Blogtober Day One: Amanda’s October TBR Jar Picks & Gothtober Readathon TBR

Hello, lovelies! Once again, it’s a new month. It’s actually one of my favorite months, October! For me, spooky season starts in September, so I’ve been reading all the books I’ve saved for spooky season for the last month, but I’m excited to share what I’ve planned for this month. I’m going to keep this first Blogtober post as my TBR jar picks because I’ve really been enjoying picking books off my TBR shelf this way. I’m also doing a readathon which I’ll mention later in the post. I have lots of Blogtober content that I’m very excited to share with you all.

Fantasy
Into the Dying Light by Katy Rose Pool

Backlist Book
The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones

Thriller
The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Most Recent Purchase
The Bronzed Beasts by Roshani Chokshi

Young Adult
The Last Legacy by Adrienne Young

I’m a bit behind on my eARC’s from NetGalley, so I have a few I want to read this month, as usual. These are just the ones that I couldn’t fit into TBR prompts for this month.

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune

All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody & Christine Lynn Herman

I’m also participating in the Gothtober Readathon (find all their information here on Twitter) again this year. This year it’s Angels vs. Demons (or vs. Death if you don’t want to be on a team). I’m going for Team Demon, which should surprise zero people. The prompts are listed in the graphic below, but I’m also sharing each prompt with my book selection.

Mythology
Pahua and the Soul Stealer by Lori M. Lee

Omens
The Death of Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling

Found Family
The Bronzed Beasts by Roshani Chokshi

Dark Romance
A Shadow in the Ember by Jennifer L. Armentrout

LGBTQ+ Representation
Into the Dying Light by Katy Rose Pool

Murder
I Am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin

Classics
Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood

BIPOC Representation
Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Disability Representation
The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones

What will you be reading this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s September Wrap Up

Hi, lovelies! I really cannot believe that September is over. But I’m very excited for October to get here because I have lots of fun Blogtober content planned. I also just love the spooky season.

What I Read

Physical Books
A Lesson in Vengeance by Victoria Lee – 3 stars
The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin – 5 stars
Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto – 4 stars

eBooks
Holdout by Jeffery Kluger – 3.5 stars
The Twin Paradox by Charles Wachter – 3.5 stars
Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – 4 stars
How We Fall Apart by Katie Zhao – 3 stars
The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes – 4 stars

Audiobooks
Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas – 4 stars
For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten – 5 stars
They’ll Never Catch Us by Jessica Goodman – 4 stars
The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – 4 stars
When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole – 2 stars
Home Before Dark by Riley Sager – 3.5 stars
One by One by Ruth Ware – 2 stars
The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – 4 stars
Recursion by Blake Crouch – 3 stars
The Girls I’ve Been by Tess Sharpe – 4 stars
The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl – 4 stars
The Broken Girls by Simone St. James – 3.75 stars
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – 2 stars

Audiobooks
Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas – 4 stars
For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten – 5 stars
They’ll Never Catch Us by Jessica Goodman – 4 stars
The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – 4 stars
When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole – 2 stars
Home Before Dark by Riley Sager – 3.5 stars
One by One by Ruth Ware – 2 stars
The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – 4 stars
Recursion by Blake Crouch – 3 stars
The Girls I’ve Been by Tess Sharpe – 4 stars
The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl – 4 stars
The Broken Girls by Simone St. James – 3.75 stars
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – 2 stars
The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He – 2.5 stars
The Maidens by Alex Michaelides – 2.5 stars

Blogging Highlights

A Season of Sinister Dreams by Tracy Banghart (Book Review)

Amanda’s Poetry Collection

Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth (Book Review)

Five Fantasy Adaptations Amanda Would Watch

The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart (Book Review)

10 Backlist Books on Amanda’s TBR List

A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers (Book Review)

Amanda’s Boarding School Recommendation

Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey (Book Review)

Other Blogger I’m Loving

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder – audiobook review! from Evelyn Reads
Check out Evelyn’s review of one of my favorite audiobooks!

October TBR from Books in the Skye
See what Steph is reading for spooky season!

New Young Adult Book Releases This Week / 27th September from Vee Bookish
Vee talks about new releases. Some of these are perfect for the upcoming month of spooky reading!

Autumn Reads from Journey into Books
Michaela recommends some great books for the Autumn season.

Ranking Riley Sager Books from Falling Down the Book Hole
Ashley ranks all of Sager’s books. This was a fun one as I’ve recently read a few of their newer books.

Book Recommendations – 8 Latine Science-Fiction/Fantasy & Magical Realism from CW @ The Quiet Pond
As usual, some great recommendations from CW and just in time to get ready for sci-fi month in November!

How was September for you with reading and blogging?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s NetGalley Shelf #4

Hello, lovelies! I’m back with another NetGalley Shelf update. I didn’t read as many eARC’s as I would have liked. But that’s okay. I will read them all eventually seeing as they’re not going anywhere, hah. Check out my last update here.

Approvals I’ve Read

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The Twin Paradox by Charles Wachter
Publication Date: August 27, 2020
This book was bizarre and way darker than I was expecting. But I did enjoy it. It’s about teen clones of people like Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein and the things they’re expected to solve by the company that created them.

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong
Publication date: November 17, 2020
Sadly, I DNF’d this book. I tried reading the eARC that I had several times. I also borrowed the audiobook from my library. I made it about halfway before I gave up.

The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig
Publication date: July 20, 2021
This book was super long. I liked it, but it was a bit of a slow sort of meandering story that had us really get to know the group of characters before getting into the real story.

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Paola Santiago and the Forest of Nightmares by Tehlor Kay Mejia
Publication date: August 3, 2021
Teylor Kay Mejia can do no wrong. I love Paola Santiago and this book just grew that love.

Holdout by Jeffery Kluger
Publication date: August 3, 2021
This was another bizarre story. The synopsis wasn’t very specific about the details of the story, so I was really surprised by much of what happened. It was a pretty political story, but I wasn’t bored or put off by this.

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The Dead and the Dark by Courtney Gould
Publication date: August 3, 2021
I really enjoyed this book. It’s queer and spooky and set in a small town. I loved the family dynamics and the existing issues that were brought to light with the events of this book. I think the mystery was really well done, too. I totally didn’t guess the twist.

Approvals on my TBR

We Are Meridians by S. Ghali
Publication date: August 27, 2019
I don’t know why I was approved for this book over a year after it’s publication, but it sounds super good. So, I’m planning to read it soon. It’s about a group of humans that left Earth and traveled into space hundreds of years ago. But now they need to return for something. The people of Earth think that it’s an alien invasion and so obviously it doesn’t go well.

