Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George
Publisher: Greenwillow Books, HarperCollins (September 19th 2017)
Length: 432 pages
Genre: ya; retelling, historical fiction, romantic comedy
Review also on my GR
Rating: 4.5/5 🍑
Six teenagers’ lives intertwine during one thrilling summer full of romantic misunderstandings and dangerous deals in this sparkling retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.
After she gets kicked out of boarding school, seventeen-year-old Beatrice goes to her uncle’s estate on Long Island. But Hey Nonny Nonny is more than just a rundown old mansion. Beatrice’s cousin, Hero, runs a struggling speakeasy out of the basement—one that might not survive the summer. Along with Prince, a poor young man determined to prove his worth; his brother John, a dark and dangerous agent of the local mob; Benedick, a handsome trust-fund kid trying to become a writer; and Maggie, a beautiful and talented singer; Beatrice and Hero throw all their efforts into planning a massive party to save the speakeasy. Despite all their worries, the summer is beautiful, love is in the air, and Beatrice and Benedick are caught up in a romantic battle of wits that their friends might be quietly orchestrating in the background.
Hilariously clever and utterly charming, McKelle George’s debut novel is full of intrigue and 1920s charm. For fans of Jenny Han, Stephanie Perkins, and Anna Godbersen.
I received an ARC from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
First things first: I have a confession to make. I know the plot more or less but I’ve never actually read Much Ado About Nothing… In my defense! We don’t read that much Shakespeare in school here! But honestly, even with that in mind, I absolutely Loved™ Speak Easy, Speak Love which I feel only means that it holds up wonderfully on its own, not only as a retelling!
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The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell
Publisher: Raven Books, Bloomsbury Publishing (October 5th 2017)
Length: 384 pages
Genre: adult lit; historical fiction, gothic, mystery, ghost story
Review also on my GR
Rating: 3.5/5 🍑
Inspired by the work of Shirley Jackson and Susan Hill and set in a crumbling country mansion, The Silent Companions is an unsettling gothic ghost story to send a shiver down the spine…
Newly married, newly widowed Elsie is sent to see out her pregnancy at her late husband’s crumbling country estate, The Bridge.
With her new servants resentful and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie only has her husband’s awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. But inside her new home lies a locked room, and beyond that door lies a two-hundred-year-old diary and a deeply unsettling painted wooden figure – a Silent Companion – that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself…
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
To be perfectly candid, I was first intrigued by The Silent Companions because of its beautiful cover that made me think of Natasha Pulley’s novels. (And I was right about that, actually, they are all made by the same amazing artist – David Mann!) Then I read an interview with Natasha where she recommended this title so, as a fan of her work, I knew I had to check it out. She called this book “magnificently creepy” and oh boy, was she right.
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We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers (February 14th 2017)
Length: 234 pages
Genre: YA; contemporary
Review also on my GR
Rating: 4/5 🍑
You go through life thinking there’s so much you need…
Until you leave with only your phone, your wallet, and a picture of your mother.
Marin hasn’t spoken to anyone from her old life since the day she left everything behind. No one knows the truth about those final weeks. Not even her best friend, Mabel. But even thousands of miles away from the California coast, at college in New York, Marin still feels the pull of the life and tragedy she’s tried to outrun. Now, months later, alone in an emptied dorm for winter break, Marin waits. Mabel is coming to visit, and Marin will be forced to face everything that’s been left unsaid and finally confront the loneliness that has made a home in her heart.
I went into this book not knowing anything about it. I knew Nina of course, I’ve read one of her books before and even without that, it’s rather hard to have any kind of interest in ya literature & not recognise her name. In any case, I was looking for a book that would make me feel and my friend told me to read We Are Okay. I will never be able to thank her for that rec enough.
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Joyride, vol. 1 by Jackson Lanzing & Collin Kelly (writers)
Publisher: Boom Entertainment (October 4th 2016)
Series: Joyride #1
Length: 112 pages
Genre: YA; science-fiction, adventure
Review also on my GR
Rating: 4/5 🍑
The stars have been blocked out for so long that people have forgotten there was anything else besides the World Government Alliance watching over them. Uma Akkolyte is a girl who shoots first, leaps before she looks, and is desperate for any means to leave her planet behind. And so she does. When Uma jacks an alien spaceship and punches through the stratosphere she sets forth on an adventure with an unlikely crew who are totally not ready for all the good, bad, and weird the universe will throw at them.
From writers Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly (Batman and Robin Eternal, Grayson) and artist Marcus To (Nightwing, New Avengers), Joyride is a rebellious love letter to the sci-fi genre, exploring what happens when nothing stands between a group of teens and their freedom amongst the stars.
I received a galley from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Joyride truly was a ride full of joy! Listen, I’ll be honest, I was sold from the very first line of the blurb I read & I was sure I’d love this comic book. I was not wrong.
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Rumor Has It by Farrah F. Polestico
Publisher: Cosmos Books (November 30th 2015)
Length: 73 pages
Genre: YA; contemporary, romance
Rating: 3/5 🍑
I picked up Rumor Has It mostly for two reasons: 1) it features the fake dating trope! I’m not gonna lie, I adore it and still don’t feel tired of it and 2) it’s written by a Filipino author which is great simply because I haven’t read many books by writers from the Philippines.
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Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
Publisher: Viking Australia (September 29th 2008)
Series: Lumatere Chronicles #1
Genre: YA, fantasy, romance
Rating: 5/5 🍑
Finnikin of the Rock and his guardian, Sir Topher, have not been home to their beloved Lumatere for ten years. Not since the dark days when the royal family was murdered and the kingdom put under a terrible curse. But then Finnikin is summoned to meet Evanjalin, a young woman with an incredible claim: the heir to the throne of Lumatere, Prince Balthazar, is alive.
Evanjalin is determined to return home and she is the only one who can lead them to the heir. As they journey together, Finnikin is affected by her arrogance . . . and her hope. He begins to believe he will see his childhood friend, Prince Balthazar, again. And that their cursed people will be able to enter Lumatere and be reunited with those trapped inside. He even believes he will find his imprisoned father.
But Evanjalin is not what she seems. And the truth will test not only Finnikin’s faith in her . . . but in himself.
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