I'm BACK for Terminal Tours with another amazing blog tour, this time for You & Me at the End of the World by Brianna Bourne! Follow along with the tour schedule here, and be sure to check out reviews and creative posts by our amazing bloggers. This dystopian novel will be released by Scholastic on July 20th, so make sure to check it out at your local indie!
The Book and its Author
This is no ordinary apocalypse…
Hannah Ashton wakes up to silence. The entire city around her is empty, except for one other person: Leo Sterling. Leo might be hottest boy ever (and not just because he’s the only one left), but he’s also too charming, too selfish, and too devastating for his own good, let alone Hannah’s.
Stuck with only each other, they explore a world with no parents, no friends, and no school and realize that they can be themselves instead of playing the parts everyone expects of them. Hannah doesn’t have to be just an overachieving, music-box-perfect ballerina, and Leo can be more than a slacker, 80s-glam-metal-obsessed guitarist. Leo is a burst of honesty and fun that draws Hannah out, and Hannah’s got Leo thinking about someone other than himself for the first time.
Together, they search for answers amid crushing isolation, but while their empty world may appear harmless . . . it’s not. Because nothing is quite as it seems, and if Hannah and Leo don’t figure out what’s going on, they might just be torn apart forever.
When she’s not writing, Brianna Bourne works as a stage manager for ballet companies around the world. Originally from Texas, she grew up in Indonesia and Egypt and now lives in England with her husband and their two daughters.
Woo! Hi friends! Happy Pride, if you celebrate! I’ve been gone. I feel like I say this so much and perhaps I should stop explaining myself because you all know by now that my life IRL is complicated and makes continuous blogging hard sometimes, but here we go one last time. So ever since March, I’ve been in a rut. I’ve finished one single book since April 5th, and that’s absolutely killing me. I can’t remember the last time I was in such a reading slump. Of course, that’s been accompanied by a lack of blog posts, mostly because I have nothing to talk about!
One might call this an issue of compounded anxiety--every post I skip just makes writing the next one harder. Now, I don’t want you thinking there’s something totally wrong with me. I’ve been having so much fun in my offline life! The weather in my area has been gorgeous, and I love spending time outside with my friends and exploring local walking/biking paths. I’ve even taken a road trip or two, along with seeing so many movies and tv shows. But I’ve been feeling off balance lately without my loyal readers to return to. So here I am! Explaining my absence again, hopefully for the last time. From now on, if I leave, you can just assume my real life has gotten busy and I’ll be back soon.
Onto bookish news! My first order of business in June will be to read--I’m looking forward to diving into new queer releases to celebrate Pride month, but mostly I have a backlog of ARCs to review. I say let me at it! I have time to kill and so many amazing reads waiting for me.
My priority here is book reviews for that reason, but I’m also going to round out the month with some lists and of course resume my 2021 Release Radar feature. My spreadsheets are looking a little bare, and I can’t wait to fill them in.
Hi all! I'm here briefly with a blog tour post for Off the Record by Camryn Garrett, which came out May 18th. See below for my review as well as a moodboard I made for the novel! Check out the tour schedule here, and thank you to TBR and Beyond for including me on this tour.
The Book and its Author
The behind-the-scenes access of Almost Famous meets the searing revelations of #metoo in this story of a teen journalist who uncovers the scandal of the decade.
Ever since seventeen-year-old Josie Wright can remember, writing has been her identity, the thing that grounds her when everything else is a garbage fire. So when she wins a contest to write a celebrity profile for Deep Focus magazine, she’s equal parts excited and scared, but also ready. She’s got this.
Soon Josie is jetting off on a multi-city tour, rubbing elbows with sparkly celebrities, frenetic handlers, stone-faced producers, and eccentric stylists. She even finds herself catching feelings for the subject of her profile, dazzling young newcomer Marius Canet. Josie’s world is expanding so rapidly, she doesn’t know whether she’s flying or falling. But when a young actress lets her in on a terrible secret, the answer is clear: she’s in over her head.