Spellbreaker by Charlie N. Holmberg
Publication date: November 1, 2020
I was a part of the blog tour for this book. Find my spotlight post here. I shared a bit of a blurb and other information about the book. Since this has already been released I’ll probably just read it on Kindle Unlimited and share that I read the finished copy in my review. Check out my spotlight post for the full synopsis.

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The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri
Publication Date: June 8, 2021
I honestly don’t know anything about this one except that I’ve heard amazing things about Suri’s books.

The Dating Dare by Jayci Lee
Publication date: August 3, 2021
This is a romance novel by an author I’ve liked before. The romance in this one starts with a game of truth or dare and I’m here for that.

Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Publication date: August 17, 2021
I don’t know what this is about but I’ve really enjoyed her books in the past, so I think I’ll probably like this one too.

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Cazadora by Romina Garber
Publication date: August 17, 2021
Magical werewolves. I loved the first book and this is the sequel.

The Boy with Fire by Aparna Verma
Publication date: August 31, 2021
I honestly don’t know anything about this book but it was up for ‘read now’ on NetGalley. I’ve also seen a few people that really loved this.

The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun
Publication Date: September 7, 2021
I don’t know anything about this other than the comp titles are Red, White, & Royal Blue and One to Watch which I enjoyed both very much.

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Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao
Publication date: September 21, 2021
I read ‘giant transforming robots’ in the synopsis and that’s honestly all I needed to know.

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune
Publication date: September 21, 2021
I really liked some of his previous books and I’m hopeful that I’ll like this one too.

The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik
Publication date: September 28, 2021
I didn’t love A Deadly Education, but I liked it enough that I curiously requested the sequel in a requesting binge.

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Tristan Strong Keeps Punching by Kwame Mbalia
Publication date: October 5, 2021
I love this series. I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next for Tristan.

A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow
Publication date: October 5, 2021
I can’t tell if this is actually a Sleeping Beauty retelling or not, but Harrow is one of my favorite authors.

Once More Upon a Time by Roshani Chokshi
Publication date: October 5, 2021
This was published as an audible original but I believe it’s being published elsewhere now. So, you can listen to this on audible right now. I would read Chokshi’s grocery lists. This was an immediate request for me.

I Am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin
Publication date: October 12, 2021
This seems like it’s going to be a summer camp sort of story but with peopple going missing and maybe some murder.

Truth of the Divine by Lindsay Ellis
Publication date: October 12, 2021
I had absolutely no business requesting this book. I own the first book, but I haven’t read it. So, requesting an early copy of the second book was not a smart move. But I did it anyway, so hopefully I like the first book.

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Little Thieves by Margaret Owen
Publication date: October 19, 2021
This is a retelling of The Goose Girl. I honestly don’t know much about that story, but a friend of mine is incredibly excited about this book.

The Death of Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling
Publication date: October 19, 2021
Another one that I don’t know much about aside from it’s a gothic horror (which is something I’m trying to dip my toes into) and some friends have read and loves it that I share a similar reading taste to.

You’ve Reached Sam by Dustin Thao
Publication date: November 2, 2021
Julie and her boyfriend, Sam, have plans for the future, for their future together. But then Sam dies and Julie tries to act like he never existed so she can move on. But then things take a sci-fi twist when she calls Sam and instead of his voicemail, he answers the phone.

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Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood
Publication date: November 9, 2021
The synopsis tagline is that this is an Ethiopian inspired Jane Eyre retelling. It’s also the authors debut fantasy novel.

All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody & Christine Lynn Herman
Publication Date: November 9, 2021
I really liked both Foody’s and Herman’s books. So, I’m interested to see what they’ve come up with together. I’ve seen bits and pieces from their social medias and I’m excited for it.

No Beauties or Monsters by Tara Goedjen
Publication date: December 7, 2021
I have no recollection of requesting this one. But I’m not surprised since I’ve been trying to read more horror and this one is YA horror.

If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales & Cale Dietrich
Publication Date: December 7, 2021
This is another ‘read now’ that I got in an email from NetGalley. It’s about a boy band on tour and I think it will be excellent.

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When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord
Publication date: January 4, 2022
I have no clue what this is about but I loved Tweet Cute and You Have a Match, so I expect to enjoy this one as well.

Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves by Meg Long
Publication date: January 11, 2022
The buzz words ‘survival’, ‘found family’, and ‘bond with a wolf’ totally got me.

Full Flight by Ashley Schumacher
Publication date: February 22, 2022
I honestly don’t know what this is about. But I really enjoyed Schumacher’s debut. Also, this cover is totally stunning and I am a sucker sometimes.

The One True Me and You by Remi K. England
Publication date: March 1, 2022
I’ve loved all of England’s books so far, so I have high hopes for this one too.

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A Far Wilder Magic by Allison Saft
Publication date: March 8, 2022
I liked Saft’s first book and this one sounds right up my alley. Mythical creatures and an ancient magic secret? Yes, please.

This May End Badly by Samantha Markum
Publication date: April 12, 2022
The tagline for this book is “When a high stakes boarding school prank war leads to a fake dating scheme, two teens must decide if they are ready to take the ultimate risk — falling in love.” How could I not hit request after reading that?

These are the ARC’s I’ve read since my last update and the ones still on my TBR. Are any of these books ones that you have on your TBR?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s August Wrap Up

Hi, lovelies! Sadly, my birthday month is over. But I had a great reading month. I was on vacation visiting my parents for most of the month. I got to read on the beach and it was glorious. It’s all I’ve wanted to do all summer, so I was in my happiest place on Earth (the beach). It was a great month for me personally and I’m happy with what I’ve read.

What I Read

Physical Books
Small Favors by Erin A. Craig – 4 stars
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston 5 stars
Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning – 3.5 stars
Key of Light by Nora Roberts – 3 stars
Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid – 4 stars
Isn’t It Bromantic? by Lyssa Kay Adams – 3.5 stars
That Weekend by Kara Thomas – 3 stars

eBooks
The Dead and the Dark by Courtney Gould – 3.75
Key of Knowledge by Nora Roberts – 3 stars
Key of Valor by Nora Roberts – 3 stars
From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 4 stars
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 4 stars

Audiobooks
The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson – 4 stars
When We Were Magic by Sarah Gailey – 3 stars
They Wish They Were Us by Jessica Goodman – 3 stars
Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson – 2 stars
The Anthropocine Reviewed by John Green – 4 stars

Blogging Highlights

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder (Book Review)

Amanda’s Favorite Time Travel Books

A Chorus Rises by Bethany C. Morrow (Book Review)

Amanda’s (Almost) Auto-Buy Authors

Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne (Book Review)

Amanda’s NetGalley Shelf #3

We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal (Book Review)

Other Bloggers I’m Loving

Ranking my Coffee Orders and Books I Would Read with Them from Charvi @ Not Just Fiction
I love coffee. So, I thought this was so much fun. I think these recommendations are excellent, too.

