First Lines Friday #18

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?  If you want to make your own post, feel free to use or edit the banner above, and follow the rules below:

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

If you’re using Twitter, don’t forget to use #FirstLinesFridays!

Hello, reader!

Welcome to another First Lines Friday post. Today, I’m featuring a book that has been on my TBR for quite some time. I’ve been promised a book that is feel-good and has a lot of heart and I’m eager to get to it! It also happens to be on my Trope-ical Readathon TBR because it features one of my favorite tropes.

But, before I completely give it away, let’s get to the first few lines and see if they will capture our imaginations.

The Line(s):

“Oh dear,” Linus Baker said, wiping the sweat from his brow. “This is most unusual.”
That was an understatement. He watched in rapt wonder as an eleven-year-old girl named Daisy levitated blocks of wood high above her head. The blocks spun in slow, concentric circles. Daisy frowned in concentration, the tip of her tongue stuck out between her teeth. It went on for a good minute before the blocks slowly lowered to the floor. Her level of control was astounding.

The Hints:

This is an adult fiction that is probably one of the most hyped books on my TBR.

It features the found family trope, which is one of my faves!

And I’ve been told there’s a M/M romance that will hit you right in the feels.

The Reveal:

Read More »

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Dec 16, 2020

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a meme where you get to flail about whatever upcoming book you’re excited to read. Though it is generally a new release, it certainly can be any book that’s on your TBR! This meme is currently hosted by Wishful Endings and it’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Hello, reader!

Usually, I fill up my Wednesdays answering what books I’m reading, what books I’ve finished, and what books I plan on reading next. I realized this week, though, that my WWW Wednesday would look exactly the same as last week’s 😅 So, in place of my usual WWW Wednesday post, I’ll be doing another post that has kind of fallen by the wayside: Can’t Wait Wednesday!

We’re on the precipice of a new year, so there are a ton of books I can’t wait to get me hands on. Today, however, I’m going to focus on one I haven’t talked about nearly enough. This is a book by an author that is one of my favorite sci-fi writers. I’ve loved both of the books I’ve read by him and one of them is one of my favorite books of all time. His writing has a wonderful blend of humor and science that I adore. His newest book features:

  • A quest in space!
  • A main character with amnesia!
  • And the fate of the world resting squarely on our main character’s shoulders!

The book I’m speaking of is…

Goodreads Synopsis:

A lone astronaut must save the earth from disaster in this incredible new science-based thriller from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Martian.

Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission–and if he fails, humanity and the earth itself will perish.

Except that right now, he doesn’t know that. He can’t even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.

All he knows is that he’s been asleep for a very, very long time. And he’s just been awakened to find himself millions of miles from home, with nothing but two corpses for company.

His crewmates dead, his memories fuzzily returning, he realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Alone on this tiny ship that’s been cobbled together by every government and space agency on the planet and hurled into the depths of space, it’s up to him to conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.

And thanks to an unexpected ally, he just might have a chance.

Part scientific mystery, part dazzling interstellar journey, Project Hail Mary is a tale of discovery, speculation, and survival to rival The Martian–while taking us to places it never dreamed of going.”

Publication Date: May 24th, 2021

Pre-order here: Bookshop::Indiebound::TBD::B&N::Amazon

Why I’m Excited:

The Martian is one of my favorite books of all time. Though I seem to be in the minority, I thought Artemis was great, as well! It stands to reason that I’ll probably love whatever Andy Weir writes. Also, this sounds like it’s going to be heart-pounding in a quiet yet dramatic way, kind of like The Martian. I’m excited to devour it like I did his other two books!

What is a book you can’t wait to get your hands on? Did you do your own Can’t Wait Wednesday post? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

WWW Wednesday: November 18, 2020

It’s time for another WWW Wednesday! This is a bookish meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where bloggers answer the 3 Ws:

  1. What are you currently reading?
  2. What did you recently finish reading?
  3. What do you think you’ll read next?

If you’d like to learn more about any of these books, click on the cover to be taken to the Goodreads page.