One woman’s account leads to another and another. Josie wants to expose the man responsible, but she’s reluctant to speak up, unsure if this is her story to tell. What if she lets down the women who have entrusted her with their stories? What if this ends her writing career before it even begins? There are so many reasons not to go ahead, but if Josie doesn’t step up, who will?
From the author of Full Disclosure, this is a moving testament to the #MeToo movement, and all the ways women stand up for each other.
Camryn Garrett was born and raised in New York. In 2019, she was named one ofTeen Vogue’s 21Under 21 and a Glamour College Woman of the Year. Her first novel, Full Disclosure, received ravereviews from outlets such asEntertainment Weekly, the Today Show, andThe Guardian, whichcalled a “warm, funny and thoughtfully sex-positive, an impressive debut from a writer still in herteens.” Her second novel, Off the Record, will be released May 18, 2021. Camryn is also interested infilm and is a student at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
Off the Record is a sensitive, well-written book that covers some heavy subjects like mental health (anxiety) and sexual harassment. Camryn Garrett approaches everything with a seriousness grounded in Josie's character. I think coverage of these topics are so important, and I loved the journalism angle. Josie is an aspiring writer, and when she wins a contest to write a profile of Marius (who is just so sweet!) she finds herself in the deep end of a #MeToo story regarding an influential industry figure.
Josie is such a compelling character for how real she seems. I was truly invested in all her storylines, and I know readers everywhere are just going to fall in love with her too. Off the Record has so much representation for readers as well--Josie is a fat, queer, Black girl, and she kicks major butt in her story. There's amazing discussion on body image, race, and queer representation that flows so well with the plot.
I also loved the semi-epistolary format! Each chapter kicks off with Josie's tweets. As someone who is also very much dependent on Twitter, I enjoyed these small additions to the chapters and the chance Garrett took to be extra-creative. Such a bouncy, youthful way to format the novel.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Off the Record--I find it so pressing and relevant, and I think it will be well-liked by any reader! 4/5 stars.
Thank you to Wednesday Books for sharing a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Lara's had eyes for exactly one person throughout her three years of high school: Chase Harding. He's tall, strong, sweet, a football star, and frankly, stupid hot. Oh, and he's talking to her now. On purpose and everything. Maybe...flirting, even? No, wait, he's definitely flirting, which is pretty much the sum of everything Lara's wanted out of life.
Except she’s haunted by a memory. A memory of a confusing, romantic, strangely perfect summer spent with a girl named Jasmine. A memory that becomes a confusing, disorienting present when Jasmine herself walks through the front doors of the school to see Lara and Chase chatting it up in front of the lockers.
Lara has everything she ever wanted: a tight-knit group of friends, a job that borders on cool, and Chase, the boy of her literal dreams. But if she's finally got the guy, why can't she stop thinking about the girl?
This adorable queer romance has been on my most anticipated list for a long while now, and I'm so so excited that I got to read an ARC! Cool for the Summer follows Lara's senior year romance(s?) while she tries to figure out if the boy she's always wanted might be falling out of favor for the girl she just met.
I enjoyed the storytelling--alternating timelines between Lara's current year in New York and her summer in Outer Banks allow us to see the buildup of Lara and Jasmine's relationship. Their friendship turns into something more during the summer, and this extra description was central to getting me to root for their relationship to begin again in the present timeline. My favorite chapter was their weekend with Jasmine's mother--Adler's account of their dinner made me feel absolutely starving!
CFTS is also kind of a Grease retelling, which I enjoyed. There's a lot of mutual pining in the best of ways. Miscommunication tropes are so over, but CFTS genuinely has us in Lara's headspace while she's deciding how to be true to her heart. Good narration cannot be under-appreciated, so this point is just to say that I liked reading in Lara's voice. She reads like a real high schooler--there's a fair bit of friend drama, but she's got real heart underneath it all.
