There’s a slightly creepy and definitely weird piece of art on my wall. The print caught my eye at a local festival a few years back, and I bought it because it intrigued me.
My kids hated it when I hung it on the wall, but my tastes haven’t gotten less eclectic since. (Sorry, not sorry, nerdlings.)
I obsessed over the details. I wondered why the angel woman was headless and whose much larger hand was on her stomach? Was he human? Another angel? Why was he touching her at all? Was the owner of that hand a good guy? Why would she be a statue? And why would she be a headless statue after that?I don’t know the real story. But my brain wouldn’t let go of the image and decided to start making up its own story that began with an angel statue. And Where Angels Can’t Follow was born
Title: Someone’s Story Author: B.A. Bellec Genre: YA Coming of Age Release Date: April 2020
In his debut endearing coming-of-age book, B.A. Bellec writes about a group of weirdos that find and save each other from the dark depths of their minds. Someone’s Story is literally Someone’s story, as in a first-person narrative of a teenager that calls himself Someone. As he struggles to ﬁnd a new footing in a new space, we encounter the many ups and downs of modern teenage life, the diﬃculties that adjusting to adult feelings bring, and a few tear-jerking surprises along the way.
Littered with music, mental health, friendship, loss, meditation, advice, pop culture, and even inspiring an EP, there is so much nostalgia, inspiration, and depth here it is hard to absorb it all. Cozy up somewhere warm and enjoy!
Title: On the Eighteenth of May Author: Jordan R. Samuel Genre: Adult/YA crossover – Romance/Mystery Release Date:March 2020
On the evening of the eighteenth of May, a young woman named Cass walks alone into a small village with the intent to stay for exactly one year. Cass soon meets two precocious children, a caring and generous business owner, and the Chief of Police from the neighboring town. Family and loss are parts of many of their stories, and while these people, as well as others, attempt to know and help her, the history and troubled memories of what led Cass to this place begin to gradually unfold. As the potential for love and the pathway for healing become clearer, the date of departure approaches. Cass and those around her will be forced to decide how forcefully they are willing to hold on: to the past, to the pain, and to the person.
On the Eighteenth of May is the story of the people and events that are interwoven throughout Cass’ journey and her life. It is a story that examines the true test of strength in the deepest depths of sorrow, as felt by the human heart. It is a story that explores the perceived helplessness of those within the support structure, and the extent to which those we love can hinder or accelerate the healing process. Finally, it is a story that reminds us of the overwhelming power of comforting influences in all of our lives, as our human souls struggle, against all odds, to survive.
Title: The Wysman Author: Dorothy A. Winsor Genre: YA Fantasy Release Date:27 June 2020
“The Grabber is just a fright tale.”
Former street kid Jarka was born with a crooked foot and uses a crutch, but that no longer matters now that he’s an apprentice Wysman, training to advise the king. When poor kids start to go missing from the city’s streets, though, Jarka suspects that whatever’s causing the disappearances comes from the castle.
Now he needs to watch his step or risk losing the position he fought so hard to win… but when someone close to him becomes the latest victim, Jarka knows he’s running out of time.
His search takes him from diving into ancient history to standing up to those who want to beat or bleed the magic out of him. Will Jarka succeed in uncovering an evil long-hidden, or will he see friends and family vanish into the darkness? And whose side is the King on, in his determination to bind his nobles to him no matter what black arts they’ve dabbled in? If Jarka fails in his search, his own future won’t be the worst thing lost.
The Wysman follows Jarka after the events in The Wind Reader, but this YA Fantasy can be read independently.
Pixieland Diaries is so adorably cute. In my reading notes, I wrote: imagine if in the old movie Clueless Cher were a Pixie.
That is Calla. She is kind-hearted, if not a bit selfish. But she is just a fifteen–almost sixteen-year-old, five-foot-tall, pink hair, violet-eyed prankster, who isn’t good at being as evil as she is supposed to be. Her heart is a little too troubled by unfairness and iniquity of the old council buggers, determining so much of her life for her when she is so young and wise.
Written in the unique format of diary format entries for chapters, it changes the reader/narrator relationship, and a more intimate exchange occurs as the reader becomes a party to the secrets Calla is penning into her diaries.
Inventory: One thoroughly enjoyable futuristic tale, a them-against-us struggle of haves and have-nots fighting a battle of dark and light, where the only two things that matter are hope and revenge.
Tessa has set close boundaries. Cass, someone Tessa saved from the streets, is her only family. The only one on the inside. While many know Tessa’s alter ego, Scorpion not many know who she is, and her closest friends don’t know her well enough to be trusted to see her scars.
Her closest friends are kept at arm’s length because Tessa knows that resistance fighting is dangerous, and the more people you have, the more people you have to lose. While she has feelings for her friend River, Cass is the only one she trusts one-hundred percent. Because the thing about being a darksider is you have to keep your eyes wide open.
The heroine in this book has some incredible development as the plot evolves, and the struggles Cindy R. Wilson gives Tessa to face internally and externally provides the reader with a juxtaposition in the world she has created. The idealism and hope Tessa has for a better life for her people in the outer rings are at war with experience of imprisonment and the weight of consequence.
Title: Beautifully Broken Author: Bailey B. Genre: NA Contemporary My rating:3 of 5 stars
Piper Lovelace is a hot mess. Life is bad enough, the rumors are vicious, and the bullies are far worse. When you can’t beat them, the only thing you can do is join them.
Of course, I wouldn’t do that, and I don’t think it’s advisable to slap a scarlet letter on one’s chest and claim harlot-dom, but I’m not Piper.
Bailey B.’s first book deals with a lot of trigger topics, the least of which is rape–and that is saying something. Piper’s dealing with a lot of psychological trauma, and what complicates it further is she resists help. It’s common for traumatized people to twist what happens to them and who they are into one mess in their heads. Beautifully Broken frames this psychology honestly.