Current Reads

  • The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang: The sequel to The Poppy War, which put me in such a massive book hangover last month that I couldn’t even get into this one! I’m eager to continue Rin’s story, but my brain apparently needed to fully digest the first book first. Thankfully, my reading has picked back up and I think I’m ready to go back in. Now I’m nervous that this book will cause another book hangover 😅
  • Rebecca by Daphne de Maurier: Look at me reading a classic and actually enjoying it! I’m reading this “classic tale of romantic suspense” for a book club and I think they are part of the reason I’m liking it so much. Our conversations about this book are so much fun and, frankly, hilarious 😂 Still, I can admit that I’m liking the writing style, even if I want to fight half the characters. I’m looking forward to this getting steadily more creepy!
  • Shadows of Winterspell by Amy Wilson: Y’aaaalllll, this book is so whimsical, I love it! This is the Middle Grade Monthly pick for November and it is such a delight. I find it hard to stop myself after reading the section for the week, lol. I mean, I know I could keep reading, but I have a bad habit of immediately yeeting book information from my brain once I finish it. I’m trying to stick to the schedule so I can actually participate in the chats! This is definitely one of my favorite picks, though, and I never would have heard of it if it weren’t for this book club 💖
  • Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin: I finally got a library card for our new local library (we moved in the middle of lockdown, so I couldn’t go and pick one up as soon as we were settled) and I picked up my first hold the other day! I was interested in reading this book as I enjoyed the first one, Serpent & Dove, but not enough for me to actually purchase it. So I’m glad I was able to borrow it and give it a shot. So far, I kind of want to slap every. single. character. Or shake them so they will stop being RIDICULOUS! But I am enjoying myself so… *shrug*

Recently Finished

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 3 out of 5.
  • No Truth Left to Tell by Michael McAuliffe: This is one of the books that had been on my Currently Reading shelf the longest. The sense of accomplishment I felt when I finally finished it was immense! It wasn’t like it was a long book or even a bad one… it was just in a genre that I’m slowly learning is not my cup of tea. Still, I enjoyed the plot and I thought the end packed a punch. You can read my full review HERE.
  • Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee: This was the Middle Grade Monthly pick for October which I, unfortunately, didn’t finish until November 😅 Book hangovers are no joke, y’all! Once I shook off the funk and dived back in, though, I practically flew through this book! It was so good! I was rooting for Min from beginning to end and I loved watching her on her journey. I’m a little sad this is a standalone because I would love to follow Min on all of her adventures!
  • The Black Sky by Timothy D. Minneci: This was the other book that was on my Currently Reading list for an embarrassingly long time, heh. Though I ended up enjoying it, I think it suffered from the same thing as No Truth Left to Tell… it wasn’t my cup of tea. I mean, it is sci-fi, but it has a more militaristic leaning that, while interesting, kind of turned me off. I dunno… I’m still compiling my thoughts on this one.

What’s Next

  • White Fox by Sara Faring: In an attempt to work on my Netgalley shelf (😬), I want to pick up this creepy sounding book soon. I wanted to read it during spooky season, but time just got away from me. It sounds properly frightening, though, and I’m looking forward to finally picking it up! A missing mom, a mysterious island, strange clues hidden in screenplay… it promises to be an interesting ride.
  • The Cousins by Karen M. McManus: Ooooohhhh yeeeaaaaah, it’s time for another #TheWriteReads tour! And this time it’s for one of my most anticipated books of the year! Karen M. McManus is swiftly becoming one of my favorite thriller authors. I’ve heard nothing but good things during this tour, so far, so I’m extra excited to read this one!

That’s it for another WWW Wednesday! What have you read recently? What are some books up next on your TBR? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

#5OnMyTBR – Black Cover

#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where you chose five books from your to-be-read pile that fit that week’s theme. If you’d like more info, head over to the announcement post!

Hello, reader!

I’m back with another 5 On My TBR! This week I had a tough time choosing the five books I wanted to feature for this post. Why? Because the topic for this Monday is books with black covers and I, apparently, have a lot of books on my TBR with black covers 😂 It took a minute to sift through them all and pick five that I really wanted to talk about today. The books I have picked are a nice mix, I think, and I can’t wait to read all five of them! So let me get to this #5OnMyTBR 😁

#1. Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth

This one is a fairly recent add to the TBR. I noticed it on Goodreads as I was randomly scrolling the home page one day and decided to read the synopsis. And when the synopsis starts with this:

A highly imaginative and original horror-comedy centered around a cursed New England boarding school for girls—a wickedly whimsical celebration of the art of storytelling, sapphic love, and the rebellious female spirit.

How could I not want to read it?! It sounds incredible! Also, there are illustrations, so I’m just extra intrigued.