This is tiny ( I kind of want to get into the habit of injecting doses of non-book-media-appreciation into my reviews) but Cool for the Summer also tuned me into its namesake Demi Lovato song, which I've listened to about 50 times since finishing the book. Definitely a bi anthem, and you should listen to it while you read a particular scene in the novel (you'll know it when you read it)
I think this book will resonate with a lot of queer readers--it's so heartfelt and written with the best impact. This might sound weird, but it's just a really safe book. Cool for the Summer is a short but comforting read. Weirdly, reading it actually started a reading and reviewing slump for me. I've hardly turned a page or written a word since I finished. I'm just that stuck thinking about Lara, Jasmine, and the rest of their adventures. 5/5 stars for a beautiful novel that I can't wait to see out in the world.
Hey hey hey, y'all! Terminal Tours is running a blog tour for this new middle grade science fiction release, Last Gate of the Emperor by acclaimed author Kwame Mbalia (Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky) and Prince Joel Makonnen. Follow along with the schedule here to check out posts by amazing bloggers supporting this novel!
The Book and its Authors
An Afrofuturist adventure about a mythical Ethiopian empire. Sci-fi and fantasy combine in this journey to the stars.
Yared Heywat lives an isolated life in Addis Prime — a hardscrabble city with rundown tech, lots of rules, and not much to do. His worrywart Uncle Moti and bionic lioness Besa are his only family… and his only friends.
Often in trouble for his thrill-seeking antics and smart mouth, those same qualities make Yared a star player of the underground augmented reality game, The Hunt for Kaleb’s Obelisk. But when a change in the game rules prompts Yared to log in with his real name, it triggers an attack that rocks the city. In the chaos, Uncle Moti disappears.
Suddenly, all the stories Yared’s uncle told him as a young boy are coming to life, of kingdoms in the sky and city-razing monsters. And somehow Yared is at the center of them.
Together with Besa and the Ibis — a game rival turned reluctant ally — Yared must search for his uncle… and answers to his place in a forgotten, galaxy-spanning war.
Barnes & Noble
KWAME MBALIA is a husband, father, writer, a New York Times bestselling author, and a former pharmaceutical metrologist in that order. He is the author of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky, a Coretta Scott King Honor book. He lives with his family in North Carolina. Visit him online at kwamembalia.com.
PRINCE JOEL MAKONNEN is the great-grandson of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I, the last emperor of Ethiopia. He is an attorney and the co-founder of Old World/New World, a media and entertainment company focused on telling powerful African stories that inspire global audiences through film, TV and books. He lives with his wife, Ariana, in Los Angeles.
Hi all! The Book Terminal Tours team is so excited to kick off our blog tour for Dustborn! We're featuring a slate of amazing bloggers and bookstagrammers, so be sure to head over to the tour schedule for links to their posts throughout the week! Auburn, Samantha, and I cannot wait to share this amazing tour with you (and encourage you to preorder Kingdom of the Wicked--see below for an amazing preorder gift offer!)
I've attached the list of our bloggers, but again, check back at the official tour schedule for updated links every day!
The Baroness of Books - Welcome Post
Sheaf & Ink - Review
forthenovellovers - Review
Inkhaven - Review
Avni Reads - Review / Fav Quotes
Writing the Universe - Review
The Reader's Game - Review / Mood Board
My Heart Is Booked Blog - Review
Oh! The Books You Can Read! - Review
Reader Voracious - Review
The Book View - Review/ Mood Board
Books in the Skye - Review
Reading Girl - Review / Fav Quotes
Thindbooks Blog - Review
Celia's Reads - Review
FrayedBooks - Review
Paws and Paperbacks - Review
Hi all! I haven't gotten to read much lately, so no new reviews :(
Classes are really busy for me this month, and I've been trying to keep afloat without sacrificing my health. As you may know, that's going... mediocre at best for my hobbies and personal joy. I'm hoping that starting in May the situation will improve, and of course over the years I've learned that sometimes it's okay to take a break and relax.
