Crunching Leaves: The world is full of color! Choose a book with red/orange/yellow on the cover.
I choseFire and Heist by Sarah Beth Durst because I absolutely love this cover. It is on my TBR and I am hoping to read it before 2020 is over!
Cozy Sweater: It’s finally cool enough for warm, cozy clothing! What book gives you the warm fuzzies?
I know, I know –Temporary Wife Temptation and Secret Crush Seduction are probably not what most folks think of when it comes to warm fuzzy reads. But I chose this series because I could totally see myself sitting on my porch, hot coffee to the side and a cardigan wrapped around me while I read the steaminess of these two romances.
Fall Storm: The wind is howling and the rain is pounding. Choose a book that you like to read on a stormy day.
I choseThe Dysastersby P.C. and Kristin Cast mainly because the teens in the books have the ability to control elements and essentially control storms that use the elements. I loved it and i can’t wait for book two!
Cool Crisp Air: Makes you breathe freely. Who’s the coolest character you’d want to trade places with?
I have to choose Jude Duarte from The Folk of the Air Trilogy. Through that caring heart, she is pretty badass, powerful and knows how to work with knives.
Hot Apple Cider: Warm autumnal drink. What underhyped book do you want to see become the next biggest, hottest thing?
I chose Five Midnights by Ann Davila Cardinal because it is a book that I have been dying to read but have not seen anyone else talk about. It is a YA horror set in Puerto Rico and touches on Puerto Rican Folklore.
Coat, Scarves, & Mittens: The weather has turned cold & it’s time to cover up! What’s a book cover you don’t like?
I chose the original cover ofShatter Meby Tahereh Mafi. As much as I love the series, I could not understand the choice for their original cover. I am so glad the covers were changed because they are gorgeous now. Even though it’s not my favorite cover, you bet I own a copy of it.
Pumpkin Spice: Time for some Starbucks! What’s your favorite fall comfort food?
What can I say, I’m a sucker for pumpkin pie.
Warm, cozy bonfire: Spread the cozy warmth! Who do you tag?
I am going to tag all bloggers and book content creators. This was super fun and I invite you to join in on the fall fun!
After her mother’s deportation last year, all Soledad “Sol” Gutierrez wants is for her life to go back to normal. Everything’s changed―new apartment, new school, new family dynamic―and Sol desperately wants to fit in. When she joins her community college’s history club, it comes with an odd initiation process: break into Westray’s oldest house and steal . . . a fork?
There’s just one problem: while the owners of the house aren’t home, their grandson Ethan is, and when he catches Sol with her hand in the kitchen drawer, she barely escapes with the fork intact. This one chance encounter irrevocably alters her life, and Sol soon learns that sometimes fitting in isn’t as important as being yourself―even if that’s the hardest thing she’s ever had to do
I have been immersed in Latinx reads this week and this was another. I wasn’t sure what to expect because I’ve never read a book from a Wattpad author, but overall, it was okay. The synopsis sounded promising o I was ready to dive in. It was a pleasant coming of age read. We see Sol, the main character, go through so many small and big changes in a small period of time after her mom is deported.
I was surprised that this was set in college because I did get more of a private high school kind of feel from it. Setting that aside I did enjoy seeing the character development of Sol. Her awkward, sarcastic nature reminded me a lot of who I was as a teenager. However, it was the only thing I could relate to. Sol is not perfect, and I appreciated that. She doesn’t always say the right things, may make some decisions and is willing to jump into a challenge. Although these are redeeming qualities, there were parts of the story where Sol seem a bit insensitive to some of her friends concerns. Hearing the story through Sol’s perspective was an interesting approach and I was intrigued to hear some of the shenanigans the history club got into.
