Mini Reviews: Novellas Edition

Hello, reader!

I’m back with some mini reviews today. As a big consumer of fantasy, I tend to read a lot of longer books. Fantasy writers have a lot to get into a story and, sometimes, that can lead to some chonky books. Lately, though, I’ve found myself really getting into shorter fiction. That’s why I figured it was time to do a mini review of some mini books, aka novellas!

I’ve been having a great time with the novellas I’ve read recently, but am so behind on actually reviewing them! That being said, let’s jump into this post, shall we?


Title: Remote Control

Author: Nnedi Okorafor

Publisher: Tor.com

Genre: Science Fiction

CW/TW: Child abuse, body horror, grief & loss depiction, death of a family member, gun violence, animal death

Rating: ★★★★

Links:
Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Nnedi Okorafor has been on my radar for quite some time, but this was my first experience reading her work. Now, I wish to read everything she has ever written!

In Remote Control, we follow the story of a young girl who has lost her name and been adopted by Death. After a tragic event, Sankofa becomes her new name and death follows wherever she goes. She spends her days wandering Ghana with her small fox companion, trying to find answers and an object that fell from the sky and changed her life.

This was such an incredible, quiet read. You would think a book about a girl that brings death with her would be more in-you-face, but this book is much more a character study that was strangely calm. Even when the character was surrounded by death and destruction. I absolutely loved the writing in this story and how it gripped me from beginning to end. I loved Fatima/Sankofa and following her around as she searches for answers to her suffering. Watching her character growth and her interactions with the world around her was a treat! And, even though I could have followed this story for chapters and chapters more, it still felt like a fully formed and finished book in this short amount of pages. I can’t wait to read more from this author!

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ARC Review: These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong

Title: These Violent Delights

Author: Chloe Gong

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books

Genre: Fantasy

Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Rating: ★★★★★

Book Links:
Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

One Sentence Synopsis

Juliette Cai and Roma Montagov are the heirs to two rival gangs in 1926 Shanghai who must work together, despite their difficult past, to save their city.

Favorite Quote

“Memories were beastly little creatures, after all – they rose with the faintest whiff of nourishment.”

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Blog Tour: Soul-Strung by Rachel Hobbs

Hello, reader!

It’s time for another magical mystery blog tour with the wonderful The Write Reads! In today’s post, I’ll be talking about the sequel to a paranormal fantasy I read and reviewed for a previous blog tour. Soul-Strung by Rachel Hobbs picks up right where Shadow-Stained left off and it is quite the whirlwind!

Now, before I jump into my stop and my review, I want to say thank you to Dave @ The Write Reads and the author for providing me with a free e-book in exchange for participation with this tour. It is, as always, much appreciated. All views written here are definitely my own!

Alright, let’s jump in, shall we?


Book Details


  • Title: Soul-Strung
  • Author: Rachel Hobbs
  • Publication date: April 13th, 2021
  • Genre: Dark Fantasy
  • Age group: Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Death, gore, blood, violence, profanity

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


“The sequel to SHADOW-STAINED, Rachel Hobbs’ pulsating debut.

BATTLEWORN RUBY is putting her darkest days behind her, and where better to start again than the bustling Callien city? Too good to be true, when the demon of her past comes crashing back into her life, the warning he carries with him leaves it in pieces. Where Drayvex goes, chaos and mayhem trail in his wake. And she’s bound to him tighter than ever before.

SCHEMING DRAYVEX has been busy: chasing the demon turned traitor from world to world, keeping furtive tabs on the girl with a piece of his soul; oh, and running a demon empire. Concerned Ruby will be discovered alive, he enlists her on a hunt for the lapis temporis, an object that can quite literally turn back time, to fix old mistakes and kill their mutual enemy in the past. He’s done playing games.

POWER-STARVED SAYDOR is on the run. Converting to his cause one underdog at a time, his eyes and ears are everywhere. You can’t kill what you can’t find, and Saydor’s covert talent is deadly. The bigger you are, the harder you fall. And he’s just getting started.

But when you’re playing for time itself, how do you know when you’ve been here before?”

