Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Queer Books to Read for Pride Month (And All Year Round): My Favorites


I know Pride Month is almost over, but it's never a bad time to read a queer book! I initially planned to make this just one post, but in the process of looking for books, I realized that there are way to many I love to limit myself! Instead, it will be split into two posts over two days. Today you can learn about twenty of my favorite queer books. Tomorrow (hopefully) I'll feature twenty queer books that I haven't read yet but am very excited about! This list will be in no particular order for the simple reason that I can't quantify my love for these books! Well, it's technically in order of release, but that's only because of how I have Goodreads organized.

Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour (YA Contemporary)

Representation: F/F romance

Release: May 15, 2014

Synopsis:

A love letter to the craft and romance of film and fate in front of—and behind—the camera from the award-winning author of Hold Still.
 
A wunderkind young set designer, Emi has already started to find her way in the competitive Hollywood film world.
 
Emi is a film buff and a true romantic, but her real-life relationships are a mess. She has desperately gone back to the same girl too many times to mention. But then a mysterious letter from a silver screen legend leads Emi to Ava. Ava is unlike anyone Emi has ever met. She has a tumultuous, not-so-glamorous past, and lives an unconventional life. She’s enigmatic…. She’s beautiful. And she is about to expand Emi’s understanding of family, acceptance, and true romance.

You Can Find it At:

Melissa by Alex Gino (MG Contemporary)

Representation: Transgender main character

Release: August 15, 2015 (re-released with new title/cover April 19, 2022)

Synopsis:

BE WHO YOU ARE.

When people look at Melissa, they think they see a boy named George. But she knows she's not a boy. She knows she's a girl.

Melissa thinks she’ll have to keep this a secret forever. Then her teacher announces that their class play is going to be Charlotte's Web. Melissa really, really, REALLY wants to play Charlotte. But the teacher says she can't even try out for the part... because she's a boy.

With the help of her best friend, Kelly, Melissa comes up with a plan. Not just so she can be Charlotte -- but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.

You Can Find it At:
Indie Bound
Apple Books
Goodreads

If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo (YA Contemporary)

Representation: Transgender main character

Release: May 3, 2016

Synopsis:

A new kind of big-hearted novel about being seen for who you really are. 

Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school. Like anyone else, all she wants is to make friends and fit in. But Amanda is keeping a secret, and she's determined not to get too close to anyone. 

But when she meets sweet, easygoing Grant, Amanda can't help but start to let him into her life. As they spend more time together, she realizes just how much she is losing by guarding her heart. She finds herself yearning to share with Grant everything about herself, including her past. But Amanda's terrified that once she tells him the truth, he won't be able to see past it. 

Because the secret that Amanda's been keeping? It's that at her old school, she used to be Andrew. Will the truth cost Amanda her new life, and her new love? 

Meredith Russo's If I Was Your Girl is a universal story about feeling different and a love story that everyone will root for.

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Goodreads

Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst (YA Fantasy)

Representation: F/F romance, bisexual main character

Release: November 22, 2016

Synopsis:

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.

Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine—called Mare—the sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two become closer, Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. And soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.

You Can Find it At:
IndieBound
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
Goodreads

Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh (YA Fantasy)

Representation: Bisexual main character

Release: January 23, 2018

Synopsis:

Odessa is one of Karthia's master necromancers, catering to the kingdom's ruling Dead. Whenever a noble dies, it's Odessa's job to raise them by retrieving their souls from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised--the Dead must remain shrouded, or risk transforming into zombie-like monsters known as Shades. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, the grotesque transformation will begin.

A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears among Odessa's necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own reveals a disturbing conspiracy: someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead--and training them to attack. Odessa is faced with a terrifying question: What if her necromancer's magic is the weapon that brings Karthia to its knees?

You Can Find it At:

Once & Future by A.R. Capetta and Cory McCarthy (YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi)

Representation: F/F romance, M/M romance, sapphic main character, gay main character, nonbinary side character, transgender side character

Release: March 26, 2019

Synopsis:

King Arthur as you've never imagined! This bold, sizzling YA retells the popular legend with the Once and Future King as a teenage girl -- and she has a universe to save.

I've been chased my whole life. As a fugitive refugee in the territory controlled by the tyrannical Mercer corporation, I've always had to hide who I am. Until I found Excalibur.

Now I'm done hiding.

My name is Ari Helix. I have a magic sword, a cranky wizard, and a revolution to start.

When Ari crash-lands on Old Earth and pulls a magic sword from its ancient resting place, she is revealed to be the newest reincarnation of King Arthur. Then she meets Merlin, who has aged backward over the centuries into a teenager, and together they must break the curse that keeps Arthur coming back. Their quest? Defeat the cruel, oppressive government and bring peace and equality to all humankind.

No pressure.

You Can Find it At:

Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston (Contemporary Romance)

Representation: M/M romance, bisexual main character, gay main character

Release: May 14, 2019

Synopsis:

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

You Can Find it At:
Amazon

The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics by Olivia Waite (Historical Romance)

Representation: F/F romance

Release: June 25, 2019

Synopsis:

As Lucy Muchelney watches her ex-lover’s sham of a wedding, she wishes herself anywhere else. It isn’t until she finds a letter from the Countess of Moth, looking for someone to translate a groundbreaking French astronomy text, that she knows where to go. Showing up at the Countess’ London home, she hoped to find a challenge, not a woman who takes her breath away.

