Reviews

This Poison Heart by Kalynn Bayron

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Bloomsbury YA and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Briseis has a gift: she can grow plants from tiny seeds to rich blooms with a single touch. When Briseis’s aunt dies and wills her a dilapidated estate in rural New York, Bri and her parents decide to leave Brooklyn behind for the summer. Hopefully there, surrounded by plants and flowers, Bri will finally learn to control her gift. But their new home is sinister in ways they could never have imagined–it comes with a specific set of instructions, an old-school apothecary, and a walled garden filled with the deadliest botanicals in the world that can only be entered by those who share Bri’s unique family lineage. When strangers begin to arrive on their doorstep, asking for tinctures and elixirs, Bri learns she has a surprising talent for creating them. One of the visitors is Marie, a mysterious young woman who Bri befriends, only to find that Marie is keeping dark secrets about the history of the estate and its surrounding community. There is more to Bri’s sudden inheritance than she could have imagined, and she is determined to uncover it . . . until a nefarious group comes after her in search of a rare and dangerous immortality elixir. Up against a centuries-old curse and the deadliest plant on earth, Bri must harness her gift to protect herself and her family.

I’ve been ready for this book since I finished Cinderella Is Dead. It didn’t even what it was about. If this author wrote it, I was going to read it. Though, the synopsis did make me even more intrigued. A retelling of the The Secret Garden, about a girl who can make plants blossom and grow with a single touch. But, the gift has a deadly side, and she suddenly inherits a mysterious old house that has strangers randomly showing up. Oh yeah, I was intrigued.

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Reviews

A Conspiracy Of Stars by Olivia A. Cole

*Spoiler free*

Octavia has only ever had one goal: to follow in the footsteps of her parents and become a prestigious whitecoat, one of the scientists who study the natural wonders of Faloiv. The secrets of the jungle’s exotic plants and animals are protected fiercely in the labs by the Council of N’Terra, so when the rules suddenly change, allowing students inside, Octavia should be overjoyed. But something isn’t right. The newly elected leader of the Council has some extremist views about the way he believes N’Terra should be run, and he’s influencing others to follow him. When Octavia witnesses one of the Faloii—the indigenous people of Faloiv—attacked in front of her in the dark of night, she knows the Council is hiding something. They are living in separate worlds on a shared planet, and their fragile peace may soon turn into an all-out war. With the help of Rondo, a quiet boy in class with a skill for hacking, and her inquisitive best friend, Alma, Octavia is set on a collision course to discover the secrets behind the history she’s been taught, the science she’s lived by, and the truth about her family.


I discovered this book by the cover of the sequel. Yes, I know that’s weird, but sequel cover just has something about it that draws me in. So, of course I wanted to check out the first book. On top of that, one of my friends absolutely raves about this book, and I trust her judgment. And it’s about a girl wanting to follow in her parents footsteps: become a scientist and discover more about the planet she lives on. A planet full of exotic plans and animals. But, people in charge have dangerous ideas about how the world should run. And those ideas turn into dangerous actions. It sounded incredible intriguing and I was eager to see what it was all about!

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Reviews

Small Favors by Erin A. Craig

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Delacorte Press and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

Ellerie Downing lives in the quiet town of Amity Falls in the Blackspire Mountain range–five narrow peaks stretching into the sky like a grasping hand, bordered by a nearly impenetrable forest from which the early townsfolk fought off the devils in the woods. To this day, visitors are few and rare. But when a supply party goes missing, some worry that the monsters that once stalked the region have returned. As fall turns to winter, more strange activities plague the town. They point to a tribe of devilish and mystical creatures who promise to fulfill the residents’ deepest desires, however grand and impossible, for just a small favor. But their true intentions are much more sinister, and Ellerie finds herself in a race against time before all of Amity Falls, her family, and the boy she loves go up in flames.

After reading and loving House Of Salt And Sorrows, I was really looking forward to anything else this author was going to write. Small Favors seemed like it was going to be extremely different than House, but I have to say, the bright yellow cover for a horror novel is certainty intriguing. And the process of small favors spiraling into something bigger and even deadly? Yes, I definitely wanted to know more. Trigger warnings: burns, vomit, blood

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The Wolf And The Woodsman by Ava Reid

*Spoiler free*

Thank you so much to Voyager and Netgalley for the e-ARC!

