Diversity Spotlight Thursday #12: Books < 200 Pages

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

Lambs Can Always Become Lions (Until Lambs Become Lions, #1)

Lambs Can Always Become Lions by Charlotte Anne Hamilton

Robin Hood, along with her group of friends, has been aiding the poor of Nottingham for four years. They have become an hindrance to the Sheriff of Nottingham, terrorising the rich lords and ladies and robbing gold right from under the Sheriff’s nose.

Helping Robin from inside, and proving her most useful ally, is Lady Marian Fitzwalter.

After hearing about a special shipment coming through Sherwood – filled with gold, jewels and weapons – Marian agrees to help Robin gather information so she can ambush it. It is risky and dangerous on both sides but Marian would do anything for Robin. And Robin would do anything to feed her people.

But as the shipment draws closer and tensions rise, Robin finds herself having to decide which is more important: love or duty.

Lambs Can Always Become Lions was the f/f Robin Hood retelling that I never knew I needed. It was beyond amazing. I loved the plot, adored every single character, the writing was amazing, and the romance was incredible. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the series will bring.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

Unicorn Tracks

Unicorn Tracks by Julia Ember

After a savage attack drives her from her home, sixteen-year-old Mnemba finds a place in her cousin Tumelo’s successful safari business, where she quickly excels as a guide. Surrounding herself with nature and the mystical animals inhabiting the savannah not only allows Mnemba’s tracking skills to shine, it helps her to hide from the terrible memories that haunt her.

Mnemba is employed to guide Mr. Harving and his daughter, Kara, through the wilderness as they study unicorns. The young women are drawn to each other, despite that fact that Kara is betrothed. During their research, they discover a conspiracy by a group of poachers to capture the Unicorns and exploit their supernatural strength to build a railway. Together, they must find a way to protect the creatures Kara adores while resisting the love they know they can never indulge.

I have read and loved both of Julia Ember her other books, The Seafarer’s Kiss and The Tiger’s Watch, so I’m expecting I’ll love this one too and I’m incredibly excited to get to it soon!

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

The Black Tides of Heaven (Tensorate #1)The Black Tides of Heaven by JY Yang

Mokoya and Akeha, the twin children of the Protector, were sold to the Grand Monastery as children. While Mokoya developed her strange prophetic gift, Akeha was always the one who could see the strings that moved adults to action. While his sister received visions of what would be, Akeha realized what could be. What’s more, he saw the sickness at the heart of his mother’s Protectorate.

A rebellion is growing. The Machinists discover new levers to move the world every day, while the Tensors fight to put them down and preserve the power of the state. Unwilling to continue to play a pawn in his mother’s twisted schemes, Akeha leaves the Tensorate behind and falls in with the rebels. But every step Akeha takes towards the Machinists is a step away from his sister Mokoya. Can Akeha find peace without shattering the bond he shares with his twin sister?

I am lucky enough to have received an ARC of The Black Tides of Heaven and it’s twin-novella The Read Threads of Fortune and I’m beyond excited to dive into them because 1) the synopsis sounds AMAZING and 2) I’ve heard nothing but great things about this from friends. I have very high expectations. Also, look at that cover? It’s gorgeous?

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #12: Bisexual Main Characters

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

How to Make a WishHow To Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

All seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn’t have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for a top music school in New York, and surviving Maggie’s latest boyfriend—who happens to be Grace’s own ex-boyfriend’s father.

Her attempts to lay low until she graduates are disrupted when she meets Eva, a girl with her own share of ghosts she’s trying to outrun. Grief-stricken and lonely, Eva pulls Grace into midnight adventures and feelings Grace never planned on. When Eva tells Grace she likes girls, both of their worlds open up. But, united by loss, Eva also shares a connection with Maggie. As Grace’s mother spirals downward, both girls must figure out how to love and how to move on.

I read an ARC of How To Make a Wish last year and it was definitely one of my favorite books of 2016. Maybe ever. The story is so heartbreaking but hopeful, and the characters meant so, so much to me. I still think about this book everyday, and I kind of want to reread it soon even though my tbr is massive already.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

Assassins: Discord by Erica Cameron Assassins: Discord (Assassins, #1)

Kindra’s moral compass has never pointed north, but that’s what happens when you’re raised as an assassin and a thief. At sixteen, she’s fantastic with a blade, an expert at slipping through the world unnoticed, and trapped in a life she didn’t chose. But nothing in her training prepares her for what happens when her father misses a target.

In the week-long aftermath, Kindra breaks rank for the first time in her life. She steals documents, starts questioning who their client is and why the target needs to die, botches a second hit on her father’s target, and is nearly killed. And that’s before she’s kidnapped by a green-eyed stranger connected to a part of her childhood she’d almost forgotten.