Speaking of history club, this was vastly different than any club I have been a part of. Was I mad about this, no. It was a unique approach that gave ways to some daring, dangerous and odd adventures. It was a bit refreshing to have that different approach of a club in a story you were expecting it to be in. Now, in regard to the supportive characters, Sol’s father and Anna had the most layers to their stories. Through their dialogue we were able to see just how close the family was and how they were working together to deal with their life being turned upside down. We were able to get some bit of the other supporting characters, but I did want to see more development to them since they helped bring together Sol’s story. I also wanted more of the romance because I saw so much potential with that story line, but I settled for cute contemporary romance I received.
Overall, it was an okay read. The pacing was a bit off and the writing style took some adjusting too, but the author has potential to create a good story with some tweaking and fine tuning. Did I enjoy the read? Yes. It was quick and easy read with a simplistic feel.
About the Author
Shay Bravo is a Mexican born author who has now lived half of her life in the USA. She began sharing her work online through Wattpad when she was fifteen years old and has connected with over 114,000 followers. Historically Inaccurate won the 2019 Watty Awards and is her first novel. Shay currently resides in Houston, Texas.
There hasn’t been a winner of the Miss Meteor beauty pageant who looks like Lita Perez or Chicky Quintanilla in all its history. But that’s not the only reason Lita wants to enter the contest, or why her ex-best friend Chicky wants to help her. The road to becoming Miss Meteor isn’t about being perfect; it’s about sharing who you are with the world—and loving the parts of yourself no one else understands. So to pull off the unlikeliest underdog story in pageant history, Lita and Chicky are going to have to forget the past and imagine a future where girls like them are more than enough—they are everything.
Witty and heartfelt with characters that leap off the page, Miss Meteor is acclaimed authors Anna-Marie McLemore and Tehlor Kay Mejia’s first book together.
Content/Trigger warning: Xenophobia, Transphobic and Homophobic comments
This story was such a delightful read! When I first heard of its’ synopsis I knew I had to get into this pageant shenanigans filled story. Did it have enough shenanigans? Not, really. But it did have a lot of good friendships and character development. Lita and Chicky are characters you grow to root for and appreciate. However, the superstars in certain parts of the story end up being the supporting characters and fiends of Lita and Chicky. This was the first novel I have read form each author and now I want to continue to read more.
There were a couple of things I enjoyed about this book, but the friendships were the driving point for me. Both Lita and Chicky are not in good terms at the beginning but throughout it all, rebuild a friendship all while genuinely caring if the other is doing okay. The friendship felt like any real friendship many of us in the real world have. We all have our disagreements and fights, but we always care about each other through the madness and hurt feelings. Lita is such a superstar in this story. At times, she feels just as divine as the name of her town Meteor, New Mexico. Although she is seen as someone who doesn’t fit with the town crowd, she still has love and pride for it. She also has her eyes set on becoming Miss Meteor. Chicky, the youngest of 4 girls and a person so used to being behind the scenes is also Lita’s ex-friend. After being bullied for liking a girl, Chicky tries to live her best life without letting others wear her down. The two main characters together compliment each other so well and seeing their development in themselves and being their truest selves was empowering.
Now, the main characters were cool, but we can’t forget about the supporting characters. Cole and Junior were so supportive. Chicky’s sisters are the perfect cheerleaders. Cole’s sister can just exit out of the story for being homophobic even though she is Cole’s sisters, who is a trans male. Did I mention Cole is such a caring sweetheart. What a pure soul.
The writing felt so cohesive that at times I was unable to realize there were two separate people who created this story. Although the writing was *chef’s kiss* good, the pacing felt a bit off to me. The beginning started great and the end was star quality. However, the middle did feel a bit leisurely for my taste. Overall, if you like a book with really good friendships, characters challenging a traditional pageant platform and just really awesome characters in general, pick up this book today!
About the Authors
Tehlor Kay Mejia is a YA author and poet at home in the wild woods and alpine meadows of Southern Oregon. When she’s not writing, you can find her plucking at her guitar, stealing rosemary sprigs from overgrown gardens, or trying to make the perfect vegan tamale. She is active in the Latinx lit community, and passionate about representation for marginalized teens in media. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @tehlorkay.