#2. Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse

I have an e-ARC of this one that I am so eager to finally pick up. I’ve been hearing nothing but rave reviews about this fantasy novel. It has prophecies, political intrigue, magic… basically all the things I love in a fantasy! I also really enjoyed Rebecca Roanhorse’s short story in the recent vampire anthology, Vampires Never Get Old, so I’m eager to read more of her work! And this cover, y’all. This cover is just absolutely gorgeous!

#3. Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou

Funny story: I work as a lab tech and I remember when I first heard about the company this book is about. I remember hearing the claims they were making about testing they could do with a single drop of blood and thinking “Yeah, that’s bullshit.” Turns out, it totally was! I’m intrigued about learning more about this failed company and how they tried to dupe the medical world. My best friend has read this and told me it’s probably gonna piss me off 😂 Exciting!

#4. There Will Come a Darkness by Katy Rose Pool

I’ve been wanting to read this since 2019, when it first came out. I’ve owned it since September of 2019… and yet 😅 It just has a lot of elements that I feel like I’m going to enjoy. There’s a prophecy! There’s a gang of people thrown together by circumstances! There’s a badass female assassin! I mean, come on… it’s like it was specifically written for me, ya know? Also, the cover super got me with this one. It’s so pretty, I can’t. Now I just need to actually read it.

#5. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

V.E. Schwab is one of my favorite authors so of course her latest book is on my list. I’ve also heard a lot of great reviews for this book from bookish folks who have similar tastes to me. And it’s a book that has a bookish element! I just know I’m going to love this book and I can’t wait to finally read it. Perhaps in December? Perhaps now…?

Who knows! But this one will definitely be read sooner rather than later.

What are some books with black covers on your TBR that you can’t wait to read? Have you read any of the books on mine? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Book Blogger Hop: July 24 – 30

The Book Blogger Hop was originally created by Crazy-For-Books and is currently being hosted by Coffee Addicted Writer. Every Friday, a new question is posted for book bloggers to answer in the coming week. The purpose of the hop is connection and community. You can discover new blogs to follow, new books to read, and you may end up with some new followers, as well!

This Week’s Question

This week’s prompt submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer.

The answer to this question would have been very different before I got home. Why? Because I got some book mail!!! Let’s talk about a couple of other books that are at the top of my TBR first, though.

Legendborn by Tracy Deonn

I was lucky enough to receive this as an ARC on Netgalley and get selected to be part of the blog tour being run by Hear Our Voices Book Tours! The tour isn’t until September, but I don’t think I can wait that long to read this YA fantasy. It’s got Black girls and magic, y’all! And look at this gorgeous cover! How am I supposed to resist it?

Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angeles

I won this beauty in a Goodreads giveaway which, honestly, was a completely shock to me. Do you know how many of those I have entered in the years that I’ve been on Goodreads? A lot. And this is the *counts on fingers* third one I’ve won. I’m so excited to read this one because it involves a competition and is billed as Moulin Rouge meets Phantom of the Opera. Like… yes, please!!

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden

This book was recently chosen as the August book for Middle Grade Marvels. I’ve been wanting to read it for awhile, so now it’s shot up to the top of my TBR! Also, this sounds like it’s gonna properly scary, which I always love. If this sounds like the kind of book you’d like to read, you should definitely consider joining in! You can see the past books and find more information here. I can’t wait to read and discuss this spooky little book!

Alright, I’m sure you’re all wondering what book showed up that could instantly change my TBR. The book that showed up on my stoop and made me legit squeal is…

The Faithless Hawk by Margaret Owen!!! Look at it!! I was selected to a part of the TBR and Beyond Tours blog tour for my most anticipated sequel of the year and the noise I made was… unnatural 😂 I’m so thankful and can’t wait to tear into this book. Though, from hints dropped by the author on Twitter, I think this book is going to wreck me… Still! I’m so excited to read this one.

So what books are at the top of your TBR? Did you do your own BBH? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Jul 1, 2020

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a meme where you get to flail about whatever upcoming book you’re excited to read. Though it is generally a new release, it certainly can be any book that’s on your TBR! This meme is currently hosted by Wishful Endings and it’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Hello, reader!

Welcome to July! Here’s hoping that this hot, summer month (if it’s actually summer where you are) treats you well. This month is bringing a lot of new things for the McBookNerd family as we have just moved into our new house! Yay for new beginnings, right?