Catherine St Day looks forward to a quiet widowhood once her late husband’s scientific legacy is fulfilled. She expected to hand off the translation and wash her hands of the project—instead, she is intrigued by the young woman who turns up at her door, begging to be allowed to do the work, and she agrees to let Lucy stay. But as Catherine finds herself longing for Lucy, everything she believes about herself and her life is tested.

While Lucy spends her days interpreting the complicated French text, she spends her nights falling in love with the alluring Catherine. But sabotage and old wounds threaten to sever the threads that bind them. Can Lucy and Catherine find the strength to stay together or are they doomed to be star-crossed lovers?

You Can Find It At:
Avon Impulse
Goodreads

Wilder Girls by Rory Power (YA Horror)

Representation: Queer protagonist, F/F romance

Release: July 9, 2019

Synopsis:

It's been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty's life out from under her.

It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don't dare wander outside the school's fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.

But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there's more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-A-Million
IndieBound
Target
Goodreads

The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco (YA Fantasy)

Representation: F/F romance

Release: October 15, 2019

Synopsis:

Frozen meets Mad Max in this epic teen fantasy duology bursting with star-crossed romance, immortal heroines, and elemental magic, perfect for fans of Furyborn.

Generations of twin goddesses have long ruled Aeon. But seventeen years ago, one sister’s betrayal defied an ancient prophecy and split their world in two. The planet ceased to spin, and a Great Abyss now divides two realms: one cloaked in perpetual night, the other scorched by an unrelenting sun. 

While one sister rules Aranth—a frozen city surrounded by a storm-wracked sea —her twin inhabits the sand-locked Golden City. Each goddess has raised a daughter, and each keeps her own secrets about her sister’s betrayal. 

But when shadowy forces begin to call their daughters, Odessa and Haidee, back to the site of the Breaking, the two young goddesses —along with a powerful healer from Aranth, and a mouthy desert scavenger —set out on separate journeys across treacherous wastelands, desperate to heal their broken world. No matter the sacrifice it demands.

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Goodreads

Tarnished Are the Stars by Rosiee Thor (YA Sci-Fi)

Representation: Asexual main character, F/F romance

Release: October 15, 2019

Synopsis:

The Lunar Chronicles meets Rook in this queer #OwnVoices science-fantasy novel, perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer and Sharon Cameron.

A secret beats inside Anna Thatcher's chest: an illegal clockwork heart. Anna works cog by cog -- donning the moniker Technician -- to supply black market medical technology to the sick and injured, against the Commissioner's tyrannical laws.

Nathaniel Fremont, the Commissioner's son, has never had to fear the law. Determined to earn his father's respect, Nathaniel sets out to capture the Technician. But the more he learns about the outlaw, the more he questions whether his father's elusive affection is worth chasing at all.

Their game of cat and mouse takes an abrupt turn when Eliza, a skilled assassin and spy, arrives. Her mission is to learn the Commissioner's secrets at any cost -- even if it means betraying her own heart.

When these uneasy allies discover the most dangerous secret of all, they must work together despite their differences and put an end to a deadly epidemic -- before the Commissioner ends them first.

You Can Find it At:

Two Rogues Make a Right by Cat Sebastian (Historical Romance)

Representation: M/M romance

Release: June 23, 2020

Synopsis:

Will Sedgwick can’t believe that after months of searching for his oldest friend, Martin Easterbrook is found hiding in an attic like a gothic nightmare. Intent on nursing Martin back to health, Will kindly kidnaps him and takes him to the countryside to recover, well away from the world.

Martin doesn’t much care where he is or even how he got there. He’s much more concerned that the man he’s loved his entire life is currently waiting on him hand and foot, feeding him soup and making him tea. Martin knows he’s a lost cause, one he doesn’t want Will to waste his life on.

As a lifetime of love transforms into a tender passion both men always desired but neither expected, can they envision a life free from the restrictions of the past, a life with each other?

You Can Find it At:
Indiebound
Barnes & Noble
Amazon
iBooks
Kobo

Night Shine by Tessa Gratton (YA Fantasy)

Representation: Sapphic main character, genderqueer love interest and side characters

Release: September 8, 2020

Synopsis:

An orphan girl must face untold danger and an ancient evil to save her kingdom’s prince in this lush, romantic fantasy perfect for fans of Girls of Paper and Fire and Tess of the Road.

How can you live without your heart?

In the vast palace of the empress lives an orphan girl called Nothing. She slips within the shadows of the Court, unseen except by the Great Demon of the palace and her true friend, Prince Kirin, heir to the throne. When Kirin is kidnapped, only Nothing and the prince’s bodyguard suspect that Kirin may have been taken by the Sorceress Who Eats Girls, a powerful woman who has plagued the land for decades. The sorceress has never bothered with boys before, but Nothing has uncovered many secrets in her sixteen years in the palace, including a few about the prince.

As the empress’s army searches fruitlessly, Nothing and the bodyguard set out on a rescue mission, through demon-filled rain forests and past crossroads guarded by spirits. Their journey takes them to the gates of the Fifth Mountain, where the sorceress wields her power. There, Nothing will discover that all magic is a bargain, and she may be more powerful than she ever imagined. But the price the Sorceress demands for Kirin may very well cost Nothing her heart.

