A pansexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with an undead spirit to start a rebellion among the living and the dead, in this dark YA fantasy by A.M. Strickland, author of Beyond the Black Door, whom Richard Kadrey calls “a storyteller of both grace and power.”
In Thanopolis, those gifted with magic are assigned undead spirits to guard them—and control them. Ever since Rovan’s father died trying to keep her from this fate, she’s hidden her magic. But when she accidentally reveals her powers, she’s bound to a spirit and thrust into a world of palace intrigue and deception.
Desperate to escape, Rovan finds herself falling for two people she can’t fully trust: Lydea, a beguiling, rebellious princess; and Ivrilos, the handsome spirit with the ability to control Rovan, body and soul.
Together, they uncover a secret that will destroy Thanopolis. To save them all, Rovan will have to start a rebellion in both the mortal world and the underworld, and find a way to trust the princess and spirit battling for her heart—if she doesn’t betray them first.
Opening Sentence: There wasn’t much warning the day they came for Rovan’s father.
What I Loved:
This is the book I read that got me back to the feeling I had craved for so long of reading and devouring a book. I couldn’t get enough. I had to know more. To feel more. This book is dark, beautiful, pansexual joy.
Rovan and Lydea. God when these two women were in a room together I felt the heat. I wouldn’t consider this a spicy novel, but the tension and attraction is very much there. Their attraction is instant and so good feeling. I loved every moment they were together.
Rovan and Ivrilos. There’s is the hate to love romance I craved. Add that to the fact Ivrilos can suck the life out of anyone he wishes with a touch and so many layers of tension build. ‘It’s complicated’ is the best way to describe their relationship and I live for it.
Japha. Dear sweet amazing Japha. Their the glue that keeps everyone together. I love them so much. I love their asexual and have that emotional deep connection with Rovan and Lydea. That their a part of the shared love as much as Rovan, Lydea, and Ivrilos are. Asexual relationships are just as deep and connected as sexual ones are. I love that it’s something this novel includes.
Healthy and thriving poly relationship. I deeply appreciate as someone who is open to the idea of polyamory, the way this book handles polyamory. Everyone is so respectful of each other’s desires. Every person loves freely and feels joy for their partners in their other relationships. Everything is handled in an honest and mature way.
Deadly magic. The magic system in this world is so cool. It’s also quite a tragic kind of magic how there’s a legacy to it that results in the death of the parent to give stronger magic to their child. It’s such a layered and unique system that added so much lore and interest to the novel.
All in All:
I highly recommend to read this very enjoyable, beautiful book. It’s romantic and fun and full of heart and mistakes made. The characters are flawed but, that’s what it is to be human. I find it beautiful.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
After way too much time, I have returned to set my goals for July 2022. I remembered that I had the most success in my goals when I’d write them down here and remind myself of them every day. Consistent progress that would lead to me actually finishing the projects I would set out for myself.
For reading I am going to restart Beyond the Surface. This time it’ll only be up on my blog and the main focus would be for me to read a book every month featuring a character dealing with their mental health.
For July, I will be reading The Art of Starving by Sam J. Miller.
I have chosen this book for this month because I have been desiring to read it for so long and I no longer want to make any excuses for not reading it.
I will also be reviewing the books that I’ve read this year that I have put off reviewing. I’ve been so behind in my reading and reviews that I feel super bad for accumulating such a large back log. It’s time to slowly chip away at it and not accumulate any more books till I have a lot of what I already have read.
In writing, I really want to finish an actual book. I’ve also put that off time and time and time again. It needs to be done. I really don’t care about a specific word count daily this time around, but I need to put something towards my book till it gets done.
The other daily thing is I need to start to exercise and I also don’t care if it starts at 10 minutes a day, but I need to move my body. I need to lose some weight and I miss fitting into a lot of my old clothes. Most of all I want to do some awesome cosplays and I need to loose a bit of weight and get in shape for that. The added bonus of being and feeling healthier will be amazing too.
Starting July 6th, I have the next two classes in my pharmacy technician course. I’m starting to get into more specific pharmacy tech classes and I am excited. I need to organize my classes a bit better so that I balance it to where I get everything done.
Another super exciting thing is that I got myself a ps5 a few months ago. I also took very big advantages of the PlayStation sales that have gone on. I’ve purchased a ton of really awesome games and I’ve been loving many of them. However, I haven’t really been doing a lot of completing any of these games. So my goal for this month is to work towards completing Dark Souls.
So far I have played 25 hours of dark souls. I have made it 8% of the way through the achievements. I am currently trying to make my way through blight town. My goal this month is not to complete dark souls, but at the very least to make any amount of progress on it daily provided I’ve completed all my other tasks for the day.
Also Man of Medan is coming to PlayStation plus in July and I am absolutely going to get my boyfriends to play through the entire game with me. I haven’t played a game with him in a good while and I’m excited to experience something new with him.
Also the main thing I want to do is organize my time better. I want to have nights available for myself to relax watch Stranger Things (my sole tv show to complete goal for the month) or to play video games without worrying that I have all these other things to do and complete for the day.
I also will have a decent amount of days this month set aside for family and friends. These days are the days that are the most peaceful to me.
All in all, there’s a lot I want to do in July. I will make sure I keep the main things I want to complete done and as long as I do, this month will be a success. If I do achieve all my goals this month I’ll let myself buy the game Stray to play next month because I’ve been so excited since it was announced.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
It’s a brand new year and it’s finally, finally time to bring back an old favorite. The monthly most anticipated ya releases! I know it’s been absolutely ages since I did this. 2021 was definitely a year, but 2022 is one I want to be one of the best. So I want to start off right and continue with the monthly celebrations of new releases!
Without further ado here they are:
Serendipity by Various Authors
“Love is in the air in this is a collection of stories inspired by romantic tropes and edited by #1 New York Times-bestselling author Marissa Meyer.
The secret admirer.
The fake relationship.
From stories of first love, unrequited love, love that surprises, love that’s been there all along, ten of the brightest and award-winning authors writing YA have taken on some of your favorite romantic tropes, embracing them and turning them on their heads. Readers will swoon for this collection of stories that celebrate love at its most humorous, inclusive, heart-expanding, and serendipitous.
Contributors include Elise Bryant, Elizabeth Eulberg, Leah Johnson, Anna-Marie McLemore, Marissa Meyer, Sandhya Menon, Julie Murphy, Caleb Roehrig, Sarah Winifred Searle, and Abigail Hing Wen.”
This sounds like an adorable little collaboration. Stories of love are always exciting.
It Will End Like This by Kyra Leigh
“For fans of The Cheerleaders and Sadie comes a psychological thriller that reminds us that in real life, endings are rarely as neat as happily ever after. A contemporay take on the Lizzie Borden story that explores how grief can cut deep.
Charlotte lost her mother six months ago, and still no one will tell her exactly what happened the day she mysteriously died. They say her heart stopped, but Charlotte knows deep down that there’s more to the story.
The only person who gets it is Charlotte’s sister, Maddi. Maddi agrees—people’s hearts don’t just stop. There are too many questions left unanswered for the girls to move on.
But their father is moving on. With their mother’s personal assistant. And both girls are sure that she’s determined to take everything that’s theirs away for herself.
Now the only way to get their lives back is for Charlotte and Maddi to decide how this story ends, themselves.”
This book sounds like a ride. From what the girls look like on the cover they really had been going through it and it feels like it’ll be a wild journey through the story.
