This list is specifically books that have romance as it’s main plot point, and where one of it’s top 5 tags on goodreads is romance. These books make you feel mushy and in love with love all over again. No tears either, well no ugly crying type of tears anyway.
Lara Jean and her many crushes are sugary sweet. But, LJ and Peter Kavinsky? My heart cannot bear it.
Tom Valeska is one of those hard candies that, once you rack that tough exterior, you will not be disappointed. Darcy is equally as tough shelled and if I could have blanked out all of Jamie then it’d be even better. It’s definitely worth putting up with his atrocious behavior though.
I picked this one after finishing Bird Box and Station Eleven and needed something light and mushy. I got mushy that’s for sure, but these character’s life stories are heartbreaking. But they still managed to have so many sweet and carefree moments even still that I couldn’t help but fall in love with their relationship. I even fell in love with the side characters.
Out April 18
Oh gosh this one. Dax and Kailyn together 😍😍😍. Their banter and the way they work as a team towards Emme’s best interest. I don’t want to say too much as this one hasn’t come out yet,but just know…You should read this.
Out April 9
I think my favorite thing about Sally Thorne is her character’s banter with each other. Plus the inner monologue of the main characters was hilarious to witness. Maybe skip the audio for this one though as there were times that I wasn’t sure if Lucy was imagining something or if it was really happening. She has a vivid imagination.
Do you have any recommendations? Have you read any of these? Do you plan to?
I’m trying this ‘planned reading’ thing again. I don’t think I’ll be able to do a full TBR but I think I could stick to a simple ‘weekend reads’ thing.
Here goes nothing.
Stalking Jack the Ripper
Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.
Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.
I’ve had my eye on this one since it came out, but the hype kept me at arm’s length. Then I saw a Buddy Read set up for this weekend and decided that now was as good a time as any. Hopefully, I’m not left disappointed.
and if I make a big enough dent on this one, then I’ll start
The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle
How do you stop a murder that’s already happened?
At a gala party thrown by her parents, Evelyn Hardcastle will be killed–again. She’s been murdered hundreds of times, and each day, Aiden Bishop is too late to save her. Doomed to repeat the same day over and over, Aiden’s only escape is to solve Evelyn Hardcastle’s murder and conquer the shadows of an enemy he struggles to even comprehend–but nothing and no one are quite what they seem.
This one I had as an ARC (for an embarrassingly long time) titled ‘The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle’ so I don’t know at what point she got half a life back but, here we are. Lol.
What are you planning on reading this weekend? Any words of encouragement to share, because I’m all out…
The first time I attempted to do this it went well and I said that I’d do it again for my 5 star shelf. Well…turns out the recommendations weren’t much different. So here I go again with a themed shelf instead: Graphic Novels.
Before I begin it’s worth noting that there is one thing all these books have in common: Manga Classics – Emma by Po Tse. The other recommendations (not included in this list) were all based on either A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness or Daniel X: Alien Hunter by James Patterson.
Bloom’s Discovery (Winx Club) by Iginio Straffi
A group of fairy friends learn to hone their magic while fighting evil and darkness!Reads L to R (Western Style) Meet the Winx Club, a group of beautiful fairies who fight evil using their unique magical powers! As they battle scary monsters and trouble-making witches, the girls become stronger fairies and closer friends. Bloom’s Discovery Before Bloom became part of the Winx Club, she was living a normal teenager’s life. All that changed one day when she discovered that she’s actually a fairy! Now Bloom’s life is anything but ordinary as she uses her magic to fight wicked villains.
Will I read it- Nope. Just…nope.
Kingdom Hearts II Vol 1 by Shiro Amano
A young boy named Roxas whiles away the last days of his summer vacation with his three best friends in their quiet little home of Twilight Town. But all is not as it should be in this hamlet nestled between night and day. Strange things keep happening around Roxas, which always seem to involve mysterious creatures…and he is plagued by dreams of a boy named Sora, whom he has never met. Bewildered, Roxas searches for answers . . . Will they lead him to Sora, Donald, and Goofy?
Will I read it- I’m confused…am I meant to have read Kingdom Hearts I? Is there a Kingdom Hearts I?
Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea by Ben Clanton
Narwhal is a happy-go-lucky narwhal. Jelly is a no-nonsense jellyfish. The two might not have a lot in common, but they do they love waffles, parties and adventures. Join Narwhal and Jelly as they discover the whole wide ocean together.
Will I read it- Do you see how cute this cover is? Have you read that tooth-aching summary? Of course, I will!
My Little Pony by Alex de Campi
Introducing four tales dedicated to exploring the magic of friendship. First, Applejack and Pinkie Pie enter a baking contest! Then, The Cutie Mark Crusaders team up with Discord, Spike enlists Princess Celestia to help him find a birthday present, and finally, Twilight Sparkle and Shining Armor chase down a mysterious ghost.
Will I read it- God, no.
Suki-tte Ii na yo, Volume 1 by Kanae Hazuki
Mei Tachibana has spent her 16 years without making either boyfriend or friends. One day, she injures a popular boy in school, Yamato Kurosawa, because of a misunderstanding but for some reason it seems that he takes a liking to her and one-sidedly claims that they’re friends. Furthermore, he not only protects Mei from a stalker, he does it with a kiss…?!!
Will I read it- yup. Sounds fluffy enough to be a quick read.
I think it’s safe to say this is more miss than it is hit. Yikes!
Have any of you gone through your Goodreads recommendations and found some gems? Tell me about it.
aka the time I couldn’t be happier to talk about fanfiction.
It’s all about Fanfiction today and I cannot begin to tell you how happy I am that fanfiction is becoming more mainstream. I remember in the early years of reading and writing fic, people would make snide comments and stereotype us as ‘overweight, single and lonely women who were bored with their lives”. Now there are mainstream media stories about its merits. Never thought I’d see the day!
Okay, enough reminiscing about the olden days, on to the real reason that we’re all here: FANFICTION*.
*(For anyone who might be confused, fanfiction is a genre of writing loosely based on a tv show/movie/book. It can be as tame as fluffy childhood stories or as raunchy as Fifty Shades of Grey which began as a Twilight fic. The three biggest websites for fanfiction are: fanfiction.net, wattpad and tumblr. )
Usually, I stick to T or M rated stories, the fascination of which started when I tried filling the void left by the abandoned Midnight Sun manuscript. This was what started me in fanfiction in the first place and I haven’t looked back since. I love stories of Renee and Charlie before things went kaput, but mainly I just like to read stories of my favorite couples being normal. No more Volturi lurking around the corner, and no Renesmee (sorry Jake).
Here is where my writing of fanfiction began. I wanted more, and that epilogue just teased me. I wanted to see Rose and Scorpius become ‘a thing’. I wanted to see Teddy grow up and have his own family. I just…wanted. Of course, this was pre-Cursed Child, which completely threw my story so far out of canon that I can’t even. But this was the beginning. Reading wise, I love reading New Generation stories (the kids of our favorite kids) and Marauders fics. James and Sirius’ shenanigans needs documenting dammit, and if J. K won’t give us, I’ll find it elsewhere.
This one was a veeeery recent addition to my addiction. I already talked about my problems letting go so I won’t reiterate.
Honourable mentions (fandoms I used to read but haven’t in a while)
Remember Me – he shouldn’t have died. That’s all.
Vampires – usually original paranormal fics. It filled a hole before I got into J.R Ward and Lara Adrian.
Are you a fanfic reader? Are you curious?? If you need or have any rec’s, lemme kno!
I hope you all are ready for that influx of family and forced family time over the next few days. I’m not.
Harry Potter all day, every day!
This one has so many possible answers: Belle/Matilda/Jo March. I was (still am) always stuck in a book just like these characters. Of course, my life was never anywhere near as dramatic as these women’s but…you know. Also, HP was my entire childhood.
1984 by George Orwell which speaks to the government being overly involved in our daily lives (I see you Big Brother). It was a worry then, and it’s a worry now.
T.H.U.G. by Angie Thomas. This one I’m predicting just based off of its current impact alone. Can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of my own.
This one might hurt some feelings for those Selection lovers out there but The Elite by Kiera Cass. Girl why???? Book one was mushy and fluffy and all of the good things about YA Romance and then came book two with an unnecessarily dragged out love triangle. Nah. Nah!
