Reviews

Lobizona by Romina Russell

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you WednesdayBooks and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Manuela Azul has been crammed into an existence that feels too small for her. As an undocumented immigrant who’s on the run from her father’s Argentine crime-family, Manu is confined to a small apartment and a small life in Miami, Florida. Until Manu’s protective bubble is shattered. Her surrogate grandmother is attacked, lifelong lies are exposed, and her mother is arrested by ICE. Without a home, without answers, and finally without shackles, Manu investigates the only clue she has about her past–a mysterious “Z” emblem—which leads her to a secret world buried within our own. A world connected to her dead father and his criminal past. A world straight out of Argentine folklore, where the seventh consecutive daughter is born a bruja and the seventh consecutive son is a lobizón, a werewolf. A world where her unusual eyes allow her to belong. As Manu uncovers her own story and traces her real heritage all the way back to a cursed city in Argentina, she learns it’s not just her U.S. residency that’s illegal. . . .it’s her entire existence.

I’m not quite sure what drew me to this book. I think it was kind of a what the heck, I’ll try it. I actually thought it was an adult book for a bit, because the cover kind of feels like an adult one. But, it is firmly YA! I basically only knew that the main character would discover magic along the way and would learn about a new world. And that was enough for me to give it a try.

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Reviews

Date Me, Bryson Keller by Kevin van Whye

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you Random House Books for Young Readers and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

Everyone knows about the dare: Each week, Bryson Keller must date someone new–the first person to ask him out on Monday morning. Few think Bryson can do it. He may be the king of Fairvale Academy, but he’s never really dated before. Until a boy asks him out, and everything changes. Kai Sheridan didn’t expect Bryson to say yes. So when Bryson agrees to secretly go out with him, Kai is thrown for a loop. But as the days go by, he discovers there’s more to Bryson beneath the surface, and dating him begins to feel less like an act and more like the real thing. Kai knows how the story of a gay boy liking someone straight ends. With his heart on the line, he’s awkwardly trying to navigate senior year at school, at home, and in the closet, all while grappling with the fact that this “relationship” will last only five days. After all, Bryson Keller is popular, good-looking, and straight . . . right? Kevin van Whye delivers an uplifting and poignant coming-out love story that will have readers rooting for these two teens to share their hearts with the world–and with each other.

I hadn’t seen this book at all until my friend (Cody is awesome) showed it to me. Just from the, this book seemed like something I wanted to read. It’s very obviously queer, which is amazing. Plus, it looks absolutely freaking adorable. A boy joins in a dare, asking out a super popular boy. Kai is closeted and he thinks Bryson is straight. The relationship only lasts five days, but Kai is starting to fall for Bryson. It sounds incredible and I’m so happy I got the chance to read it. Trigger warnings: homophobia, forced outing

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Reviews

Bone Crier’s Moon by Kathryn Purdie

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you HaperCollins and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Bone ​Criers have a sacred duty. They alone can keep the dead from preying on the living. But their power to ferry the spirits of the dead into goddess Elara’s Night Heavens or Tyrus’s Underworld comes from sacrifice. The gods demand a promise of dedication. And that promise comes at the cost of the Bone Criers’ one true love. Ailesse has been prepared since birth to become the matriarch of the Bone Criers, a mysterious famille of women who use strengths drawn from animal bones to ferry dead souls. But first she must complete her rite of passage and kill the boy she’s also destined to love. Bastien’s father was slain by a Bone Crier and he’s been seeking revenge ever since. Yet when he finally captures one, his vengeance will have to wait. Ailesse’s ritual has begun and now their fates are entwined—in life and in death. Sabine has never had the stomach for the Bone Criers’ work. But when her best friend Ailesse is taken captive, Sabine will do whatever it takes to save her, even if it means defying their traditions—and their matriarch—to break the bond between Ailesse and Bastien. Before they all die.

I wasn’t sure about this book for awhile. Soul mate books are always hit or miss for me and books about the dead are also always hit or miss for me. It didn’t sound like something I would normally read and I wasn’t sure I would like it. But, I had seen so many people be excited about and I kind of wanted to give it a try. So, I decided to just give it a try to give it a try.