The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman
“In this epic YA fantasy debut, magic, a prized resource, is the only thing between peace and war. When magic runs out, four estranged royal siblings must find a new source before their country is swallowed by invading forces. The first in an Indian-inspired duology that’s perfect for fans of There Will Come a Darkness, The Gilded Wolves, and We Hunt the Flame.
Vira is desperate to get out of her mother’s shadow and establish her legacy as a revered queen of Ashoka. But with the country’s only quarry running out of magic–a precious resource that has kept Ashoka safe from conflict–she can barely protect her citizens from the looming threat of war. And if her enemies discover this, they’ll stop at nothing to seize the last of the magic.
Vira’s only hope is to find a mysterious object of legend: the Ivory Key, rumored to unlock a new source of magic. But in order to infiltrate enemy territory and retrieve it, she must reunite with her siblings, torn apart by the different paths their lives have taken. Each of them has something to gain from finding the Ivory Key–and even more to lose if they fail. Ronak plans to sell it to the highest bidder in exchange for escape from his impending political marriage. Kaleb, falsely accused of assassinating the former maharani needs it to clear his name. And Riya, a runaway who cut all family ties, wants the Key to prove her loyalty to the rebels who want to strip the nobility of its power.
They must work together to survive the treacherous journey. But with each sibling harboring secrets and their own agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family–and their world–for good.”
This sounds like a fun and magical fantasy. It sounds like things are going to get very complicated and it’ll be interesting to see who to root for.
Waking Romeo by Kathryn Baker
“What if Juliet Capulet met someone who made her doubt true love? What if Wuthering Heights was a message to a time traveller? A cosmic reimagining of Romeo and Juliet and homage to two literary classics in a compelling novel about fate, love and time travel from an award-winning author.
YEAR: 2083. LOCATION: LONDON. MISSION: WAKE ROMEO.
It’s the end of the world. Literally. Time travel is possible, but only forwards. And only a handful of families choose to remain in the ‘now’, living off the scraps that were left behind. Among these are eighteen-year-old Juliet and the love of her life, Romeo. But things are far from rosy for Jules. Romeo is in a coma and she’s estranged from her friends and family, dealing with the very real fallout of their wild romance. Then a handsome time traveller, Ellis, arrives with an important mission that makes Jules question everything she knows about life and love. Can Jules wake Romeo and rewrite her future?
A highly original mashup that delights as it disorients … and asks what would have happened if two great literary love stories were somehow intertwined.”
This sounds so interesting. I love a good retelling and this one sounds so neat and original.
Echoes and Empires by Morgan Rhodes
“A snarky seventeen-year-old must team up with an enigmatic criminal to cure herself of dangerous forbidden magic in the first book of a new fantasy duology from Morgan Rhodes, the New York Times bestselling author of the Falling Kingdoms series.
Josslyn Drake knows only three things about magic: it’s rare, illegal, and always deadly. So when she’s caught up in a robbery gone wrong at the Queen’s Gala and infected by a dangerous piece of magic—one that allows her to step into the memories of an infamously evil warlock—she finds herself living her worst nightmare. Joss needs the magic removed before it corrupts her soul and kills her. But in Ironport, the cost of doing magic is death, and seeking help might mean scheduling her own execution. There’s nobody she can trust.
Nobody, that is, except wanted criminal Jericho Nox, who offers her a deal: his help extracting the magic in exchange for the magic itself. And though she’s not thrilled to be working with a thief, especially one as infuriating (and infuriatingly handsome) as Jericho, Joss is desperate enough to accept.
But Jericho is nothing like Joss expects. The closer she grows with Jericho and the more she sees of the world outside her pampered life in the city, the more Joss begins to question the beliefs she’s always taken for granted—beliefs about right and wrong, about power and magic, and even about herself.
In an empire built on lies, the truth may be her greatest weapon.”
This book sounds like pure magical fun. A full on entertaining fantasy and I’m excited for it.
African Town by Irene Latham and Charles Waters
“Chronicling the story of the last Africans brought illegally to America in 1860, African Town is a powerful and stunning novel-in-verse.
In 1860, long after the United States outlawed the importation of enslaved laborers, 110 men, women and children from Benin and Nigeria were captured and brought to Mobile, Alabama aboard a ship called Clotilda. Their journey includes the savage Middle Passage and being hidden in the swamplands along the Alabama River before being secretly parceled out to various plantations, where they made desperate attempts to maintain both their culture and also fit into the place of captivity to which they’d been delivered. At the end of the Civil War, the survivors created a community for themselves they called African Town, which still exists to this day. Told in 14 distinct voices, including that of the ship that brought them to the American shores and the founder of African Town, this powerfully affecting historical novel-in-verse recreates a pivotal moment in US and world history, the impacts of which we still feel today.”
The fact that this is a historical novel in verse makes this book a need for me. I crave these kinds of uniquely told novels and I know I’ll love this.
One True Loves by Elise Bryant
“From the author of Happily Ever Afters, comes the highly anticipated companion novel, One True Loves, another irresistible YA romantic comedy full of self-discovery, Black love, and a dreamy European cruise.
Lenore Bennett has always been a force. A star artist and style icon at her high school, she’s a master in the subtle art of not giving a . . . well, you know what. But now that graduation is here, she’s a little less sure.
She’s heading to NYU in the fall with a scarlet U (for “undeclared”) written across her chest. Her parents always remind her that Black kids don’t have the luxury of figuring it out as they go—they have to be 110 percent prepared. But it’s a lot of pressure to be her ancestors’ wildest dreams when Lenore’s not even sure what her dreams are yet.
When her family embarks on a post-graduation Mediterranean cruise, her friend Tessa is sure Lenore’s in for a whirlwind romance. But Lenore knows that doesn’t happen in real life. At least not to girls like her.
Then she meets Alex Lee. After their parents bond over the Cupid Shuffle, she ends up stuck with him for the remainder of the cruise. He’s a hopeless romantic and a golden boy with a ten-year plan. In short, he’s irritating as hell.
But as they get to know each other during the picturesque stops across Europe, he may be able to help her find something else she’s been looking for, even if she doesn’t want to admit it to herself: love.”
This sounds like a fun slow burn will they won’t they romance. I haven’t watched a fun little romance like this in too long.
Horror Hotel by Victoria Fulton and Faith McClaren
“This addictive YA horror about a group of teen ghost hunters who spend the night in a haunted LA hotel is The Blair Witch Project for the TikTok generation.
When the YouTube-famous Ghost Gang—Chrissy, Chase, Emma, and Kiki—visit a haunted LA hotel notorious for tragedy to secretly film after dark, they expect it to be just like their previous paranormal huntings. Spooky enough to attract subscribers—and ultimately harmless.
But when they stumble upon something unexpected in the former room of a gruesome serial killer, they quickly realize that they’re in over their heads.
Sometimes, it’s the dead who need our help—and the living we should fear.”
The Kindred by Alecia Dow
“Once upon a time, to save a planetary empire from revolution, Kindred mind-pairings were created to ensure each and every person would be seen and heard, no matter how rich or poor….
THE NOBLE AND THE COMMONER.
Joy Abara knows her place. A commoner from the lowly planet Hali, she lives a simple life—apart from the notoriety that being Kindred to the nobility’s most infamous playboy brings.
Felix Hamdi has a plan. Exasperate his noble family to the point that they agree to let him choose his own future, and finally meet his Kindred face to face.