5-Star Book Predictions Update! from Sofi @ A Book. A Thought.
I love seeing what books people think they’re going to love. I especially love seeing the updates later on to see if they were right about their predictions.

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson – Contemporary Audiobook Recommendation from Skye @ Books in the Skye
Skye has been collaborating with other bloggers to recommend audiobooks of different genres. This post is the first of my contemporary recommendations that she will be sharing with you all!

Five-Star Feminist, Fiery, and Fearsome: Iron Widow – A Blog Tour Review from Avery @ B for Book Slut
I have an advanced copy of Iron Widow , so reading such a rave review made me really excited to read this one.

10 Middle Grade Books to Read in Fall 2021 from Briana @ Pages Unbound
Seasonal recommendations are some of my favorite posts to read and to create. I’m incredibly excited to get into my fall reading lists.

New Young Adult Book Releases This Week [23/8] from Vee @ Vee_Bookish
I think I love these posts because no matter how much time I’ve spent looking at new releases, I always find more from these posts.

Three Year Blogaversary: Ten Favorite Reviews from Caitlin @ Realms of my Mind
Check out some of Caitlin’s favorite reviews. There are some really great books on this list!

How did you do reading/blogging wise in August?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s Magical Readathon: Orilium – The Novice Path TBR

Hi, lovelies! G has returned to us with a brand new version of The Magical Readathon! I’m honestly beyond excited about this because I loved the Magical Readathon in the past years when I did it. But with the author of the series that inspired the readathon being hugely transphobic, G has recreated this readathon with a brand new world of her own creation. I’m in awe of the amount of time and effort that it must have taken to think up and plan and organize everything for this. You can check out G’s announcement video with all of the details and stuff you need to know here!

Above is the ‘Novice Path’ which is the path I must take if I want to make it to Orilium and attend the academy there. To successfully venture on the Novice Path, I must complete two prompts, but I’m going to go for all seven. Each prompt must have their own book. So, here are the books I’m planning to read to complete the Novice Path and make it to Orilium.

The Novice Path Entrance: read a book with a map

The Crown of Gilded Bones by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Ashthorn Tree: a book that keeps tempting you (or the book on top of your TBR)

Dial A For Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto

The Mist of Solitude: read a standalone

The Twin Paradox by Charles Wachter

Ruin of the Skye: read a book featuring ghosts/haunted house, or other supernatural elements

Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas

Obsidian Falls: read a thriller or mystery book

Holdout by Jeffery Kluger

Tower of Rumination: read a five star prediction

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Orilium Academy Arc: a book with a school setting

How We Fall Apart by Katie Zhao

There are also a few prompts that have to so with creating my character (which I plan to use in future rounds of this readathon) so, I am planning to attempt these prompts as well this month.

Background

Wildling: read a book largely set in a forest/outside

The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Province

Irtheria: read a book that features fae or elven characters

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Heritage

Earthling: read a book with elemental magic or an element work in the book/series title (air, fire, earth, or water)

The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin

So, these are all of the prompts that I am hoping to complete this month (if you read my TBR jar post, you may have noticed that I definitely borrowed from that list too. What are you reading this September?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

10 Backlist Books on Amanda’s TBR List

Hello, lovelies! A friend suggested a ’10 on my TBR’ kind of post and I thought that was a super fun idea. I thought I could spin it in a few ways too. So, the first way that I’m spinning this is with specifically backlist books that I want to read. These are all books that I own either digitally or physically since my focus for 2021 has been to read mostly books I already own.

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The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
“Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky. There, to her shock, Yeine is named an heiress to the king. But the throne of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is not easily won, and Yeine is thrust into a vicious power struggle.”

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Jade City by Fonda Lee
“The Kaul family is one of two crime syndicates that control the island of Kekon. It’s the only place in the world that produces rare magical jade, which grants those with the right training and heritage superhuman abilities. The Green Bone clans of honorable jade-wearing warriors once protected the island from foreign invasion–but nowadays, in a bustling post-war metropolis full of fast cars and foreign money, Green Bone families like the Kauls are primarily involved in commerce, construction, and the everyday upkeep of the districts under their protection. When the simmering tension between the Kauls and their greatest rivals erupts into open violence in the streets, the outcome of this clan war will determine the fate of all Green Bones and the future of Kekon itself.”

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Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth
“A decade ago near Chicago, five teenagers defeated the otherworldly enemy known as the Dark One, whose reign of terror brought widespread destruction and death. The seemingly un-extraordinary teens—Sloane, Matt, Ines, Albie, and Esther—had been brought together by a clandestine government agency because one of them was fated to be the “Chosen One,” prophesized to save the world. With the goal achieved, humankind celebrated the victors and began to mourn their lost loved ones. Ten years later, though the champions remain celebrities, the world has moved forward and a whole, younger generation doesn’t seem to recall the days of endless fear. But Sloane remembers. It’s impossible for her to forget when the paparazzi haunt her every step just as the Dark One still haunts her dreams. Unlike everyone else, she hasn’t moved on; she’s adrift—no direction, no goals, no purpose. On the eve of the Ten Year Celebration of Peace, a new trauma hits the Chosen: the death of one of their own. And when they gather for the funeral at the enshrined site of their triumph, they discover to their horror that the Dark One’s reign never really ended.”

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The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk
“Music brought Autumn, Shay, and Logan together. Death wants to tear them apart.
Autumn always knew exactly who she was—a talented artist and a loyal friend. Shay was defined by two things: her bond with her twin sister, Sasha, and her love of music. And Logan always turned to writing love songs when his love life was a little less than perfect. But when tragedy strikes each of them, somehow music is no longer enough. Now Logan can’t stop watching vlogs of his dead ex-boyfriend. Shay is a music blogger struggling to keep it together. And Autumn sends messages that she knows can never be answered. Despite the odds, one band’s music will reunite them and prove that after grief, beauty thrives in the people left behind.”

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Beneath the Citadel by Destiny Soria
“In the city of Eldra, people are ruled by ancient prophecies. For centuries, the high council has stayed in power by virtue of the prophecies of the elder seers. After the last infallible prophecy came to pass, growing unrest led to murders and an eventual rebellion that raged for more than a decade. In the present day, Cassa, the orphaned daughter of rebels, is determined to fight back against the high council, which governs Eldra from behind the walls of the citadel. Her only allies are no-nonsense Alys, easygoing Evander, and perpetually underestimated Newt, and Cassa struggles to come to terms with the legacy of rebellion her dead parents have left her — and the fear that she may be inadequate to shoulder the burden. But by the time Cassa and her friends uncover the mystery of the final infallible prophecy, it may be too late to save the city — or themselves.”

