Reviews

Sweet And Bitter Magic by Adrienne Tooley

*Spoiler free*

Thank you so much to Margaret K. McElderry Books and Netgalley for the e-ARC!

Tamsin is the most powerful witch of her generation. But after committing the worst magical sin, she’s exiled by the ruling Coven and cursed with the inability to love. The only way she can get those feelings back—even for just a little while—is to steal love from others. Wren is a source—a rare kind of person who is made of magic, despite being unable to use it herself. Sources are required to train with the Coven as soon as they discover their abilities, but Wren—the only caretaker to her ailing father—has spent her life hiding her secret. When a magical plague ravages the queendom, Wren’s father falls victim. To save him, Wren proposes a bargain: if Tamsin will help her catch the dark witch responsible for creating the plague, then Wren will give Tamsin her love for her father. Of course, love bargains are a tricky thing, and these two have a long, perilous journey ahead of them—that is, if they don’t kill each other first.

Witches, and f/f enemies-to-lovers. Yeah, that was enough for me to be completely invested. Then I found out that it was about a witch who is unable to love traveling with girl who is a source of magic to stop a plague that is ravaging the queendom. I also found out it had a cat, so this book was filled to the brim with things that I wanted to know more about. Trigger warnings: grief

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Reviews

10 Reasons You Should Read The Henna Wars By Adiba Jaigirdar

*Spoiler free*

When Nishat comes out to her parents, they say she can be anyone she wants—as long as she isn’t herself. Because Muslim girls aren’t lesbians. Nishat doesn’t want to hide who she is, but she also doesn’t want to lose her relationship with her family. And her life only gets harder once a childhood friend walks back into her life. Flávia is beautiful and charismatic and Nishat falls for her instantly. But when a school competition invites students to create their own businesses, both Flávia and Nishat choose to do henna, even though Flávia is appropriating Nishat’s culture. Amidst sabotage and school stress, their lives get more tangled—but Nishat can’t quite get rid of her crush on Flávia, and realizes there might be more to her than she realized.

I’ve wanted to read The Henna Wars since before it came out. It was a f/f enemies-to-lovers book and that was enough to seal the deal for me. Then, my friend (hi Tay!) read this book and absolutely loved it. Since we have very similar taste, it shot right up to the top of the list of books I wanted to try out. Trigger warnings: racism, a character being outed, homophobia

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Chloe Gets Vulnerable

Let’s see if I can get through this without throwing my laptop down a well (my neighbors actually have a well, so this really is an option for me. I dunno how deep it is, but this would be a good way to find out, right?). I’m not sure how I want to start this. I know what I want to talk about, but how do I dive into it. Well, I guess let’s just say I’m going to be talking about gender. *jazz hands* There, that should work.

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Reviews

We Set The Dark On Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia

*Spoiler free*

At the Medio School for Girls, distinguished young women are trained for one of two roles in their polarized society. Depending on her specialization, a graduate will one day run a husband’s household or raise his children, but both are promised a life of comfort and luxury, far from the frequent political uprisings of the lower class. Daniela Vargas is the school’s top student, but her bright future depends upon no one discovering her darkest secret—that her pedigree is a lie. Her parents sacrificed everything to obtain forged identification papers so Dani could rise above her station. Now that her marriage to an important politico’s son is fast approaching, she must keep the truth hidden or be sent back to the fringes of society, where famine and poverty rule supreme. On her graduation night, Dani seems to be in the clear, despite the surprises that unfold. But nothing prepares her for all the difficult choices she must make, especially when she is asked to spy for a resistance group desperately fighting to bring equality to Medio. Will Dani cling to the privilege her parents fought to win for her, or to give up everything she’s strived for in pursuit of a free Medio—and a chance at a forbidden love?

I knew this book was queer (f/f to be exact), so it was already on my list of books that I want read. Though, the absolute adoration and love I’ve seen from some of my friends about this book shot it right to the top of books to read. Marriage to rise above, secrets that need to be kept, and a resistance group needing Dani’s help made it sound like this book was going to be incredible and I couldn’t wait to read it!

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Reviews

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

*Spoiler free*

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Cynical twenty-three-year old August doesn’t believe in much. She doesn’t believe in psychics, or easily forged friendships, or finding the kind of love they make movies about. And she certainly doesn’t believe her ragtag band of new roommates, her night shifts at a 24-hour pancake diner, or her daily subway commute full of electrical outages are going to change that. But then, there’s Jane. Beautiful, impossible Jane. All hard edges with a soft smile and swoopy hair and saving August’s day when she needed it most. The person August looks forward to seeing on the train every day. The one who makes her forget about the cities she lived in that never seemed to fit, and her fear of what happens when she finally graduates, and even her cold-case obsessed mother who won’t quite let her go. And when August realizes her subway crush is impossible in more ways than one—namely, displaced in time from the 1970s—she thinks maybe it’s time to start believing.

