YA

Review: Starswept by Mary Fan (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Starswept

Author: Mary Fan

Genre: YA Sci-Fi

Publication Date: August 29, 2017

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Some melodies reach across the stars.

In 2157, the Adryil—an advanced race of telepathic humanoids—contacted Earth. A century later, 15-year-old violist Iris Lei considers herself lucky to attend Papilio, a prestigious performing arts school powered by their technology. Born penniless, Iris’s one shot at a better life is to attract an Adryil patron. But only the best get hired, and competition is fierce.

A sudden encounter with an Adryil boy upends her world. Iris longs to learn about him and his faraway realm, but after the authorities arrest him for trespassing, the only evidence she has of his existence is the mysterious alien device he slipped to her.

When she starts hearing his voice in her head, she wonders if her world of backstabbing artists and pressure for perfection is driving her insane. Then, she discovers that her visions of him are real—by way of telepathy—and soon finds herself lost in the kind of impossible love she depicts in her music.

But even as their bond deepens, Iris realizes that he’s hiding something from her—and it’s dangerous. Her quest for answers leads her past her sheltered world to a strange planet lightyears away, where she uncovers secrets about Earth’s alien allies that shatter everything she knows.

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Review: The Tiger’s Watch by Julia Ember (Spoiler Free)

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Title: The Tiger’s Watch

Author: Julia Ember

Genre: YA Fantasy (LGBTQIA+)

Publication Date: August 22, 2017

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Sixteen-year-old Tashi has spent their life training as a inhabitor, a soldier who spies and kills using a bonded animal. When the capital falls after a brutal siege, Tashi flees to a remote monastery to hide. But the invading army turns the monastery into a hospital, and Tashi catches the eye of Xian, the regiment’s fearless young commander.

Tashi spies on Xian’s every move. In front of his men, Xian seems dangerous, even sadistic, but Tashi discovers a more vulnerable side of the enemy commander—a side that draws them to Xian.

When their spying unveils that everything they’ve been taught is a lie, Tashi faces an impossible choice: save their country or the boy they’re growing to love. Though Tashi grapples with their decision, their volatile bonded tiger doesn’t question her allegiances. Katala slaughters Xian’s soldiers, leading the enemy to hunt her. But an inhabitor’s bond to their animal is for life—if Katala dies, so will Tashi.

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Review: Trust by Kylie Scott (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Trust

Author: Kylie Scott

Genre: Mature YA Contemporary

Publication Date: July 18, 2017

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley.

Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love…the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.

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Review: Station Fosaan by Dee Garretson (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Station Fosaan

Author: Dee Garretson

Genre: YA Sci Fi

Publication Date: February 14, 2017

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Earth scientists and their families stationed on the remote planet of Fosaan were promised a tropical vacation-like experience. But Fosaan, devastated from an apocalyptic event nearly three-hundred years ago, is full of lethal predators and dangerous terrain.

Earthers are forbidden to go beyond the safety zone of their settlement and must not engage the small population of reclusive Fosaanians, descendants of the survivors. Sixteen-year-old Quinn Neen plans to do both of those things.

When Quinn discovers a beautiful Fosaanian girl named Mira stealing food from his family’s living unit, he soon learns Earth’s government may not be telling the whole truth about Fosaan and the cause of the past disaster.

There are some who to restore the planet to its former glory by any means necessary. Quinn finds himself caught between his loyalty to his own people and what is right for Mira and her people.

Before he can decide what to do, the scientists are taken captive, stranding the young Earthers on Fosaan.

Quinn must go from renegade to leader and convince Mira to become an ally in a fight against an enemy whose very existence threatens their lives and the future of those both on Fosaan and at home.

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Review: The Castaways by Jessika Fleck (Spoiler Free)

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Title: The Castaways

Author: Jessika Fleck

Publication Date: April 3, 2017

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The Castaway Carnival: fun, mysterious, dangerous.

Renowned for its infamous corn maze… and the kids who go missing in it.

When Olive runs into the maze, she wakes up on an isolated and undetectable island where a decades-long war between two factions of rival teens is in full swing.

Trapped, Olive must slowly attempt to win each of her new comrades’ hearts as Will—their mysterious, stoically quiet, and handsome leader—steals hers.