In celebration of all things new, I thought I’d do a Can’t Wait Wednesday today to highlight a new book that I’m really looking forward to. If you saw my TTT post from yesterday, you’ll know that there are quite a few books that I can’t wait to get my hands on! So many, in fact, that I had to leave some off of my list of ten. That being said, I decided to highlight a book that didn’t make the list yesterday, but not because I’m not incredibly excited about it! The book I’ll be featuring today includes:

  • Witches!!
  • Suffragists!!
  • Magic!!
  • And a gorgeous cover!!

The book I’m talking about is…

Goodreads Synopsis:

“In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.

But when the Eastwood sisters–James Juniper, Agnes Amaranth, and Beatrice Belladonna–join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten words and ways that might turn the women’s movement into the witch’s movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote-and perhaps not even to live-the sisters will need to delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.

There’s no such thing as witches. But there will be.”

Publication Date: October 13th, 2020

Pre-order here: Bookshop::Indiebound::TBD::B&N::Amazon

Why I’m Excited:

There’s witches! What else do I need?

Seriously, though, I absolutely adored Alix E. Harrow’s other book, The Ten Thousand Doors of January. If the writing in this new one is anywhere near as lyrical and lovely as that book, I just know I’m going to fall hard. I can’t wait to get wrapped up into another of her fantastical stories.

But, also, witches!!

What is a book you can’t wait to get your hands on? Did you do your own Can’t Wait Wednesday post? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Jun 10, 2020

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a meme where you get to flail about whatever upcoming book you’re excited to read. Though it is generally a new release, it certainly can be any book that’s on your TBR! This meme is currently hosted by Wishful Endings and it’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Hello, reader!

Another super late night post because ya girl is spending her entire days packing. You’d think I would have planned ahead and scheduled some posts for this week, but… yeah. That didn’t happen so here we are 😅 It’s still Wednesday, though, and I’m ready to talk about a book that I am dying to read. And there may be a reason I picked this one especially today. If you follow a certain children’s literature author, I’m sure you’ll figure out why soon enough.

So this book is one I’ve been hearing about since 2019. It’s a book that features:

  • Ghosts!
  • A trans main character!
  • Creepy vibes!
  • Supernatural love!

The book I’m talking about is….

Goodreads Synopsis:

Yadriel has summoned a ghost, and now he can’t get rid of him.

When his traditional Latinx family has problems accepting his gender, Yadriel becomes determined to prove himself a real brujo. With the help of his cousin and best friend Maritza, he performs the ritual himself, and then sets out to find the ghost of his murdered cousin and set it free.

However, the ghost he summons is actually Julian Diaz, the school’s resident bad boy, and Julian is not about to go quietly into death. He’s determined to find out what happened and tie up some loose ends before he leaves. Left with no choice, Yadriel agrees to help Julian, so that they can both get what they want. But the longer Yadriel spends with Julian, the less he wants to let him leave.”

Publication Date: September 1st, 2020

Pre-order here: Bookshop::Indiebound::TBD::B&N::Amazon

Why I’m Excited

It just sounds like it’s going to be so cute! Creepy, but cute! I want to watch Yadriel and Julian fall in love because I just need some softness right now, okay? And I’m super curious in brujo traditions and I’m always up for a witchy/supernatural romp! The fact that it is now coming out during my birth-month just makes it that much more appealing 😉 And, of course, the cover is just gorgeous! I can’t wait to get my hands on this one.

What book are you excited to pick up? Have any of you had the pleasure to read Cemetery Boys yet? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

If you have a moment, as well, considering signing this petition for Tony McDade, a Black trans man that was recently killed by police in Tallahassee. And much love to everyone in the trans community who may be hurting right now. Trans men are men. Trans women are women. And that’s that on that.

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Apr 15, 2020

Image by Tressa @ Wishful Endings

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a meme where you get to flail about whatever upcoming book you’re excited to read. Though it is generally a new release, it certainly can be any book that’s on your TBR! This meme is currently hosted by Wishful Endings and it’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

Hello, readers!

Ya girl is struggling with her O.W.L.s, y’all. Which means I haven’t been reading as much as I should be and an still dragging my way through The Heart’s Invisible Furies. Which means, instead of a WWW Wednesday, I’m bringing you a Can’t Wait Wednesday! Mixing it up. Keeping it fresh.

(S T R U G G L I N G)

Alright, there are a lot of books coming out in 2020 that I can’t wait to get my greedy little paws on. I decided to go with one that I’ve wanted to read since I learned it was a Thing back in 2019. Want some hints?