You Can Find it At:
IndieBound
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Amazon
Goodreads

A Curse of Roses by Diana Pinguicha (YA Historical Fantasy)

Representation: F/F romance

Release: December 1, 2020

Synopsis:

With just one touch, bread turns into roses. With just one bite, cheese turns into lilies.

There’s a famine plaguing the land, and Princess Yzabel is wasting food simply by trying to eat. Before she can even swallow, her magic—her curse—has turned her meal into a bouquet. She’s on the verge of starving, which only reminds her that the people of Portugal have been enduring the same pain.

If only it were possible to reverse her magic. Then she could turn flowers…into food.

Fatyan, a beautiful Enchanted Moura, is the only one who can help. But she is trapped by magical binds. She can teach Yzabel how to control her curse—if Yzabel sets her free with a kiss.

As the King of Portugal’s betrothed, Yzabel would be committing treason, but what good is a king if his country has starved to death?

With just one kiss, Fatyan is set free. And with just one kiss, Yzabel is yearning for more.

She’d sought out Fatyan to help her save the people. Now, loving her could mean Yzabel’s destruction.

Based on Portuguese legend, this #OwnVoices historical fantasy is an epic tale of mystery, magic, and making the impossible choice between love and duty…

You Can Find it At:
Bookshop.org
IndieBound

The Girls I've Been by Tess Sharpe (YA Mystery)

Representation: Bisexual main character, F/F romance

Release: January 26, 2021

Synopsis:

A slick, twisty YA page-turner about the daughter of a con artist who is taken hostage in a bank heist.

Nora O’Malley’s been a lot of girls. As the daughter of a con-artist who targets criminal men, she grew up as her mother’s protégé. But when mom fell for the mark instead of conning him, Nora pulled the ultimate con: escape.

For five years Nora’s been playing at normal. But she needs to dust off the skills she ditched because she has three problems:

#1: Her ex walked in on her with her girlfriend. Even though they’re all friends, Wes didn’t know about her and Iris.

#2: The morning after Wes finds them kissing, they all have to meet to deposit the fundraiser money they raised at the bank. It’s a nightmare that goes from awkward to deadly, because:

#3: Right after they enter bank, two guys start robbing it.

The bank robbers may be trouble, but Nora’s something else entirely. They have no idea who they’re really holding hostage…

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Goodreads

A Dark and Hollow Star by Ashley Shuttleworth (YA Fantasy)

Representation: Lesbian main character, pansexual/questioning main character, bisexual main character, gay main character, genderfluid side character, F/F romance, M/M romance

Release: February 23, 2021

Synopsis:

Choose your player.

The “ironborn” half-fae outcast of her royal fae family.
A tempestuous Fury, exiled to earth from the Immortal Realm and hellbent on revenge.
A dutiful fae prince, determined to earn his place on the throne.
The prince’s brooding guardian, burdened with a terrible secret.

For centuries, the Eight Courts of Folk have lived among us, concealed by magic and bound by law to do no harm to humans. This arrangement has long kept peace in the Courts—until a series of gruesome and ritualistic murders rocks the city of Toronto and threatens to expose faeries to the human world.

Four queer teens, each who hold a key piece of the truth behind these murders, must form a tenuous alliance in their effort to track down the mysterious killer behind these crimes. If they fail, they risk the destruction of the faerie and human worlds alike. If that’s not bad enough, there’s a war brewing between the Mortal and Immortal Realms, and one of these teens is destined to tip the scales. The only question is: which way?

Wish them luck. They’re going to need it.

You Can Find it At:
Bookshop
IndieBound
Book Depository
Buffalo Street Books
Barnes &N oble
Amazon

The Passing Playbook by Isaac Fitzsimons (YA Contemporary)

Representation: Transgender main character, M/M romance

Release: June 1, 2021

Synopsis:

Fifteen-year-old Spencer Harris is a proud nerd, an awesome big brother and a Messi-in-training. He's also transgender. After transitioning at his old school leads to a year of bullying, Spencer gets a fresh start at Oakley, the most liberal private school in Ohio. 

At Oakley, Spencer seems to have it all: more accepting classmates, a decent shot at a starting position on the boy's soccer team, great new friends, and maybe even something more than friendship with one of his teammates. The problem is, no one at Oakley knows Spencer is trans—he's passing. 

So when a discriminatory law forces Spencer's coach to bench him after he discovers the 'F' on Spencer's birth certificate, Spencer has to make a choice: cheer his team on from the sidelines or publicly fight for his right to play, even if it means coming out to everyone—including the guy he's falling for.

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Goodreads

The Other Merlin by Robyn Schneider (YA Fantasy)

Representation: Bisexual main character, cast of queer side characters

Release: September 21, 2021

Synopsis:

Welcome to the great kingdom of Camelot. Prince Arthur’s a depressed botanist who would rather marry a library than a princess, Lancelot’s been demoted to castle guard after a terrible misunderstanding, and nothing is going according to plan. Then Arthur accidentally pulls the sword from the stone (in his defense, he was drunk and mostly kidding), and now everyone’s convinced he’s some prophesied hero.

Emry Merlin is stuck in her small town. Her father, the legendary court wizard, disappeared years ago, and Emry’s been peddling theater tricks to make ends meet. When a royal messenger arrives summoning her far less talented twin brother to serve as Prince Arthur's right-hand wizard, Emry is understandably upset. But after Emmett becomes indisposed thanks to a bad spell, Emry disguises herself as her brother and travels to the royal court to impersonate him until they can switch.