Then the royal family is assassinated, putting Felix next in line for the throne…and accused of the murders. Someone will stop at nothing until he’s dead, which means they’ll target Joy, too. Meeting for the first time as they lift a spacecraft and flee amidst chaos might not be ideal…neither is crash-landing on the strange and backward planet called Earth. But hiding might just be the perfect way to discover the true strength of the Kindred bond and expose a scandal—and a love—that may decide the future of a galaxy.”
AHHHH! This sounds like such a cool sci-fi romance concept. I’d be obsessed with this book.
At the End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp
“From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of This Is Where It Ends comes another heartbreaking, emotional and timely page-turner that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center is ironically named. No one has hope for the delinquent teenagers who have been exiled there; the world barely acknowledges that they exist.
Then the guards at Hope start acting strange. And one day…they don’t show up. But when the teens band together to make a break from the facility, they encounter soldiers outside the gates. There’s a rapidly spreading infectious disease outside, and no one can leave their houses or travel without a permit. Which means that they’re stuck at Hope. And this time, no one is watching out for them at all.
As supplies quickly dwindle and a deadly plague tears through their ranks, the group has to decide whom among them they can trust and figure out how they can survive in a world that has never wanted them in the first place.”
I’ve really liked other books by this author and that makes me excited to see another book from her.
Murder of Crows by K. Ancrum
“Tig Torres investigates Hollow Falls’ horrific history in this original novel based on the hit podcast Lethal Lit from Einhorn’s Epic Productions and iHeartRadio!
Lethal Lit follows Tig Torres, a Cuban American teen detective, in her hometown of Hollow Falls. In season one of the hit podcast, Tig used her smarts and fearlessness to track down the infamous “Lit Killer,” a serial killer who staged his murders after death scenes from famous books. But there’s no rest for courageous, mystery-solving teens in a place like Hollow Falls, and though the Lit Killer is now behind bars, his protégé, Tig’s classmate and crush Oly, has disappeared!
And that’s not the only game afoot. Tig has caught the attention of the town’s local armchair detective group, the Murder of Crows. They’re obsessed with Hollow Falls’ dark past and fixated on a dangerous search for the missing body of the town’s founder. There are rumors about what’s buried with the body that could be life-changing for whoever finds it, and with a mission like that underway, it’s not long before a member of the Murder of Crows turns up dead.
Tig, along with her friends Max and Wyn, steps in to help, but the stakes are getting higher and the hunt more deadly. Someone’s willing to kill to keep the town’s secrets buried, and if Tig’s not careful, she’ll be the Murder of Crows’ next victim.
This original Lethal Lit story takes place between Seasons 1 and 2 of the podcast, and features a brand-new, never-before-told story starring Tig Torres and her sleuthing friends!”
This is super interesting to me because this was originally a podcast. It makes me wonder if it’ll read more like someone telling you a story or if it’ll have a more typical book feel.
Nightrender by Jodi Meadows
“Kingdoms will fall, gods will die, and hearts will be broken in this sprawling new fantasy from New York Times bestselling author Jodi Meadows.
In the middle of nothingness is the Island of Salvation.
Reality bends easily here. Villages disappear. Forests burn forever. Pockets of inconsistent time are everywhere, their boundaries strung with yellow ribbon. And the three kingdoms of Salvation have been at war for a thousand years.
But the greatest threat is the Malice, an incursion from the demon plane slowly tearing its way through the world’s weakest seams. Seams that–once split–will lead to the total unraveling of night and day, light and dark, life and death.
Not that the human world takes much interest. Of more concern is the upcoming marriage of Rune Hightower, Prince of Embria, and Johanne Fortuin, Princess of Embria–the serpent bride, a girl of famous cunning–which offers a possible end to the ancient conflict. But Rune has noticed the growing darkness, and he is determined to summon mankind’s only defense: Nightrender, the hammer of the gods, an immortal warrior more weapon than girl.
There is only one problem. The last time she was summoned, she slaughtered every royal in Salvation, and no one knows why. Will she save humanity from the Malice… or plunge it deeper into the fires of eternal war?”
A fun fantasy concept and I’m all for it.
Love Somebody by Rachel Roasek
“Becky Albertalli meets Julie Murphy in this joyful, #ownvoices, queer YA rom-com about miscommunication, evolving identities, and falling in love with someone else’s words, with a subtle nod to Cyrano de Bergerac.
Sam Dickson is charismatic, popular, and she’s not about to let anything get in the way of her big plans for the future — not even the people she cares about.
Ros Shew must be Sam’s inverse: a loner, a wallflower, and uninterested in fame or popularity. But both girls are wickedly smart and secretly long to be seen and understood.
Enter Christian Powell, the darling of the Northeastern soccer team, and Sam’s ex and current pet project. He’s not the best with words, but he makes up for it with his genuine big heart.
When Christian falls for Ros on first sight, he’s desperate to get to know her. After a disastrous first interaction, Christian enlists the help of Sam who, after a bad review from Ros over her latest play, is only too happy to agree. But things can’t stay that simple forever. Ros starts to suspect that Christian is acting differently around her, and behind the scenes, Sam realizes that her own feelings for Ros are much more complicated than simple rivalry. With so much to lose if their secrets are discovered, all three teens are forced to confront not just their feelings, but themselves, to keep their fragile new relationships from completely falling apart.”
Disaster bisexuals. Hell yeah!
Vinyl Moon by Mahogany L. Brown
“A teen girl hiding the scars of a past relationship finds home and healing in the words of strong Black writers. A great companion for readers of Nic Stone, Amy Fellner Dominy, and Renee Watson.
When Darius told Angel he loved her, she believed him. But five weeks after the incident, Angel finds herself in Brooklyn, far from her family, Darius, and the California life she has known.
Angel feels out of sync with her new neighborhood. At school, she can’t shake the feeling everyone knows what happened–and how it was her fault. The only place that makes sense is Ms. G’s class. There, Angel’s classmates share their own stories of pain, joy, and fortitude. And as Angel becomes immersed in her revolutionary literature course, the words from novels like The Bluest Eye, The House on Mango Street, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and Push speak to her and begin to heal the wounds of her past.
Award-winning author Mahogany L. Browne weaves together prose, poems, and vignettes to tell the story of Angel, a young woman whose past was shaped by domestic violence but whose love of language and music and the gift of community grant her the chance to find herself again.”
The way this story is told sounds so good. I love the idea of this and I really want to pick this book up.
Medusa by Jessie Burton
“A dazzling, feminist retelling of Greek myth from the internationally bestselling author of The Miniaturist, stunningly illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill.
Exiled to a far-flung island by the whims of the gods, Medusa has little company except the snakes that adorn her head instead of hair. But when a charmed, beautiful boy called Perseus arrives on the island, her lonely existence is disrupted with the force of a supernova, unleashing desire, love, betrayal . and destiny itself.
Filled with glorious full-colour illustrations by award-winning Olivia Lomenech Gill, this astonishing retelling of Greek myth is perfect for readers of Circe and The Silence of the Girls. Illuminating the girl behind the legend, it brings alive Medusa for a new generation.”
This graphic novel sounds so damn gorgeous! I want it so bad.
My Fine Fellow by Jennieke Cohen
“Culinary delights abound, romance lingers in the air, and plans go terribly, wonderfully astray in this cheeky and charming historical tale, perfect for fans of Bridgerton or Dickinson.
It’s 1830s England, and Culinarians—doyens who consult with society’s elite to create gorgeous food and confections—are the crème de la crème of high society.
Helena Higgins, top of her class at the Royal Academy, has a sharp demeanor and an even sharper palate—and knows stardom awaits her if she can produce greatness in her final year.