The Graveyard Book, mainly because there were so many more things I wanted to learn about the characters. I didn’t want Nobody to ever leave that cemetery. More please Mr. Gaiman. Please!
Aaaanyway, this is the last post from me until after Boxing Day (Dec. 26) as that’s my grandfather’s birthday. Lots to do!
If you’re here then I’m guessing that you love books (or at least know someone who’s as obsessed as I am*). This, this little post is going to give you a few moments to bask in the wonder that are bookish gifts. Go on. Bask!
(*if it’s book-related then I’m overly interested.)
These soothing, fragrant pieces of wax are magic all on their own, but when you add in a quirky bookish name or scent and the game is won!
Here are a few suggestions that tickled my fancy.
For those areas that don’t need/can’t fit a full sized candle or want to pretend like these smaller ones are less of a commitment. Lol…
I’m particularly drawn to Pemberley but they all sound like money leaving wallet.
Old Books are an objective scent I think. Either you love it, or you don’t. I personally find it appealing. I can pretend that I’m in Belle’s library or that I own as many books as she does…
There are so many creative ones out there, you’re bound to find one for your book-loving candle collector.
Apart from my addiction to books, coffee is my lifeblood. In order to get this sweet nectar into my body, I need to have aesthetically pleasing mugs. (Or I guess you can use them for tea too…or whatever)
It’s what I want to say to every person that ever interrupts my reading time with questions like ‘why are you crying?’ and ‘did you even eat breakfast?’. Ugh. (Okay, maybe not necessarily those questions. Those are good questions. Keep them coming.)
You get to drink coffee, read books aaaand watch the Cheshire Cat slowly reappear while your coffee gets cold because you’re too lost in the book to remember to drink it while it’s still hot and…oh. Oops.
This one has a bit more whimsy. And the message rings true. If only someone would tell the rest of society.
Very simply designed but, again, a very true statement.
Self control? I don’t know her.
Out of all the suggestions I’ve made thus far, this one might be the one that gives me the most pleasure.
I found it so hard to narrow down the options that I showed you guys. There were so many lovely options…but I couldn’t put them all so. Here ya go.
Bookends are a wonderful space breaker that also adds some personality to your shelves. It’s also that thing that makes you feel guilty as you add more books to your collection and can no longer fit them and your bookend onto the shelf at the same time.
These cute ones could help the guilt…maybe.
This one doesn’t take up quite so much room and it’s Harry Potter themed so I think it’s a must.
Quirky and functional. Plus this might be me one day…
I think this one is classy looking and can blend well with most decor.
aka The time I forgot that chronological order was a thing. I’m sorry.
BY JAY KRISTOFF AND AMIE KAUFMAN
Kady, Ezra, Hanna, and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza—but who knows what they’ll find seven months after the invasion?
Meanwhile, Kady’s cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza’s ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys—an old flame from Asha’s past—reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict.
With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heros will fall, and hearts will be broken.
I’m hooked, and I NEED to know how this all ends for our band of characters. Plus, an action-packed sci-fi is never something you should pass up. The first two books in the series have been four stars for me, but I have high hopes that this one will surpass them both.
WHAT IF IT’S US
BY ADAM SILVERA AND BECKY ALBERTALLI
*no cover yet
What If It’s Us opens as Arthur and Ben meet at the post office as Ben is shipping his ex-boyfriend’s things back to him. They subsequently endure the frustration of knowing there was a missed connection, before the universe pushes them back together again in a series of failed “first” dates.
Expected publication: October 2nd 2018 by HarperTeen
Two things: Becky and Adam. You need more of a reason? Okay, it’s a possibly cavity-inducing definitely heart wrenching teen romance novel. You need this book in your life, I promise.
*LEGENDARY (CARAVAL 2)
BY STEPHANIE GARBER
Stephanie Garber’s limitless imagination takes flight once more in the colorful, mesmerizing, and immersive sequel to the bestselling and breakout debut Caraval, following Scarlett’s younger sister, Tella, on a journey to the empire’s capital to fulfill a mysterious bargain.