Studying magic at the castle is everything Emry hoped for. But life in King Uther’s court is full of scandals, lies, and backstabbing courtiers. What’s a teen wizard masquerading as her twin brother to do? Other than fall for the handsome prince, stir trouble with the foppish Lord Gawain, offend Princess Guinevere, and make herself indispensable to the future of Camelot?

When the truth comes out with disastrous consequences, Emry has to decide whether she'll risk everything for the boy she loves, or give up her potential to become the greatest wizard Camelot has ever known.

Channeling the modern humor of A Knight's Tale, bestselling author Robyn Schneider creates a Camelot that becomes the ultimate teen rom-com hotspot in this ultra-fresh take on the Arthurian legend.

You Can Find it At:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
Target
Powell's
Google Play
Goodreads

If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich (YA Contemporary)

Representation: M/M romance

Release: December 7, 2021

Synopsis:

Eighteen-year-olds Ruben Montez and Zach Knight are two members of the boy-band Saturday, one of the biggest acts in America. Along with their bandmates, Angel Phan and Jon Braxton, the four are teen heartbreakers in front of the cameras and best friends backstage. But privately, cracks are starting to form: their once-easy rapport is straining under the pressures of fame, and Ruben confides in Zach that he’s feeling smothered by management’s pressure to stay in the closet.

On a whirlwind tour through Europe, with both an unrelenting schedule and minimal supervision, Ruben and Zach come to rely on each other more and more, and their already close friendship evolves into a romance. But when they decide they’re ready to tell their fans and live freely, Zach and Ruben start to truly realize that they will never have the support of their management. How can they hold tight to each other when the whole world seems to want to come between them?

You Can Find it At:

Forward March by Skye Quinlan (YA Contemporary)

Representation: Asexual lesbian main character, F/F romance

Release: March 22, 2022

Synopsis:

What’s worse? Someone using your face for catfishing or realizing you actually do have a crush on the catfished girl?

Harper “Band Geek” McKinley just wants to make it through her senior year of marching band—and her Republican father’s presidential campaign. That was a tall order to start, but everything was going well enough until someone made a fake gay dating profile posing as Harper. The real Harper can’t afford for anyone to find out about the Tinder profile for three very important reasons:

1. Her mom is the school dean and dating profiles for students are strictly forbidden.
2. Harper doesn't even know if she likes anyone like that—let alone if she likes other girls.
3. If this secret gets out, her father could lose the election, one she's not sure she even wants him to win.

But upon meeting Margot Blanchard, the drumline leader who swiped right, Harper thinks it might be worth the trouble to let Margot get to know the real her.

With her dad’s campaign on the line, Harper’s relationship with her family at stake, and no idea who made that fake dating profile, Harper has to decide what’s more important to her: living her truth or becoming the First Daughter of America.

You Can Find it At:

Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler (YA Contemporary)

Representation: Pansexual main character, lesbian main character, F/F romance

Release: June 7, 2022

Synopsis:

In this sweet and funny new f/f romance from the author of Cool for the Summer, a cheerleader and the school's newest quarterback are playing to win, but might lose their hearts in the process.

Amber McCloud’s dream is to become cheer captain at the end of the year, but it’s an extra-tall order to be joyful and spirited when the quarterback of your team has been killed in a car accident. For both the team and the squad, watching Robbie get replaced by newcomer Jack Walsh is brutal. And when it turns out Jack is actually short for Jaclyn, all hell breaks loose.

The players refuse to be led by a girl, the cheerleaders are mad about the changes to their traditions, and the fact that Robbie’s been not only replaced but outshined by a QB who wears a sports bra has more than a few Atherton Alligators in a rage. Amber tries for some semblance of unity, but it quickly becomes clear that she's only got a future on the squad and with her friends if she helps them take Jack down.

Just one problem: Amber and Jack are falling for each other, and if Amber can't stand up for Jack and figure out how to get everyone to fall in line, her dream may come at the cost of her heart.

Dahlia Adler's Home Field Advantage is a sparkling romance about fighting for what - or who - you truly want.

You Can Find it At:
Bookshop

I love all of these books, and hope you do as well! And as a bonus, many of these authors have even more queer books! Some of the books are in a series, which means you can get more of the same characters. It makes me so happy that the number of queer books being published has increased each year. It is so important to be able to see yourself in books, and these authors are helping make that possible. I also want to give a huge shout out to LGBTQ Reads (run by Dahlia Adler) for the amazing work keeping track of queer books being published!

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Top Ten Books On My Summer 2022 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and That Artsy Reader Girl. Looking back, I just realized I haven't posted a Top Ten Tuesday since the Spring TBR prompt (shame on me). Hopefully I'll keep up with things a little more this summer.

1. Blood and Moonlight by Erin Beaty - June 28, 2022

2. The Song That Moves the Sun by Anna Bright - June 28, 2022

3. What Souls Are Made Of by Tasha Suri (Remixed Classics #4) - July 5, 2022

4. Youngblood by Sasha Laurens - July 19, 2022

5. Accomplished by Amanda Quain - July 26, 2022

6. My Imaginary Mary by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows (Mary #2) - August 2, 2022

7. How to Date a Superhero (and Not Die Trying) by Christina Fernández - August 2, 2022

8. Belladonna by Adalyn Grace (Belladonna #1) - August 23, 2022

9. Blood of Troy by Claire M. Andrews (Daughter of Sparta #2) - September 6 (2022)

10. Funeral Girl by Emma K. Ohlan - September 6, 2022

11. I'm the Girl by Courtney Summers - September 13, 2022

12. Bone Weaver by Aden Polydoros - September 20, 2022


Are you excited to read any of these books! I've got a bunch of them preordered and can't wait to get them! What will you be reading this summer?

