“You Are Not Alone” by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

New this week!

Folks, Hendricks and Pekkanen have done it again. I loved The Wife Between Us and An Anonymous Girl, so I knew You Are Not Alone would be a hit.

Hendricks Pekkanen books

Hendricks and Pekkanen have a knack for writing compelling thrillers that aren’t boring in the build-up. (That’s one of my recent beefs with thrillers. I get sick of reading 80% of the book confused, then finding out all the answers at the very end.) With these authors, they give you the whodunit thriller that you want, but throw in interesting pieces to keep you guessing and not completely in the dark. I will read anything these two put out without hesitation.

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You Are Not Alone bounces between several characters’ points of view. Shay Miller is a young woman living in New York, just stumbling through life, trying to figure out where she belongs. On the way to an interview one day, she witnesses the suicide of another young woman on the subway platform. From that day forward, Shay’s life will never be the same.

Cassandra and Jane Moore are two sisters that get what they want in life. They have a tight-knit group of friends that are like family to them, and they’ll protect each other no matter the cost. So when a mysterious girl (Shay) shows up at their friend Amanda’s memorial service after her suicide, they aren’t sure what her motives are. Did Amanda tell Shay something about the group’s secret? Does she know too much?

The sisters take Shay under their protective wing to find out more — they need to see if Shay should be taken care of (in a good way or a bad way). But no one is who they seem in this book, so you’ll keep guessing until the very end.

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Buy the book here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“The Holdout” by Graham Moore

81lcu8C-rjLThe Holdout was one of the Book of the Month picks for February, and as an avid true crime fan, I knew this was one for me. (Join Book of the Month here and get your first book for $5! It’s one of my favorite book clubs in the world.)

Maya Seale was the titular “holdout,” the only non-guilty voter at the start of months-long deliberations in the case of The People vs. Robert Nock. Bobby Nock had allegedly killed his teenaged student, Jessica Silver, after having an alleged sexual relationship with her. However, the details were not clear, because Jessica’s body was never found. The defense argued that because of this lack of a body, as well as many other unclear details, Bobby Nock should not be found guilty of murder. There was a reasonable doubt. Maya believes this, and argues ad nauseam with her fellow jury members, until they all agree. There was enough reasonable doubt to conclude that Bobby Nock should not be found guilty.

Flash forward 10 years. Having been fascinated by the procedures of the court, Maya Seale is now a highly-sought defense attorney. She’s defended some of the most notorious alleged criminals in Los Angeles. But one day, one of the other jury members, Rick, seeks her out to ask her to come back to the Omni Hotel, where they were sequestered for months, to film a documentary with the help of a popular true crime podcast.

Maya is hesitant, because she knows Rick still harbors major resentment for her due to her “cajoling” the rest of the jury to change their verdicts to not guilty. He thinks Bobby is guilty, and he claims to have new evidence that will prove he is right. After initially declining Rick’s invite, Maya decides that it’d be better to be there, to be involved, than to see the results later and not have any way to share her feelings, regardless of if she was “right” or “wrong” 10 years ago.

This book has TWISTS for days. I read it in under 24 hours, and it’s been quite a while since I’ve been sucked into a story like that! If you like true crime, mystery, whodunits, you’ll like The Holdout. Think Serial meets Twelve Angry Men meets And Then There Were None, and you’ll only have part of this roller coaster of a story.

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10 Awesome Reads to Get You Ready for Spooky Season

I *love* fall, Halloween, and just everything about Spooky Season. Perhaps it’s because my birthday is in October, but also because I’ve always loved dressing up in costumes, reading spooky books, watching fun (not scary) movies, and letting my *goth spirit* out in the open.

So, in the spirit of Spooky Season coming upon us, I’ve compiled a list of 10 of my favorite SpOoKy reads to get you in the spirit.

Click the covers below to head to Amazon!

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Enjoy, spoopy babiessss! 🙂

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Waiting on Wednesday: “The Girl the Sea Gave Back” by Adrienne Young

91ND0Y8hxLLWelcome to Waiting on Wednesday! This post is where I can flail about books that aren’t out yet!

This week I’m waiting on The Girl the Sea Gave Back by Adrienne Young. If this name sounds familiar, it’s because it is! Adrienne also wrote one of my faves from last year: Sky in the Deep (click to view my review!) PLUS LOOK AT THAT COVER 😍😍😍😍😍

The Girl the Sea Gave Back is not quite a sequel to Sky in the Deep. Adrienne says Girl is “A new standalone in the Sky in the Deep world, following Halvard (a character from Sky) ten years later.”

