Welcome to another edition of Book Birthday Tuesday! There are so many good books coming out today, including a few I’m promoting for a book tour and some Book of the Month YA selections that I’ve already managed to obtain. With so many amazing publications this month there is sure to be something for you.
Announcing Trouble by Amy Fellner Dominy (8/5) – 5/5 Personal Rating
I may know everything there is to know about baseball, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. Or like him. Garrett Reeves: sidelined player and the embodiment of everything I’ve learned to hate about baseball. He’s gorgeous, he’s cocky, he’s laser-focused on getting back in the game, no matter the cost.
When he convinces me to call games alongside him, our chemistry heats up the booth. We’re good together, whether I want to admit it or not. I’m finding that I like baseball again, but even worse, I’m liking Garrett. A lot.
But when he has to decide between our future and a new shot at his dreams, I know baseball will win out every time.
Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book has tons of hilarious banter, lots of sexual tension, and a hero who will throw a wild pitch right at your heart.
I was lucky enough to be selected to be apart of a blog tour for this book and I absolutely loved it! My personal review will be going up later this week, but the story was a cute-meet that had a strong female lead who was a little lost. The story follows Josie who has some major dad issues, hates baseball because of him, and plays it safe so she’s never let down. Then the curveball that is Garrett Reeves is thrown into her life and she realizes she might not want the safe future she has planned for herself. If you love a good YA love story or are a baseball fan, I highly suggest checking this one out!
House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig – BOTM YA
Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor, a manor by the sea, with her sisters, their father, and stepmother. Once they were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls’ lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.
Disturbed by a series of ghostly visions, Annaleigh becomes increasingly suspicious that the deaths were no accidents. Her sisters have been sneaking out every night to attend glittering balls, dancing until dawn in silk gowns and shimmering slippers, and Annaleigh isn’t sure whether to try to stop them or to join their forbidden trysts. Because who—or what—are they really dancing with?
When Annaleigh’s involvement with a mysterious stranger who has secrets of his own intensifies, it’s a race to unravel the darkness that has fallen over her family—before it claims her next.
I have been trying to get my hands on an ARC of this book for MONTHS. This is my most highly anticipated book of this yea. It’s a retelling of 12 Dancing Princesses, which I know absolutely nothing about but I’m a fan of retellings period. It’s one of the Book of the Month YA options for August and one of the ones I selected so I got it August 1st! (To get your own BOTM YA copy for just $10 click the link in the title)
Hello Girls by Brittany Cavallaro & Emily Henry – BOTM YA
Best friends are forged by fire. For Winona Olsen and Lucille Pryce, that fire happened the night they met outside the police station—both deciding whether to turn their families in.
Winona has been starving for life in the seemingly perfect home that she shares with her seemingly perfect father, celebrity weatherman Stormy Olsen. No one knows that he locks the pantry door to control her eating and leaves bruises where no one can see them.
Lucille has been suffocating beneath the needs of her mother and her drug-dealing brother, wondering if there’s more out there for her than disappearing waitress tips and generations of barely getting by.
One harrowing night, Winona and Lucille realize they can’t wait until graduation to start their new lives. They need out. Now. All they need is three grand, fast. And really, a stolen convertible to take them from Michigan to Las Vegas can’t hurt.
I’m getting some Thelma & Louise vibes from this synopsis. Teen girls on the run, starting over because of circumstances out of their hands. A friendship formed out of each having crappy home lives and wanting more than the hand they’d been dealt. I really don’t know what to expect with this book but I’m really excite to find out. I hadn’t heard of this book until the BOTM YA selections came out and it’s the other book I selected this month and I’ll be starting it right after House of Salt and Sorrows! (To get your own BOTM YA copy for just $10 click the link in the title)
Vow of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson (Dance of Thieves #2) – Preordered
Kazi and Jase have survived, stronger and more in love than ever. Their new life now lies before them―the Ballengers will be outlaws no longer, Tor’s Watch will be a kingdom, and the two of them will meet all challenges side by side, together at last.
But an ominous warning mars their journey back, and in their rush to return to Tor’s Watch, just outside the fortress walls, they are violently attacked and torn apart―and each is thrust into their own new hell.
Unsure whether the other is alive or dead, Kazi and Jase must keep their wits among their greatest enemies and unlikeliest allies. And all the while, Death watches and waits.
I’m 50% through an ARC of this book and cannot put it down. I waited to read Dance of Thieves because I was warned of an ugly cliffhanger and I’m terribly impatient. This series was worth the wait and I can’t wait to see how Kazi and Jase end their journey. I also get to meet Mary E. Pearson out on tour for this book and I’m ecstatic. Her books are so well written and always have a twist I’m never expecting.
How the Light Gets In by Katy Upperman – 3/5 Personal Rating
Since her sister’s tragic death, seventeen-year-old Callie Ryan has basically given up. Her grades have plummeted, she’s quit her swim team, and she barely recognizes the people her parents have become.
When she returns to her aunt’s run-down coastal Victorian one year after Chloe’s death, Callie resigns herself to a summer of guilt and home renovations. She doesn’t expect to be charmed by the tiny coastal town or by Tucker Morgan, a local boy brimming with sunshine.
But even as her days begin to brighten, Callie’s nights are crowded with chilling dreams, unanswered questions, and eerie phenomenon that have her convinced she’s being haunted. Will Callie be able to figure out what her sister is trying to communicate before it’s too late?