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The Broken Girls by Simone St. James
Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears. . .
Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.
When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced. . .”

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Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young
“Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago. Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki, in a village where every neighbor is an enemy, every battle scar possibly one she delivered. But when the Riki village is raided by a ruthless clan thought to be a legend, Eelyn is even more desperate to get back to her beloved family. She is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend, who sees her as a threat. They must do the impossible: unite the clans to fight together, or risk being slaughtered one by one. Driven by a love for her clan and her growing love for Fiske, Eelyn must confront her own definition of loyalty and family while daring to put her faith in the people she’s spent her life hating.”

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The Girl With the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke
“When sixteen-year-old Ellie Baum accidentally time-travels via red balloon to 1988 East Berlin, she’s caught up in a conspiracy of history and magic. She meets members of an underground guild in East Berlin who use balloons and magic to help people escape over the Wall—but even to the balloon makers, Ellie’s time travel is a mystery. When it becomes clear that someone is using dark magic to change history, Ellie must risk everything—including her only way home—to stop the process.”

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Crier’s War by Nina Varela
Impossible love between two girls —one human, one Made.
A love that could birth a revolution.

After the War of Kinds ravaged the kingdom of Rabu, the Automae, Designed to be the playthings of royals, took over the estates of their owners and bent the human race to their will. Now, Ayla, a human servant rising the ranks at the House of the Sovereign, dreams of avenging the death of her family… by killing the Sovereign’s daughter, Lady Crier. Crier, who was Made to be beautiful, to be flawless. And to take over the work of her father. Crier had been preparing to do just that—to inherit her father’s rule over the land. But that was before she was betrothed to Scyre Kinok, who seems to have a thousand secrets. That was before she discovered her father isn’t as benevolent as she thought. That was before she met Ayla. Set in a richly-imagined fantasy world, Nina Varela’s debut novel is a sweepingly romantic tale of love, loss and revenge, that challenges what it really means to be human.”

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Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova
“Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo she can’t trust, but who may be Alex’s only chance at saving her family.”

These are ten books that are on my owned TBR list. A few of them I own on my Kindle and the rest I own physical copies of. I’m still really excited to read all of these and I do plan to get to them eventually. Hopefully, this list will motivate me to pick up some of them really soon.

Are there any on this list that you’ve read and loved? Which ones should I pick up first?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s August TBR Jar Picks

Hey, lovelies! It’s a new month, which means we have five new picks from my TBR Jar. First, let’s talk about how I did last month. Out of the five books I picked, I read three of them. I think that’s pretty good considering I didn’t read much of anything for most of the month. And the two that I didn’t read were fantasy and the third in a series I think I want to reread before I jump into the new one. I’m happy with how I did for the prompts. I also managed to read my book club book and way more NetGalley arc’s than I planned for. So, let’s talk about what prompts I picked for August! I’ll be on vacation for most of the month, so I’m not keeping my hopes up that I’ll be reading a ton of books.

5 Star Prediction
The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green
I love John Green and I have the audiobook borrowed from my library. I haven’t listened to his podcast of the same name, and I’m glad for that now that this book is out. I fully anticipate loving this book.

Reread
Key of Light by Nora Roberts
This is the perfect prompt because I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump lately. Roberts is a go-to for me when I’m in a reading slump.

Most Recent Purchase
Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning
I found this second book in the series for like $2 at a local used bookstore in July. I really enjoyed the first one and I’m excited to continue the series.

Middle Grade
Paola Santiago and the Forest of Nightmares by Tehlor Kay Mejia
I’m so excited for this sequel and I’m glad that I have a prompt for this eARC since I need to read it this month either way.

LBGTQIA
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
This one was gifted to me for my birthday and I’m incredibly excited to read it.

I have more NetGalley arc’s I need to read than usual for the month of August. But I’ve stopped putting pressure on myself to read them as fast as possible. I have a system and I just keep working with that and I slowly make progress. So, these are all eARC’s that I have that will be published in August. Are there any on your TBR?

Paola Santiago and the Forest of Nightmares by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Holdout by Jeffery Kluger

The Dating Dare by Jayci Lee

The Dead and the Dark by Courtney Gould

Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Cazadora by Romina Garber

The Boy with Fire by Aparna Verma

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s July Wrap Up

Hey, lovelies! July was a much better reading month for me than June was. I’m really proud of how well I did working on my physical TBR and getting it down to a lower number. I also read some really great blog posts this month. I did better at regularly checking my feed to read stuff from the people I follow. So, lets get into it!

What I Read

Physical Books
Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning – 4 stars
Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson – 3 stars
Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth – 4.5 stars
The Darkness Outside Us by Eliot Schrefer – 4.5 stars
Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey – 4 stars
Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey – 4 stars
Tools of Engagement by Tessa Bailey – 3.5 stars
Grace and Glory by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 5 stars

eBooks
The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart – 4 stars
The Sea is Salt and So Am I by Cassandra Hartt – 2 stars
A Season of Sinister Dreams by Tracy Banghart – 4 stars
What We Devour by Linsey Miller – 4 stars
A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers – 4.5 stars
The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendigi – 3.5 stars

Blogging Highlights

Amanda’s Favorite Retellings

We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal (Book Review)

10 Popular YA Books on Amanda’s Physical TBR

Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo (Book Review)

Amanda’s Summertime Book Recommendations

Rea and the Blood of the Nectar by Payal Doshi (Book Review)

5 Books Featuring Grief Amanda Recommends

Miss Meteor by Anna-Marie McLemore & Tehlor Kay Mejia (Book Review)

Other Bloggers I’m Loving

Thoughts on Prologues and Epilogues (Let’s Talk Bookish) from Briana @ Pages Unbound
I thought this was a really interesting discussion post!

Summerween TBR Time! from Destiny @ Howling Pages
Check out some spooky books that Destiny is going to read in July.

My 2021 Goals | Mid-Year Check-In from Jess @ Jessticulates
Come see how Jess is doing for their 2021 goals! I think you’re killing it Jess!

Our Friend is Here! A Discussion with Ryan Douglass, Author of The Taking of Jake Livingston – On Why We Need Radical YA Books from Skye @ The Quiet Pond
I love everything that comes from the Quiet Pond, but this post in particular was a great read.

Discover A Reader’s Book Buying Process from Kal @ Reader Voracious
See the how and why behind Kal’s book buying habits!

Book Drop // Library Book Haul from Book Loaner
Check out this library haul!