Monday, June 27, 2022

Quarantine Releases (98)


Since the posts for the last couple weeks have been on the late side, I'm excited to say that this one was actually written and scheduled early. Perfect for everyone to discover this week's new books before they come out on Tuesday! And there are approximately a million new books to choose from!

Young Adult

The Dream Runners by Shveta Thakrar

A lush tapestry of dreams, myth, and magic—perfect for fans of Holly Black, Roshani Chokshi, and Margaret Rogerson.

Seven years ago, Tanvi was spirited away to the subterranean realm of Nagalok, where she joined the ranks of the dream runners: human children freed of all memory and emotion, who collect mortal dreams for the entertainment of the serpentine, immortal naga court.

But when one of Tanvi’s dream harvests goes awry, she begins to remember her life on earth. Panicked and confused, she turns to the one mortal in Nagalok who might be able to help: Venkat, the dreamsmith responsible for collecting the dream runners’ wares and shaping them into the kingdom’s most tantalizing commodity. And as they search for answers, a terrifying truth begins to take shape—one that could turn the nagas’ realm of dreams into a land of waking nightmare.

From the author of the Indie Next selection and Andre Norton Award finalist Star Daughter, this stand-alone contemporary fantasy, inspired by the nagas and garudas of Hindu mythology, is full of slow-burning romance, haunting intrigue, and shimmering magic.

Places to Purchase:

Blood and Moonlight by Erin Beaty

In Erin Beaty's fantasy mystery-thriller, Blood and Moonlight, an orphan with a secret, magical sight gets caught between a mysterious genius and the serial killer he’s hunting.

Rising above the city of Collis is the holy Sanctum. And watching over its spires is Catrin, an orphan girl with unique skills—for she alone can spot the building’s flaws in construction before they turn deadly.

But when Catrin witnesses a murderer escaping the scene of his crime, she’s pulled into a dangerous chain of events where the only certainty is that the killer will strike again. Assigned to investigate is the mysterious and brilliant Simon, whose insights into the mind of a predator are frighteningly accurate.

As the grisly crimes continue, Catrin finds herself caught between killer and detective while hiding her own secret—a supernatural sight granted by the moon, destined to make her an outcast, and the only thing that might save her and those she loves from becoming the next victims...

Places to Purchase:

This Vicious Grace by Emily Thiede

Three weddings. Three funerals. Alessa’s gift from the gods is supposed to magnify a partner’s magic, not kill every suitor she touches.

Now, with only weeks left until a hungry swarm of demons devours everything on her island home, Alessa is running out of time to find a partner and stop the invasion. When a powerful priest convinces the faithful that killing Alessa is the island’s only hope, her own soldiers try to assassinate her.

Desperate to survive, Alessa hires Dante, a cynical outcast marked as a killer, to become her personal bodyguard. But as rebellion explodes outside the gates, Dante’s dark secrets may be the biggest betrayal. He holds the key to her survival and her heart, but is he the one person who can help her master her gift or destroy her once and for all?

Emily Thiede's exciting fantasy debut, This Vicious Grace, will keep readers turning the pages until the devastating conclusion and leave them primed for more!

Places to Purchase:

The Song That Moves the Sun by Anna Bright

This sweeping YA fantasy romance full of star-crossed love, complex female friendship, and astrological magic is perfect for fans of Laini Taylor, Alexandra Bracken, and V.E. Schwab. From the acclaimed author of The Beholder.

Best friends Rora and Claudia have never felt more like their lives are spiraling out of control. And when they meet Major and Amir--two boys from one of the secret cities of the spheres, ruled by the magic of the astrological signs--they discover they're not alone. There is a disruption in the harmony between the spheres, and its chaos is spreading.

To find the source of the disharmony, Rora and Claudia will embark on a whirlwind journey of secrets, romance, and powerful truths--about themselves, each other, and two long-ago explorers named Dante and Beatrice, who were among the first to chart this course toward the stars.

Inspired partly by the classic works of Dante Alighieri, this gorgeous stand-alone contemporary fantasy will captivate readers of Lore and Star Daughter.

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Bad Things Happen Here by Rebecca Barrow

I Killed Zoe Spanos meets The Cheerleaders in this haunting mystery about an island town with a history of unsolved deaths—and a girl desperate to uncover the mystery behind it all.

Luca Laine Thomas lives on a cursed island. To the outside world, Parris is an exclusive, idyllic escape accessible only to the one percent. There’s nothing idyllic about its history, though, scattered with the unsolved deaths of young women—deaths Parris society happily ignores to maintain its polished veneer. But Luca can’t ignore them. Not when the curse that took them killed her best friend, Polly, three years ago. Not when she feels the curse lingering nearby, ready to take her next.

When Luca comes home to police cars outside her house, she knows the curse has visited once again. Except this time, it came for Whitney, her sister. Luca decides to take the investigation of Whitney’s death into her own hands. But as a shocking betrayal rocks Luca’s world, the identity Whitney’s killer isn’t the only truth Luca seeks. And by the time she finds what she’s looking for, Luca will come face to face with the curse she’s been running from her whole life.