My love for Red, White, And Royal Blue is no secret. I’ve been excited for McQuiston’s next book since I finished it. And finding out that it would be f/f only made me all the more excited. I was a bit nervous about the time travel aspect of the plot, only because I haven’t read a lot of books set in the real world with a slight magical aspect that I’ve liked. But a f/f book by Casey McQuiston was something I was willing to go out on a limb for. Thank you so much to St. Martins Griffin and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

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Reviews

Crier’s War by Nina Varela

*Spoiler free*

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After the War of Kinds ravaged the kingdom of Rabu, the Automae, Designed to be the playthings of royals, took over the estates of their owners and bent the human race to their will. Now, Ayla, a human servant rising the ranks at the House of the Sovereign, dreams of avenging the death of her family… by killing the Sovereign’s daughter, Lady Crier. Crier, who was Made to be beautiful, to be flawless. And to take over the work of her father. Crier had been preparing to do just that—to inherit her father’s rule over the land. But that was before she was betrothed to Scyre Kinok, who seems to have a thousand secrets. That was before she discovered her father isn’t as benevolent as she thought. That was before she met Ayla. Set in a richly-imagined fantasy world, Nina Varela’s debut novel is a sweepingly romantic tale of love, loss and revenge, that challenges what it really means to be human.

In a very me way, it was the second I found out this book was queer was the second I knew I wanted to read it. (Yes, it might have taken me a little bit to get to it, but I wanted to read it the whole time.) This was a queer fantasy book. A queer fantasy with the enemies-to-lovers trope and a very intriguing world, a world with Automae ruling over humans. It sounded amazing.

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Reviews

Full Disclosure by Camryn Garrett

*Spoiler free*

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Simone Garcia-Hampton is starting over at a new school, and this time things will be different. She’s making real friends, making a name for herself as student director of Rent, and making a play for Miles, the guy who makes her melt every time he walks into a room. The last thing she wants is for word to get out that she’s HIV-positive, because last time . . . well, last time things got ugly. Keeping her viral load under control is easy, but keeping her diagnosis under wraps is not so simple. As Simone and Miles start going out for real–shy kisses escalating into much more–she feels an uneasiness that goes beyond butterflies. She knows she has to tell him that she’s positive, especially if sex is a possibility, but she’s terrified of how he’ll react! And then she finds an anonymous note in her locker: I know you have HIV. You have until Thanksgiving to stop hanging out with Miles. Or everyone else will know too. Simone’s first instinct is to protect her secret at all costs, but as she gains a deeper understanding of the prejudice and fear in her community, she begins to wonder if the only way to rise above is to face the haters head-on…

This book has been on my list for a long time. One of my friends, Cody, raves about it every chance he gets. I was interested before I knew his opinion, it sounded interesting, but I’d heard SO MANY people absolutely raving about this book. So, I knew I had to give it a shot sooner rather than later.

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Reviews

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

*Spoiler free*

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Luc O’Donnell is tangentially–and reluctantly–famous. His rock star parents split when he was young, and the father he’s never met spent the next twenty years cruising in and out of rehab. Now that his dad’s making a comeback, Luc’s back in the public eye, and one compromising photo is enough to ruin everything. To clean up his image, Luc has to find a nice, normal relationship…and Oliver Blackwood is as nice and normal as they come. He’s a barrister, an ethical vegetarian, and he’s never inspired a moment of scandal in his life. In other words: perfect boyfriend material. Unfortunately apart from being gay, single, and really, really in need of a date for a big event, Luc and Oliver have nothing in common. So they strike a deal to be publicity-friendly (fake) boyfriends until the dust has settled. Then they can go their separate ways and pretend it never happened. But the thing about fake-dating is that it can feel a lot like real-dating. And that’s when you get used to someone. Start falling for them. Don’t ever want to let them go.

Gay fake dating. Was there really anything else that I needed to know to want to read this book? Not really, because that’s what sold me. There’s also enemies-to-lovers, having nothing in common, and a guy needed a respectable boyfriend to clean up his image. Yeah, I was ready to dive right in from “gay fake dating”, but now I was completely ready.

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What Love, Victor Means To Me

 

I basically sobbed my way to writing this post. I fell head over heels for this show. When I finished it, I didn’t want to write a review. Which is weird, because I have this deep, burning love for it inside of me and I usually want to share that here. I just feel like anything I could write about it wouldn’t do it and what I’m feeling justice. I don’t want to talk about just what I liked about. This show was so good and touched me so deeply for so many more reasons than that. But I do want to talk about, because I have things to say about it. This show touched me and I want to share that. So, this won’t really be a review. It’ll still be a lot of me rambling, but i’ll be a bit more personal rambling. Really, this show is just incredible special and I’m going to take the chance to talk about what it left me feeling.

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Reviews

I Kissed Alice by Anna Birch and Victoria Ying

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Macmillan/Imprint and Edeweiss for the e-ARC!

Rhodes and Iliana couldn’t be more different, but that’s not why they hate each other. Hyper-gifted artist Rhodes has always excelled at Alabama’s Conservatory of the Arts despite a secret bout of creator’s block, while transfer student Iliana tries to outshine everyone with her intense, competitive work ethic. Since only one of them can get the coveted Capstone scholarship, the competition between them is fierce. They both escape the pressure on a fanfic site where they are unknowingly collaborating on a graphic novel. And despite being worst enemies in real life, their anonymous online identities I-Kissed-Alice and Curious-in-Cheshire are starting to like each other…a lot. When the truth comes out, will they destroy each other’s future?

 

A f/f enemies-to-lovers book. Did I really need anymore than that for it to shoot up to the top of the list of books I wanted to read? It really didn’t. Any queer book is automatically on the list of books I want to read and this one was no different. Two artists, who are completely different hate each other in real life, but unknowingly connect on a fanfic site where the co-create a graphic novel. I just, I felt like and still feel like screaming when I hear the synopsis. Trigger warnings: depression, anxiety 

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