100 Books By Trans and Non-Binary Authors from Vee @ Vee Bookish
Some great recommendations here. I love the idea of collaboration to come up with ha huge list of recommendations.

Book Recommendations: Pride Month Edition – 10 Books with Bisexual and Pansexual Rep to Read During Pride Month! from CW @ The Quiet Pond
There are some really great recommendations on this list!

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s July TBR Jar Picks

Hi, lovelies! We’ve made it through another month of 2021. So, I’m back with five more picks from my TBR jar! I did really great with last month’s picks. I read all but one of them. I did start that last book, but a reading slump hit me in the end of June, so I didn’t manage to finish it. Despite the reading slump, I’m pushing through and picking five more books that I hope to read in July.

1st in a Series

We Set the Dark on Fire by Sara Raasch & Kristin Simmons

Standalone

Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson

LGBTQIA+

The Darkness Outside Us by Eliot Schrefer

Middle Grade

Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend

Favorite of a Friend

Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning

I’m also planning to participate in the next round oof Pop Culture Readathon (find all the information for this readathon on their Twitter). I’m not really going to make a specific TBR for that though. There are so many prompts that I’m just going to fill them in as I read. I do, however, have some NetGalley ARCs that I need to read. So, I’ll add those below with a few books that I want to read in July.

Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth
This was one of the books I didn’t get to last month, but it’s been chosen as the bookclub book for this month. So, I’ve got to actually pick it up this time.

The Sea is Salt and So Am I by Cassandra Hartt

The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri

A Season of Sinister Dreams by Tracy Banghart

That’s all I have this month. I’m trying to keep it smaller this month so that I don’t fall back into the reading slump that came for me in June. What are you planning to read this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s June Wrap Up

Hey, lovelies! Another month has come to an end. Can you believe we’re already halfway through 2021? I certainly can’t. I’m sharing this post a few days early for the sake of my blogging schedule.

What I Read

Physical Books
Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert – 4.5 stars
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry – 4 stars
The Only Good Indians by Stephan Graham Jones – 2.5 stars
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne – 4 stars
Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones – 4.5 stars
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman – 4 stars
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty – 3 stars
The Test by Sylvain Neuvel – 3 stars

eBooks
Off the Record by Camryn Garrett – 4 stars
Better Together by Christin Riccio – 2.5 stars
A Chorus Rises by Bethany C. Morrow – 4.5 stars
Trouble Girls by Julia Lynn Rubin – 3 stars
Rea and the Blood of the Nectar by Payal Doshi – 4.5 stars
Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun by Jonny Garza Villa – 3.5 stars
Middlewest Book One by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Mike Huddleston – 4 stars
Middlewest Book Two by Scottie Young & Jorge Corona – 4 stars
Middlewest Book Three by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Jean-François Beaulieu – 4 stars

Audiobooks
Aru Shah and the City of Gold by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars
We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal – 4 stars
The Library of the Dead by T.L. Huchu – 4.5 stars

Blogging Highlights

Rereading Books I Loved as a Teenager – Wrap Up

Amanda’s Favorite Underrated Backlist Books

Cool for the Summer by Dahlia Adler (Book Review)

Amanda’s 2021 Anticipated Series Finales

Hurricane Summer by Asha Bromfield (Book Review)

Amanda’s Beginner Fantasy Recommendations

If You Liked This, Then Try That (Series Edition)

On This Unworthy Scaffold by Heidi Heilig (Book Review)

Amanda’s Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month Recommendations

Amanda’s NetGalley Shelf #2

Other Bloggers I’m Loving

Fierce Fairytales Favorite Quotes from Michaela @ Journey into Books
This is one of my favorite poetry collections. Come check out some of Michaela’s favorite quotes.

Mid Year – 5 Star Predictions from LaRonda @ Flying Paperbacks
Come see what books LaRonda thinks might be 5 star reads!

16 LGBTQ+ SFF books by BIPOC to read for Pride Month from Fadwa @ Word Wonders
Fadwa’s here again to share a list of incredible books. I’ve read quite a few of these and the ones I haven’t read are on my TBR.

Welcome to Pride Month at the Pond 2021! Celebrating Pride Month with Queer Authors and Intersectional Voices & Literature from CW @ The Quiet Pond
Just accept that CW’s posts will make this list of mine every month. This post shares lots of great recommendation posts and interviews from pride month 2020, and shares a bit about what The Quiet Pond will be doing this year. Now that June is over, you can check out all the great content that’s been shared.

Project Hail Mary from Anastasia @ Read & Survive
This is a review filled with spoilers, but I loved reading it! I also loved this book.

How to Write Amazing Blog Posts Using Notion from Sumedha @ The Wordy Habitat
Sumedha has shared some great information about how to better plan and organize your blog posts before you write them!

Why Your Book Recommendation Posts Should Have More Than Three Books Listed from Briana @ Pages Unbound
Briana really made me think with this one. I usually make lists of around ten books, but I’d been thinking that was too many for one post. But now that I’ve read this, I’ve totally changed my mind.

What books did you read this month that you really loved? Are there any blog posts you’re particularly proud of from this month? Share with me in the comments!

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s June Graphic Novel Mini-Reviews

Hey, lovelies! I finallly picked up a few of my graphic novels this month! There was a readathon that I’ve done before called GraphicsAThon (find them on Twitter here). I felt motivated to try to read one or two graphic novels that I already own. Reading books I own is the theme for 2021 and I’m doing my best to stay on brand.

Middlewest Book One by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Mike Huddleston

I’ve loved what I’ve read of Skottie Young’s graphic novels. So, this was my reasoning for purchasing this one. I have to say before you get into this one, there is a scene where the dad hits his son, Abel (who is our main character). And Abel’s dad definitely has anger issues, so it’s not a super healthy relationship. The story starts with Abel waking up late to his job of delivering newspapers. His dad is screaming at him. One thing lead to another and he and his dad are screaming at each other in the front yard. His dad turns into a giant wind monster and Abel flees for his life. But while he’s running away (with his best friend, a talking fox) he’s hit by the wind monster and this leaves a strange mark on his chest. After escaping, Abel searches for answers about what happened and how to heal this strange mark he now has. So, I enjoyed this. I think the art style was really interesting. There were lots of colors and each panel’s colors did a great job of portraying the mood of the pages. As for the story, I enjoyed it. I have quite a few questions about this world that I feel like weren’t answered. The art shows this world as a steam punk-ish kind of world. There’s lots of machinery with weird jars of green stuff that could be fuel of some sort. But there’s also things like regular doctors and hospitals, so it was unclear if this was supposed to be a realistic world like the one we live in or a fantasy world. There’s magic and many animals that can talk (like Abel’s fox sidekick), so there are definitely some fantasy elements (most of this book is about a wind monster, so). I’m not holding out hope that I will have my questions answered about the world building because it’s mostly shown through the artwork. But I’m still very interesting in reading the next book.