Blogging is intense! I usually spend at least 10 hours per week on this space, and dedicating those hours to something else can be difficult for me since I love to write here. All of us face burnout at some point (I'll probably write a bit about that soon) and we learn what schedule works best for us and our audiences. Some things have to go--this month it's been the blog and bookstagram, next month it could be Goodreads updates and Twitter, etc. I've come to terms with this remaining a hobby for me. I'll never make money here (because nobody pays bloggers, even though we definitely deserve it) so I have to dedicate my time accordingly.
I've also been spending a lot of time outside. Seeing the sky at least once a day, going on walks and bike rides, getting the mail--all that is brilliant for my mental health, unsurprisingly. You know I live in Massachusetts, so I'll share that I took a trip out to Western MA last weekend (for private reasons) and got to drive the scenic route and visit some local bookshops. That was so much fun, and I picked out some new reads: Last Night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo, The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by K.S. Villoso, and Just Our Luck by Julia Walton. I also visited a comic shop for the first time! I'm now the proud owner of 3 new Wonder Woman comics, and a copy of a comic that features the Doctor's first appearance in American comics. That one is literally 40 years old and I'm excited to (gently) read it. Maybe once I'm more of a connoisseur, I'll branch out in my reviews on this blog!
Today's post is my tour stop for the Pride and Premeditation blog tour! Follow along with the schedule here, and be sure to check out the giveaway at the end of my post. Thank you to TBR & Beyond for choosing me, and HarperTeen for sharing a copy in exchange for my honest review.
The Book and its Author
Perfect for fans of the Lady Janies and Stalking Jack the Ripper, the first book in the Jane Austen Murder Mysteries series is a clever retelling of Pride and Prejudice that reimagines the iconic settings, characters, and romances in a thrilling and high-stakes whodunit.
When a scandalous murder shocks London high society, seventeen-year-old aspiring lawyer Lizzie Bennet seizes the opportunity to prove herself, despite the interference of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, the stern young heir to the prestigious firm Pemberley Associates.
Convinced the authorities have imprisoned the wrong person, Lizzie vows to solve the murder on her own. But as the case—and her feelings for Darcy—become more complicated, Lizzie discovers that her dream job could make her happy, but it might also get her killed.
Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound | Indigo
Tirzah Price grew up on a farm in Michigan, where she read every book she could get her hands on and never outgrew her love for YA fiction. She holds an MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and is a former bookseller and librarian. Now, she’s a contributing editor at Book Riot, where she can be found recommending books on the site, newsletters, podcasts, and social media accounts. When she’s not writing, reading, or thinking about YA books, she splits her time between experimenting in the kitchen and knitting enough socks to last the fierce Michigan winters.
Tirzah is pronounced TEER-zuh. Pronouns are she/her.
Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads
Photo credit - Tab London
A cute historical fiction retelling/mystery where Lizzie Bennet is reimagined as an intrepid future barrister--inhibited only by the patriarchy. She sets off on a mission to solve a murder to convince her father that she can take a job at the family's law offices. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite Austen novel, and I love reading/watching retellings of it. I enjoyed Lizzie's escapades, and this book is a perfect afternoon diversion.
The mystery kept me guessing until the end--the plot involves a good bit of danger (as it should) and more than once, Lizzie found herself in a bind. Price's writing moves the story well, and I liked the pacing. I finished in a day because it's on the shorter side, but there's a perfect balance of excitement and cozy mystery that you could put it down and come back later.
My favorite aspect was the plot thread about Lizzie's dreams of becoming a barrister. Being a Regency novel, she's up against men taking credit for her work and not believing she's as capable of the hard jobs. It's entertaining to watch Lizzie turn her gender into an advantage in some situations to extract information or do some detective work as a way of countering that. I don't want to spoil the book for you, but this thread has such a satisfying resolution! Price did a great job with that.