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Book Review: A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson

Title: A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

Author: Holly Jackson

Genre: Thriller

Source: Bought

Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Rating: ★★★★★

Book Links:
Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

One Sentence Synopsis

High school senior Pip decides to try and prove that a closed case in her town isn’t as straight-forward as everyone thinks.

Favorite Quote

“But sometimes remembering isn’t for yourself, sometimes you do it just to make someone else smile.

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Blog Tour: Forget Me Not by Anca Antoci

Hello, reader!

I’ve got another The Write Reads blog tour stop for you today! Today’s post is featuring a YA fantasy that features magic, vampires, and lycanthropes: Forget Me Not by Anca Antoci. This self-published novel was a fun, fantastical romp that had me hooked!

But before I get to the post, I want to thank Dave @ The Write Reads and the author for providing me with a free e-ARC in exchange for my participation on this tour and an honest review. It is very much appreciated! Now, let’s get into this tour post, shall we?


Book Details


  • Title: Forget Me Not
  • Author: Anca Antoci
  • Publication date: January 31st, 2020
  • Genre: Contemporary Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


Deceiving the vampire that saved her could get her killed, but it’s a risk she’s willing to take.

When tragedy strikes, Rae makes a terrible choice and struggles with the aftermath. In the wilderness of the Tongass rainforest, she finds herself hunted by creatures of hell, monsters she never dreamed could be real.

A hidden world, an ancient race, and a secret she discovers by accident give a new meaning to her life but only if she can escape and return to civilization. If she is to survive, Rae must comply with Ari, her reluctant hero, and allow him to wipe away any memory of this realm. Knowledge is power, but is it worth dying for?

When push comes to shove, that’s when real strength emerges.

What would it take to discover what you’re made of?”

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Blog Tour: You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen M. McManus

Hello, reader!

I’m very excited to bring you my blog tour stop for one of my most anticipated books of 2021: You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen M. McManus! McManus is my favorite YA mystery/thriller author, so you know when The Write Reads put out a call for bloggers to participate in the tour for her newest book, I jumped at the chance. There was no way I was missing out on this one! I’m so happy I got a spot, too, because this book was incredible.

I’m getting ahead of myself, though. Before we get to my post, I have some thank yous to address. First, thank you to Dave @ The Write Reads and all the behind-the-scenes folks for giving me a spot on this tour and all the work they put into making them run smoothly. Second, I want to thank the publisher, Penguin, and Netgalley for providing me with a free e-ARC in exchange for my participation and an honest review. It is, as always, much appreciated!

Now, let’s get to my post!


Book Details


  • Title: You’ll Be the Death of Me
  • Author: Karen M. McManus
  • Publication date: November 30th, 2021
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


From the author of One of Us Is Lying comes a brand new addictive thriller.

Ivy, Mateo and Cal used to be close – best friends back in middle school.

Now all they have in common is a bad day. So for old time’s sake they skip school together – one last time.

But when the trio spot Brian ‘Boney’ Mahoney ditching class too, they follow him – right into a murder scene.

They all have a connection to the victim. And they’re ALL hiding something.

When their day of freedom turns deadly, it’s only a matter of time before the truth comes out . . .

It’s Ferris Bueller’s Day Off with murder, perfect for fans of One Of Us Is Lying and A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder. This explosive new thriller is impossible to put down.”

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Blog Tour: The Girl of Dorcha Wood by Kristin Ward

Hello, reader!

It’s my stop on another wonderful blog tour hosted by The Write Reads! For today’s tour, I’ll be talking about a young adult fantasy novel that is the first in what promises to be an action-packed series. It’s filled with magic and intrigue, with sprinklings of Celtic folklore littered throughout. If that sounds interesting to you, stick around to see what I thought about The Girl of Dorcha Woods by Kristin Ward!

But, before I get to my review, I want to thank Dave @ The Write Reads (and all the behind-the-scenes folks!), the publisher, and the author for providing me with a free e-book in exchange for an honest review and my participation in this tour. It is very much appreciated!

Alright, enough intro, let’s dive in!


Book Details


  • Title: The Girl of Dorcha Wood
  • Author: Kristin Ward
  • Publication date: April 13th, 2021
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


Treacherous. Evil. Dark. Dorcha Wood is all of these. And none of them.