Her short fiction appears in the ALL OUT and TOIL & TROUBLE anthologies from Harlequin Teen. Her debut YA fantasy, WE SET THE DARK ON FIRE, is out 2/26/2019 from Katherine Tegen/Harper Collins, with a sequel to follow. Her debut middle grade, PAOLA SANTIAGO AND THE DROWNED PALACE, releases from Disney-Hyperion/Rick Riordan Presents in 2020, with a sequel to follow in 2021. METEOR, co-written with Anna-Marie McLemore, is out summer 2020 from HarperTeen.
Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and taught by their family to hear la llorona in the Santa Ana winds. They are the author of THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS, a finalist for the 2016 William C. Morris Debut Award; 2017 Stonewall Honor Book WHEN THE MOON WAS OURS, which was longlisted for the National Book Award in Young People’s Literature; WILD BEAUTY, a Kirkus Best Book of 2017; and BLANCA & ROJA, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice. DARK AND DEEPEST RED, a reimagining of The Red Shoes based on true medieval events, is forthcoming in January 2020.
It’s Giveaway Time
Click the rafflecopter picture below to win a copy of Miss Meteor! This giveaway is open internationally and sponsored by HarperCollins International. And will end on October 30, 2020.
Eleven fresh vampire stories from young adult fiction’s leading voices!
In this delicious new collection, you’ll find stories about lurking vampires of social media, rebellious vampires hungry for more than just blood, eager vampires coming out―and going out for their first kill―and other bold, breathtaking, dangerous, dreamy, eerie, iconic, powerful creatures of the night.
Welcome to the evolution of the vampire―and a revolution on the page.
Vampires Never Get Old includes stories by authors both bestselling and acclaimed, including Samira Ahmed, Dhonielle Clayton, Zoraida Córdova and Natalie C. Parker, Tessa Gratton, Heidi Heilig, Julie Murphy, Mark Oshiro, Rebecca Roanhorse, Laura Ruby, Victoria “V. E.” Schwab, and Kayla Whaley.
Eleven riveting tales of the creature many of us have swooned about – the vampire. Vampires Never Get Old [edited] by Zoraida Cordova& Natalie C. Parker is an anthology of vampires stories full of modern and magical twists, vampires of all shapes, sizes and identities and just overall a fresh bite of vampire stories. Many folks like myself grew up with vampires created by Anne rice, L.J. Smith and the mother daughter duo, P.C. & Kristin Cast. Personally, this anthology was definitely a fresh start to the revival of the vampire we are seeing in Young Adult fiction. To be clear, I am here for all of it!
Was this anthology perfect? No, and that’s what I enjoyed most about it. There are so many cliffhangers, questions need to be answered and a yearning to read both the books I grew up with and the books that are yet to be published. Did this anthology continuously pique my interest? Of course! Each story has a different vampire and if you came here to get your average pale, dark and handsome – well sorry to delightfully disappoint you because these vampires are flourishing with so much awesomeness. While I enjoyed each story, there were three that I want to put some shine on.
The three stories that made me want a full novel of were Mirrors, Windows, Selfies by Mark Oshiro, First Killby V.E. Schwab, and Vampires Never Die by Zoraida Cordova and Natalie C. Parker.
Mirrors, Windows, Selfies by Mark Oshiro was such a good read! I need more of this. It had a great modern twist to the superstitions of mirrors and vampires. As a Latina, I grew up hearing so many superstitions about mirrors, so this was a story I was automatically intrigued by. For the main character the importance of the mirror becomes pivotal is discovering who and what they truly are. It opens doors to the main character realizing everything they have been hidden from. Mark Oshiro knows how to write a story in a different form; in the case of this story in the form of a blog and still manages to get me screaming that the story has ended.