I was meh about this book. I didn’t love it and I didn’t hate it. I linked my review in the title if you want the full review, but basically there was some weird overly supernatural occurrences that I wasn’t a fan of along with an insta-love. It did show the aftermath of losing someone and moving on very well though and Callie’s grief was relatable. I love Upperman’s other two books so overall I’m a tad disappointed in this one and will hold off on buying it. If you don’t mind a bit of ghostly activity though this might be for you.
A Dress for the Wicked by Autumn Krause – 1/5 Personal Rating
Nothing much happens in the sleepy town of Shy in Avon-upon-Kynt. And for eighteen years, Emmaline Watkins has feared that her future held just that: nothing.
But when the head of the most admired fashion house in the country opens her prestigious design competition to girls from outside the stylish capital city, Emmy’s dreams seem closer than they ever have before.
As the first “country girl” to compete, Emmy knows she’ll encounter extra hurdles on her way to the top. But as she navigates the twisted world of high fashion she starts to wonder: will she be able to tailor herself to fit into this dark, corrupted race? And at what cost?
I think I just expected too much out of this book. I thought the main plot was going to be about this fashion competition, but it was really about political instability and sticking it to the (wo)man. This would have been fine if the world-building were more complete or if the synopsis had maybe mentioned this. It really needed more background on the country and the political system. I also had no idea where this whole book was taking place, old world Europe? A made-up place in Europe? The author also tried too hard to give the the best friend and love interest a mysterious background that just frustrated me and was never really openly given. Rant over but if you want to read more of my disappointment I’ve linked my full review. (Also it’s a gorgeous cover so maybe just buy for Instagram pics?)
Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning (Sea Witch #2) – Possible TBR
Runa will not let her twin sister die. Alia traded her voice to the Sea Witch for a shot at happiness with a prince who doesn’t love her. And his rejection will literally kill her—unless Runa intervenes.
Under the sea, Evie craves her own freedom—but liberation from her role as Sea Witch will require an exchange she may not be willing to make. With their hearts’ desires at odds, what will Runa and Evie be willing to sacrifice to save their worlds?
Told from alternating perspectives, this epic fairy tale retelling is a romantic and heart-wrenching story about the complications of sisterhood, the uncompromising nature of magic, and the cost of redemption.
I’ve heard mixed reviews on this series and still haven’t fully decided if I’m going to pick up Sea Witch or not. I’ve already stated I’m a huge fan of fairytale retellings and The Little Mermaid is on of my favorite Disney Classics, but I’ve been burnt by quite a few Little Mermaid retellings lately (see The Surface Breaks) and just am not sure if I’m ready to jump in again this soon. I do love villain background stories though so it’s a possible TBR for now.
Swipe Right for Murder by Derek Milman – TBR
On the run from the FBI.
Targeted by a murderous cult.
Labeled a cyber-terrorist by the media.
Irritated texts from his best friend.
Eye contact with a nice-looking guy on the train.
Aidan has a lot to deal with, and he’s not quite sure which takes top priority.
Finding himself alone in a posh New York City hotel room for the night, Aidan does what any red-blooded seventeen-year-old would do—he tries to hook up with someone new. But that lapse in judgement leads to him waking up next to a dead guy, which sparks an epic case of mistaken identity that puts Aidan on the run from everyone—faceless federal agents, his eccentric family, and, naturally, a cyber-terrorist group who will stop at nothing to find him.
He soon realizes the only way to stop the chase is to deliver the object everyone wants, before he gets caught or killed. But for Aidan, the hardest part is knowing who he can trust not to betray him—including himself.
So I recently went back in the the Tinder/Bumble/Hinge universe and almost went out with a murderer. Twice. This is why I read I swear. Life imitates art right? Yeah I don’t know either but the whole experience makes me want to pick up this book even more. It’s semi-relatable and I can read it from the comfort of my couch instead of living it. Plus it’s a James Patterson (approved? published? assisted?) book and that guy always has some good stories.
Let’s Call it Doomsday by Katie Henry – Pass
There are so many ways the world could end. There could be a fire. A catastrophic flood. A super eruption that spews lakes of lava. Ellis Kimball has made note of all possible scenarios, and she is prepared for each one. What she doesn’t expect is meeting Hannah Marks in her therapist’s waiting room. Hannah calls their meeting fate. After all, Ellis is scared about the end of the world; Hannah knows when it’s going to happen.
Despite Ellis’s anxiety — about what others think of her, about what she’s doing wrong, about the safety of her loved ones — the two girls become fast friends. As Ellis tries to help Hannah decipher the details of her doomsday premonition, she learns there are secrets Hannah isn’t telling her. But with time ticking down, the search for answers only raises more questions. When does it happen? Who will believe them? How do you prepare for the end of the world when it feels like your life is just getting started?
Katie Henry, the author of Heretics Anonymous, delivers an engrossing and thoughtful tale about how people survive — with some faith in family, friends, and maybe a few prepper forums.
Don’t judge a book by its cover. Don’t judge a book by its cover. I might be being superficial on this one. Uppercase, who is no longer doing book boxes, sent an email out saying this would have been their August book selection if they had continued into this month. I think the biggest reason I’m passing on this though is that I myself have some end of the world anxiety and I already fill my anxiety quota with the My Favorite Murder podcast. Not my cup of tea but I’ve heard nothing but great things about Heretics Anonymous so if you liked that one maybe give this one a try!