The first book in this series was a creeper. I started off not being impressed and on the verge of dnf’ing, then it all changed. Now I’m invested in Tella, Scarlett and Legend’s story.
BY AMIE KAUFMAN
When Earth intercepts a message from a long-extinct alien race, it seems like the solution the planet has been waiting for. The Undying’s advanced technology has the potential to undo environmental damage and turn lives around, and Gaia, their former home planet, is a treasure trove waiting to be uncovered.
For Jules Addison and his fellow scholars, the discovery of an alien culture offers unprecedented opportunity for study… as long as scavengers like Amelia Radcliffe don’t loot everything first. Mia and Jules’ different reasons for smuggling themselves onto Gaia put them immediately at odds, but after escaping a dangerous confrontation with other scavvers, they form a fragile alliance.
In order to penetrate the Undying temple and reach the tech and information hidden within, the two must decode the ancient race’s secrets and survive their traps. But the more they learn about the Undying, the more their presence in the temple seems to be part of a grand design that could spell the end of the human race…
Their first collaboration series was entertaining, and gave me Illuminae feels. This one also reminds me of These Broken Stars and the Illuminae Files, so I’m curious. Maybe it will be the best parts of both and I will have found my new favorite series. Who knows?
CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE
BY TOMI ADEYEMI
Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.
Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for the enemy.
If after reading that synopsis you still aren’t sold on this book (and this series) then there is NOTHING that I can say to you that will change your mind. It’s a fantasy series, there is royalty plot, there’s going to be battles, and romance. Like? GET. ON. THIS.
LEAH ON THE OFFBEAT
BY BECKY ALBERTALLI
Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.
When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.
So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.
Have you read Simon? Are you going to see the movie? Well…then it’s clear why you NEED this book in your life (and why I’m desperate to have it in my hands). Leah is that badass, fiercely loyal best friend that you need but may not deserve. I want to see her get all the best things in her life.
BY JENNIFER L ARMENTROUT
Whether or not you believe in fate, or luck, or love at first sight, every romance has to start somewhere. MEET CUTE is an anthology of original short stories featuring tales of “how they first met” from some of today’s most popular YA authors.
I’m hoping for all of the fluff. Pleaaaaaase give me cavities!!!
*IF I DIE BEFORE I WAKE
BY EMILY KOCH (FINISHED VERSION)
Review coming soon. Expected publication: January 11th 2018 by Harvill Secker.
I can’t wait to see the finished product for this one.
BY GRETCHEN MCNEIL
WELCOME TO THE NEAR FUTURE, where good and honest 8/18 citizens can enjoy watching the executions of society’s most infamous convicted felons, streaming live on The Postman app from the suburbanized prison island Alcatraz 2.0.
When eighteen-year-old Dee Guerrera wakes up in a haze, lying on the ground of a dimly lit warehouse, she realizes she’s about to be the next victim of the app. Knowing hardened criminals are getting a taste of their own medicine in this place is one thing, but Dee refuses to roll over and die for a heinous crime she didn’t commit. Can Dee and her newly formed posse, the Death Row Breakfast Club, prove she’s innocent before she ends up wrongfully murdered for the world to see? Or will The Postman’s cast of executioners kill them off one by one?
This looks like one to get the blood pumping and the brain box going. Yes and please.
BLACK MIRROR Volume I
BY CHARLIE BROOKER
From the creator of Black Mirror comes the first book in an anthology series featuring original stories from leading fiction writers, all set in the world of the cult series.
I love the TV show and if this is anything close to the original, well then I know I’ll love it even if it gives me nightmares till I’m 100.
BY STEPHEN KING
An eleven-year-old boy is found in a town park, hideously assaulted and murdered. The fingerprints (and later DNA) are unmistakably those of the town’s most popular baseball coach, Terry Maitland, a man of impeccable reputation, with a wife and two daughters. Detective Ralph Anderson, whose son Maitland coached, orders an immediate and public arrest. Maitland is taken to jail, his claim to innocence scorned. Maitland has a foolproof alibi, with footage to prove that he was in another city when the crime was committed. But that doesn’t save him either.