The people of Felmore talk of Dorcha Wood in whispers, if they speak of it at all, fearing the wrath of the Cù-Sìth should their words be carried on the wind. Those murdering beasts still roam the darkness of the forest, the last remnants of the cursed Aos Sí—a race of elves long since vanished from the world. 

But to seventeen-year-old Fiadh, it is home. A haven. A forest whose secrets become known only when it chooses to reveal them. Her life is one of balance until the outside world shatters it. 

From the moment Fiadh set eyes on Gideon, the peaceful rhythm of her life was lost. As a new path unfolds, Fiadh confronts the reality of old hatreds, the consequences of things hidden, and the truth of who she really is.”

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Blog Tour: Skin of the Sea by Natasha Bowen

Hello, reader!

Today is my stop on yet another book tour hosted by the wonderful people at TBR & Beyond Tours! Today’s featured book is Skin of the Sea by Natasha Bowen and it caught my interest as soon as I saw the cover. It’s a YA fantasy inspired by West African mythology and, y’all, there are Black mermaids. How could I not want to read it?

Before we get to my post, I want to thank the wonderful team at TBR & Beyond Tours for allowing me a spot on this tour. Don’t forget that there are other incredible bloggers and bookstagrammers participating along the way! You can check out the full schedule HERE. I also want to thank the publisher, Random House Books, and Netgalley for providing me with a free e-ARC in exchange for my participation with this tour and an honest review. It is, as always, much appreciated!

Alright, now let’s get into the post!


Book Details


  • Title: Skin of the Sea
  • Author: Natasha Bowen
  • Publication date: November 2nd, 2021
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Violence, enslavement, death, suicide, blood

Bookshop::TBD::Indigo::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


An unforgettable fantasy debut inspired by West African mythology, this is Children of Blood and Bone meets The Little Mermaid, in which a mermaid takes on the gods themselves.

A way to survive.
A way to serve.
A way to save.

Simi prayed to the gods, once. Now she serves them as Mami Wata–a mermaid–collecting the souls of those who die at sea and blessing their journeys back home.

But when a living boy is thrown overboard, Simi does the unthinkable–she saves his life, going against an ancient decree. And punishment awaits those who dare to defy it.

To protect the other Mami Wata, Simi must journey to the Supreme Creator to make amends. But all is not as it seems. There’s the boy she rescued, who knows more than he should. And something is shadowing Simi, something that would rather see her fail. . . . Danger lurks at every turn, and as Simi draws closer, she must brave vengeful gods, treacherous lands, and legendary creatures. Because if she doesn’t, then she risks not only the fate of all Mami Wata, but also the world as she knows it.”

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Blog Tour: Journey to the Heart of the Abyss by London Shah

Hello, reader!

Today is my stop on yet another fabulous tour hosted by TBR & Beyond Tours! The book in question is the second book in a duology that I’m so glad I found: Journey to the Heart of the Abyss by London Shah. If you’re into YA science fiction that has a lot of action, a lot of beautiful imagery, and a lot of heart, you’re gonna love this one!

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Before we get to my post, I want to thank the wonderful team at TBR & Beyond Tours for allowing me a spot on this tour. Don’t forget that there are other incredible bloggers and bookstagrammers participating along the way! You can check out the full schedule HERE. I also want to thank the publisher, Little, Brown and Company, for not only sending me an ARC of this book, but a finished copy of the first book in this duology, The Light at the Bottom of the World, in exchange for my participation and my honest thoughts. It is always appreciated!

Now, I think it’s time we dive in 🐋


Book Details


  • Title: Journey to the Heart of the Abyss
  • Author: London Shah
  • Publication date: November 16th, 2021
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Animal cruelty, childhood trauma, racism, violence

Book Links

Bookshop::TBD::Indigo::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


The sequel to London Shah’s thrilling futuristic mystery The Light at the Bottom of the World, perfect for fans of Illuminae and These Broken Stars

Leyla McQueen has finally reunited with her father after breaking him out of Broadmoor, the illegal government prison—but his freedom comes at a terrible cost. As Leyla celebrates his return, she must grapple with the pain of losing Ari. Now separated from the boy who has her heart and labeled the nation’s number one enemy, Leyla must risk illegal travel through unchartered waters in her quest for the truth behind her father’s arrest.