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Sometime in Summer by Katrina Leno

From critically acclaimed author Katrina Leno comes a tender love letter to books and summertime, with a touch of magic.

Anna Lucia Bell believes in luck: bad luck. Bad luck made her best friend stop talking to her. Bad luck caused her parents’ divorce. Bad luck is forcing her mother, Miriam, to sell the family’s beloved bookstore. And it is definitely bad luck that Anna seems to be the only person in the world Miriam is unable to recommend a life-changing book.

When Anna finds out that she and her mom are spending two months in a New England seaside town called Rockport, she expects a summer plagued with bad luck too. But Rockport has surprises in store for Anna, including a comet making its first appearance in over twenty years and two new—but familiar—friends.

In what will prove to be the most important summer of her life so far, Anna learns about love, herself, and the magic that an ordinary summer can bring.

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Blade Breaker by Victoria Aveyard

In the sequel to Victoria Aveyard’s instant #1 New York Times bestselling Realm Breaker, a divided world must rally, an unstoppable enemy must be defeated, and the fate of the world rests on a blade’s edge.

Andry, a former squire, continues to fight for hope amid blood and chaos.

Dom, a grieving immortal, strives to fulfill a broken oath.

Sorasa, an outcast assassin, faces her past when it returns with sharpened teeth.

Valtik, an old sorceress, summons a mighty power.

And Corayne, a pirate’s daughter with an ancient magic in her blood, steps closer to becoming the hero she’s destined to be.

Together they must assemble an army to face Queen Erida and Taristan’s wicked forces. But something deadly waits in the shadows, something that might consume the world before there’s any hope for victory.

The sequel to the instant #1 New York Times bestselling Realm Breaker features breathless action, deadly twists, and gripping magic, making it perfect for fans of Garth Nix and J. R. R. Tolkien.

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The Black Girls Left Standing by Juliana Goodman

In Juliana Goodman's powerful young adult debut The Black Girls Left Standing, Beau Willet will stop at nothing to clear her sister's name. 

Sixteen-year-old Beau Willet has dreams of being an artist and one day leaving the Chicago projects she’s grown up in. But after her older sister, Katia, is killed by an off-duty police officer, Beau knows she has to clear her sister’s name by finding the only witness to the murder; Katia’s no-good boyfriend, Jordan, who has gone missing. If she doesn't find him and tell the world what really happened, Katia's death will be ignored, like the deaths of so many other Black women who are wrongfully killed.

With the help of her friend, Sonnet, Beau sets up a Twitter account to gather anonymous tips. But the more that Beau finds out about her sister's death, the more danger she finds herself in. And with a new relationship developing with her childhood friend, Champion, and the struggle to keep her family together, Beau is soon in way over her head. How much is she willing to risk to clear her sister's name and make sure she's not forgotten?

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Stealing Infinity by Alyson Noël

These days, I’ve been killing it when it comes to letting people down. Now I’ve been kicked out of high school, arrested, and accepted into a remote, off-the-grid school owned and operated by an inscrutable billionaire tech guru.

Gray Wolf Academy is looking for a certain kind of student. Ones that no one will miss. Like me.

Then there’s Braxton. The beautiful, oddly anachronistic guy who showed up right when the trouble started. And he’s a total enigma—which means that I definitely can’t trust him, even if there’s something about him that makes me want to.

They all tell me I have a gift. A very rare gift. And Gray Wolf Academy wants me to learn it. To use it. Because if what they say is true, I have all the time in the world.

And that makes me the most dangerous high school student you’ll never know…

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Our Crooked Hearts by Melissa Albert

The New York Times bestselling author of The Hazel Wood returns with a darkly gripping, contemporary fantasy full of secrets, lies, mystery, and witchcraft

The suburbs, right now . . .

Ivy’s summer break kicks off with an accident, a punishment, and a mystery: a stranger whose appearance in the middle of the road, in the middle of the night, heralds a string of increasingly unsettling events. As the days pass, Ivy grapples with eerie offerings, corroded memories, and a burning question: What if there's more to her mother than meets the eye?

The city, back then . . .

Dana has always been perceptive. And the summer she turns sixteen, with the help of her best friend and an ambitious older girl, her gifts bloom into a heady fling with the supernatural. As the trio’s aspirations darken, they find themselves speeding toward a violent breaking point.

Years after it began, Ivy and Dana's shared story will come down to a reckoning among a daughter, a mother, and the dark forces they never should’ve messed with.

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Ride With Me by Lucy Keating

In this charming, contemporary YA novel, neighborhood rideshare driver Charlie Owens embarks on a collision course with love when she crashes into the school’s cute but annoying party boy and wrecks his car and her no-strings-attached attitude toward life.

As a driver for her local ride share app, Charlie Owens loves what the open road gives her: freedom, extra cash for an epic road trip, and a path to getting out of her sleepy town of Chester Falls, Massachusetts. She’s seen her fair share of mysterious passengers and explosive break-ups in the backseat of her car, but Charlie lives a no-strings-attached lifestyle and never gets involved.

But when a routine post-party pick-up ends with Charlie crashing into Andre, her school’s notorious party boy, she’s forced to make a deal to drive him anywhere he needs to go, anytime, until his car can be repaired. Suddenly Charlie and Andre are stuck together, and they couldn’t be more different. But Andre’s charm wins over Charlie’s passengers, and she soon finds herself at risk of breaking her most sacred rule: don’t fall in love.