It’s Stephen King. End. Of
MISS PEREGRINE 4
BY RANSOM RIGGS
*no cover yet*
The first three novels in the series introduced Jacob Portman and the world of the peculiars – and saw that world threatened by, and spared from, destruction by a hostile splinter faction and their monstrous servants. Now, in a thrilling new story arc, Jacob’s adventure continues as Ransom Riggs reveals even more secrets of the peculiar world, set against the rich landscapes of American history.
(HOW DID I MISS THIS ANNOUNCEMENT????) Expected publication: May 1st 2018 by Penguin LCC US.
More adventures with my peculiar babies!!! (And maybe now we’ll actually get some diversity).
YOU’LL MISS ME WHEN I’M GONE
BY RACHEL LYNN SOLOMON
Eighteen-year-old twins Adina and Tovah have little in common besides their ambitious nature. Viola prodigy Adina yearns to become a soloist—and to convince her music teacher he wants her the way she wants him. Overachiever Tovah awaits her acceptance to Johns Hopkins, the first step on her path toward med school and a career as a surgeon.
But one thing could wreck their carefully planned futures: a genetic test for Huntington’s, a rare degenerative disease that slowly steals control of the body and mind. It’s turned their Israeli mother into a near stranger and fractured the sisters’ own bond in ways they’ll never admit. While Tovah finds comfort in their Jewish religion, Adina rebels against its rules.
When the results come in, one twin tests negative for Huntington’s. The other tests positive.
These opposite outcomes push them farther apart as they wrestle with guilt, betrayal, and the unexpected thrill of first love. How can they repair their relationship, and is it even worth saving?
I’m already feeling the tears that this one is going to bring. This one is going to be REAL and REAL HARD to read.
THE QUEEN’S RISING
BY REBECCA ROSS
When her seventeenth summer solstice arrives, Brienna desires only two things: to master her passion and to be chosen by a patron.
Growing up in the southern Kingdom of Valenia at the renowned Magnalia House should have prepared her for such a life. While some are born with an innate talent for one of the five passions—art, music, dramatics, wit, and knowledge—Brienna struggled to find hers until she belatedly chose to study knowledge. However, despite all her preparations, Brienna’s greatest fear comes true—the solstice does not go according to plan and she is left without a patron.
Months later, her life takes an unexpected turn when a disgraced lord offers her patronage. Suspicious of his intent, and with no other choices, she accepts. But there is much more to his story, and Brienna soon discovers that he has sought her out for his own vengeful gain. For there is a dangerous plot being planned to overthrow the king of Maevana—the archrival kingdom of Valenia—and restore the rightful queen, and her magic, to the northern throne. And others are involved—some closer to Brienna than she realizes.
With war brewing between the two lands, Brienna must choose whose side she will remain loyal to—passion or blood. Because a queen is destined to rise and lead the battle to reclaim the crown. The ultimate decision Brienna must determine is: Who will be that queen?
Magic!!!! Action!!! Where do I sign up?
BY COURTNEY ALAMEDA
Set against a future of marauding space scavengers and deadly aliens who kill with sound, here is a frightening, fast-paced YA adventure from the author of the acclaimed horror novel, Shutter.
Tuck has been in stasis on the USS John Muir, a ship that houses Earth’s most valued artifacts—its natural resources. Parks and mountains are preserved in space.
Laura belongs to a shipraiding family, who are funded by a group used to getting what they want. And they want what’s on the Muir.
Tuck and Laura didn’t bargain on working together, or battling mutant aliens who use sound to kill. But their plan is the only hope for their crews, their families, and themselves.
In space, nobody can hear you scream . . . but on the John Muir, the screams are the last thing you’ll hear.
Sci-fi and horror mixed into one? Sounds like a recipe for 5 stars to me!
THE ASTONISHING COLOR OF AFTER
BY EMILY X R PAN
Leigh Chen Sanders is absolutely certain about one thing: When her mother died by suicide, she turned into a bird.
Leigh, who is half Asian and half white, travels to Taiwan to meet her maternal grandparents for the first time. There, she is determined to find her mother, the bird. In her search, she winds up chasing after ghosts, uncovering family secrets, and forging a new relationship with her grandparents. And as she grieves, she must try to reconcile the fact that on the same day she kissed her best friend and longtime secret crush, Axel, her mother was taking her own life.