Across Britain, the fallout from Leyla’s actions has escalated tensions between Anthropoid and non-Anthropoid communities, bringing them to an all-time high. And, as Leyla and her friends fight to uncover the startling truths about their world, she discovers her own shocking past—and the horrifying secrets behind her father’s abduction and arrest. But as these long-buried truths finally begin to surface, so, too, do the authorities’ terrible future plans. And if the ever-pervasive fear prevents the people from taking a stand now, the abyss could stay in the dark forever.”

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Blog Tour: Little Thieves by Margaret Owen

Hello, reader!

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Little Thieves by Margaret Owen hosted by TBR & Beyond Tours! This is one of my most anticipated releases of 2021 and, spoiler alert, it did not disappoint! A loose retelling of The Goose Girl, this is a young adult fantasy that blends the magic of a dark fairytale with the excitement of a heist novel. It’s atmospheric, it’s engaging, and it left me feeling like I immediately wanted to re-read it!

Before we get more into this post, though, we must do our thank-yous! Thank you so much to the team at TBR & Beyond Tours for giving me a spot on this one. Thank you to the publisher, Henry Holt & Company, and Netgalley for providing me a free e-ARC in exchange for my participation and an honest review. It is always appreciated and even more so when I ended up loving the book as much as I did! Also, seeming as this is a tour, there are of course quite a few incredible blogger/bookstgrammers that are involved. If you would like to see the schedule so see their awesome content, just click HERE.

Alright, now let’s kick off this tour post!


Top Five Reasons To Read Little Thieves


  • Vanja is both a gremlin and an absolute treasure! Do you like your main characters to be smart, cunning, and with a flair for the sarcastic? You’re gonna love Vanja. She makes terrible choices and you find yourself caring about her so much that you just go along for the ride.
  • This nails dark, wintery vibes. This is the perfect book to get you in the mood for the later part of the year. The atmosphere is top-notch! NO THOUGHTS, JUST VIBES! (But actually quite a lot of thoughts… we’ll get to that later)
  • A dark fairytale at it’s finest. If you like dark fairytales, this is kind of a must-read. It hits that perfect feel of being told a bedtime story but one with a lot more blood and danger. If you’ve ever read German children’s fairytales from back in the day… you know what I mean.
  • The LGBTQIA+ representation! This book is filled with it, in both subtle and not-so-subtle ways. I do love a story that casually weaves in LGBT characters because the fact that a woman has a wife should just be normal. Not some big to-do. But I also appreciate the more in-depth look at different communities that fall under the LGBTQIA+ banner.
  • The mental health representation! I did not expect this book to make me sob BUT HERE WE ARE. More on that later, but this book does an incredible job of showing how past trauma can affect someone.

Book Details


  • Title: Little Thieves
  • Author: Margaret Owen
  • Publication date: October 19th, 2021
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Discussions of child abuse and neglect, abusive environments, trauma, sexual assault (past), blood, violence

Book Links

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Indigo::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


Once upon a time, there was a horrible girl…

Vanja Schmidt knows that no gift is freely given, not even a mother’s love–and she’s on the hook for one hell of a debt. Vanja, the adopted goddaughter of Death and Fortune, was Princess Gisele’s dutiful servant up until a year ago. That was when Vanja’s otherworldly mothers demanded a terrible price for their care, and Vanja decided to steal her future back… by stealing Gisele’s life for herself.

The real Gisele is left a penniless nobody while Vanja uses an enchanted string of pearls to take her place. Now, Vanja leads a lonely but lucrative double life as princess and jewel thief, charming nobility while emptying their coffers to fund her great escape. Then, one heist away from freedom, Vanja crosses the wrong god and is cursed to an untimely end: turning into jewels, stone by stone, for her greed.

Vanja has just two weeks to figure out how to break her curse and make her getaway. And with a feral guardian half-god, Gisele’s sinister fiancé, and an overeager junior detective on Vanja’s tail, she’ll have to pull the biggest grift yet to save her own life.

Margaret Owen, author of The Merciful Crow series, crafts a delightfully irreverent retelling of “The Goose Girl” about stolen lives, thorny truths, and the wicked girls at the heart of both.

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