Kindra has to decide who to trust and which side of the battle to fight for. She has to do it fast and she has to be right, because the wrong choice will kill her just when she’s finally found something worth living for.

I bought the ebook of Assassins: Discord when it was on sale for pride month. All I knew about this book was that it featured assassins and that the main character is bi, and honestly, I didn’t need to know more.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

Like WaterLike Water by Rebecca Podos

A gorgeously written and deeply felt literary young adult novel of identity, millennial anxiety, and first love, from the widely acclaimed author of The Mystery of Hollow Places

In Savannah Espinoza’s small New Mexico hometown, kids either flee after graduation or they’re trapped there forever. Vanni never planned to get stuck—but that was before her father was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease, leaving her and her mother to care for him. Now, she doesn’t have much of a plan at all: living at home, working as a performing mermaid at a second-rate water park, distracting herself with one boy after another.

That changes the day she meets Leigh. Disillusioned with small-town life and looking for something greater, Leigh is not a “nice girl.” She is unlike anyone Vanni has met, and a friend when Vanni desperately needs one. Soon enough, Leigh is much more than a friend. But caring about another person stirs up the moat Vanni has carefully constructed around herself, and threatens to bring to the surface the questions she’s held under for so long.

With her signature stunning writing, Rebecca Podos, author of The Mystery of Hollow Places, has crafted a story of first love and of the complex ways in which the deepest parts of us are hidden, even from ourselves.

I was lucky enough to read this book early. I finished it last week and *enter some random swear words here* it was SO GOOD! I don’t want to spoil anything for you all, but what I appreciated most about this book is how messy the characters are. Not problematic, just real. They also had so much character growth throughout the book, and it was wonderful.

What is your favorite book with a bisexual main character?

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #11 – The F/F Romance Edition

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

The Paths We Choose (Lillac Town, #2)The Paths We Choose by M. Hollis

Lily Ferrari enjoys having control over every detail of her life. Ever since she left her parents’ house to gain her freedom, she decided to fully own her autonomy. But an unexpected visit from her little brother may change the path she chooses to follow.
Add to that a casual fling with the bright architect Mayte González, and Lily’s summer is turning out more interesting than she expected. It certainly beats the routine of working extra shifts at Johnson’s Bookstore.
A few weeks before her college life begins, Lily needs to figure out if she’s wrong about the past or if she should continue to protect her heart at all costs.

Sometimes moving forward is only possible if you have the right people by your side.

Will I ever be able to shut up about this novella? I honestly don’t think so. This is just the most perfect f/f romance I’ve read (so far) and it makes me so incredibly happy. I definitely want to reread this soon.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

Strawberry SummerStrawberry Summer by Melissa Brayden

Just because you’re through with your past, doesn’t mean it’s through with you.

Margaret Beringer didn’t have an easy adolescence. She hated her name, was less than popular in school, and was always cast aside as a “farm kid.” However, with the arrival of Courtney Carrington, Margaret’s youth sparked into color. Courtney was smart, beautiful, and put together—everything Margaret wasn’t. Who would have imagined that they’d fit together so perfectly?

But first loves can scar.

Margaret hasn’t seen Courtney in years and that’s for the best. But when Courtney loses her father and returns to Tanner Peak to take control of the family store, Margaret comes face-to-face with her past and the woman she’s tried desperately to forget. The fact that Courtney has grown up more beautiful than ever certainly doesn’t help matters.

Strawberry Summer has been on my TBR for quite some time now, because I was saving it for summer. It just seemed like an incredibly summer-y book, which *might* have something to do with the title. I honestly can’t wait to pick this up, because it seems like it’s going to be very swoon-worthy.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

The Story of Lizzy and DarcyThe Story of Lizzy and Darcy by Grace Watson

When Lizzy Bennet first meets Darcy Williams, there is an instant dislike between them. As much as they try to avoid it their paths keep crossing, and they each start to see a different side to the other. Their tentative friendship is soon tested, but will they realise how they really feel?

The Story of Lizzy and Darcy is a modern day, same-sex adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice

I saw someone talking about this on Twitter the other day (I don’t remember who, so if it was you please let me know so I can give you credit!!) (Update: it was the incredible Tasha from Cats and Paperbacks!!) and I got so incredibly excited about this book! Pride and Prejudice is the only classic I kind of liked, and an f/f version of that? SIGN ME UP. Also, this book is releasing TODAY!!

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #10

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

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Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens AgendaSimon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

Now that the Upside of Unrequited might show up on my doorstep any day (please let it be soon!!) I thought it was time to feature Simon!

I read Simon a few years ago, and I loved it so much! It’s such a cute and happy story, and Becky Albertalli’s writing was amazing. Also, they’re in the process of filming the movie and I couldn’t be more excited??? It might also have something to do with the fact that Nick Robinson is cast as Simon, and I always had a little crush on him, haha.

