The Girl Who Fell Beneath The Sea by Axie Oh

*Spoiler free*

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

Deadly storms have ravaged Mina’s homeland for generations. Floods sweep away entire villages, while bloody wars are waged over the few remaining resources. Her people believe the Sea God, once their protector, now curses them with death and despair. In an attempt to appease him, each year a beautiful maiden is thrown into the sea to serve as the Sea God’s bride, in the hopes that one day the “true bride” will be chosen and end the suffering. Many believe that Shim Cheong, the most beautiful girl in the village–and the beloved of Mina’s older brother Joon–may be the legendary true bride. But on the night Cheong is to be sacrificed, Joon follows Cheong out to sea, even knowing that to interfere is a death sentence. To save her brother, Mina throws herself into the water in Cheong’s stead. Swept away to the Spirit Realm, a magical city of lesser gods and mythical beasts, Mina seeks out the Sea God, only to find him caught in an enchanted sleep. With the help of a mysterious young man named Shin–as well as a motley crew of demons, gods and spirits–Mina sets out to wake the Sea God and bring an end to the killer storms once and for all. But she doesn’t have much time: A human cannot live long in the land of the spirits. And there are those who would do anything to keep the Sea God from waking…

I was pulled into this book because of the cover. I know, I know, that’s bad, but it’s absolutely stunning. And it sounded absolutely incredible as well. A girl who sacrifices herself save her brother, who is swept into the sea and into the Spirit Realm. A story of a Sea God and deadly storms and enchantments. It sounded so, so good.

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Our Wayward Fate by Gloria Chao

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you SimonTeen and Netgalley for the e-ARC!

Seventeen-year-old Ali Chu knows that as the only Asian person at her school in middle-of-nowhere Indiana, she must be bland as white toast to survive. This means swapping her congee lunch for PB&Js, ignoring the clueless racism from her classmates and teachers, and keeping her mouth shut when people wrongly call her Allie instead of her actual name, pronounced Āh-lěe, after the mountain in Taiwan. Her autopilot existence is disrupted when she finds out that Chase Yu, the new kid in school, is also Taiwanese. Despite some initial resistance due to the “they belong together” whispers, Ali and Chase soon spark a chemistry rooted in competitive martial arts, joking in two languages, and, most importantly, pushing back against the discrimination they face. But when Ali’s mom finds out about the relationship, she forces Ali to end it. As Ali covertly digs into the why behind her mother’s disapproval, she uncovers secrets about her family and Chase that force her to question everything she thought she knew about life, love, and her unknowable future.

I really loved American Panda. It was such a light, fluffy, funny, and amazingly written book. I was really looking forward to reading another one of Gloria’s books! After American Panda, I will honestly read anything that she writes. This one sounded different than her debut, more secrets and more delving into characters, but I was still really, really looking forward to it!

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