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Reviews

More Than Maybe by Erin Hahn

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you WednesdayBooks and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Growing up under his punk rocker dad’s spotlight, eighteen-year-old Luke Greenly knows fame and wants nothing to do with it. His real love isn’t in front of a crowd, it’s on the page. Hiding his gift and secretly hoarding songs in his bedroom at night, he prefers the anonymous comfort of the locally popular podcast he co-hosts with his outgoing and meddling, far-too-jealousy-inspiringly-happy-with-his-long-term-boyfriend twin brother, Cullen. But that’s not Luke’s only secret. He also has a major un-requited crush on music blogger, Vada Carsewell. Vada’s got a five year plan: secure a job at the Loud Lizard to learn from local legend (and her mom’s boyfriend) Phil Josephs (check), take over Phil’s music blog (double check), get accepted into Berkeley’s prestigious music journalism program (check, check, check), manage Ann Arbor’s summer concert series and secure a Rolling Stone internship. Luke Greenly is most definitely NOT on the list. So what if his self-deprecating charm and out-of-this-world music knowledge makes her dizzy? Or his brother just released a bootleg recording of Luke singing about some mystery girl on their podcast and she really, really wishes it was her?

I have seen a lot of love for You’d Be Mine online and a lot of excitement for More Than Maybe. I haven’t read You’d Be Mine yet, even though I really want, because I know it’s heavier. But, I knew that More Than Maybe would have a super sweet male main character and that was basically enough for me to want to read. And then I found out there’s mutual pining and I kind of just exploded.

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Reviews

Hood by Jenny Elder Moke

*Spoiler free*

Isabelle of Kirklees has only ever known a quiet life inside the sheltered walls of the convent, where she lives with her mother, Marien. But after she is arrested by royal soldiers for defending innocent villagers, Isabelle becomes the target of the Wolf, King John’s ruthless right hand. Desperate to keep her daughter safe, Marien helps Isabelle escape and sends her on a mission to find the one person who can help: Isabelle’s father, Robin Hood. As Isabelle races to stay out of the Wolf’s clutches and find the father she’s never known, she is thrust into a world of thieves and mercenaries, handsome young outlaws, new enemies with old grudges, and a king who wants her entire family dead. As she joins forces with Robin and his Merry Men in a final battle against the Wolf, will Isabelle find the strength to defy the crown and save the lives of everyone she holds dear?

I’ve discovered that I will jump on any Robin Hood retellings. Especially because most of the ones I come across feature a female main character, and I think that is one the best things ever. When I first found out about this book, I knew it would be about Robin Hood’s daughter, and that was basically all I needed to know that I wanted to read it.

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Reviews

The Best Laid Plans by Cameron Lund

*Spoiler free*

It seemed like a good plan at first. When the only other virgin in her group of friends loses it at Keely’s own eighteenth birthday party, she knows it’s time for drastic measures. If she’s going to avoid heading to college without any experience of her own, she needs to find the guy, and fast. Problem is, she’s known all the boys in her small high school forever, and it’s kinda hard to be into a guy when you watched him eat crayons in kindergarten. So she can’t believe her luck when she meets a ridiculously hot new guy named Dean. Not only does he look like he’s fallen out of a classic movie poster, but he drives a motorcycle, flirts with ease, and might actually be into her. But Dean’s already in college, and Keely is convinced he’ll drop her if he finds out how inexperienced she is. That’s when she talks herself into a new plan: her lifelong best friend, Andrew, would never hurt or betray her, and he’s clearly been with enough girls that he can show her the ropes before she goes all the way with Dean. Of course, the plan only works if Andrew and Keely stay friends–just friends–so things are about to get complicated. 

I was very, very much looking forward to this book. It sounds a bit like a YA version of The Kiss Quotient, which I adored! I always appropriate sex positive YA, and this sounded like it would also be packed full with amazing tropes. Plus, the cover is so bright and happy and absolutely adorable.

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Reviews

The Lucky Ones by Liz Lawson

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you Delacorte and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

May is a survivor. But she doesn’t feel like one. She feels angry. And lost. And alone. Eleven months after the school shooting that killed her twin brother, May still doesn’t know why she was the only one to walk out of the band room that day. No one gets what she went through–no one saw and heard what she did. No one can possibly understand how it feels to be her. Zach lost his old life when his mother decided to defend the shooter. His girlfriend dumped him, his friends bailed, and now he spends his time hanging out with his little sister…and the one faithful friend who stuck around. His best friend is needy and demanding, but he won’t let Zach disappear into himself. Which is how Zach ends up at band practice that night. The same night May goes with her best friend to audition for a new band. Which is how May meets Zach. And how Zach meets May. And how both might figure out that surviving could be an option after all.

A book about what happens after school shootings. I knew this book would be heartbreaking, and I never know how I will react to those kinds of books. Sometimes they hit really well, and sometimes the emotions feel really overwhelming. But I wanted to give this one a try. It’s something that is so prevalent now and it’s something I wanted to give a try. Trigger warnings: This book deals with a school shooting. It’s a hard book to read, so please take care of yourself.

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