Penelope Pickering is going to prove the value of non-European cuisine to all of England. Her contemporaries may scorn her Filipina heritage and her dishes, but with her flawless social graces and culinary talents, Penelope is set to prove them wrong.
Elijah Little has nothing to his name but a truly excellent instinct for flavors. London merchants won’t allow a Jewish boy to own a shop, so he hawks his pasties for a shilling a piece to passersby—but he knows with training he can break into the highest echelon of society.
When Penelope and Helena meet Elijah, a golden opportunity arises: to pull off a project never seen before, and turn Elijah from a street vendor to a gentleman chef.
But Elijah’s transformation will have a greater impact on this trio than they originally realize—and mayhem, unseemly faux pas, and a little romance will all be a part of the delicious recipe.”
This sounds adorable and so fun! I’d love to read this.
The Storyteller by Kathryn Williams
“With the mystery of Maureen Johnson and Brittany Cavallo and the historical intrigue of Romanov, this enthralling story follows a teenage girl’s quest to uncover the truth behind her secretive great aunt Anna, who just might be the long lost Russian princess Anastasia.
It’s not every day you discover you might be related to Anastasia…or that the tragic princess actually survived her assassination attempt and has been living as the woman you know as Aunt Anna.
For Jess Morgan, who is growing tired of living her life to please everyone else, discovering her late aunt’s diaries shows her she’s not the only one struggling to hide who she really is. But was her aunt truly a Romanov princess? Or is this some elaborate hoax?
With the help of a supremely dorky, but undeniably cute, local college student named Evan, Jess digs into the century-old mystery.
But soon Jess realizes there’s another, bigger truth waiting to be revealed: Jess Morgan. Because if she’s learned anything from Aunt Anna, it’s that only you can write your own story.
Part mystery, romance, and historical fiction, this genre-bending YA will pull readers into one girl’s journey of discovering the impossible tale of a long-lost aunt—and through her, the importance of being true to yourself.”
Fun adorable mystery and a bit of romance, count me in!
The Bone Spindle by Leslie Vedder
“Genderflipped Sleeping Beauty x Indiana Jones with ruins, riddles, battle axes, cursed princes, and snark.
The prince sleeping in the Forest of Thorns has waited a hundred years for the one who will break the curse. Or so the story goes…
Seventeen-year-old Fi is a treasure hunter with a knack for ruins and riddles. She considers the curse ancient history—until she pricks her finger on a bone spindle and comes face to face with the mysterious spirit of Prince Briar Rose.
Shane is an ax-wielding huntswoman from the northern islands, perpetually on the run from trouble. She partners with Fi for the score of a lifetime, but gets a lot more than she bargained for when she finds herself dragged along on the dangerous quest and falling hard for a mysterious girl in red.
Fi never wanted a partner. Now she’s stuck with two of them—and a destiny to break the curse and save the fallen kingdom of magic.
Dark magic, Witch Hunters, and treacherous exes all stand in their way, but Fi and Shane won’t stop until they reach the heart of the Forest of Thorns.”
This story combo sounds so good. Fantasy and adventure and magic I want all of it.
The Helheim Princess by Tana Warner
“A thrilling, intricate, and romantic #OwnVoices LGBTQ fantasy that builds on Norse mythology into a beautiful story all its own.
For as long as Sigrid could remember, she’s wanted to become a mighty, fearless valkyrie. But without a winged mare, she’s a mere stable hand, left wondering who her parents were and why she’s so different. So when the Eye shows her a vision where she’s leading a valkyrie charge on the legendary eight-legged horse Sleipnir, she grabs the possibility of this greater destiny with both hands, refusing to let go.
Too bad that the only one who can help her get there is Mariam, an enemy valkyrie who begrudgingly agrees to lead her to Helheim but who certainly can’t be trusted―even if she does make Sigrid more than a little flustered. As they cross the nine worlds, battling night elves, riding sea serpents, and hurtling into fire to learn the truth about Sigrid’s birthright, an unexpected but powerful bond forms.
As her feelings for Mariam deepen into something fiery and undeniable, Fate has other plans for Sigrid. What happens when the one thing you think you were meant to do might end the nine worlds?”
Norse fantasy hell yeah!
Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves by Meg Long
“A captivating debut about survival, found family, and the bond between a girl and a wolf that delivers a fresh twist on classic survival stories and frontier myths.
After angering a local gangster, seventeen-year-old Sena Korhosen must flee with his prize fighting wolf, Iska, in tow. A team of scientists offer to pay her way off her frozen planet on one condition: she gets them to the finish line of the planet’s infamous sled race. Though Sena always swore she’d never race after it claimed both her mothers’ lives, it’s now her only option. But the tundra is a treacherous place, and as the race unfolds and their lives are threatened at every turn, Sena starts to question her own abilities. She must discover whether she’s strong enough to survive the wild – whether she and Iska together are strong enough to get them all out alive.”
Sounds like a fun adventure with intense aspects. Sounds like a great story.
Unedited by Barry Lyga
“The companion piece to Mike and Phile and All the World in all its +1,000 page glory.
This is a book. It is written by Barry Lyga. Yes, we know it’s a very long book. We tried to get him to cut it, but he wouldn’t. So there was nothing we could do about it. We understand if the length turns you off. A long book like this one represents a commitment, and if it isn’t good, you’ll feel like you’ve wasted your time and your money. Still, we published it because we think it’s a good book. Could it be shorter? Maybe. That’s a very difficult call. Each person will have his or her own opinion. Some will read it and think, “It could have been shorter.” Others will think, “It was just right.” And maybe some people will wish it was longer. Isn’t that the highest compliment you can pay a book, to wish it would never end?
Usually, this text here (it’s called “flap copy”) is sexy marketing-talk, designed to get you to buy the book. Did you know that most people look at the cover, then the back cover, then the flap copy, and only then do they bother even to flip to a page in the book? So you probably haven’t even read any part of the book yet, but you might decide to buy or not buy it anyway. Without having read a word of it.
So, we’ll just say this: This book is a love story. We hope you’ll give it a shot.”
The description of this is something else. I have to read this. I’m too curious. Call me sold.
Lawless Spaces by Corey Ann Haydu
“Perfect for fans of Deb Caletti, this poignant coming-of-age novel in verse follows a teen girl who connects with the women of her maternal line through their journals and comes to better understand her fraught relationship with her mother.
Mimi’s relationship with her mother has always been difficult. But lately, her mother has been acting more withdrawn than usual, leaving Mimi to navigate the tricky world of turning sixteen alone. What she doesn’t expect is her mother’s advice to start journaling—just like all the woman in her family before her. It’s a tradition, she says. Expected.
But Mimi takes to poetry and with it, a way to write down the realities of growing into a woman, the pains of online bullying, and the new experiences of having a boyfriend. And all in the shadows of a sexual assault case that is everywhere on the news—a case that seems to specifically rattle her mother.
Trying to understand her place in the world, Mimi dives into the uncovered journals of her grandmother, great-grandmother, and beyond. She immerses herself in each of their lives, learns of their painful stories and their beautiful sprits. And as Mimi grows closer to each of these women, she starts to forge her own path. But it isn’t until her mother’s story comes to light that Mimi learns about the unyielding bonds of family and the relentless spirit of womanhood.”
Novel in verse so I need it now!
Icebreaker by Al Graziadei
“A. L. Graziadei’s Icebreaker is an irresistible YA debut about two hockey players fighting to be the best—and the romance that catches them by surprise along the way.