Honestly, the world-building and girl power that Sky had is enough to have me read *anything* Adrienne Young writes. But if that’s not enough, here’s the synopsis!

For as long as she can remember, Tova has lived among the Svell, the people who found her washed ashore as a child and use her for her gift as a Truthtongue. Her own home and clan are long-faded memories, but the sacred symbols and staves inked over every inch of her skin mark her as one who can cast the rune stones and see into the future. She has found a fragile place among those who fear her, but when two clans to the east bury their age-old blood feud and join together as one, her world is dangerously close to collapse.

For the first time in generations, the leaders of the Svell are divided. Should they maintain peace or go to war with the allied clans to protect their newfound power? And when their chieftain looks to Tova to cast the stones, she sets into motion a series of events that will not only change the landscape of the mainland forever but will give her something she believed she could never have again—a home.

The most exciting thing for me personally: Wednesday Books “granted my wish” on NetGalley today, so I can read the electronic ARC ahead of publication! HOORAY!

The Girl the Sea Gave Back releases September 3rd, 2019!

Pre-order your copy of The Girl the Sea Gave Back here!
Get caught up — order Sky in the Deep here!

Are you excited for The Girl the Sea Gave Back? What other books are you looking forward to reading in 2019? Let me know in the comments!

 

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“Slayer” by Kiersten White

DF57BC13-4647-4A27-ADF8-9721CDEDD1C8It’s no secret to many who know me — I absolutely *adore* Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I’ve watched it several times (PSA: It’s on Hulu!) and it never ceases to make me laugh, cry, laugh again, and cry some more. (I’m looking at you, “The Body”.)

So when I heard there was a Slayer book coming out, I knew there was no options. I was going to buy it, and I was going to buy it immediately. The stakes were high (pun intended) — would it hold up? Would it make me furious, another adaptation of my faves gone wrong?

Turns out, I LOVED IT.

Slayer starts out after the last season of the show ends, where Buffy rids the world of magic. Or something. But here’s where it’s different from the show, and a wholly awesome new perspective into the Slayer world. The story is told from the

 perspective of Nina, a teen girl who has grown up in the Watcher’s Academy and has spent her life learning how to become a healer. Her twin sister, Artemis, is also there, and she is more of the violent Watcher “type”, always feeling Nina like she is a bit of an outsider.

But then everything changes. Because (and the synopsis says it better than I can) “Nina is not only the newest Chosen One—she’s the last Slayer, ever. Period.”

Talk about pressure.

So you’ve got a Slayer, Watchers, teens and adults, demons, romantic interests, the works! And most importantly, the “who is the bad guy” trope. Is it him? Is it her? It’s her! No wait, is it him? I love this type of storyline so much — it keeps you guessing from beginning to end.

Anyway — If you loved Buffy Summers, you’ll love Nina and Artemis and all of their friends (and foes). There is supposedly more of this story to come, and I can’t wait for them to SLAY me like this one did. 😉

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Buy your copy here!

[Bonus: I listened to the audiobook of this book, and it’s killer!]

Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

Happy Pride Month!

IMG_2812Happy Pride Month all!

My friend Ben over at Ace of Bens created this awesome Pride Tag to celebrate Pride Month! (For those who don’t know, a “tag” is basically a group of prompts bloggers use to write fun, engaging posts!)

Here’s what Ben has to say about it!

To create the prompts for this tag, I used 11 different colors on various versions of the rainbow pride flag throughout history and what they were added to represent. I want to stress that this is not a book tag. Therefore, you don’t have to run a book blog, BookTube, or other type of bookish platform to do this tag!

Rules

  • Credit the original author of the tag — Ace Of Bens
  • Make sure you copy and paste these rules and notes at the beginning of the tag.
  • Tag as many or as few people as you’d like!

Notes

  • This tag originally uses the word “queer” as an umbrella term for the LGBTQ+ community, but you are free to change it to whatever term or abbreviation you are most comfortable with for your own post.
  • You don’t have to be out to be proud of who you are. Therefore, you can still do this tag if you aren’t out to everyone you know, as long as you feel comfortable and safe doing it!
  • Don’t feel obligated to answer all of these questions or to even do this if you are tagged. I want this to be a fun pride month post, not a source of anxiety for anyone.
  • Happy Pride Month!

Black & Brown: People Of Color — Who Is Your Favorite Queer Celebrity/Creator Of Color?

