October was my first month without my main WIP. Because I’ve been in such an intense state of revision, I took October off to tap into things I’ve wanted to watch and read for a while, and honestly, it’s been quite restorative. 10/10 highly recommend. I might have a new project in the works, but it’s all joy and no stress. Book-shaped, but without all the other intensity.
Which, speaking of, it’s November. Am I doing NaNoWriMo? Who knows.
Read an advanced copy on NetGalley Content warning: kidnapping, murder, queerphobia, parental abuse, drug use, attempted school shooting, school lockdown, eating an eyeball, arson Gentle spoilers for The Scapegracers
The queer witch gang is back in the second installment of The Scapegracers trilogy. It picks up where the previous book left off, with Sideways without her specter, and the only clues anyone has are Sideways’ mental connection with Madeline, the girl who stole it. The Chantry boys remain a threat, on top of the typical teenage foibles of finals and catching up on one’s studies.
Intense in its magic and its love for queer women and teen friendships, this second entry is a triumph, and I have several fears for Sideways and gang in book three.
Read an eARC from the publisher Content warning: death, discussion of suicide, abusive relationships
Orpheus and Eurydice get the CW treatment in this retelling that puts the tragic couple in college. Both are music majors, and both have different goals for their relationship as well as their musical careers. A litany of questionable choices follow, told in the past in the music program and present in the Afterlife.
Really fun with delightfully messy relationships and excellent use of music references to move the story along.
An interview with author Jordan Kurella will be going up on release day, August 15th, 2022.
Happy YA debut day to The Many Half-Lived Lives of Sam Sylvester by Maya MacGregor. This book requires major tissues, as we watch the titular character move into a new school around people who get them all while haunted by personal trauma and the ghost of a teen murdered thirty years prior.
Join me in welcoming this book with an interview with the author. Like Sam, Maya MacGregor is non-binary and autistic, and they took the time to share with me the inspiration for the story and the back stories found within, a sneak peek at their next project, and what’s on their TBR.
Happy release day to I Am The Ghost In Your House! This is a tender, melancholy story about an invisible girl who wants to have a normal teenage life. Taking place in Pittsburgh, Pie hopes to see the girl whose house she haunted a few years prior. It’s a read perfect for Halloween.
Join me in celebrating this release with this interview with the author, Mar Romasco-Moore. Find out more about the origin of this tale, how Romasco-Moore put together the flashbacks, and what they’re working on next.
Read an eARC from the publisher Content warning: absent parent (father), child sexual assault (Chapter 43, not depicted, heavily implied), mental illness, kidnapping, home invasion
Pie isn’t a ghost, not exactly. But no one can see her, except for her equally invisible mom. All her life, they’ve been traveling across the United States, and Pie’s special treat holiday is Halloween. She chooses Pittsburg as the destination in the hopes that she’ll see the girl whose house she squatted in a few years before.
Melancholy, tender, and spooky, this novel is a great examination of family born and chosen with a dash of boundary setting in more ways than one.
A blog interview will be going up with the author on release day, April 19, 2022.
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance Year Release: 2020 Source: Kindle
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Amanda Ellis is an heiress who wants to break free of her family’s expectations and painful heteronormativity. Wren Rebello designs lingerie and seeks to be taken more seriously as a romantic partner. The two are best internet friends and, on a whim, decide to do a friends vacation at a cottage for New Year’s Eve.
Much like the book itself, this review will be short and sweet. The emotional journey these characters go on together is so swoon-worthy, but this is no way a slow-burn when it comes to the erotic. It starts real quick, and it does not abate. If anything, it escalates to some highly horny sequences of self-discovery featuring sexy consent and sex toys galore.
Read a NetGalley eARC Content warning: falling, disfiguration, vomiting, body horror, violence against birds, suicide (both discussed and depicted)
Sam Avery’s boyfriend, Nick Grevers, is an avid mountaineer who goes into Alps one season and an accident occurs. Nick’s climbing partner Augustin perishes while Nick returns with supposed amnesia and a face completely bandaged up. In an effort to give his boyfriend closure and healing, Sam races against time and nature while supernatural madness unfolds. While Nick might have left the mountain behind, it certainly back with him.
Echo taps into several sources of primordial dread, like losing the one we love in ways less permanent than death, tall men who are slightly too tall, and sleep deprivation demons.
Vic Fowler is an artist, a perfumist whose business is struggling as they’re trying to achieve the height of luxury and artistry in New York City despite everything about their lifestyle pointing to the contrary. They are threatened with blackmail in exchange for a commission—that’s right, the perfume is made of people. A saga of desperation, aesthetic, murder, and dissatisfaction follows hence forth.
Tonally, it reminded me a lot of A Certain Hunger with its voicey protagonist who’s really three anxiety attacks in a well-tailored blazer. At least they smell beautiful.
An interview with author Lara Elena Donnelly will be posted on February 3rd, 2022.
November featured not as much reading as I’m used to. That’s because I finished my rewrite as my NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) project, rather than writing the requisite 50,000 words. I did it! I completed the rewrite, and it is now sitting in beta readers’ inboxes. The work took a lot out of me, so much so that I’m still feeling vaguely hungover.
December will feature some more things. But also, what do you mean it’s December already?