Middlewest Book Two by Scottie Young & Jorge Corona

So, this second volume of the series actually did answer some of my questions that I had. I believe that this is a fantasy world. It’s called Middlewest and there are all sorts of fantasy towns. But there are some elements that are similar to the world we know. We did learn a small detail about the green stuff in jars that seemed to be fuel. There’s also little bits of this worlds history mentioned, like the Great Plain Wars. I liked this second volume. The art was just as good as the first volume. We get to see some mythological and magical creatures that I thought were really cool. We also meet Abel’s grandfather who is a snow monster. I think the theme of controlling your feelings and emotions was a compelling one. We see a bit of Abel’s dad’s history when we meet the grandfather. I liked getting this character backstory. We also see Abel’s dad traveling in search of Abel and he’s having some really great realizations. I still wouldn’t say that I like him, but getting to see the character growth was interesting. Abel is still searching for a way to get rid of the mark, which we learned is called the Heart of a Storm. It’s seeming like there’s no way to actually get rid of it and Abel’s not happy with that. He’s still struggling with his anger and he takes it out on Fox. I loved Fox. He’s such a fun sidekick. Overall, I’m enjoying this series and I’m very interested to see where things go in the third volume. So far, both volumes have left off on a pretty compelling cliffhanger, which leaves me wanting to jump right into the next volume.

Middlewest Book Three by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Jean-François Beaulieu

This is the conclusion to this series. I didn’t know there were only three volumes, but I didn’t mind that much. It was nice that I didn’t have to wait for anymore installments to be released. So, in this final volume, Abel and many other kids have been taken and put to work at an Ethol farm (ethol is the weird green stuff in bottles that we see in the first two volumes). This farm is run by a super not nice guy. Most of this book we are watching Abel and his friends try to figure out a way to escape the farm. But we also get to see other characters, like Maggie and Jeb, as well as Abel’s dad again. We follow what they’re doing as well. Everyone is trying to find Abel, basically. I enjoyed this conclusion. I think it was really fast paced and action packed. The stakes were high for Abel to keep his wind monster powers in check and he mostly succeeded. I think there could definitely be more created from this world, and I hope that we get to see that some day. I liked that there was a reunion between Abel and his father. I think it was really important for Abel to get to say his piece to his dad, finally. Abel’s dad’s growth was really good. I still didn’t like him, but I could appreciate him learning just how wrong he had been. Overall, I really enjoyed this series. It has a great message of breaking patterns, acknowledging and managing your emotions, and found families.

That’s all I read for graphic novels this month. I’m glad I managed to start and finish this series. It was a really enjoyable one with stunning artwork and important themes. What graphic novels did you read this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Summer 2021 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each week we talk about our top ten with a different topic provided by Jana. This week’s topic is the ten books on my summer TBR fo 2021.

Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth

The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin

The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart

A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon

A Season of Sinister Dreams by Tracy Banghart

The Dating Dare by Jayci Lee

Cazadora by Romina Garber

Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

W.I.T.C.H., Part I. The Twelve Portals, Vol. 2 by Elisabetta Gnone

These are ten books that I’m hoping to get to this summer. What’s on your list?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

10 Popular YA Books on Amanda’s Physical TBR

Hey, lovelies! Today I’m going to talk about 10 books that are on my TBR of books that I already own. I’ve said this many times already, but if you’re new here, 2021 is the year that I’m going to get my owned TBR down to about 20-25 books. So, making lists like these, where I get to talk about books I’m excited to read are helpful because I can look back on them and appreciate how much progress I’ve made with reading them, or see how many I haven’t read and kick my butt into gear to get them read. So, let’s talk about 10 books on my owned TBR that I’ll hopefully read today.

Book Cover

Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas
“Yadriel has summoned a ghost, and now he can’t get rid of him. When his traditional Latinx family has problems accepting his gender, Yadriel becomes determined to prove himself a real brujo. With the help of his cousin and best friend Maritza, he performs the ritual himself, and then sets out to find the ghost of his murdered cousin and set it free. However, the ghost he summons is actually Julian Diaz, the school’s resident bad boy, and Julian is not about to go quietly into death. He’s determined to find out what happened and tie up some loose ends before he leaves. Left with no choice, Yadriel agrees to help Julian, so that they can both get what they want. But the longer Yadriel spends with Julian, the less he wants to let him leave.”

Book Cover

Realm Breaker by Victoria Aveyard
“A strange darkness grows in Allward. Even Corayne an-Amarat can feel it, tucked away in her small town at the edge of the sea. She soon discovers the truth: She is the last of an ancient lineage—and the last hope to save the world from destruction. But she won’t be alone. Even as darkness falls, she is joined by a band of unlikely companions:
A squire, forced to choose between home and honor.
An immortal, avenging a broken promise.
An assassin, exiled and bloodthirsty.
An ancient sorceress, whose riddles hide an eerie foresight.
A forger with a secret past.
A bounty hunter with a score to settle.
Together they stand against a vicious opponent, invincible and determined to burn all kingdoms to ash, and an army unlike anything the realm has ever witnessed.”

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I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver
“When Ben De Backer comes out to their parents as nonbinary, they’re thrown out of their house and forced to move in with their estranged older sister, Hannah, and her husband, Thomas, whom Ben has never even met. Struggling with an anxiety disorder compounded by their parents’ rejection, they come out only to Hannah, Thomas, and their therapist and try to keep a low profile in a new school. But Ben’s attempts to survive the last half of senior year unnoticed are thwarted when Nathan Allan, a funny and charismatic student, decides to take Ben under his wing. As Ben and Nathan’s friendship grows, their feelings for each other begin to change, and what started as a disastrous turn of events looks like it might just be a chance to start a happier new life. At turns heartbreaking and joyous, I Wish You All the Best is both a celebration of life, friendship, and love, and a shining example of hope in the face of adversity.”