First Kill by V.E Schwab is actually the second piece of writing I have read from the author. Let’s just say, I might be a fan of her writing. Straight form the title, I know this was going to be a good one. Whenever you hear first kill in vampires stories, it’s either the vampires first kill or a vampire hunter’s first vampire kill. The story is told in two points of view, each view a main character in the story. Juliette and Calliope are girls pining for each other and trying to be just normal teens. Juliette is also a born and bred vampire, while Calliope comes form a family of fierce Vampire hunters. Sounds interesting, right? Juliette and calliope throughout the story have to figure out whether they want to pursue the crush or honor their family. With a cliffhanger that could have you flinging the book across the room [I promise no book was harmed], V.E. Schwab sucks you into this unique vampire story and leave you wanting to know what happens next for Juliette and Calliope.
Vampires Never Die by Zoraida Cordova and Natalie C. Parker is a vampire story with a modern feel to it. Brittany, a vampire, crates an Instagram account to escape her reality and be a whatever she wants to be. Along this social media journey she befriends Tony and they become a little closer. But this little budding friendship/relationship is just the tip of the story iceberg. Brittany is a vampire who turns other women in Vampires. Now, before you go – oh no! Brittany turns women who have been told by men and society that they are not worthy. Turning them into vampires gives them a power that make them fierce forces of nature. Overall, Zoraida and Natalie were able to create a short story with the right amount of social media escapism, pizazz and a nostalgic feeling to go and read that vampire novel where the female characters are fierce, powerful and making sure the world is at peace.
Want a book full of stories that take a fresh look into the vampire, vivid & magical backdrops and characters that have complicated lives because they are vampires? Then pick this anthology up today!
About The Authors
Zoraida Córdova is the author of many fantasy novels, including the award-winning Brooklyn Brujas series, Incendiary, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge: A Crash of Fate, and The Way to Rio Luna. Her short fiction has appeared in the New York Times bestselling anthology Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View, Star Wars: Clone Wars Stories of Light and Dark, and Come On In. She is the co-editor of Vampires Never Get Old. She is the co-host of the writing podcast, Deadline City, with Dhonielle Clayton. Zoraida was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador and raised in Queens, New York. When she’s not working on her next novel, she’s finding a new adventure.
Natalie C. Parker grew up in a Navy family finding home in coastal cities from Virginia to Japan. Now, she lives surprisingly far from any ocean on the Kansas prairie with her wife where she writes and edits books for teens including the acclaimed Seafire trilogy.
Dhonielle Clayton was born in the suburbs of Washington, DC and spent her childhood Saturdays at the comic book store with her father and most evenings hiding beneath her grandmother’s dining room table with a stack of books. She earned a BA in English at Wake Forest University. She was an English teacher for three years and worked with educational curriculum. Being surrounded by children, Dhonielle re-discovered her love of children’s literature and earned a masters in children’s and young adult literature from Hollins University. Currently, she is working on both middle grade and young adult novel projects. She moved to NYC where she earned her MFA at the New School’s MFA Program. She is co-founder of CAKE Literary, a literary development studio committed to bringing diversity to high concept content.
Tessa Gratton is the author of adult SFF The Queens of Innis Lear and Lady Hotspur from Tor Books, as well as the YA series The Blood Journals and The United States of Asgard. Her most recent YA is the original fairy tale Strange Grace from McElderry Books and the upcoming Night Shine. Tessa’s novels and short stories have been translated into twenty-two languages, nominated twice for the Tiptree Award, and several have been Junior Library Guild Selections. Though she has lived all over the world, she currently resides at the edge of the Kansas prairie with her wife.
Heidi grew up in Hawaii where she rode horses and raised peacocks, and then she moved to New York City and grew up even more, as one tends to do. Her favorite thing, outside of writing, is travel, and she has haggled for rugs in Morocco, hiked the trails of the Ko’olau Valley, and huddled in a tent in Africa while lions roared in the dark. She holds an MFA from New York University in Musical Theatre Writing, of all things, and she’s written books and lyrics for shows including The Time Travelers Convention, Under Construction, and The Hole. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, son and their pet snake, whose wings will likely grow in any day now. In her debut, The Girl from Everywhere, Heidi Heilig blends fantasy, history, and a modern sensibility with witty, fast-paced dialogue, breathless adventure, and enchanting romance.
