to you. You have to find them for yourself, and sometimes, you have to carve new ones entirely.” (230)

And with that I say goodbye. I’m off to give more notes on my classmates’ work. I hope you enjoyed my (kind of scattered sorry) review and found it helpful! If so, leave me a comment or talk to me on Twitter. Bye!!

Kailey

Batman: Nightwalker – Review

Hello my beautiful people! I hope you’re all having a good January. Mine has been more organized than usual (I’ve started bullet journaling and let me tell you, this might have saved my life). As a result, I’ve been reading and writing a ton already. I’ve already finished three books this month! And I’m currently reading two (The Belles and Killer Instinct, in case y’all were wondering).

One of the awesome books I’ve been able to read is Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu. The day this came out I put a hold on it at my library, not really expecting to get it before I headed back to school, but hopeful that I might. A couple hours later I got an email from my library that my hold was ready for pickup. I all but ran there to grab it.

Look how cool it is!

(Yes, I own a Batman beanie. No I didn’t wear it while I read. Not the entire time at least.)

So, obviously this cover is not the only thing I’m going to talk about. I mean, I could. But I don’t think you guys would be too appreciative if I spent the whole review going “LOOK AT THE COVER! LOOK AT THE COVER!” (But, for real, look at the cover!)

Okay, cover love over. There’s actual content to discuss here. It took me a little while to get through this, both because I am actually sticking to a writing schedule for once (I’m on a self-imposed deadline) and because I was reading two other books at the same time. I didn’t mind reading this one slowly, though. It was nice to take breaks in between chapters, set the book down and come back to it. It’s not the kind of book where that’s entirely necessary, unlike several heavier books, but it is helpful to work through some of the different theories you might have. I had multiple theories about who did what and what was going on as I read, so I enjoyed waiting between every few chapters.

Before I get into my theories (as much as a no spoiler review will allow) let’s get the book description in here. From Amazon:

“Before he was Batman, he was Bruce Wayne. A reckless boy willing to break the rules for a girl who may be his worst enemy.

The Nightwalkers are terrorizing Gotham City, and Bruce Wayne is next on their list.
The city’s elites are being taken out one by one as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is about to become eighteen and inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Industries and all the tech gadgetry that he loves. But on the way home from his birthday party, he makes an impulsive choice and is sentenced to community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most nefarious criminals.

Madeleine Wallace is a brilliant killer . . . and Bruce’s only hope.
The most intriguing inmate in Arkham is Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. A girl who will only speak to Bruce. She is the mystery he must unravel, but is he convincing her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees?

In this second DC Icons book–following Leigh Bardugo’s Wonder Woman: Warbringer–Bruce Wayne is proof that you don’t need superpowers to be a super hero, but can he survive this game of tense intrigue, pulse-pounding action, and masterful deception?”

First thing’s first: I loved the characterization of young Bruce Wayne. I felt that he was accurate to what a young Batman would be like. His behaviors, thought process, and actions all rang true as something teenage Bruce Wayne would do.

His friends were intriguing, though not really focused on too much. Without giving anything away, I will say that young Harvey Dent made want to cry and protect him. But both he and their friend Dianne Garcia were purely background characters in this story. I thought both characters could have had bigger roles, but it wasn’t a major point in the novel.

Madeleine Wallace kept me guessing until the very end. Even now, twelve hours after I finished the book, I still don’t know how I really felt about her. She’s incredibly complex, and a great character in play opposite to Bruce. I wouldn’t exactly call her a foil . . . it could be argued, for sure. But I don’t feel comfortable saying that, based on my reading. Maybe you’ll think differently (if you do, tell me in the comments).

I can’t say who the biggest villain ended up being, but I will tell you that I was genuinely surprised. I was looking elsewhere and ended up being blindsided by who The Big Bad Villain turned out to be. (Or maybe I’m just saying all this to throw you off)(I’m not). I think you’ll be surprised as well when you read this. Or maybe you won’t be. But I think it’s a testament to Lu’s writing that you can suspect anyone and no one and still end up being wrong about who Bruce can and can’t trust. (Is that spoiler-y? I don’t think so.)(If that’s spoiler-y I’m sorry.)

 

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I definitely think it’s better than a lot of books I’ve read in the past. It’s better than one of the books I’ve read already this year. There were parts that kept me guessing, moments of true insight into the characters, and a story that left just enough wiggle room for more of the Bruce Wayne we know and love. The only thing that made this a 4 star review instead of 5 was a personal dislike for how Madeleine’s storyline ended. However, it was still a fantastic read and I would (and already have) recommend it to anyone looking for a good YA.

