Week In Review
June 18 – July 8
Summer is definitely here! We’re coming off a pretty gross humid heatwave, but I think the temperatures are going to pick up again this week. Blegh!
I did some reading these past couple of weeks, but mostly it was so hot that I didn’t feel like doing anything. So hopefully my reading picks up!
I received three e-ARCs via Edelweiss over the past couple of weeks:
The Cerulean, Amy Ewing:
Sera Lighthaven has always felt as if she didn’t quite belong among her people, the Cerulean who live in the City Above the Sky. She is curious about everything—especially the planet that her City is magically tethered to—and can’t stop questioning her three mothers, her best friend, Leela, and even the High Priestess. Sera has always longed for the day when the tether will finally break and the Cerulean can move to a new planet. But when Sera is chosen as the sacrifice required to break the tether, she feels betrayed by Mother Sun, and everything in which she’d been taught to trust. In order to save her City, Sera must throw herself from its edge and end her own life.
But something goes wrong, and Sera survives the fall, landing on the planet below in a country called Kaolin. Sera has heard tales about humans, and she quickly learns that the dangers her mothers warned her of were not just stories. Meanwhile, back in the City, all is not what it seems, and the lives of every Cerulean may be in danger if Sera is not able to find a way home.
The Pioneer, Bridget Tyler:
When Jo steps onto Tau Ceti E, it should be the happiest moment of her life. After all, she’s been training for as long as she can remember to be a cadet pilot in the International Space Agency. She’s dreamed of the day she and her family would leave Earth forever and begin life as pioneers on a new planet.
But now she can’t stop thinking of everything that has gone wrong on their mission: the terrible accident that nearly destroyed their craft, that set their voyage back years, that killed her brother, that left her unable to fly…
As Jo struggles to live with her grief and figure out who she’s going to be now, she falls in love with her new world. It isn’t hard. Jo’s team is camped out by a pristine, tumbling river at the base of a mountain range that looks like huge prisms buried in the prairie. The soring crystal peaks transform every sunset into rainbows full of colors human eyes have never seen before. And that’s just the beginning. Tau offers Jo and her family a lifetime of beauty and adventure.
Jo throws herself into helping her team, lead by her commander mother, establish their community on this amazing new world. But just when she starts to feel like her old self again, she uncovers a devastating secret her mother has been keeping from her people. A secret that could destroy her family’s pioneering dreams…if they survive that long.
With the fate of the pioneers in her hands, Jo must decide how far she’s willing to go to expose the truth — before the truth destroys them all.
We Set the Dark on Fire, Tehlor Kay Mejia:
At the Medio School for Girls, distinguished young women are trained for one of two roles in their polarized society. Depending on her specialization, a graduate will one day run a husband’s household or raise his children, but both are promised a life of comfort and luxury, far from the frequent political uprisings of the lower class. Daniela Vargas is the school’s top student, but her bright future depends upon no one discovering her darkest secret—that her pedigree is a lie. Her parents sacrificed everything to obtain forged identification papers so Dani could rise above her station. Now that her marriage to an important politico’s son is fast approaching, she must keep the truth hidden or be sent back to the fringes of society, where famine and poverty rule supreme.
On her graduation night, Dani seems to be in the clear, despite the surprises that unfold. But nothing prepares her for all the difficult choices she must make, especially when she is asked to spy for a resistance group desperately fighting to bring equality to Medio. Will Dani cling to the privilege her parents fought to win for her, or to give up everything she’s strived for in pursuit of a free Medio—and a chance at a forbidden love?
The first in a sizzling fantasy duology from debut author Tehlor Kay Mejia, We Set The Dark On Fire is a boldly feminist look at freedom, family, and fighting the power.
All of these books sound so interesting! They aren’t out until 2019, but put them on your TBR now!
And via Netgalley, I received an e-book of The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton, which sounds interesting:
At a gala party thrown by her parents, Evelyn Hardcastle will be killed–again. She’s been murdered hundreds of times, and each day, Aiden Bishop is too late to save her. Doomed to repeat the same day over and over, Aiden’s only escape is to solve Evelyn Hardcastle’s murder and conquer the shadows of an enemy he struggles to even comprehend–but nothing and no one are quite what they seem.