Seventeen-year-old Mickey James III is a college freshman, a brother to five sisters, and a hockey legacy. With a father and a grandfather who have gone down in NHL history, Mickey is almost guaranteed the league’s top draft spot.
The only person standing in his way is Jaysen Caulfield, a contender for the #1 spot and Mickey’s infuriating (and infuriatingly attractive) teammate. When rivalry turns to something more, Mickey will have to decide what he really wants, and what he’s willing to risk for it.
This is a story about falling in love, finding your team (on and off the ice), and choosing your own path.”
This book sounds so adorable and fun and I love that.
The Chosen One by Echo Brown
“Echo Brown testifies to the disappointments and triumphs of a Black first-generation college student in this fearless exploration of the first year experience.
There are many watchers and they are always white. That’s the first thing Echo notices as she settles into Dartmouth College. Despite graduating high school in Cleveland as valedictorian, Echo immediately struggles to keep up in demanding classes. Dartmouth made many promises it couldn’t keep. The campus is not a rainbow-colored utopia where education lifts every voice. Nor is it a paradise of ideas, an incubator of inclusivity, or even an exciting dating scene. But it might be a portal to different dimensions of time and space—only accessible if Echo accepts her calling as a Chosen One and takes charge of her future by healing her past. This remarkable challenge demands vulnerability, humility, and the conviction to ask for help without sacrificing self-worth.
In mesmerizing personal narrative and magical realism, Echo Brown confronts mental illness, grief, racism, love, friendship, ambition, self-worth, and belonging as they steer the fates of first-generation college students on Dartmouth’s campus. The Chosen One is an unforgettable coming-of-age story that bravely unpacks the double-edged college transition—as both catalyst for old wounds and a fresh start.”
This book sounds like it’d give me a new perspective on the first year college experience and I feel like it’ll be really interesting.
The Red Palace by June Hur
“June Hur, critically acclaimed author of The Silence of Bones and The Forest of Stolen Girls, returns with a third evocative, atmospheric historical mystery perfect for fans of Courtney Summers and Kerri Maniscalco.
To enter the palace means to walk a path stained in blood…
Joseon (Korea), 1758. There are few options available to illegitimate daughters in the capital city, but through hard work and study, seventeen-year-old Hyeon has earned a position as a palace nurse. All she wants is to keep her head down, do a good job, and perhaps finally win her estranged father’s approval.
But Hyeon is suddenly thrust into the dark and dangerous world of court politics when someone murders eight palace nurses in a single night, and the prime suspect is Hyeon’s closest friend and mentor. Determined to prove her beloved teacher’s innocence, Hyeon launches her own secret investigation.
In her hunt for the truth, she encounters Eojin, a young undercover police inspector also searching for the killer. When evidence begins to point to the Crown Prince himself as the murderer, Hyeon and Eojin must work together to search the darkest corners of the palace to uncover the deadly secrets behind the bloodshed.”
I want to read everything from this author even though I haven’t gotten to read one of her books yet. I just know I’ll adore them.
The Temperature of Me and You by Brian Zepka
“Sixteen-year-old Dylan Highmark thought his winter was going to be full boring shifts at the Dairy Queen, until he finds himself in a fiery first love, literally.
Dylan has always wanted a boyfriend, but the suburbs surrounding Philadelphia do not have a lot in the way of options. Then, in walks Jordan, a completely normal (and undeniably cute) boy who also happens to run at a cool 110 degrees Fahrenheit. When the boys start spending time together, Dylan begins feeling all kinds of ways, and when he spikes a fever for two weeks and is suddenly coughing flames, he thinks he might be suffering from something more than just a crush.
Jordan forces Dylan to keep his symptoms a secret. But as the pressure mounts and Dylan becomes distant with his closest friends and family, he pushes Jordan for answers. Jordan’s revelations of why he’s like this, where he came from, and who’s after him leaves Dylan realizing how much first love is truly out of this world. And if Earth supports life that breathes oxygen, then love can only keep Jordan and Dylan together for so long.
THE TEMPERATURE OF ME AND YOU is the story of first love, and the lengths we’ll go to figure out our hearts. What starts as an electric, chance encounter at a Dairy Queen leads to first love, a journey of trust and identity, and a ticking clock for survival.”
Adorable first love story I need to warm my heart.
Loveboat Reunion by Abigail Hing Wen
“This companion novel to Abigail Hing Wen’s New York Times bestselling debut, Loveboat, Taipei, follows two fan favorite characters—Sophie and Xavier—as they reconnect and write their own futures on a wild, unexpected Loveboat reunion.
Sophie Ha and Xavier Yeh have what some would call a tumultuous past.
It’s a classic tale of girl-meets-boy, boy-meets-other-girl, heart-gets-broken, revenge-is-plotted, everything-blows-up. Spectacularly.
At least they’re friends now. They’ve left the drama behind them back in Taipei—at their summer program, Loveboat—forever.
Now fall is here, and it’s time to focus on what really matters. Sophie is determined to be the best student Dartmouth’s ever had. Forget finding the right guy to make her dreams come true—Sophie is going to make her future happen for herself. Xavier, on the other hand, just wants to stay under his overbearing father’s radar, collect his trust fund when he turns eighteen, and concentrate on what makes him happy, for the first time ever.
But the world doesn’t seem to want Sophie and Xavier to succeed. Sophie’s college professor thinks her first major project is “too feminine.” Xavier’s father gives him an ultimatum: finish high school or be cut off from his inheritance.
Then Sophie and Xavier find themselves on a wild, nonstop Loveboat reunion, each trying to resist the chemistry that originally led to them to combust. As they grow closer, they hatch a plan to take control of their own futures. Step one? Break all the rules.
Expansive and romantic, glamorous and tender, Loveboat Reunion takes readers back to Taipei through the eyes of Sophie and Xavier, on an unforgettable journey of glittering revelry and self-discovery that’s perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Mary H. K. Choi.”
I want a good romance book! I’ve not read them for way too long.
In Every Generation by Kendare Blake
“The first in an all-new series by New York Times best-selling author Kendare Blake continues the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer featuring the next generation of Scoobies and Slayers who must defeat a powerful new evil.
A new Slayer for a new generation…
Frankie Rosenberg is passionate about the environment, a sophomore at New Sunnydale High School, and the daughter of the most powerful witch in Sunnydale history. Her mom, Willow, is slowly teaching her magic on the condition that she use it to better the world. But Frankie’s happily quiet life is upended when new girl Hailey shows up with news that the annual Slayer convention has been the target of an attack, and all the Slayers—including Buffy, Faith, and Hailey’s older sister Vi—might be dead. That means it’s time for this generation’s Slayer to be born.
But being the first ever Slayer-Witch means learning how to wield a stake while trying to control her budding powers. With the help of Hailey, a werewolf named Jake, and a hot but nerdy sage demon, Frankie must become the Slayer, prevent the Hellmouth from opening again, and find out what happened to her Aunt Buffy, before she’s next.
Get ready for a whole new story within the world of Buffy!”
Magic buffy world novel! Sounds so fun!
The Greatest Thing by Sarah Winifred Searle
“With breathtaking art and honest storytelling, Sarah Winifred Searle delivers a moving graphic novel about love, self-acceptance, and the life-saving power of teen friendships.
It’s the first day of her sophomore year, and Winifred is going to reinvent herself. This isn’t by choice—she was perfectly comfortable with the way things were when she was a freshman and a member of a well-established three-person clique. But now that her two best (and only) friends have transferred to a private school, Win must navigate high school on her own.