This one is going to hurt so good. I can tell and I CANNOT WAIT!
TYLER JOHNSON WAS HERE
BY JAY COLES
When Marvin Johnson’s twin, Tyler, goes to a party, Marvin decides to tag along to keep an eye on his brother. But what starts as harmless fun turns into a shooting, followed by a police raid.
The next day, Tyler has gone missing, and it’s up to Marvin to find him. But when Tyler is found dead, a video leaked online tells an even more chilling story: Tyler has been shot and killed by a police officer. Terrified as his mother unravels and mourning a brother who is now a hashtag, Marvin must learn what justice and freedom really mean.
Well anyone who’s looked at the news in the past ever, will find this situation all too familiar. Books like this are so necessary.
THE QUEENS OF INNIS LEAR
BY TESSA GRATTON
The erratic decisions of a prophecy-obsessed king have drained Innis Lear of its wild magic, leaving behind a trail of barren crops and despondent subjects. Enemy nations circle the once-bountiful isle, sensing its growing vulnerability, hungry to control the ideal port for all trade routes.
The king’s three daughters—battle-hungry Gaela, master manipulator Reagan, and restrained, starblessed Elia—know the realm’s only chance of resurrection is to crown a new sovereign, proving a strong hand can resurrect magic and defend itself. But their father will not choose an heir until the longest night of the year, when prophecies align and a poison ritual can be enacted.
Refusing to leave their future in the hands of blind faith, the daughters of Innis Lear prepare for war—but regardless of who wins the crown, the shores of Innis will weep the blood of a house divided.
Tag yourself, I’m Elia. But also, why is he waiting so long to choose a successor? This is serious business man!
* A RONAN (TRC) TRILOGY <UNNAMED>
BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER
*no cover/release date yet*
Maggie Stiefvater just outlined three books “for a Ronan-centered trilogy”.
aka that time I force my opinions down your throat, maybe?
I’ve always been interested in these kinds of ideas and thought, why not give it a try. So here we are, with me pretending that I know what I’m doing with this. Hopefully, I introduce you all to some new things…(or reaffirm your thoughts on them).
Jack Torrance’s new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he’ll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote…and more sinister. And the only one to notice the strange and terrible forces gathering around the Overlook is Danny Torrance, a uniquely gifted five-year-old.
What works for The Shining is how isolated and helpless to escape their fate our characters are. Off Season by Jack Ketchum features a cast that is on an equally inevitable path to destruction.
It’s gory, for sure, so if that’s something that you can’t handle then give this one a pass. But, Ketchum gives you glimpses of our hunters and the hunted and you feel for both groups in a way that leaves you confused about who you’re rooting for. The ending as well…it got me good.
A Wrinkle in Time
It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.
“Wild nights are my glory,” the unearthly stranger told them. “I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me be on my way. Speaking of way, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract”.
Meg’s father had been experimenting with this fifth dimension of time travel when he mysteriously disappeared. Now the time has come for Meg, her friend Calvin, and Charles Wallace to rescue him. But can they outwit the forces of evil they will encounter on their heart-stopping journey through space.
You like children on adventures? Are you a fantasy lover who’s always up for a bit of magic? Then Terry Pratchett’s The Wee Free Men is the one for you.
Armed only with a frying pan and her common sense, Tiffany Aching, a young witch-to-be, is all that stands between the monsters of Fairyland and the warm, green Chalk country that is her home. Forced into Fairyland to seek her kidnapped brother, Tiffany allies herself with the Chalk’s local Nac Mac Feegle – aka the Wee Free Men – a clan of sheep-stealing, sword-wielding, six-inch-high blue men who are as fierce as they are funny. Together they battle through an eerie and ever-shifting landscape, fighting brutal flying fairies, dream-spinning dromes, and grimhounds – black dogs with eyes of fire and teeth of razors – before ultimately confronting the Queen of the Elves, absolute ruler of a world in which reality intertwines with nightmare. And in the final showdown, Tiffany must face her cruel power alone…
Tiffany is the kind of girl you want fighting battles for you. She has a single-minded determination and overcomes obstacles like nobody’s business. And those little men are strange in all the right ways. Give it a try.