Julie Murphy lives in North Texas with her husband who loves her, her dog who adores her, and her cats who tolerate her. After several wonderful years in the library world, Julie now writes full-time.
When she’s not writing or reliving her reference desk glory days, she can be found watching made-for-TV movies, hunting for the perfect slice of cheese pizza, and planning her next great travel adventure.
Mark Oshiro is the author of Anger is a Gift (Tor Teen), winner of the 2019 Schneider Family Book Award and nominated for a 2019 Lammy Award (in the LGBTQ Children’s/Young Adult category). Upcoming novels include Each of Us a Desert (Tor Teen), a YA Fantasy novel out September 15, 2020, and The Insiders (Harper Collins), a MG Contemporary with magical elements out Fall 2021. When they are not writing, crying on camera about fictional characters for their online Mark Does Stuff universe, or traveling, Mark is busy trying to fulfill their lifelong goal: to pet every dog in the world.
Rebecca Roanhorse is a NYTimes bestselling and Nebula, Hugo and Locus Award-winning speculative fiction writer and the recipient of the 2018 Astounding (Campbell) Award for Best New Writer.
Her novel Trail of Lightning (Book 1 in the Sixth World Series) won the Locus Award for Best First Novel and is a Nebula, Hugo and World Fantasy finalist. It was also selected as an Amazon, B&N, Library Journal, and NPR Best Books of 2018, among others. Book 2 in the Sixth World Series, Storm of Locusts, has received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist, is a Locus Award Finalist, and has been named an Amazon, Powell’s, and Audible Best of 2019. Her novel, Resistance Reborn, is part of Star Wars: Journey to The Rise of Skywalker and a USA Today and NYTimes bestseller. Her middle grade novel Race to the Sun for the Rick Riordan Present’s imprint was a New York Times Bestseller and received a starred review from Kirkus. Her next novel is an epic Fantasy set in a secondary world inspired by the Pre-Columbian Americas called Black Sun, out Oct 13, 2020.
She lives in Northern New Mexico with her husband, daughter, and pups. She drinks a lot of black coffee.
A two-time National Book Award Finalist, Laura Ruby writes fiction for adults, teens and children. She is the author of the Printz Medal Winning novel Bone Gap, as well as Thirteen Doorways, Wolves Behind Them All. Other works include the Edgar®-nominated children’s mystery Lily’s Ghosts, the ALA Quick Pick for teens Good Girls (2006), a collection of interconnected short stories about blended families for adults, I’m not Julia Roberts (2007), and the York trilogy. She is on the faculty of Hamline University’s Masters in Writing for Children Program. She makes her home in the Chicago area.
Victoria “V.E.” Schwab is the #1 NYT, USA, and Indie bestselling author of more than a dozen books, including Vicious, the Shades of Magic series, and This Savage Song. Her work has received critical acclaim, been featured by EW and The New York Times, been translated into more than a dozen languages, and been optioned for TV and Film. The Independent calls her the “natural successor to Diana Wynne Jones” and touts her “enviable, almost Gaimanesque ability to switch between styles, genres, and tones.”
Kayla Whaley lives outside Atlanta, Georgia where she buys too many books and drinks too many lattes. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from the University of Tampa and is a graduate of the Clarion Writers’ Workshop. She was named one of Bustle‘s inaugural “Rule Breakers” in 2018.
Whether writing fiction, nonfiction, or the extremely occasional poem, she is fascinated by disability, sexuality, and the body. Among other venues, her work has appeared at Catapult, Bustle, Michigan Quarterly Review, Uncanny Magazine, Book Riot, and in the anthologies Here We Are: Feminism for the Real World (Algonquin) and Unbroken: 13 Stories Starring Disabled Teens (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux).
She has also appeared on the first season of Reese Witherspoon’s podcast How It Is and Slate’s popular Dear Prudence podcast.