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The Reader (Sea of Ink and Gold, #1)The Reader by Traci Chee

Once there was, and one day there will be. This is the beginning of every story.

Sefia lives her life on the run. After her father is viciously murdered, she flees to the forest with her aunt Nin, the only person left she can trust. They survive in the wilderness together, hunting and stealing what they need, forever looking over their shoulders for new threats. But when Nin is kidnapped, Sefia is suddenly on her own, with no way to know who’s taken Nin or where she is. Her only clue is a strange rectangular object that once belonged to her father left behind, something she comes to realize is a book.

Though reading is unheard of in Sefia’s world, she slowly learns, unearthing the book’s closely guarded secrets, which may be the key to Nin’s disappearance and discovering what really happened the day her father was killed. With no time to lose, and the unexpected help of swashbuckling pirates and an enigmatic stranger, Sefia sets out on a dangerous journey to rescue her aunt, using the book as her guide. In the end, she discovers what the book had been trying to tell her all along: Nothing is as it seems, and the end of her story is only the beginning.

I have heard nothing but great things about The Readers from friends and reviewers I trust, so I feel like this book is going to be a favorite of mine. And that cover??? GORGEOUS. I’m honestly just waiting for the paperback to come out so I can have the most amazing reading experience, because y’all know I hate hardbacks.

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How to Make a WishHow to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

All seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn’t have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for a top music school in New York, and surviving Maggie’s latest boyfriend—who happens to be Grace’s own ex-boyfriend’s father.

Her attempts to lay low until she graduates are disrupted when she meets Eva, a girl with her own share of ghosts she’s trying to outrun. Grief-stricken and lonely, Eva pulls Grace into midnight adventures and feelings Grace never planned on. When Eva tells Grace she likes girls, both of their worlds open up. But, united by loss, Eva also shares a connection with Maggie. As Grace’s mother spirals downward, both girls must figure out how to love and how to move on.

I could hardly choose the book I was going to use for ‘a book releasing soon’ this week, because there are so many books coming out on May 2nd that I’ve either read and loved, or am incredibly excited about. How to Make a Wish falls under the first option.

I loved this book so so much, and it means so much to me. If you want to know why, you can check out my full review here.

Some Thoughts on the Bookish Community and Loneliness
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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #9

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

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Tiny Pretty Things (Tiny Pretty Things, #1)Tiny Pretty Things by Dhonielle Clayton and Sona Charaipotra

Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette’s desire to escape the shadow of her ballet star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever. When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.

I just looked through my shelves trying to find the perfect books for this week’s Diversity Spotlight Thursday and I realized that I hadn’t even reviewed this book yet. I need to get to that soon!
Anyway, I LOVED Tiny Pretty Things. I usually never go for books with multiple POV but in this book it just works. I loved the rivalry between the students, which was incredibly entertaining but got so incredibly dark sometimes, but I most of all loved the characters. They all felt incredibly real, and even though some were incredibly shitty, I couldn’t help but love them. And Gigi is definitely my new book girlfriend.

e6dae-tbr1Beginner's Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions

Beginner’s Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions by Six de los Reyes

Falling in love is a chemical reaction.

Just ask Kaya Rubio, twenty-five year-old Molecular Genetics graduate student and research assistant. Fed up with her spinster aunts’ relentless reminders and unsolicited advice regarding her Single Since Birth status, she designs a scientific, evidence-based methodology to find her a suitable partner in time for her cousin’s wedding. As any good scientist knows, any valid experimental design requires a negative control. Enter the most unsuitable candidate for a potential boyfriend: the messy, easygoing, café owner Nero Sison. Her null hypothesis? Going out with Nero would establish her baseline data without catalyzing the chemical reaction she seeks.

But when Kaya’s recorded results refuse to make sense, she is forced to come to the conclusion that there are some things in life that are simply, by nature, irrational and illogical. And that sometimes, chemistry doesn’t always happen inside a lab.

Can I go one week without mentioning a #romanceclass book? Eh, probably not.
Beginner’s Guide has a female scientist as a main character and I love that! I don’t see enough scientist ladies in books. I’ve heard nothing but great things about this one, so I can’t wait to finally pick it up soon.

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The Paths We Choose (Lillac Town, #2)The Paths We Choose by Maria Hollis

Lily Ferrari enjoys having control over every detail of her life. Ever since she left her parents’ house to gain her freedom, she decided to fully own her autonomy. But an unexpected visit from her little brother may change the path she chooses to follow.
Add to that a casual fling with the bright architect Mayte González, and Lily’s summer is turning out more interesting than she expected. It certainly beats the routine of working extra shifts at Johnson’s Bookstore.
A few weeks before her college life begins, Lily needs to figure out if she’s wrong about the past or if she should continue to protect her heart at all costs.

Sometimes moving forward is only possible if you have the right people by your side.