In her forest-veiled pagan village, Évike is the only woman without power, making her an outcast clearly abandoned by the gods. The villagers blame her corrupted bloodline—her father was a Yehuli man, one of the much-loathed servants of the fanatical king. When soldiers arrive from the Holy Order of Woodsmen to claim a pagan girl for the king’s blood sacrifice, Évike is betrayed by her fellow villagers and surrendered. But when monsters attack the Woodsmen and their captive en route, slaughtering everyone but Évike and the cold, one-eyed captain, they have no choice but to rely on each other. Except he’s no ordinary Woodsman—he’s the disgraced prince, Gáspár Bárány, whose father needs pagan magic to consolidate his power. Gáspár fears that his cruelly zealous brother plans to seize the throne and instigate a violent reign that would damn the pagans and the Yehuli alike. As the son of a reviled foreign queen, Gáspár understands what it’s like to be an outcast, and he and Évike make a tenuous pact to stop his brother. As their mission takes them from the bitter northern tundra to the smog-choked capital, their mutual loathing slowly turns to affection, bound by a shared history of alienation and oppression. However, trust can easily turn to betrayal, and as Évike reconnects with her estranged father and discovers her own hidden magic, she and Gáspár need to decide whose side they’re on, and what they’re willing to give up for a nation that never cared for them at all.

I saw a flash of a picture of this book for a giveaway and was practically sold. Then I saw a flash on the description, a girl who has no magic because she has been abandoned by the gods, based on Hungarian history and Jewish myth, and the only survivors of a monster attack being Évike, the main character, and the cold, one eyed captain of the Woodsman. Then I basically fell head over heels for this book and definitely, definitely, wanted to read it. Trigger warnings: torture, antisemitism, physical abuse by parental figures, vomiting, animal death, self-harm, gore, body horror

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Reviews

Meet Cute Diary by Emery Lee

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Quill Tree Books and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Noah Ramirez thinks he’s an expert on romance. He has to be for his popular blog, the Meet Cute Diary, a collection of trans happily ever afters. There’s just one problem—all the stories are fake. What started as the fantasies of a trans boy afraid to step out of the closet has grown into a beacon of hope for trans readers across the globe. When a troll exposes the blog as fiction, Noah’s world unravels. The only way to save the Diary is to convince everyone that the stories are true, but he doesn’t have any proof. Then Drew walks into Noah’s life, and the pieces fall into place: Drew is willing to fake-date Noah to save the Diary. But when Noah’s feelings grow beyond their staged romance, he realizes that dating in real life isn’t quite the same as finding love on the page.

I mean, I heard this was about a trans boy who runs a trans romance blog who must concoct a fake dating scheme to prove a troll wrong and I was ready to read it. That sounds like an amazing book that sounds right up my alley. Plus, I’m pretty desperate for a trans romcom, and this is a romcom! I wanted to see it what it was all about, because it sounded like it would be amazing. Trigger warnings: anxiety, transphobia, panic attacks

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What’s Not To Love by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Puffin and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

Since high school began, Alison Sanger and Ethan Molloy have competed on almost everything. AP classes, the school paper, community service, it never ends. If Alison could avoid Ethan until graduation, she would. Except, naturally, for two over-achieving seniors with their sights on valedictorian and Harvard, they share all the same classes and extracurriculars. So when their school’s principal assigns them the task of co-planning a previous class’s ten-year reunion, with the promise of a recommendation for Harvard if they do, Ethan and Alison are willing to endure one more activity together if it means beating the other out of the lead. But with all this extra time spent in each other’s company, their rivalry begins to feel closer to friendship. And as tension between them builds, Alison fights the growing realization that the only thing she wants more than winning…is Ethan.

Even before reading and adoring If I’m Being Honest and Always Never Yours, I was looking forward to this book. Rivals-to-lovers with some amazing kissing. Yeah, that’s pretty much all I needed to know to want to read this book desperately. Then, I found out how amazing these authors’ books are, and I was even more ready to see what this book was all about.

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Reviews

The One’s We’re Meant To Find by Joan He

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Roaring Brook Press and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Cee awoke on an abandoned island three years ago. With no idea of how she was marooned, she only has a rickety house, an old android, and a single memory: she has a sister, and Cee needs to find her. STEM prodigy Kasey wants escape from the science and home she once trusted. The eco-cities—Earth’s last unpolluted place—are meant to be sanctuary for those committed to planetary protection, but they’re populated by people willing to do anything for refuge, even lie. Now, she’ll have to decide if she’s ready to use science to help humanity, even though it failed the people who mattered most.

