Posts By: Layla

Top Ten Tuesday (15): Top Ten 2016 Debuts I Am Looking Forward To

Top Ten Tuesday (15): Top Ten 2016 Debuts I Am Looking Forward To

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week, the theme is “Top Ten 2016 Debuts I am Looking Forward To” and we’re happy to be participating! I am particularly happy to be doing this one because I just got back from this year’s NCTE in Minneapolis (were any of you there?) and heard about a bunch of debuts I’m really excited about. (I even grabbed a few!)   Burning Glass – Kathryn Purdie: “Sonya was born with the rare gift to feel what those around her feel—both physically and emotionally—a gift she’s kept hidden from the empire for seventeen long years. After a reckless mistake wipes out all the other girls with similar abilities, Sonya is hauled off to the palace and forced to serve the emperor as his sovereign Auraseer.” She has to spy out assassins! I love it. Anything with young women who… Read more »

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The Scorpion Rules: Review + Erin Bow dinner + giveaway

The Scorpion Rules: Review + Erin Bow dinner + giveaway

You get two for the price of one today–Layla has a review of The Scorpion Rules for you, and Wendy has a giveaway + recap of the Erin Bow event she attended awhile back! Review: I enjoyed the hell out of this book. I have been in the middle of a fairly severe reading slump (and am also reading nonstop for my dissertation, so you know, take that into account, too) and The Scorpion Rules is one of the few books that have successfully broken through the haze of grumpiness I’ve been in for the last few months. But The Scorpion Rules really worked for me. From what I can tell, though, it seems like it’s been a fairly divisive read – you’ll either love it or you’ll hate it. Luckily for me, I am firmly on Team Scorpion Rules (and Team Talis!). If you like dark humor, morally ambiguous AIs,… Read more »

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Top Ten Tuesday (14):

Top Ten Tuesday (14):

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week, the theme is “Top Ten Debut Authors Who Have Me Looking Forward To Their Sophomore Novel / Top Ten Sophomore Novels That I Loved Just As Much If Not More As The Author’s Debut” and we’re happy to be participating! Let me note here that I’m going to do five of each because I make the rules! Muahaha. Except for when I don’t.   Top Five Debut Authors Whose Sophomore Novels I’m Looking Forward To Becky Albertalli – I loved Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda (Oreos! gay teens in love! falling in love through letters! Harry Potter slash!) and can’t wait to read whatever Albertalli writes next. I know Wendy loved this one, too. Stacey H. Lee – Lee’s book Under A Painted Sky came out this year, and I really enjoyed it. If you didn’t get… Read more »

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What We Left Behind: Review

What We Left Behind: Review

What We Left Behind was one of my most anticipated reads of 2015. Ever since I heard more about Robin Talley’s latest book back at BEA in May, I’d been incredibly excited to get my hands on it. I thought Talley’s debut novel – about an interracial teen couple during the Civil Rights Movement – was beautifully written, even if I had some issues with the way the relationship between the two women played out. What We Left Behind – about how the relationship between a self-identified lesbian and her genderqueer partner changes once they both make the shift from high school to college – sounded great to me. Books with queer characters! Relationship feels! A protagonist who IDs as genderqueer! I love all of it; bring it on. But … now that I’ve finished? If there were more novels (young adult and adult alike) that dealt amazingly with non-binary gender identities, I think I’d… Read more »

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Top Ten Tuesday (13): Top Ten Author Duos You’d LOVE To See Write A Book Together

Top Ten Tuesday (13): Top Ten Author Duos You’d LOVE To See Write A Book Together

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week, the theme is “Top Ten Author Duos I’d Love to See Write a Book Together” and we’re happy to be participating! Let me note here that I’m only going to do five author duos because, um, this is a hard one, you all. I also apologize in advance because I think these might be verrrrry specific to my interests, which is to say, they get a little odd towards the end.     Rachel Hartman and Naomi Novik. Ok, so basically what I want from this pairing is fanfic, so get ready, world. All I’m asking for is a short story where the Temeraire dragons meet up with the dragons from Shadow Scale and, like, talk about dragon stuff. (War. Humans. What it’s like to be dragons, I don’t know! I’m not very creative.) Courtney Milan and… Read more »

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These Shallow Graves: Review

These Shallow Graves: Review

If you enjoy historical fiction with a spunky female lead, some romance, and a murder mystery thrown in for good measure, you might want to pick up Jennifer Donnelly’s latest book, These Shallow Graves. I admit, I was lured in by the promise of a spunky female lead in this case – a girl who secretly dreams of being a writer and defying societal expectations! – ’cause that’s my jam all the time. In turn-of-the-century America, no less! (An aside: my love for American history has been totally revitalized by the release of the soundtrack for Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton: An American Musical, by the way. And this is … a century later! Where’s my Revolutionary War YA when I need it?) Anyway. Ahem. Back to business! Despite the spunky female lead, while I liked many aspects of These Shallow Graves, I didn’t connect with it emotionally in the way that I wanted… Read more »

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Classic MG Discussion: A Girl of the Limberlost

Classic MG Discussion: A Girl of the Limberlost

Hey all, I’m especially happy to be hosting today’s discussion of Gene Stratton Porter’s 1909 novel, A Girl of the Limberlost. Come talk to me in the comments, since Wendy and Kim aren’t able to participate this month. I am eager to chat! This book was one of my childhood favorites (and I mean favoritest favorites) so I was really looking forward to revisiting this one. I remembered it being chock-full of food porn and also involving a lot of rhapsodizing about nature. Trees! Moths! Butterflies! THE LIMBERLOST! On those fronts, I was not disappointed. As Wendy noted last month, it’s also the sequel to Stratton Porter’s earlier book, Freckles, which I also read as a kid. It’s not necessary to read Freckles to appreciate this book (which is good, I think, because Freckles is by far the weaker book), but if anyone’s interested in knowing a bit more about it, the… Read more »

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