Olive is only sure about one thing: her troop consists of the good guys, and she’ll do whatever it takes to help them win the war and get back home.

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Review: Nobody’s Goddess by Amy McNulty (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Nobody’s Goddess

Author: Amy McNulty

Genre: YA Fantasy

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

In a village of masked men, each man is compelled to love only one woman and to follow the commands of his “goddess” without question. A woman may reject the only man who will love her if she pleases, but she will be alone forever. A man must stay masked until his goddess returns his love—and if she can’t or won’t, he remains masked forever.

Seventeen-year-old Noll’s childhood friends have paired off and her closest companion, Jurij, found his goddess in Noll’s own sister. Desperate to find a way to break this ancient spell, Noll instead discovers why no man has ever chosen her. She is in fact the goddess of the mysterious lord of the village, a man who refuses to let Noll have her right as a woman to spurn him.

Thus begins a dangerous game between the choice of woman and the magic of man. The stakes are no less than freedom and happiness, life and death—and neither Noll nor the veiled lord is willing to lose.

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Review: What I Lost by Alexandra Ballard (Spoiler Free)

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Title: What I Lost

Author: Alexandra Ballard

Genre: YA Contemporary

Publication Date: June 6, 2017

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.

*Trigger warning for anorexia/eating disorders*

What sixteen-year-old Elizabeth has lost so far: forty pounds, four jean sizes, a boyfriend, and her peace of mind. As a result, she’s finally a size zero. She’s also the newest resident at Wallingfield, a treatment center for girls like her—girls with eating disorders. Elizabeth is determined to endure the program so she can go back home, where she plans to start restricting her food intake again. She’s pretty sure her mom, who has her own size-zero obsession, needs treatment as much as she does. Maybe even more. Then Elizabeth begins receiving mysterious packages. Are they from her ex-boyfriend, a secret admirer, or someone playing a cruel trick?

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Review: Grrrls on the Side by Carrie Pack (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Grrrls on the Side

Author: Carrie Pack

Genre: YA Contemporary

Publication Date: June 8, 2017

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The year is 1994 and alternative is in. But not for alternative girl Tabitha Denton; she hates her life. She is uninterested in boys, lonely, and sidelined by former friends at her suburban high school. When she picks up a zine at a punk concert, she finds an escape—an advertisement for a Riot Grrrl meet-up.

At the meeting, Tabitha finds girls who are more like her and a place to belong. But just as Tabitha is settling in with her new friends and beginning to think she understands herself, eighteen-year-old Jackie Hardwick walks into a meeting and changes her world forever. The out-and-proud Jackie is unlike anyone Tabitha has ever known. As her feelings for Jackie grow, Tabitha begins to learn more about herself and the racial injustices of the punk scene, but to be with Jackie, she must also come to grips with her own privilege and stand up for what’s right.

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Review: Soulmated by Shaila Patel (Spoiler Free)

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Title: Soulmated (Joining of Souls #1)

Author: Shaila Patel

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance

Publication Date: January 24, 2017

My Rating: 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Eighteen-year-old Liam Whelan, an Irish royal empath, has been searching for his elusive soulmate. The rare union will cement his family’s standing in empath politics and afford the couple legendary powers, while also making them targets of those seeking to oust them.

Laxshmi Kapadia, an Indian-American high school student from a traditional family, faces her mother’s ultimatum: Graduate early and go to medical school, or commit to an arranged marriage.

When Liam moves next door to Laxshmi, he’s immediately and inexplicably drawn to her. In Liam, Laxshmi envisions a future with the freedom to follow her heart.

Liam’s father isn’t convinced Laxshmi is “The One” and Laxshmi’s mother won’t even let her talk to their handsome new neighbor. Will Liam and Laxshmi defy expectations and embrace a shared destiny? Or is the risk of choosing one’s own fate too great a price for the soulmated?

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Cover Reveal: Ultimate Sacrifice by S.E. Green

Hey everyone! I’ve teamed up with author S.E. Green and Oftomes Publishing to bring you the ultra spooky cover for Ultimate Sacrifice, a chilling mystery/horror combo that is sure to send shivers down your spine. This creepy tale hits shelves on October 10, 2017, so be sure to mark your calendars!

Drum roll please…

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