Book Cover

The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He
“Cee has been trapped on an abandoned island for three years without any recollection of how she arrived, or memories from her life prior. All she knows is that somewhere out there, beyond the horizon, she has a sister named Kay, and it’s up to Cee to cross the ocean and find her. In a world apart, 16-year-old STEM prodigy Kasey Mizuhara lives in an eco-city built for people who protected the planet―and now need protecting from it. With natural disasters on the rise due to climate change, eco-cities provide clean air, water, and shelter. Their residents, in exchange, must spend at least a third of their time in stasis pods, conducting business virtually whenever possible to reduce their environmental footprint. While Kasey, an introvert and loner, doesn’t mind the lifestyle, her sister Celia hated it. Popular and lovable, Celia much preferred the outside world. But no one could have predicted that Celia would take a boat out to sea, never to return. Now it’s been three months since Celia’s disappearance, and Kasey has given up hope. Logic says that her sister must be dead. But nevertheless, she decides to retrace Celia’s last steps. Where they’ll lead her, she does not know. Her sister was full of secrets. But Kasey has a secret of her own.”

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Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson
“Two girls. One night. Zero phones.
Kat and Stevie—best friends, theater kids, polar opposites—have snuck away from the suburbs to spend a night in New York City. They have it all planned out. They’ll see a play, eat at the city’s hottest restaurant, and have the best. Night. Ever. What could go wrong? Well. Kind of a lot? They’re barely off the train before they’re dealing with destroyed phones, family drama, and unexpected Pomeranians. Over the next few hours, they’ll have to grapple with old flames, terrible theater, and unhelpful cab drivers. But there are also cute boys to kiss, parties to crash, dry cleaning to deliver (don’t ask), and the world’s best museum to explore. Over the course of a wild night in the city that never sleeps, both Kat and Stevie will get a wake-up call about their friendship, their choices…and finally discover what they really want for their future. That is, assuming they can make it to Grand Central before the clock strikes midnight.”

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They Wish They Were Us by Jessica Goodman
“In Gold Coast, Long Island, everything from the expensive downtown shops to the manicured beaches, to the pressed uniforms of Jill Newman and her friends, looks perfect. But as Jill found out three years ago, nothing is as it seems. Freshman year Jill’s best friend, the brilliant, dazzling Shaila Arnold, was killed by her boyfriend. After that dark night on the beach, Graham confessed, the case was closed, and Jill tried to move on. Now, it’s Jill’s senior year and she’s determined to make it her best yet. After all, she’s a senior and a Player–a member of Gold Coast Prep’s exclusive, not-so-secret secret society. Senior Players have the best parties, highest grades and the admiration of the entire school. This is going to be Jill’s year. She’s sure of it. But when Jill starts getting texts proclaiming Graham’s innocence, her dreams of the perfect senior year start to crumble. If Graham didn’t kill Shaila, who did? Jill vows to find out, but digging deeper could mean putting her friendships, and her future, in jeopardy.”

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The Storm Crow by Kalyn Josephson
“In the tropical kingdom of Rhodaire, magical, elemental Crows are part of every aspect of life…until the Illucian empire invades, destroying everything. That terrible night has thrown Princess Anthia into a deep depression. Her sister Caliza is busy running the kingdom after their mother’s death, but all Thia can do is think of all she has lost. But when Caliza is forced to agree to a marriage between Thia and the crown prince of Illucia, Thia is finally spurred into action. And after stumbling upon a hidden Crow egg in the rubble of a rookery, she and her sister devise a dangerous plan to hatch the egg in secret and get back what was taken from them.”

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Grace and Glory by Jennifer L. Armentrout
“Trinity Marrow has lost the battle and her beloved Protector. Even with both demons and Wardens on her side, Trin may not win the war against the Harbinger. Bringing Lucifer back to the world to fight the Harbinger is probably a really, really bad idea, but they’re out of options—and the world’s ultimate fallen angel is the only being powerful enough to impact the outcome. As Trin and Zayne form a new and more dangerous bond and Lucifer unleashes Hell on earth, the apocalypse looms and the world teeters on the end of forever. Win or lose, one thing is certain—nothing will ever be the same.”

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The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson
“After solving the case of Truly Devious, Stevie Bell investigates her first mystery outside of Ellingham Academy in this spine-chilling and hilarious stand-alone mystery from New York Times bestselling author Maureen Johnson. Amateur sleuth Stevie Bell needs a good murder. After catching a killer at her high school, she’s back at home for a normal (that means boring) summer. But then she gets a message from the owner of Sunny Pines, formerly known as Camp Wonder Falls—the site of the notorious unsolved case, the Box in the Woods Murders. Back in 1978, four camp counselors were killed in the woods outside of the town of Barlow Corners, their bodies left in a gruesome display. The new owner offers Stevie an invitation: Come to the camp and help him work on a true crime podcast about the case. Stevie agrees, as long as she can bring along her friends from Ellingham Academy. Nothing sounds better than a summer spent together, investigating old murders. But something evil still lurks in Barlow Corners. When Stevie opens the lid on this long-dormant case, she gets much more than she bargained for. The Box in the Woods will make room for more victims. This time, Stevie may not make it out alive.”

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Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston
“Seventeen-year-old Ana is a scoundrel by nurture and an outlaw by nature. Found as a child drifting through space with a sentient android called D09, Ana was saved by a fearsome space captain and the grizzled crew she now calls family. But D09—one of the last remaining illegal Metals—has been glitching, and Ana will stop at nothing to find a way to fix him. Ana’s desperate effort to save D09 leads her on a quest to steal the coordinates to a lost ship that could offer all the answers. But at the last moment, a spoiled Ironblood boy beats Ana to her prize. He has his own reasons for taking the coordinates, and he doesn’t care what he’ll sacrifice to keep them. When everything goes wrong, she and the Ironblood end up as fugitives on the run. Now their entire kingdom is after them—and the coordinates—and not everyone wants them captured alive. What they find in a lost corner of the universe will change all their lives—and unearth dangerous secrets. But when a darkness from Ana’s past returns, she must face an impossible choice: does she protect a kingdom that wants her dead or save the Metal boy she loves?”

These are ten books I own, both physically and as eBooks that I’m really hoping to read before 2021 is over. I’ve heard good things about all of these, which is probably the reason I bought them in the first place. So, check in later in the year and maybe I’ll do an update for this post about whether I’ve read these or not. Have you read any of these? Which should I start with?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s June TBR Jar Picks

Hi, lovelies! Last month was pretty successful for my first attempt with my TBR jar. I did well enough that I’m going for it again. I think the idea of the TBR jar is such a fun one that I’m willing myself to do just as well this month. So, I will pick five slips from my jar and then pick books that fit the categories I’ve picked for this month. I will also be including a few books I want to read this month that aren’t a part of my TBR jar picks. I have some eARCs I need to make sure to read this month. Let’s see what I’m hoping to read this month!

Adult
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne
I absolutely loved both The Hating Game and 99 Percent Mine. I’m confident I’ll love this one too.

First in a Series
The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart
I’ve heard nothing but good things about this one. I was actually asked to add this to my TBR so I can let a friend know if it’s as good as it sounds.

