Flip Turns – blog tour (ARC review)

Author: Catherine Arguelles
Publication date: September 12, 2022
Genre: Middle Grade Contemporary/Mystery

My rating: 3.75/5 stars

Summer may be over, but that’s no reason we can’t enjoy a middle-grade summer swim team mystery! Flip Turns is an easy read, replete with humor, the casual bluntness of young teenagers, and the trappings of a classic whodunnit, but also deals with serious topics (including stalking-like behavior and anxiety) in a context that’s approachable for younger audiences. I’m so glad to have been a part of TBR and Beyond’s tour for this book–read on for my thoughts on the book!

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Not Good for Maidens – blog tour (review, quotes, and ace rep!)

Author: Tori Bovalino
Publication date: June 21, 2022
Genre: YA fantasy horror
My rating: 4/5 stars

A modern take on the Goblin Market fairytale. Queer rep galore. Themes of belonging, family, duty, bonds, and bargains. Old English villages. Witches. Creepy-as-heck body horror. You’ll find it all in Not Good for Maidens, a dark YA fantasy full of bargains gone wrong, temptations too strong, and yearning to belong, unfolding over two timelines and two continents.. Read on for more of my thoughts, including some favorite quotes of mine from the book!

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The Words We Keep – blog tour (ARC review + quotes + mental health rep)

Author: Erin Stewart
Publication date: March 15, 2022
Genre: YA contemporary
My rating: 4.5/5 stars

By turns painfully real and softly hopeful, The Words We Keep is a striking exploration of the effects of mental illness not just on an individual, but on an entire family. It addresses the pervasiveness of mental health struggles across all types of individuals–social butterflies, high-achieving academic types, and nonconformist artists. And it does so through the eyes of anxious girl doing her best not to come unraveled even as her world seems to be falling apart around her. I couldn’t get over how much this story resonated with my own memories of high school and college–through those years of my life, so much of this main character’s experience could have been my own–and I sincerely hope this book is picked up by students working their way through high school today, as the stakes and anxieties have only gotten higher the past few years. Read on for a full review, as well as some quotes from this book that I really appreciated.

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All the Right Reasons – blog tour (ARC review + EDS rep!)

Author: Bethany Mangle
Publication date: February 15, 2022
Genre: YA Contemporary
My rating: 4/5 stars

Fans of Gilmore Girls, this book was basically made for you. A story of a single mother and her daughter, both struggling to find love, propelled by hefty doses of sarcasm and coffee, this is a great read if you’re looking for something sweet, fast, and fun. And, more importantly, it has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome representation! Read on for more about the book and my thoughts on it.

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Our Violent Ends – blog tour (ARC review + giveaway!!)

Tour banner reading:
Turn the Page Tours presents Our Violent Ends by New York Times bestselling author Chloe Gong
Blog Tour | Nov. 8th-12th
Depicting the cover of the book, against a fiery background.

Author: Chloe Gong
Series: These Violent Delights (#2)
Publication date: November 16, 2021
Genre: YA historical fantasy/retelling, romance
My rating: 4/5

Crackling with tension and filled with (surprise, surprise) violence, Our Violent Ends is a deliciously dark* conclusion to the These Violent Delights duology. The first book in the series smashed onto the YA scene with much fanfare, a loose retelling of Romeo and Juliet set in Shanghai in the 1920’s, substituting rival gangs for feuding houses and adding a mysterious, monstrous illness. (Also, the author was literally still in undergrad when she published it, so uh…what am I doing with my life???) In this second installment, the stakes–both personal and political–are higher than ever, and the result is an action-packed, emotional whirlwind.

*I feel obligated to point out that this exact phrase, “deliciously dark,” was also used by Natasha Ngan in describing this book. I wrote this intro before looking at her quote in the official blurb. So…if two independent minds both came up with those words, you can pretty reasonably assume it’s a valid assessment.

Like most tour posts, I’ve got a review for you, a smattering of excellent quotes from the book, and, if you stick around until the end, a giveaway that you can enter to win a copy of both books in the duology for yourself! Let’s get started.

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Six Crimson Cranes – blog tour (ARC review + lovely quotes)

Author: Elizabeth Lim
Publication date: July 6, 2021
Genre: YA fantasy
My rating: 5/5 stars

Six Crimson Cranes was one of my most-anticipated reads of this year–and, I am pleased to report, it exceeded my expectations. Taking the bones of Western fairytales (especially “The Wild Swans”) and reshaping them in an Asian-inspired world brimming with its own unique mythologies, Elizabeth Lim has created a tale that feels at once classic and wholly original. Read through for my review, info on the author, and some quotes from the book, as well as my latest Bookstagram post about this beauty!

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A Sisterhood of Secret Ambitions – blog tour (ARC review)

Author: Sheena Boekweg
Publication date: June 1, 2021
Genre: YA historical fiction
My rating:
4/5 stars

Take everything you knew about the 1920s, add in a secret network of women who manipulate the men in power to achieve social change, make it a little bit queer, write it with so many highlight-able lines, and you have…something pretty darn close to this book. The best way I can describe this book is that it is exactly what it is pitched as, and simultaneously way more than I expected. With strong female friendships, body positivity, ace and trans rep, and plenty of badass women (fighting with words and manipulation mostly, but still capable of fighting!), this was a seriously cool book.

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The Helm of Midnight – blog tour (review + giveaway!)

Author: Marina Lostetter
Publication date: April 13, 2021
Genre: fantasy
My rating: 5/5 stars

Magic masks. A serial killer. Political intrigue. Mysterious gods. Folks, this is my favorite fantasy novel I’ve read this year–a deliciously dark tale with intricate worldbuilding, memorable (and diverse!) characters, and a nuanced portrayal of the impacts of trauma on the human psyche. I’m so grateful to Jean Book Nerd for having me as a host on this tour. Stick around for my review, more info on the book, and a giveaway you don’t want to miss!

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Sing Me Forgotten – blog tour (ARC review + beautiful quotes)

Author: Jessica S. Olson
Publication date: March 9, 2021
Genre: YA fantasy, romance, retelling
My rating: 4/5 stars

Phantom of the Opera phans, rejoice–this is the gender-swapped Phantom retelling we’ve all been waiting for. Dark, luscious, and full of twisted magic, this story offers a fresh twist on the musical (and novel) you know and love. It takes out the love triangle, adds in a magic system rooted in the buying and selling of memory, and doesn’t shy away from the tricky blend of monstrousness and humanity that is the Opera Ghost. In other words, it tells a new tale while maintaining the best parts of the original. The end result is magical–music to my ears, if you’ll pardon the pun.

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February 2021 monthly wrap-up

Alright, friends: I’m finally getting back on my game with blogging and Bookstagram. I posted on more than half of the days in February, which is about the ratio I’m trying to go for. February was a great reading month for me, in both quantity and quality. To prevent making this post overly long, let’s dive right in:

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