But she isn’t alone for long. In art class, she meets two offbeat students, Oscar and April. They don’t look or act like the typical teenagers in her small New England town: They’re creative, a little rebellious, and seem comfortable in their own skin in a way that Win can only dream of.
Through clandestine sleepovers, thrift store shopping, and zine publishing, Winifred finally breaks out of her shell. But there’s one secret she can’t bear to admit to April and Oscar, or even to herself—and this lie is threatening to destroy her newfound friendships.”
This looks like an adorable graphic novel.
Anything But Fine by Tobias Madden
“After a decade of dedicated ballet practice, one missed step on a flight of stairs lands Luca in the hospital with a titanium plate screwed into his foot. Without ballet, he loses his friends, his school, and his perfect future.
As Luca settles into his new life, he strikes up an unlikely friendship with the least popular (and nicest) girl in his new school, Amina, and the gorgeous, popular, and (allegedly) straight, Jordan Tanaka-Jones.
With his dancing dreams dead on their feet, Luca has to figure out who he is without ballet. And to do that he’ll have to unlearn his prejudices about the school on the “bad” side of town, make friends who aren’t always competing against him, and figure out if love is worth being a skeleton in someone else’s closet.”
This sounds like an emotional and beautiful story. I feel I’d become so attached to the story.
Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler
“From the New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award finalist, a biography in verse and prose of science fiction visionary Octavia Butler.
Acclaimed novelist Ibi Zoboi illuminates the young life of the visionary storyteller Octavia E. Butler in poems and prose. Born into the Space Race, the Red Scare, and the dawning Civil Rights Movement, Butler experienced an American childhood that shaped her into the groundbreaking science-fiction storyteller whose novels continue to challenge and delight readers fifteen years after her death.”
This sounds like a beautiful tribute to a novelist and I’d love to read this.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
I have thought about what I wanted to do for this year for a good long time. I gave myself December to relax and feel good and prepare myself for 2022. I want to do a lot this year. In a very focused and determined way. I’m so excited.
The first thing I wanted to focus on was going back to school and become a pharmacy tech to make enough money to better support my family. At the same time after doing that working towards being a pharmacist.
In writing I wanted to focus on writing four first drafts this year. So one draft every three months. Starting with a pseudo paranormal horror that I’ve had in my brain forever. Which also means I’ll be watching some fun paranormal horror movies over the coming months to immerse myself in that mindset.
Also in writing I wanted to see if I could write a poetry book and self publish it. As of right now I’m not sure what theme it will have, but I’ll figure it out soon enough.
The last thing in writing I wanted to blog post every day. Which I feel like will actually happen this year because I’m going to have a monthly gift to myself for accomplishing my goals for each individual month.
As for reading I would like to start reading much more often and I hope to complete reading at least 50 books in 2022. To help with this I’m doing a monthly book exchange with a friend sharing our favorite books. For January I’m lending her Starfish and I can’t wait to hear what she thinks. Other then the book she’ll lend me, I will also be reading The Assignment by Liza Wiemer, Replica by Lauren Oliver, and Jack Kerouac is Dead to me by Gae Polisner. As well as two DC comics I was behind reviewing.
My other goal is exercise and it has my favorite prize attached to it if I keep it up all the way into September which is this super awesome Harley Quinn “Kill the Justice League” cosplay that I will buy and feel like a badass in should I keep my fitness goals throughout the year.
For January if I keep my goals I want to get myself this custom Red Riot Sweater. Something that I know I’ll never want to take off and that I’ll feel like I can do anything in. Which will be the perfect thing to wear over the year I want to do so much in.
This year will be about staying positive and motivated and progressing forward and embracing my life. I know that life happens and it can get difficult but I’m so ready to take on this year and do the best I possibly can.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! Let me know what your goals are for 2022!
Cover Rating: 6/10 it’s a pretty cover, but also kinda basic for my tastes. I feel like I get a feel that the story is magical and school related, but I think the styling isn’t completely for me.
Publisher: Del Rey Books
Publish Date: September 29th, 2020
Number of Pages: 336
Received: My boyfriend bought it for me as a blind date with a book. I was surprised and curious about it when I got it and then reading it absolutely blew me away. It was also amazing cause I realized this was the second blind date book he’d gotten me and it was randomly the same author as the previous one he’d gotten for me ‘Spinning Silver’.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of Uprooted and Spinning Silver comes the first book of the Scholomance trilogy, the story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic.
FINALIST FOR THE LODESTAR AWARD •“The dark school of magic I’ve been waiting for.”—Katherine Arden, author of the Winternight Trilogy
I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.
Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I’m concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I’m not joining his pack of adoring fans.
I don’t need help surviving the Scholomance, even if they do. Forget the hordes of monsters and cursed artifacts, I’m probably the most dangerous thing in the place. Just give me a chance and I’ll level mountains and kill untold millions, make myself the dark queen of the world.
At least, that’s what the world expects. Most of the other students in here would be delighted if Orion killed me like one more evil thing that’s crawled out of the drains. Sometimes I think they want me to turn into the evil witch they assume I am. The school certainly does.
But the Scholomance isn’t getting what it wants from me. And neither is Orion Lake. I may not be anyone’s idea of the shining hero, but I’m going to make it out of this place alive, and I’m not going to slaughter thousands to do it, either.
Although I’m giving serious consideration to just one.
Opening Sentence: “I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life.”
I finished this book a good while back and I feel so bad I didn’t review this sooner because this book is just so amazing! I adore this book. I want to live in this book. Actually I’d rather not the Scolomancy is actually terrifying, but the idea of the magic and the school was so unique and wonderful! GAHHHHH! I have so many feelings for this book.
What I LOVED:
Actually everything. The pacing was amazing. The characters quirky and interesting to read about. The magic system S tier. The setting mindblowingly interesting and cool. The way this book made me think about current issues with capitalism was shocking to me. The conversations I had about this book with my boyfriend were amazing. There were times this book made me smile so big and want to chuckle. The way that magic and the school itself had its own personality was amazing. The detail and the lushness of this book was stunning. I couldn’t rave about this book more.
Novik created a world of her own. I think there’s so many typical interpretations of magic that have been done over and over, but in ‘A Deadly Education’ that is definitely not the case. The magic is so alive and the danger and systems in place so unique to this world it was delightful. It truly is a deadly eduction. Surviving this school would be a tough order for most anyone.
Galadriel’s view of her own power. Galadriel is so powerful. Intensely powerful. Yet, her reasonings for staying under the radar are admirable. I don’t know if I can speak more on this without spoiling something really powerful about this book. So I’ll leave it like this for you all to discover this on your own.
How real the world felt. Even though this book is 100% fantasy. The world uncovers itself in such a way that you’re learning about it, but it feels like you’ve always known it to be that way. It’s so easy to be sucked in and you don’t feel like your being told how the world is, the world simply is. Which shows just how much care Naomi put into crafting this story.
How messed up Enclaves are. Enclaves and enclaves dynamics are so important to this story and it adds to the messed up system this world is built upon. Yet, everyone wants to be in an enclave and everyone wants the protection it provides. Which is the part that made me think of our worlds capitalism and being rich and how it screws over so many people, but yet everyone wishes they were well off. This cycle of a system fundamentally broken and often insidiously so.
The fights. The battles in this book are so well paced and fun to read. You feel the danger of it. It sucks you in immediately.