The classic Lizzie-Darcy banter is out in full force as Darcy works at a rival firm, and is also trying to prove the innocence of their client. Rivals to lovers is fun to read, and their slow realization that they may be something more is well-earned. I liked that the romance took a backseat to the mystery, though. There are so many Austen adaptations out there for a romance main plot, but this one is truly original for the thriller aspects.
4/5 stars to Pride and Premeditation. Links above for you to order your copy!
TW: racism, incest, antisemitism
This is a short statement regarding Emily A. Duncan et al. If you’ve been on book Twitter earlier this week, you probably know they’ve been facing up to past actions, including bullying fellow authors in Slack chats, attacking victims of CSA and incest, antisemitism, and participating in some really heinous things. Apparently this has been passed around through whisper networks for years, but I had no idea. Consequently I read and loved their novels, publishing numerous posts about them and sharing content on social media.
Complicit in this behavior are Rory Power and Christine Lynn Herman, whose books I have also publicized in the same manner.
I am shocked, to say the least.
By no means am I a public figure, but I do owe it to you all to address this given my previous support of this friend group, Emily above all. I cannot accept any of their apologies or judge their sincerity, since I am not an offended party or a victim here and therefore am completely removed from the situation. The real victims here have been Jewish authors, authors of color, and queer authors, who already face racism and bias in publishing every day. Please support the books of Rin Chupeco, Hafsah Faizal, Ava Reid, and Ashley Shuttleworth. Doubtlessly I am missing names here, but I’ve seen their accounts specifically during this past week.
As a blogger, I make it my priority to support marginalized authors and as a QWOC, I am incredibly disappointed in Emily et al. Please know that I am not a mindless consumer and I do think critically about whose content I consume. That being said, I also don’t believe in retconning my feelings about books and authors. I have never been so personally invested in books written by bullies in the community--when I say I adored their novels, you know I am being honest because you have read my reviews and promotion. Those reviews and posts have to stay up. They are date stamped, and were 100% true to my feelings at the time. I believe in honesty, and I can’t curate my past feed to match every new development regarding whose behavior has been revealed as reprehensible.
I will say this: just as I do for other authors whose behavior and creed I find not to match my standards, Emily’s books will no longer appear on my feed until such a time as I deem appropriate. That could be never (it certainly is for some others) or there could be a time when they truly own and make reparations for their actions. Either way, don’t take this as an indication of my forgiveness. This isn’t that. This is me saying not yet. Me saying I don’t condone this in our community. As a public voice, I am capable of providing a consequence for Emily’s actions, albeit a small one, and it is the termination of my public support of their work.
I will be adding a disclaimer to my reviews to clarify that at the time they were written, I had no knowledge of Emily's behavior behind-the-scenes.
I welcome any and all thoughts on the matter. Please let me know if you feel this is insufficient given my past enthusiasm, or if there is anything else you would like to see me do or acknowledge. I don’t bow to demands, but I am open to constructive conversation.
Thank you for reading. If I recommended you one of Emily’s books and you were affected by the subject matter or their actions, I am truly sorry for putting this in your path. Again, please feel free to reach out.
Sorry for my absence! I should’ve put something up for you last week when I realized updating my computer would sever my Evernote access--that’s one of my most recommended apps for bloggers, and I use it to write and store all of my posts. Luckily, everything’s back now, so I’m going to be retroactively posting a few end-of-month things for March and beginning-of-month things for April soon. Fear not, I’ll round up links on my social media so they won’t get lost amongst my newer posts. That’s my Tuesday’s Two (I guess the second item is yay!!! Rule of Wolves is out today, and Shadow and Bone is coming out so so soon!!)
*bug with my search button! I'll remove this text when it's fixed <3
Hey, I'm Shreya! I love to read, write, travel, and drink coffee.
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