Or you can try: Gregory and the Grimbockle, a new release that just tugs at you.
Ten-year-old Gregory is about to find out that the enormous mole stuck straight beneath his nose is not just a mole, but is actually a humpy crumpy portal of skin that hides a creature called the Grimbockle.
What’s more? The Grimbockle is just one of the many strange little creatures called Bockles tending to the mysterious threads that connect all humans from one to the other. It is a very important job and one that has long been carried out with incredible secrecy…
…that is, before tonight.
Gregory is an outcast, who you can’t help but want to protect, in a family that could work on communication and affection. I also love that this book reminds us that human connections are OUR responsibility and that there are no magical creatures running around fixing it for us. Put in the work.
Black Dagger Brotherhood
In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.
The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams
Sexy, protective vampires fighting to keep their world secret and safe, all while protecting the human race. Easily binge-worthy material. On par with this series is the Midnight Breed series.
Part human, part otherworldly, the Breed has lived among humankind for thousands of years, maintaining a tentative peace built on secrecy, power, and the dark justice carried out by the formidable warriors of the Order.
But now, a blood war within the race is set to ignite. Vampires are going Rogue in startling numbers, feeding without discretion, killing humans in the streets. It is up to the Order to stop the spreading threat of Rogue domination — and in so doing, each of the warriors will be forced to confront private demons, darkest secrets, deepest fears. Some will know triumph, some will know loss, but each warrior can count on one thing: Love, when it finds him, will often come at the worst possible moment, with the least likely woman . . . and it will bring each of these powerful males to his knees.
Also, if you love loooong series, then both these are right up your alley. So. Many. Books!
Literary fiction at its finest.
Two half-sisters, Effia and Esi, are born into different villages in eighteenth-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and lives in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle. Unbeknownst to Effia, her sister, Esi, is imprisoned beneath her in the castle’s dungeons, sold with thousands of others into the Gold Coast’s booming slave trade, and shipped off to America, where her children and grandchildren will be raised in slavery
If heart-tugging literary fictions that span years/generations then Homegoing and A Thousand Splendid Suns are both for you. They have it in spades.
Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them – in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul – they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation. With heart-wrenching power and suspense, Hosseini shows how a woman’s love for her family can move her to shocking and heroic acts of self-sacrifice, and that in the end it is love, or even the memory of love, that is often the key to survival
Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron wakes up in a hospital room, leg in a cast, stitches in her face and a big blank canvas where the last six weeks should be. She discovers she was involved in a fatal car accident while on a school trip in Italy. A trip she doesn’t even remember taking. She was jetted home by her affluent father in order to receive quality care. Care that includes a lawyer. And a press team. Because maybe the accident…wasn’t an accident.
As the accident makes national headlines, Jill finds herself at the center of a murder investigation. It doesn’t help that the media is portraying her as a sociopath who killed her bubbly best friend, Simone, in a jealous rage. With the evidence mounting against her, there’s only one thing Jill knows for sure: She would never hurt Simone. But what really happened? Questioning who she can trust and what she’s capable of, Jill desperately tries to piece together the events of the past six weeks before she loses her thin hold on her once-perfect life
When this book first came out it was EVERYWHERE! Every booktuber and book blogger was raving about it, and I wasn’t buying the hype. Well…this was well warranted. Another book that deserves the hype is If I Die Before I wake by Emily Koch.
How Do You Solve Your Own Murder?
Everyone believes Alex is in a coma, unlikely to ever wake up. As his family debate withdrawing life support, and his friends talk about how his girlfriend Bea needs to move on, he can only listen.
But Alex soon begins to suspect that the accident that put him here wasn’t really an accident. Even worse, the perpetrator is still out there and Alex is not the only one in danger.
As he goes over a series of clues from his past, Alex must use his remaining senses to solve the mystery of who tried to kill him, and try to protect those he loves, before they decide to let him go.
Mystery/Thriller, unreliable narrator. Check, and check. Both these books leave you confused and enthralled and 100% invested. Oh, and the settings are pretty similar too: hospital rooms, so…