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A Secret Princess by Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz

A surprising and romantic YA retelling-mashup of A Little Princess and The Secret Garden by bestselling authors Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz.

Best friends Mary Lennox, Sara Crewe, and Cedric Erroll are best friends. And thank goodness, since their boarding school is basically insufferable. When one of the friends suffers a personal tragedy, a plan—and a secret—change everything for the trio . . . for good.  
 
Filled with charm and romance, and inspired by some of classic literature's most beloved characters, The Secret Princess is the perfect blend of A Little Princess and The Secret Garden—and the perfect companion to Jo & Laurie.

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Katzenjammer by Francesca Zappia

American Horror Story meets the dark comedy of Kafka’s The Metamorphosis as Cat searches for a way to escape her high school. A tale of family, love, tragedy, and masks—the ones others make for us, and the ones we make for ourselves. Katzenjammer will haunt fans of Chelsea Pitcher’s This Lie Will Kill You and E. Lockhart’s We Were Liars.

Cat lives in her high school. She never leaves, and for a long time her school has provided her with everything she needs. But now things are changing. The hallways contract and expand along with the school’s breathing, and the showers in the bathroom run a bloody red. Cat’s best friend is slowly turning into cardboard, and instead of a face, Cat has a cat mask made of her own hardened flesh.

Cat doesn’t remember why she is trapped in her school or why half of them—Cat included—are slowly transforming. Escaping has always been the one impossibility in her school’s upside-down world. But to save herself from the eventual self-destruction all the students face, Cat must find the way out. And to do that, she’ll have to remember what put her there in the first place.

Using chapters alternating between the past and the present, acclaimed author Francesca Zappia weaves a spine-tingling, suspenseful, and haunting story about tragedy and the power of memories. Fans of Marieke Nijkamp’s This Is Where It Ends and Karen McManus’s One of Us Is Lying will lose themselves in the pages of this novel—or maybe in the treacherous hallways of the school. 

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Godslayers by Zoe Hana Mikuta

Godslayers--Zoe Hana Mikuta's high-octane sequel to Gearbreakers--is perfect for fans of Pacific Rim, Pierce Brown's Red Rising Saga, and Marie Lu's Legend series. 

The only way to kill a god is from the inside...

The Gearbreakers struck a devastating blow against Godolia on Heavensday, but the cost of victory has been steep. Months later, the few rebels who've managed to escape the tyrannical empire's bloody retribution have fled to the mountains, hunted by the last Zenith--Godolia's only surviving leader.

Eris has been held prisoner since the attack on the capital city, which almost killed her. And she begins to wish it had when she discovers Sona--the girl she loves, the girl she would tear down cities for--also survived, only to be captured and Corrupted by the Zenith. The cybernetic brainwashing that Sona has forcibly undergone now has her believing herself a loyal soldier for Godolia, and Eris' mortal enemy.

With the rebellion shattered and Godolia moving forward with an insidious plan to begin inducting Badlands children into a new Windup Pilot program, the odds have never been more stacked against the Gearbreakers. Their last hope for victory will depend on whether Eris and Sona can somehow find their way back to each other from opposite sides of a war...

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Romance

A Matter of Temptation by Stacy Reid

Miss Wilhelmina "Mina" Crawford is desperate. Having been ruined in the eyes of society years ago for one foolish, starry-eyed mistake, she spends her days secreted away at her family's crumbling estate, helping her brother manage the land but not able to truly live life the way she's always dreamed. When her brother admits to just how dire their finances have gotten, she takes it upon herself to procure employment...but the only one who will even consider the scandalous idea of a female secretary is the brilliant, ruthless, and infuriating Earl of Creswick.

Simon Loughton, the Earl of Creswick, needs help if he wants to finally pass the reform bill he's been championing for years and secure the vote for England's most vulnerable constituents. Too bad help comes in the form of a woman with breathtaking nerve, fiery red hair, and a sense of humor to match.

Now temptation--disguised as a lovely, clever-mouthed devil--lives and works under Simon's very roof. And Mina finally feels as though she's truly living life to her wildest dreams. But even the most incendiary of kisses can't incinerate Mina's past...or the shocking secret that could ruin them both.

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Up All Night With a Good Duke by Amy Rose Bennett

"I can think of the perfect way to keep you occupied and your mind diverted," she murmured. "Come to my room. If you're not too tired..."

Lust flashed in his gaze, and then, he caught her face between his hands and kissed her. "For you, my beautiful Artemis, I'd stay up all night."

Artemis Jones―"respectable" finishing-school teacher by day and Gothic romance writer by night―has never lost sight of her real dream: to open her own academic ladies' college. When Artemis is unexpectedly called upon by a dear friend, a fellow Byronic Book Club member, to navigate her first London Season, she comes at once. Who knows, perhaps she can court the interest of a wealthy patron for her school. As long as she can avoid her high-handed aunt's schemes to marry her off.

Dominic Winters, the widowed Duke of Dartmoor, needs a wife―someone who will provide him with an heir and help him to manage his spitfire adolescent daughter. The problem is, Society has dubbed him "The Dastardly Duke." Rumors are rife that he murdered his mad wife, so his choices for a suitable bride are limited. But then, he meets the ravishing and passionate Artemis Jones, who might just be everything he needs.