Galadriel and Orion as people. These two have some super unique personalities yet, the way they were brought up and the more you learn about them the more their thought processes and quirks make a lot of sense. Very well fleshed out characters in ‘A Deadly Education’.
Language being so integralto the magic. The learning of languages and the value of languages in this school and magic is so interesting. The more language you know the more spells you have access to and the more unique the language the more unique the spells. I loved the library scenes in this book. So cool.
All in all:
You should stop reading this review and go and pick up a copy of this book right now. It was so good and amazing. I loved this. I’ll always love this book it’s definitely a new favorite.
Naomi Novik is the acclaimed New York Times-bestselling author of the Nebula Award-winning novel Uprooted, Spinning Silver, and the nine-volume Temeraire series, as well as a founder of the Archive of Our Own. Her upcoming book A Deadly Education is the first of the Scholomance trilogy, and will be available September 2020.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
…they’ve been doing it for centuries. Now New York Times bestselling author Laurie Halse Anderson has gathered female and nonbinary writers and artists to reveal the women making our world better day by day. Real-world heroes who exemplify the best of Wonder Woman herself: her strength, compassion, and commitment to truth, equality, and justice.
Read the stories of Beyoncé (by Mikki Kendall and A.D’Amico), Keiko Agena (by Sarah Kuhn, Lynne Yoshii, and Carrie Strachan), Márcia Barbosa (by Corinna Bechko and Anastasia Longoria), Brené Brown (by Louise Simonson and Nicole Goux), Mariana Costa Checa (by Melissa Marr and Marcela Cespedes), Mari Copeny (by Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, Sharee Miller, and Silvana Brys), Teara Fraser (by Traci Sorell and Natasha Donovan), Ruth Bader Ginsburg (by Lilah Sturges, Devaki Neogi, and Triona Farrell), Judith Heumann (by Marieke Nijkamp and Ashanti Fortson), Marsha P. Johnson (by Jadzia Axelrod and Michaela Washington), Leiomy Maldonado (by Magdalen Visaggio and Emma Kubert), Ellen Ochoa (by Cecil Castellucci and Carina Guevara), Francisca Nneka Okeke (by Dr. Sheena C. Howard and Laylie Frazier), Greta Thunberg (by Kami Garcia and Igzell), Naomi Watanabe (by Jody Houser and Michiums), Serena Williams (by Danielle Page, Brittney Williams, and Caitlin Quirk), Edith Widnsor (by Amanda Deibert and Cat Staggs), Malala Yousafzai (by Son M. and Safiya Zerrougui), and Khatijah Mohamad Yusoff (by Amanda Deibert, Hanie Mohd, and Shari Chankhamma).
The feeling of empowerment that I felt reading this was really powerful. I wasn’t expecting the depth of feeling that it would inspire in me. Seeing all these amazing women who pushed past boundaries and thrived to be major successes in their individual lives.
The individual art that went with each story was so beautiful too. It really gave a sense of each individual person and gave them a color and feel of their own.
I really enjoyed Mari Copeny’s story being so young and deciding that she would be a voice for change. There’s something about children that makes them see things for what they really are. A innocence that makes them confident that they can go out there and really make a difference. Something that many adults lose in themselves. But, reading her story made me feel like why am I stopping myself from doing the things I’m passionate about? The only person holding me back is me.
My other favorite story was about Naomi Watanabe. I love her because she’s all about loving yourself for who you are. Making jokes that have nothing to do with putting herself down and being incredibly successful being a positive icon. I think she has such a beautiful soul.
All in all:
This comic is a great must have for all the women in your family. It’s empowering and a beautiful read. It did Wonder woman’s anniversary proud.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
From #1 New York Times bestselling author KAMI GARCIA (Beautiful Creatures) and artist GABRIEL PICOLO, the creative duo behind the New York Times bestselling graphic novel Teen Titans: Raven, comes the romantic meet-up we have all been waiting for!
It seems like years, but it’s only been a few days since Raven Roth recovered her memories, trapped her demon father, Trigon, into her amulet, and had her heart broken for the first time. But she doesn’t have time to think about the past…she has to focus on finding a way to get rid of Trigon for good.
Garfield Logan still can’t believe he has powers that allow him to change into different animals, but the price of knowing that his parents kept this secret hidden from him just feels too high. And what’s more, his difficulty controlling these abilities could have unexpected consequences.
Both are seeking answers from the one person who seems to have them all figured out: Slade Wilson.
When their paths converge in Nashville, Raven and Gar can’t help but feel a connection, despite the secrets they both try to hide. It will take a great amount of trust and courage to overcome the wounds of their pasts. But can they find acceptance for the darkest part of themselves? Or maybe even love?
Beast Boy Loves Raven tells the story of how Beast boy, Robin, and Raven all meet. This is the first appearance Robin makes in these comics.
Robin is a mostly serious character who knows what he is doing. He is smart and tactical and very practical. I’m very interested to see how his character is fleshed out in the next comic.
Beast Boy and Raven meet in the same area while they both wait separately for their meetings with Slade. Beast Boy is immediately attracted to Raven and tries to charm her. It takes a while for her to trust him, but she comes around. They make a really cute couple already.
This is my favorite artwork of the whole story. The pain and intensity with the uniqueness of beast boy starting to transform. It’s stunning and also builds up the dynamic of the relationship between Beast Boy and Raven as she tries to figure out what she can do to save him.
All in all:
I really enjoyed reading this! It’s a fun read that makes me want so much more of these stories and I really hope that they do continue this well into the future. I want to see how the Teen Titans assemble in this new storyline.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!
Yesterday while I was reading some others blog posts for the day I came upon this post from ‘My Book World’ called Mental Health Book Tag. My own mental health has been iffy lately. I’ve been angry and sad and incredibly anxious. My mind has been so on edge I’ve cried at work worrying about my dad and I’ve made little excuses about things that aren’t going to happen to be worrying to my boyfriend and I’ve felt like a mess. Life these days has felt so fragile and yet so precious and I’m keeping in my mind that my dad told me to think positive. So I will.
So today, I would like to share with you all my answers on this Mental Health Book Tag. I want to share some awesome books that don’t shy away from something that touches everyone’s lives at some point and in some way in one shape or form or another.
What’s a book or series that features a strong support system?
In ‘Spinning Silver’ Miryem’s parents are a strong support system not only for her, but for Wanda who comes to work for them. When Miryem is first taken to live with the Staryk king Wanda doesn’t know what to do, thinking she wouldn’t have a job anymore. However, Miryem’s parents step up and reassure her continuing having her help and even adding an extra job for her brother to keep them safe and afloat. They are always making sure Wanda is fed and that she has a safe place to be while making her feel like she’s doing something that gives her purpose. They are an amazing support system.
What’s a book, series, or genre that you turn to when you need to take care of yourself? What’s something that you do—other than reading—to take care of your mental health?
Magical realism books like ‘The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender’ make me feel so curious and fascinated. Magical realism strikes me. Reading these kind of books when my mental health isn’t doing well helps me to distract my mind. However, if I’m having a crisis I talk to my boyfriend or my friends. My boyfriend always listens and is kind and understanding to me about everything I’m going through. When I see him and stuff is still going through my mind he’ll just hold me and tell me everything will be ok. It means the world to me.
What’s a book that features a character that is relatable to your mental health or illness?
I have never felt more understood by a book before I read this one. Kiko’s relationship with her mom is almost the exact relationship I had with my grandmother. ‘Starfish’ was such a raw read for me. Narcissistic abuse is no joke.