Standalone
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
This one I found as a local used book sale. I liked Big Little Lies the novel and the tv show. I’m interested to see if I like this one too as I’ve heard good things.

New Release
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
I absolutely loved Beach Read so, I’m very excited to pick up Henry’s newest release.

Favorite of a Friend
Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones
My friend, Alana, has been raving about this book for literal years. So, hopefully I’ll manage to finally pick this one up.

These are the books that I’ve picked to go with my TBR jar categories. I’m hopeful that I’ll manage to read all of them. I’m excited about quite a few of these, so I think I’ll actually be able to do that this month. I’m also participating in a readathon on Twitter this month. The Clear Your Shit Readathon was wicked fun to do last year and I am in need of clearing more shit off my TBR. So, I’m joining this month long mini-round. There’s a bingo board and all that, but I’m just going to list the prompts.

Candles: a book with a white or black cover
The Test by Sylvain Neuvel
I’ve owned this forever but never pick it up. I figure it’ll be good to have something pretty short on this list.

Athame: a book in a genre you don’t normally read
The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
I got this one because I’ve heard incredible things about it. It’s horror and that’s far from my usual genre.

Cauldron: a book featuring a magical object
We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal
I’ve actually already started this one. I’m only about 100 pages into it. But I really want to finish it as soon as I can. So, here it is on this TBR list.

Bells: a comfort read
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne
I tried to share books from my TBR jar picks and this bingo board so that I didn’t have a huge list to read.

Free Space
Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
This is my June bookclub book. I’m excited for this one because I adored Beartown. I’ve seen people hauling this one, but not many reviewing it. Also, I couldn’t fit it in any of the other squares.

Ancient Grimoire: a book that’s 400 pages or more
The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart
Another borrow from my TBR jar picks, but I have a lot of new romance I want to read and most of those aren’t over 400 pages.

Bag of Teeth: a creepy book
Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth
I’ve heard incredible things about this one and I’ve been eager to pick it up since I bought it.

Incense: a book in your favorite genre
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
So, technically science fiction is my favorite genre. But romance is a really close second and I don’t have any sci-fi on my physical TBR that I’m really excited about.

Chalice: a book with something elemental
Aru Shah and the City of Gold by Roshani Chokshi
This is my audiobook choice. I love the audio for this series. I also just love this series. Last month, I finished rereading the first three so I’m excited to dive into this one.

I do have a few other books on my TBR list. They’re mostly eARC’s that I really need to get to. I’ve been slacking a bit on my NetGalley arc’s since binging like 10 of them in April.

Off the Record by Camryn Garrett
I have an eARC of this one that I plan to read this month.

Better Together by Christine Riccio
Another eARC that I need to make sure to read this month.

Trouble Girls by Julia Lynn Rubin
There are a few NetGalley arc’s I need to read in June and this queer Thelma & Louise is one I’m excited for.

So, this is a much longer list than last month. But I did well enough with my May TBR jar picks. I read three of the five books that I picked. The only reason I didn’t read all five was because I didn’t read that many audiobooks last month and those two were both books I planned to listen to. So, I’m happy with my results from last month and I’m excited to push myself to stick to this TBR for June. What are you thinking of reading this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s May Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! We have reached the end of another month. Which means that it’s time to once again talk about the things I read this month, how I read them, and last month I started sharing some of my blog posts I’m proud of as well as posts from other bloggers that I enjoyed. Let’s get into it!

What I Read

Physical Books
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder – 4 stars
Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder – 4 stars
Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder – 4 stars
King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo – 5 stars
The Lives of Saints by Leigh Bardugo – 3 stars
The Electric Kingdom by David Arnold – 4 stars
Miss Meteor by Tehlor Kay Mejia & Anna-Marie McLemore – 4.5 stars
The Light Brigade by Kameron Hurley – 4 stars
We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal – 4.5 stars
Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo – 5 stars

eBooks
With You All the Way by Cynthia Hand – 4 stars
Yesterday is History by Kosoko Jackson – 3 stars
Evernight by Claudia Gray – 4 stars
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green – 5 stars
Everlost by Neal Schusterman – 4 stars
Everwild by Neal Schusterman – 4 stars
Everfound by Neal Schusterman – 4 stars
Storm Glass by Maria V. Snyder – 3.5 stars
Sea Glass Maria V. Snyder – 3.5 stars
Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder – 3 stars
The Last Fallen Star by Graci Kim – 4 stars

Audiobooks
Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore – 5 stars
Sure, I’ll Be Your Black Friend: Notes From the Other Side of the Fist Bump by Ben Philippe
Winterkeep by Kristin Cashore – 4 stars
Aru Shah and the Song of Death by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars
Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars

Blogging Highlights

Amanda’s Mythology/Folklore Recommendations

Rereading Books I Loved as a Teenager – TBR

Amanda Recommends Completed Series

Amanda’s Beginner Science Fiction Recommendations

The Crown of Gilded Bones by Jennfer L. Armentrout (Book Review)

The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman (Book Review)

Other Bloggers I’m Loving

20 Best Hilariously Fun Drinking Board Games from Christine @ The Uncorked Librarian
This one cracked me up. These are definitely some games I want to try once we’re allowed to have friends over again.

Welcome to Asian Pasifika Heritage Month 2021! Celebrating 17 Amazing Asian and Pacific Islander Authors and Literature from CW @ The Quiet Pond
CW is forever doing to most for us and it’s no different for the month of May. In this post, they share some highlights from last May and share a bit about what they’ll be doing in May.

Books on my TBR: Poetry Collections from Ally @ Ally Writes Things
Ally shares some books that are on her TBR. I thought this was a fun post and a great one to find new poetry collections!

Review: House of Earth and Blood (Sarah J. Maas) from V @ The Sassy Library Fox
I personally loved this book and so did V. Check out V’s detailed review by clicking the link.

Hurricane Summer by Asha Bromfield / Blog Tour from Jessica @ Jessica C Writes
Jessica’s review is a great one. Had I not already read this book, her review would have made me want to read it. This book covers some tough topics, so check out her review to see the content warnings.

Color the Shelves – a bookish playlist by Joan He, author of The Ones We’re Meant to Find from Fadwa @ Word Wonders
Fadwa’s Color the Shelves feature is one of my favorites. The Ones We’re Meant to Find is a book I’m really excited for and I’m hoping to read my copy very soon. I love reading about author’s playlists and writing inspirations.

The Definitive Book Blogger List from A Book. A Thought.
I had this on last month’s post. But it’s just such an incredible list of people that I had to share it again. Click the link to find some new bloggers to follow!

Share a blog post you’re proud of or share some of your favorite blog posts from the last month or so in the comments.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.