I mean, is anybody surprised that I was looking forward to this book with bated breath before I even knew it existed, basically the second I finished Descendent Of The Crane? It’s a Joan He book, of course I am going to want to read it. And the synopsis only heightened my urge to read it. One sister wakes on an abandoned island, and the other is a STEM prodigy living in a eco-city, one of the last unpolluted places on Earth. Cee needs to find Kasey, and Kasey wants to escape the city she is stuck in. I was very much looking forward to seeing what this book was all about. Trigger warnings: terminal illness, suicide, violence, death, death of parent (off page), vomiting, large scale natural disasters and mass casualties, some gore

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Reviews

Gideon The Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

*Spoiler free*

The Emperor needs necromancers. The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman. Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead bullshit. Brought up by unfriendly, ossifying nuns, ancient retainers, and countless skeletons, Gideon is ready to abandon a life of servitude and an afterlife as a reanimated corpse. She packs up her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and prepares to launch her daring escape. But her childhood nemesis won’t set her free without a service.

Harrowhark Nonagesimus, Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House and bone witch extraordinaire, has been summoned into action. The Emperor has invited the heirs to each of his loyal Houses to a deadly trial of wits and skill. If Harrowhark succeeds she will become an immortal, all-powerful servant of the Resurrection, but no necromancer can ascend without their cavalier. Without Gideon’s sword, Harrow will fail, and the Ninth House will die.

Of course, some things are better left dead.

I feel like I’ve seen so much of this book pretty much everywhere and most of what I’ve seen is a whole lot of love. So, of course I was intrigued. Basically, all I knew of this book going into it was lesbian necromancers in space, but not quite lesbian necromancers in space because that selling point wasn’t exactly what everybody was saying it was. Honestly, that was enough for me. It looked and sounded dark and gritty. Plus, skeletons are cool! Trigger warnings: graphic violence, gore, murder, mass murder, human sacrifice, many conversations about suicide, death, death of children, talk of depression, grief depiction, trauma depiction, loss of a loved one, lots of blood depiction, self-harm to get blood, and mentions of cancer.

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Reviews

Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to G.P. Putnam’s Sons and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Maybell Parish has always been a dreamer and a hopeless romantic. But living in her own world has long been preferable to dealing with the disappointments of real life. So when Maybell inherits a charming house in the Smokies from her Great-Aunt Violet, she seizes the opportunity to make a fresh start. Yet when she arrives, it seems her troubles have only just begun. Not only is the house falling apart around her, but she isn’t the only inheritor: she has to share everything with Wesley Koehler, the groundskeeper who’s as grouchy as he is gorgeous–and it turns out he has a very different vision for the property’s future. Convincing the taciturn Wesley to stop avoiding her and compromise is a task more formidable than the other dying wishes Great-Aunt Violet left behind. But when Maybell uncovers something unexpectedly sweet beneath Wesley’s scowls, and as the two slowly begin to let their guard down, they might learn that sometimes the smallest steps outside one’s comfort zone can lead to the greatest rewards.

I was looking forward to this book. I had really enjoyed You Deserve Each Other, with it’s hilarious humor and fantastic MC, so I was pumped to see what Hogle’s next book would be like! Then I found out that it would have a dreamer MC and a love interest with social anxiety and I became incredibly eager to read the book. Plus, the plot focuses around inheriting a house and clashing ideas on what to do with it! It sounded amazing. Trigger warnings: anxiety, social anxiety, panic attacks

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Reviews

Gearbreakers by Zoe Hana Mikuta

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Feiwel Friends and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

The shadow of Godolia’s tyrannical rule is spreading, aided by their giant mechanized weapons known as Windups. War and oppression are everyday constants for the people of the Badlands, who live under the thumb of their cruel Godolia overlords. Eris Shindanai is a Gearbreaker, a brash young rebel who specializes in taking down Windups from the inside. When one of her missions goes awry and she finds herself in a Godolia prison, Eris meets Sona Steelcrest, a cybernetically enhanced Windup pilot. At first Eris sees Sona as her mortal enemy, but Sona has a secret: She has intentionally infiltrated the Windup program to destroy Godolia from within. As the clock ticks down to their deadliest mission yet, a direct attack to end Godolia’s reign once and for all, Eris and Sona grow closer—as comrades, friends, and perhaps something more…

I mean, a sci-fi with a title like Gearbreakers was enough to rope me in and shoot this book straight up my list of anticipated list. Plus, the author seems totally badass, so I was incredibly intrigued to see what kinds of book she would produce. Giant robots, rebels, taking down a tyrannical rule from the inside. Oh yeah, that sounded like a book I wanted to read. Trigger warnings: torture, grief, blood

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