  • It’s a YA contemporary 📚
  • It involves a school competition 🎒
  • It’s sapphic! 👩‍❤️‍💋‍👩
  • And it comes out May 12th 📅

Any guesses? My book for this Can’t Wait Wednesday is…

Goodreads Synopsis:

“When Dimple Met Rishi meets Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda in this rom com about two teen girls with rival henna businesses.
When Nishat comes out to her parents, they say she can be anyone she wants—as long as she isn’t herself. Because Muslim girls aren’t lesbians. Nishat doesn’t want to hide who she is, but she also doesn’t want to lose her relationship with her family. And her life only gets harder once a childhood friend walks back into her life.

Flávia is beautiful and charismatic and Nishat falls for her instantly. But when a school competition invites students to create their own businesses, both Flávia and Nishat choose to do henna, even though Flávia is appropriating Nishat’s culture. Amidst sabotage and school stress, their lives get more tangled—but Nishat can’t quite get rid of her crush on Flávia, and realizes there might be more to her than she realized.”

Publication Date: May 12th, 2020

Pre-order links: Indiebound::Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon

Why I’m Excited:

This just sounds like it’s going to be amazing. It kinda has enemies-to-lovers vibes, though “enemies” is probably a strong word. I’m always here for a contemporary with a little social commentary, as well. I think this will be cute and it will probably hurt my heart and I am READY.

What book are you excited to finally read? Did you do your own Can’t Wait Wednesday post? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Mar 25, 2020

Image by Tressa @ Wishful Endings

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a meme where you get to flail about whatever upcoming book you’re excited to read. Though it is generally a new release, it certainly can be any book that’s on your TBR! This meme is currently hosted by Wishful Endings and it’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine.

With the general craziness that is the world right now, I’ve been surprisingly busier than one would think. I still have to go to work while most are sequestered to their homes because I work in healthcare. Though I’m certainly not on the front lines, it’s still been a very interesting time. Not to mention trying to make sure the kiddos aren’t falling behind with school stuff. You would think that not being able to go anywhere on my days off would be very conducive to reading, but it’s mostly been conducive to spending time with the family to help them de-stress. Which I’m super okay with 💕

That being said, I haven’t finished a book since my last WWW Wednesday 😅 So we’re going to talk about a book that I’m anticipating, instead! There’s a lot of uncertainty in the book world right now, especially when it comes to publishing, but there are still quite a few books that will be coming out in the next couple of months that I can’t wait to read!

For this week’s Can’t-Wait Wednesday, I’ve decided to highlight one of my most anticipated May releases. Want some hints?

  • There’s knights ⚔
  • There’s a Renaissance Faire 👑
  • There’s FEMINISM 💁🏾‍♀️💪🏾

And the book is… *drum roll*

GoodReads Synopsis:

“Kit Sweetly slays sexism, bad bosses, and bad luck to become a knight at a medieval-themed restaurant.

Working as a wench―i.e. waitress―at a cheesy medieval-themed restaurant in the Chicago suburbs, Kit Sweetly dreams of being a knight like her brother. She has the moves, is capable on a horse, and desperately needs the raise that comes with knighthood, so she can help her mom pay the mortgage and hold a spot at her dream college.

Company policy allows only guys to be knights. So when Kit takes her brother’s place and reveals her identity at the end of the show, she rockets into internet fame and a whole lot of trouble with the management. But the Girl Knight won’t go down without a fight. As other wenches join her quest, a protest forms. In a joust before Castle executives, they’ll prove that gender restrictions should stay medieval―if they don’t get fired first.”

Publication Date (hopefully): May 5th, 2020

Pre-order and support an indie?: Find it on Indiebound!

Why I’m Excited:

Well… I love Renaissance Faires and I love feminism! I’ve recently discovered that I really enjoy books that are set at a Ren Faire and I need more of it. And the whole concept of this novel makes me want to gobble it up.

Lady knights, for the win!

What is a book you can’t wait to read? Did you participate in Can’t-Wait Wednesday? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Spring 2020 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish back in June 2010. It is currently hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and, as is stated on the blog, it was “born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.”

We’ve come to another Tuesday and today, we are anticipating Spring! I’m overly ready for the warm weather, the budding plants, and the sunshine. And, of course, I’m ready for the books!

This Spring, however, is a weird one, with the coronavirus looming over all of us. It’s especially a weird one for any authors that have books coming out from now until June! So I decided to highlight those ten of those books for my TTT. I’ll also leave a link to their Indiebound pages, as well, because our independent bookstores need some love during this crisis, too 💕

Alright, let’s get to my list!

Read More »