I also purchased a few e-books with a gift card I’ve been saving from my birthday:
The Last Time I Lied, Riley Sager:
Two Truths and a Lie. The girls played it all the time in their tiny cabin at Camp Nightingale. Vivian, Natalie, Allison, and first-time camper Emma Davis, the youngest of the group. The games ended when Emma sleepily watched the others sneak out of the cabin in the dead of night. The last she–or anyone–saw of them was Vivian closing the cabin door behind her, hushing Emma with a finger pressed to her lips.
Now a rising star in the New York art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings–massive canvases filled with dark leaves and gnarled branches that cover ghostly shapes in white dresses. The paintings catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the socialite and wealthy owner of Camp Nightingale. When Francesca implores her to return to the newly reopened camp as a painting instructor, Emma sees an opportunity to try to find out what really happened to her friends.
Yet it’s immediately clear that all is not right at Camp Nightingale. Already haunted by memories from fifteen years ago, Emma discovers a security camera pointed directly at her cabin, mounting mistrust from Francesca and, most disturbing of all, cryptic clues Vivian left behind about the camp’s twisted origins. As she digs deeper, Emma finds herself sorting through lies from the past while facing threats from both man and nature in the present.
And the closer she gets to the truth about Camp Nightingale, the more she realizes it may come at a deadly price.
The Elizas, Sara Shepard:
When debut novelist Eliza Fontaine is found at the bottom of a hotel pool, her family at first assumes that it’s just another failed suicide attempt. But Eliza swears she was pushed, and her rescuer is the only witness.
Desperate to find out who attacked her, Eliza takes it upon herself to investigate. But as the publication date for her novel draws closer, Eliza finds more questions than answers. Like why are her editor, agent, and family mixing up events from her novel with events from her life? Her novel is completely fictional, isn’t it?
The deeper Eliza goes into her investigation while struggling with memory loss, the closer her life starts to resemble her novel until the line between reality and fiction starts to blur and she can no longer tell where her protagonist’s life ends and hers begins.
I really liked Riley Sager’s Final Girls when I read it last year, so I am really looking forward to reading this new book. And I just can’t resist Sara Shepard’s books!
I also purchased Empire of Night and Forest of Ruin by Kelley Armstrong, which are books two and three in her Age of Legends series. I read the first book, Sea of Shadows, years ago and enjoyed it, so when I saw these two on for $2.99 each I couldn’t resist!
And I finally connected my current laptop and Kobo and Adobe Digital Editions and library accounts, so I went on an e-book borrowing tear! Currently I have five e-books checked out:
Those Girls, Lauren Saft;
Young Widows Club, Alexandra Coutts;
The Storyspinner, Becky Wallace;
Hello, Sunshine, Leila Howland; and
Wesley James Ruined My Life, Jennifer Honeybourn.
Since my last Week in Review post, I’ve finished four books:
Sawkill Girls, Claire Legrand;
Stay Sweet, Siobhan Vivian;
Save the Date, Morgan Matson; and
Assassin’s Heart, Sarah Ahiers.
I liked all of them, by Sawkill Girls and Stay Sweet were my favourites of the four.
I’m trying to read some older ARCs and e-ARCs I have, so I’ve just barely started Kendare Blake’s Three Dark Crowns.
Several reviews from the last couple weeks:
What We See When We Read, Peter Mendelsund;
The Historian, Elizabeth Kostova;
Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty;
Till Death Do Us Tart, Ellie Alexander;
Save the Date, Morgan Matson; and
Stay Sweet, Siobhan Vivian.
I also posted a bunch of Waiting on Wednesday posts, about upcoming books I was looking forward to:
Not Even Bones, Rebecca Schaeffer;
Sawkill Girls, Claire Legrand (which I’ve since read and loved); and
Whiskey When We’re Dry, John Larison.
Time for some more coffee and book time! Happy reading!