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You Were Made to Be Mine by Julie Anne Long

In the fifth installment of USA Today bestselling author Julie Anne Long's charming Palace of Rogues series, a rakish spy finds more than he bargained for in his pursuit of an earl's enchanting runaway fiancee.

The mission: Find the Earl of Brundage's runaway fiancee in exchange for a fortune. Child's play for legendary British former spymaster, Christian Hawkes. The catch? Hawkes knows in his bones that Brundage is the traitor to England who landed him in a brutal French prison. Hawkes is destitute, the earl is desperate, and a bargain is struck.

Fleeing a savagely shattered dream, the sheltered Lady Aurelie Capet finds refuge in an alias and the warmth and kindness of the Grand Palace on the Thames—until a gorgeous, mysterious disturbance to her peace literally topples through the door.

An unexpected, fierce desire that feels destined, dangerous—and devastatingly sweet—ignites between the sheltered beauty and the jaded spy, and as they slowly unravel each other's shocking secrets Hawkes closes in on the truth about the earl. Soon it's clear they can have no future without vanquishing the past: Hawkes knows that loving her means avenging her. Aurelie knows that loving Hawkes means freeing him to do that, no matter the cost.

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Four Weeks of Scandal by Megan Frampton

If you love the sparkle of Tessa Dare and the wit of Sarah MacLean, then you won't want to miss this newest historical romance by Megan Frampton, who returns with a delicious story about a will in dispute, a four-week bargain, and a pretend engagement with romantic consequences.

It only takes one moment to cause a scandal...and four weeks to live it down!

Week one: Lovely, lively Octavia Holton arrives in the village, determined to claim her inheritance--the home she grew up in with her late father. Surely he meant for his daughter to have the property, and owning it means she could fix it up, sell it, and use the money to pay off her debts. But when she arrives, she discovers the house is also claimed--by one Gabriel Fallon.

Week two: Gabriel claims his father won the property in a bet, but he can't bring himself to toss Octavia out on her very delightful derrière, so he makes her a four-week bargain: Together they'll pretend to be engaged, all the while seeking out any will, letter, or document that proves who gets the ownership.

Weeks three and four: But that means togetherness...a lot of togetherness, and long days--and evenings--in each other's company. The pair seems destined to "duke it out," staking their claims...but it's all too soon that they realize their rivalry might lead to something much more intimate. And suddenly four weeks seems like a long time. And yet not enough.

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Never Marry a Scandalous Duke by Renee Ann Miller

A stolen kiss at a ball and mistaken identities leads to a marriage of convenience in USA Today bestselling author Renee Ann Miller’s latest Infamous Lords novel. Featuring a spunky, scientist, spinster heroine and a deliciously dashing duke, readers can expect smoldering passion, engaging characters, and roguish antics set against the compelling backdrop of Victorian London. Perfect for fans of Victoria Alexander and Betina Krahn!

A thoroughly roguish nobleman and a devoted lady entomologist have absolutely nothing in common—or do they? Love is far from scientific when it truly blooms …
 
In the eyes of the ton, Lady Sara Elsmere is so firmly on the shelf, she might as well be nailed in place. Not that Sara minds. She is far more concerned about her study of butterflies than society’s gossip. Of course, it’s also true that the nervous laughter that ruined Sara’s debut—and every social event thereafter—is a bit embarrassing. She can hardly help it—men are quite nerve-wracking. Except for one: the rake who pulls her into a dark room during a costume ball and kisses her senseless. He doesn’t make her titter, he makes her burn . . .
 
Ian McAllister, the Duke of Dorchester, is perfectly satisfied to remain a rogue for the rest of his days. But when he finds he has kissed the wrong shepherdess, albeit a decidedly luscious one, he’s faced with a dilemma. His indiscretion with an innocent may cost him a lucrative business arrangement—and his two scapegrace wards need a maternal influence they can’t scare away. Promising Sara the use of her dowry to fund her studies seals the pair’s businesslike deal. But as they embark on their life together, they discover that their mutual attraction has sparked a desire not easily tamed—and certain feelings each of them are surprised to own. Can their matrimonial experiment possibly end in real love?

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The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston

A disillusioned millennial ghostwriter who, quite literally, has some ghosts of her own, has to find her way back home in this sparkling adult debut from national bestselling author Ashley Poston.

Florence Day is the ghostwriter for one of the most prolific romance authors in the industry, and she has a problem—after a terrible breakup, she no longer believes in love. It’s as good as dead.

When her new editor, a too-handsome mountain of a man, won’t give her an extension on her book deadline, Florence prepares to kiss her career goodbye. But then she gets a phone call she never wanted to receive, and she must return home for the first time in a decade to help her family bury her beloved father.

For ten years, she’s run from the town that never understood her, and even though she misses the sound of a warm Southern night and her eccentric, loving family and their funeral parlor, she can’t bring herself to stay. Even with her father gone, it feels like nothing in this town has changed. And she hates it.

Until she finds a ghost standing at the funeral parlor’s front door, just as broad and infuriatingly handsome as ever, and he’s just as confused about why he’s there as she is.

Romance is most certainly dead . . . but so is her new editor, and his unfinished business will have her second-guessing everything she’s ever known about love stories.

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Look at all these great books! I've got a bunch of preorders and books I want to read, especially Blood and Moonlight, The Song That Moves the Sun, Up All Night With a Good Duke, Four Weeks of Scandal, and The Dead Romantics!
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