Oooh! Amandla Stenberg is an incredible actor — you may know them from The Hate U Give, Everything, Everything, or as Rue in The Hunger Games! Amandla is non-binary, so they use they/them pronouns. They are popping up in all of the big movie franchises lately, including The Darkest Minds movie that came out last year.

Lavender: Diversity — Name A Piece Of Media (Movie, TV Show, Book, Podcast, Etc.) With Queer Representation That You Admire For Its Overall Diversity.

Oooh. This is a tough one. The Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab has some great queer representation, plus it’s a really amazing read. I also loved The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid (read my review here). As for television, I’m going to copy Ben’s answer and say Brooklyn Nine-Nine. I have loved this show from the beginning, and it has some great queer representation! It’s a super funny show and if you watch it and don’t laugh there’s something wrong with you! 😛

Red: Life — What Point Of Your Life Were You At When You First Learned About The Queer Community? What Point Were You At When You Realized You Were A Part Of It?

I was probably in high school when I really learned about the queer community, but admittedly I didn’t know much, and that was the case until about 5 years ago when I got into blogging. Through reading, learning, and meeting new friends who identify as queer, I’ve learned a lot more and have become more informed about the queer community. It’s very important to me to learn and respect all people, regardless of our differences, because ultimately we’re all the same: human. We all deserve respect and love and I try to spread that message everywhere I go.

Orange: Healing — Community Is A Huge Part Of Healing. How Has This Community Helped You Become More Comfortable In Your Own Skin?

Through learning about the queer community and helping others learn, I feel that it has made me more aware of myself and how I feel. I truly believe that all people are valid and again, that we all deserve love and respect regardless of sexual or gender orientation. It’s healthiest to be who you are, how you want to be.

Yellow: Sunlight — What Is Something About The Queer Community And/Or Culture That Makes You Happy? Something You Find Joy Or Light In.

I’m absolutely thrilled to see the book and television industries becoming more inclusive and that more queer and queer POC are represented in the media. Growing up when I did, while it was the start of inclusivity becoming more common, I do admit that I was quite sheltered in my learning and consumption of queer information. I love that kids and teens growing up now are able to learn more, to see themselves in media, and to know that there are so many people out there that support them.

Green: Nature — How Have You Grown Since Last Pride Month?

I’ve become more informed on the queer community, and issues surrounding the queer folx. I always strive to listen to those in the queer community and learn from them — to support them in every way I can.

Indigo: Serenity — Would You Say You’re At A Point Of Self-Discovery That You’ve Found Inner Peace With Your Gender And Sexual Identities?

In learning more about what it means to be queer, what gender and sexual identities are and how to address them, I feel like I’ve become more informed and feel more confident in my own identity. I hope to support other people in their decisions about these topics as well. It’s hard sometimes living in Nebraska — some people just don’t understand how to love everyone, not just the ones that you agree with. I’m trying to help others around me discover their truths now.

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Violet: Spirit — How Are You Getting Into The Spirit Of Pride Month?

Well, by doing this Pride Tag! I also am aiming to read books by queer authors, and to boost queer voices on twitter and beyond! I so enjoy this month as it lets my friends in the queer community celebrate who they are, and to be PROUD of who they are. 🙂

I’m not sure who to tag — if you identify with this tag, please do feel free to write your own post! Use the original tag post on Ace of Bens for the prompts — I skipped some that do not apply to me or that I do not have an answer for. Thanks for reading! And thank you to Ben for creating the tag! Happy Pride!

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“The Night Before” by Wendy Walker

40867676The Night Before is a keep-you-guessing mystery told in the always classic chronologically mixed format — alternating between “Present Day,” “Months Ago,” and of course, “The Night Before”.

Laura Heart has a shady past and a knack for overthinking her romantic relationships. When she goes through her most recent breakup with “Asshole,” she packs her bags and moves from NYC back to her childhood home to live with her sister, Rosie. Rosie, her husband Joe, and their neighbor Gabe, all are connected by proximity, but also by the fact that they were best friends growing up in that same neighborhood. They know each others’ childhood secrets, which for some, are more sinister than is typical.

To ease Laura’s heartache, Rosie helps Laura craft a dating profile and get a date with a respectable, mature, older man — one who would seemingly have a stable life to help Laura keep her head straight. When Laura doesn’t return from her date, her family fears the worst.

This book is a master class in the unreliable narrator, the alternating-time chapters, in leading you down the road only for you to find it wasn’t taking you where you thought.

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Pre-order the book here (releases May 14, 2019)

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.