If you’ve read this, or want to read it, or just want to talk about books, tell me in the comments! Or talk to me on Twitter (I’m pretty much always on Twitter you guys). I’m leaving to get my hair cut and drop this back off at the library. Writing time when I get back. I hope this review was helpful!

Kailey

January Releases

Hello! I know, it’s been so long since you’ve last seen me. A whole day. You all missed me so much I’m sure.

Okay, now that we’ve gotten all my sarcasm out of the way (ha good joke Kailey) it’s time to talk about why we’re really here. It’s time for me to let you know about some January book releases!

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(I finally figured out I can put gifs in these posts. Go me for taking so long to do it.)

I know, you’re probably thinking “Kailey, you’ve never done a post like this before. What is this?” Well, I’m glad you asked. In my Most Anticipated Books of 2018 post I mentioned something about monthly release posts. This is the first of that type. What I’ll be doing is early in the month (I’ll try my best to get it up on the 1st but no promises) I’ll post a list of books coming out that month that I have heard about/want to read/think sound interesting. It will obviously not be a complete list, because I’m bound to miss some books (that’s where y’all come in. Remember, my comment section is always open). But, I’ll try to give you guys a good selection of books coming out for the month. Some months the list might be longer than others (heads up, March might be a looooooooong list) but I’ll do my best to give you guys a few different titles at least to look at.

So, here’s the books I’ve chosen for January.

Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed – A YA Contemporary about a young Indian-American girl named Maya, who tries to find her way and where she belongs after a tragedy turns her normally kind neighborhood into a place full of suspicion and hate. Release Date: January 16th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu – A YA Fantasy about a young Bruce Wayne targeted by murderous nightwalkers. While doing community service at Arkham Asylum he comes across Madeleine Wallace, who might his best bet at stopping them. Too bad he doesn’t know whose side she’s on. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black – A YA Fantasy about a young girl, Jude, who was brought to the High Court of Faerie seven years ago. Now, she’s trying to find a place to fit in–against the desires of the youngest prince. Of course, none of that matters if the Courts of Faerie erupt in civil war like they’re threatening to. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone by Rachel Lynn Solomon – A YA Contemporary about twins Adina and Tovah, who are struggling with their fractured relationship. A diagnosis of Huntington’s disease can bring them back together or widen the gap–but only one of them tested positive. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert – A YA Fantasy with fairy tale-esque writing. After Alice’s grandma dies, she’s got to work with Ellery, a superfan of her grandmother’s cult classic novel in order to find her missing mother. Release Date: January 30th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann – A YA Contemporary about Alice, an asexual college student whose last relationship ended because her ex couldn’t separate love and sex. She’s done with relationships–until she realizes she has feelings for her co-worker Takumi. Release Date: January 23rd. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Between the Blade and the Heart by Amanda Hocking – A YA Fantasy about Malin, a Valkyrie-in-training whose world is turned upside down when she finds out her mother let an immortal live who was destined for death. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Meet Cute: Some People Are Destined to Meet by Jennifer L. Armentrout – An anthology of short stories about first meetings between lovable characters by several popular YA authors, like Nicola Yoon, Emery Lord, and Dhonielle Clayton, among others. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Beneath the Haunting Sea by Joanna Ruth Meyer – A YA Fantasy about a banished soon-to-be empress named Talia who works to unravel family secrets and long-forgotten history of the gods. All the while the sea is calling to her–and it’s getting harder not to answer. Release Date: January 9th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Reign the Earth by A.C. Gaughen – A YA Fantasy about Shalia, a girl in a political marriage to prevent an attack on her desert home from her magic-hating husband. The only problem? She’s one of the magic users he despises. Release Date: January 30th. About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp – A YA Mystery about Corey, whose best friend Kyra has died while she was away. Now that Corey has returned, her community is pushing her away and she’s determined to find out why. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Busted by Gina Ciocca – A YA Contemporary Romance about a girl named Marissa, who became the queen of busting cheating boyfriends (accidentally). Now she’s been asked to spy on an ex-friend’s boyfriend. But the girl he’s falling for might just be Marissa. Release Date: January 2nd (already out!). About: Goodreads. Purchase: Amazon B&N

Whew. That’s a lot of books. I hope you find one or two on here that you’ll like at least. I wanted to give a lot of options for this first month. Twelve books–I’m not even sure if I could read twelve books in a month. If you can, that’s pretty awesome. I’m sort of jealous.

I have not read any of these books, but I thought the premises sounded interesting. If you have read/are reading any of these, let me know what you think! I’d love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment or talk to me on Twitter!

I’m trying to move this draft along so I’m off to go work on Project L. And then get some reading in tonight. I hope y’all are having a good start to the year!

Kailey