What’s a book that depicts a bad representation of a mental difference or mental illness?
I read this book years ago before I really understood representation and really mental illness at all. However, looking back this isn’t a good representation of mental illness. Also, it glorifies mental illness. Which is why the book and tv show has been criticized many times by many people to shed light on its misrepresentation.
What’s a book that depicts a good representation of a mental difference or mental illness?
‘Speak ’ is a good representation of a girl dealing with the trauma of sexual assault. She is isolated by her peers to be on her own causing her to withdraw into her own mind. She has no support and her grades slip and the only place she find solace is her art class. It feels real to how it feels when you went through something difficult and are in a place where no one is supporting you. There feels like there is nowhere to go.
What’s your favorite book that features mental difference or mental illness?
I know I’m using this book a lot in this tag, but it was just so beautifully written and so relatable to my own experiences and feelings. It’s not just my favorite mental health work, but it’s also one of my all time favorite books in general.
What’s your least favorite book that features mental difference or mental illness?
So this is another book I read that at the time I really enjoyed and didn’t really understand that it was a bad representation of mental illness at the time. Love saving these two characters from their mental health problems is something that even isn’t safe to imply. Looking for someone outside of yourself to save you and cure you from your problems isn’t really going to do anything but put a bandaid on your problems. Sure, love will happen if your mentally struggling or not, but it isn’t going to cure it. Books like this might give readers the wrong impression.
What’s a book that takes you to your happy place? When you are dealing with mental health struggles, what is your happy place?
I have read and reread ‘The Giver’ so many times. I’ve been attached to this book since elementary school and it has been my favorite for years. It makes me think of how important emotion and color is to make our lives beautiful. To inspire our compassion for ourselves and for others. It puts me in a mood of appreciation for life.
Honestly, my happy place and what I need a lot when I’ve been struggling during the week is my time with my boyfriend. Being held by him. Being held by someone that you know loves you and who knows who you are and you hat your going through feels like a weight being lifted. He helps me to feel at peace with myself and to know that everything will be ok. Also his constant jokes always put a smile on my face.
What’s your favorite quote from a book that features mental difference or mental illness? What’s something you want other people to know about mental difference or mental illness?
‘But some people are just starfish–they need everyone to fill the roles that they assign. They need the world to sit around them, pointing at them and validating their feelings. But you can’t spend your life trying to make a starfish happy, because no matter what you do, it will never be enough. They will always find a way to make themselves the center of attention, because it’s the only way they know how to live.’ -Akemi Dawn Bowman (Starfish)
Nothing better describes the selfishness of living with someone who expects you to live and be exactly the way they want you to all the time. If you don’t fit into their box you face their wrath. So many traumas from this abuse caused me to want to people please and to have this deep feeling that I’m going to mess up and hurt someone I love badly. However, I am not broken. There isn’t anything wrong with me and it’ll all be ok. So, that’s what I want everyone to know. Wherever you are and however dark a place you find yourself you will get to a better place and it will all be ok.
A long time ago I talked about my dad being very sick. I haven’t mentioned it in a long time mostly dealing with it on my own, but the other night and yesterday afternoon my dad had two episodes that seemed to indicate new mini strokes. I don’t know for sure if that is exactly what it was he didn’t want to be taken to the hospital, but it reminded me all the same that my time on this earth with my dad is limited.
I don’t know how much time I have left with my dad, but I know I want to make the best of it. I know there are certain parts of my life he will never experience by my side. However, one thing I hope he does experience is me writing a book and seeing if I can get it published. My dad is a big part of why I love stories and it’s funny too because he doesn’t like books. Growing up he used to tell me all these fantastic stories.
The other love he taught me was for animals. Especially for insects and among them most importantly to have a love and respect for bees. So, I really want to write and dedicate my bee book idea to my dad.
I know my dad will most likely never read it. He’s blind in one eye and further loosing vision in the other due to his strokes. He never had much patience for reading, but I want him to know that I wrote something for him. Inspired by the love he passed down to me.
Yesterday when I got home from work he talked to me and called me his Angel. That morning he had told me to think positive. So as hard as that is for me I will try. I will put my dad energy into doing something that will make him proud. At the very least have a first draft I can print out and put into his hands. So he would know how much his love has always meant to me.
I love my dad so much. I know cancer and the strokes have changed him so much, but nothing has ever changed his love for me. Even when he’s mad at my mom or wanting someone or something to blame for his illness when I come into the room he still treats me like his little girl.
I know my dad wants me always to remain strong. To always think positive no matter what and to pursue my dreams. So that’s exactly what I’ll do for the rest of my life. During my time on earth with him and during the time he passes on and I will carry him living inside my heart forever more.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Writing this brought me to tears, but it also helped me feel a sense of resolve. My one wish is that this post inspires those reading to be there for their loved ones now and to think positive. Thank you all for being here.
Acclaimed author Lilliam Rivera and artist Steph C. reimagine one of DC’s greatest Green Lanterns, Jessica Cruz, to tell a story about immigration, family, and overcoming fear to inspire hope.
Jessica Cruz has done everything right. She’s a dedicated student, popular among her classmates, and has a loving family that has done everything they can to give her a better life in the United States. While Jessica is a part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, allowing her to go to school and live in the U.S., her parents are undocumented. Jessica usually worries for her parents, but her fears and anxiety escalate as a mayoral candidate with a strong anti-immigration stance runs for office.
As the xenophobia in Coast City increases, Jessica begins to debate whether it’s worth renewing her status to stay in the U.S., or if her family would be safer and better off moving back to Mexico. And despite her attempts to lean on her friends and family, she finds herself constantly visited by visions of Aztec gods, one pulling her towards hope and the other towards anger.
But when her father is detained by I.C.E., Jessica finds herself being pulled into an abyss of fear. With her father gone and feeling helpless, Jessica must find her way out of her fears and ultimately become a voice for her community.
‘Unearthed’ has my heart. This gorgeous comic brought me to tears several times and the balance of the words and the illustrations blended together so perfectly to tell the story of Jessica. From the beginning her general anxiety about school and needing to do well paired with her fear of losing her family to I.C.E. Due to being undocumented felt so real. There are so many D.A.C.A program and undocumented students that would relate deeply to this story.
Something I also loved was all the Spanish when the parents were speaking to their daughter. For me, growing up in a latinax household it felt so normal to have that mixture of Spanish and English reading this. Also the lovingness of ‘Mi hija’ made my heart so happy.
One of the big themes of this was Fernanda running for office. She discusses ‘cleaning up’ Coast City and cracking down on immigration. The fear Jessica’s family feels towards this women and the ideas she represents is palpable. Jessica even goes so far into her anger because of it that she loses sight of what is truly important for a while.
Her anger has her feeling one with the ideas of the God of the Smoking Mirror. He says that destruction will create a new way forward.
It is also interesting to me that her anxiety is also colored by the fire of the God of the Smoking Mirror. It seems to suggest a fear based thinking in the ideology of his anger.
When the Goddess of the Jade Skirt shows up in a dream and first tells her to let herself be a bridge and to connect with her friends to make change she doesn’t quite connect to it at first. It takes her a long while to understand the ideas this goddess was trying to teach her.
All in all:
This was an amazing read! I loved it with every part of me. The art so stunning and rich in color. The story so full of raw emotion. The hope a steady beat that brings Jessica to step forward and make her stand. It’s such a powerful read. I cannot recommend this comic enough.
THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!