Whaley spent four years as senior editor at Disability in Kidlit, an award-winning site dedicated to examining portrayals of disability in middle grade and young adult fiction, and she is currently on the Advisory Board for Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, a peer-reviewed journal published by St. Catherine University. She also holds a Master’s in Public Administration, which is languishing somewhere in her closet, so the less said about that, the better.
*Thank you Algonquin Young Readers and Colored Pages Bookish Tours for this amazing opportunity!*
It is release day for Furia and I want to celebrate how awesome of a read this story is!!!
A powerful, #ownvoices contemporary YA for fans of The Poet X and I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter set in Argentina, about a rising soccer star who must put everything on the line—even her blooming love story—to follow her dreams.
In Rosario, Argentina, Camila Hassan lives a double life.
At home, she is a careful daughter, living within her mother’s narrow expectations, in her rising-soccer-star brother’s shadow, and under the abusive rule of her short-tempered father.
On the field, she is La Furia, a powerhouse of skill and talent. When her team qualifies for the South American tournament, Camila gets the chance to see just how far those talents can take her. In her wildest dreams, she’d get an athletic scholarship to a North American university.
But the path ahead isn’t easy. Her parents don’t know about her passion. They wouldn’t allow a girl to play fútbol—and she needs their permission to go any farther. And the boy she once loved is back in town. Since he left, Diego has become an international star, playing in Italy for the renowned team Juventus. Camila doesn’t have time to be distracted by her feelings for him. Things aren’t the same as when he left: she has her own passions and ambitions now, and La Furia cannot be denied. As her life becomes more complicated, Camila is forced to face her secrets and make her way in a world with no place for the dreams and ambition of a girl like her.
Filled with authentic details and the textures of day-to-day life in Argentina, heart-soaring romance, and breathless action on the pitch, Furia is the story of a girl’s journey to make her life her own.
Furia is the feminist Latinx story you want more of. Camila, the protagonist is such a loveable character. I really enjoyed seeing her fierce determination to dismantle the misogynistic views the people of her country has. She was not here to give up being a futbol star. I was rooting for her the entire way. Camila is a character that is strong willed, real and so easy to root for. I appreciated her tenacity while she faced some harsh words and ideologies, especially those coming from her father. Speaking of her father, boy was he cruel, misogynistic and just so negative all the time. I truly enjoyed the moments Camila defied her father and really stood her ground. As a Latina growing up, I knew many male relatives [not my dad] who also had such views and saw most Latinx women as housewives. Seeing Camila be the opposite of this just brought such joy in my heart.
Throughout this story, there were other strong women who were shown as not perfect. I enjoy this part because it showed their flaws and how through Camila’s continued fight for her goals, we were able to see a woman like her mother finally understand Camila and see her as a worthy person of the ambitions she was chasing. If that isn’t good character growth, I don’t know what is. Along with Camila, we met Diego; futbol star and the alleged love interest of Camila. Although the story did not focus on their romance, it was refreshing to see an independent woman also get the eye of the guy she wants while putting him in his place when she needed to. I mean if she can go for being a famous futbol star, she can also fall for a guy too.
Overall, Furia is a smooth pacing, page turning story full of empowering moments. You root on Camila, you want to dismantle the patriarchy and enjoy a really good game of futbol all at once. If you are into sports and love a resilient and powerful protagonist, then this is the book for you.
About the Author
Yamile (sha-MEE-lay) Saied Méndez is a fútbol-obsessed Argentine-American who loves meteor showers, summer, astrology, and pizza. She lives in Utah with her Puerto Rican husband and their five kids, two adorable dogs, and one majestic cat. An inaugural Walter Dean Myers Grant recipient, she’s also a graduate of Voices of Our Nations (VONA) and the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA Writing for Children’s and Young Adult program. She’s a PB, MG, and YA author. Yamile is also part of Las Musas, the first collective of women and nonbinary Latinx MG and YA authors. She’s represented by Linda Camacho at Gallt & Zacker Literary.