THE PATHS WE CHOOSE IS RELEASING SOON SOS. I read an ARC of this a few weeks ago after loving the first book in this series, The Melody of You and Me, and I loved it so much! It has amazing female friendships, an adorable f/f relationship, sex-positivity, an incredible main character and great scenes with a younger brother that made me cry. You should all pick this up. Seriously. If you’re not convinced yet, check out my review here.

Some Thoughts on the Bookish Community and LonelinessTwitter Instagram •  Goodreads

WoW: Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that is hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

StarfishTitle: Starfish
Author:  Akemi Dawn Bowman
Publication date: September 26th, 2017
Goodreads

Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.

But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.

From debut author Akemi Dawn Bowman comes a luminous, heartbreaking story of identity, family, and the beauty that emerges when we embrace our true selves.

Review: Timekeeper by Tara Sim

First of all, let’s look at that cover. I just can’t stop looking at it. That gorgeous starry background, those gorgeous illustrations, and that font! I am the human equivalent of the heart-eyes emoji right now. This might be my favorite cover of the year.

When I finally moved past the cover and started reading the synopsis, I immediately knew one thing for sure: this book is going to make me cry. Granted, almost all of the books I read make me cry, but this one is going to break my heart in thousands of little pieces and make me cry. I’m not sure why I think this. There are a lot of sad things mentioned in the synopsis (not getting into dream school, an abusive uncle), but nothing that screams I’M GOING TO RIP YOUR HEART OUT. But I’m quite sure it will.

Anyway, this book has many things I love like the cover, the art, self discovery, and it even has a roadtrip feel  to it, so I can’t wait to get my hands on this one. It’ll get a very prominent place on my bookshelf, so I can stare at it forever.

Some Thoughts on the Bookish Community and LonelinessTwitter Instagram •  Goodreads

 

 

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #8

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with three book fitting three different categories: a diverse book you’ve read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and a diverse book that has not been released yet.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

The Forbidden Wish (The Forbidden Wish, #1)

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

She is the most powerful Jinni of all. He is a boy from the streets. Their love will shake the world…

When Aladdin discovers Zahra’s jinni lamp, Zahra is thrust back into a world she hasn’t seen in hundreds of years—a world where magic is forbidden and Zahra’s very existence is illegal. She must disguise herself to stay alive, using ancient shape-shifting magic, until her new master has selected his three wishes.

But when the King of the Jinn offers Zahra a chance to be free of her lamp forever, she seizes the opportunity—only to discover she is falling in love with Aladdin. When saving herself means betraying him, Zahra must decide once and for all: is winning her freedom worth losing her heart?

As time unravels and her enemies close in, Zahra finds herself suspended between danger and desire in this dazzling retelling of Aladdin from acclaimed author Jessica Khoury

I received The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury in a Fairyloot box once, and it spend almost a year sitting on my TBR. When I finally picked it up, I kind of hated myself for not picking it up sooner.
The Forbidden Wish is an Aladdin retelling which puts the original to shame. It has great characters, a very interesting world and a great romance, and it’s certainly one I’d recommend.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3Binti (Binti, #1)

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.

Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti’s stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach.

If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself – but first she has to make it there, alive.

Binti was my very first ebook purchase when I got my Kindle. I have heard so many amazing things about it that I just couldn’t resist it, even though I was kind of on a book buying ban. I’m definitely planning to pick this one up, once I finish the 5 books I’m reading now. And no, I’m not kidding about reading 5 books.

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #3

The GauntletThe Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi

A trio of friends from New York City find themselves trapped inside a mechanical board game that they must dismantle in order to save themselves and generations of other children in this action-packed debut that’s a steampunk Jumanji with a Middle Eastern flair.

When twelve-year-old Farah and her two best friends get sucked into a mechanical board game called The Gauntlet of Blood and Sand—a puzzle game akin to a large Rubik’s cube—they know it’s up to them to defeat the game’s diabolical architect in order to save themselves and those who are trapped inside, including her baby brother Ahmed. But first they have to figure out how.

Under the tutelage of a lizard guide named Henrietta Peel and an aeronaut Vijay, the Farah and her friends battle camel spiders, red scorpions, grease monkeys, and sand cats as they prepare to face off with the maniacal Lord Amari, the man behind the machine. Can they defeat Amari at his own game…or will they, like the children who came before them, become cogs in the machine?

I don’t think I can tell you how incredibly excited I am to get my hands on The Gauntlet. It’s one of my most anticipated 2017 releases, and I’m so happy that the wait for this book is almost over because I really can’t wait any longer.
The premise of this book sounds amazing, the cover is beautiful, and Karuna Riazi is such an incredible person and I can’t wait to read her work. (Also, if you’re not following her on Twitter yet, you’re missing out).

Some Thoughts on the Bookish Community and LonelinessTwitter Instagram •  Goodreads