Posted in new releases

January 2021 Middle Grade New Releases

1) The Sea in Winter

Another great outing by Indigenous author Christine Day!

Maisie Cannon has had a rough year ever since she hurt her leg. It’s taken away the thing she loves most, her ballet training and auditions.

While her blended family is loving and supportive Maisie knows they just don’t get how hopeless she feels. Her family’s midwinter roadtrip along the coast near the Makah community where her mother grew up doesn’t hold the same excitement as previous years.

How can she explain to her family when her anxieties and dark moods start to hurt as much as her knee. How can she continue to be strong when inside she feels like a cold and roiling sea.

Amazon: The Sea In Winter

2) Root Magic

A wonderful book about the Gullah people who I’ve never seen in a middle grade book before (please correct me if I’m wrong!)

Set during 1963 when things are changing for Jezbel Turner. Her beloved grandmother has just passed away. Her family is the target of harassment from the local police deputy. And with school integration beginning in South Carolina Jez and her twin brother are going to start school with a bunch of new kids.

But the biggest change comes from their Uncle Doc who tells them he’s going to train them in rootwork. Jez and her brother Jay have alway been intrested in the African American folk magic, that has been in their family for generations.

They are especially curious about the potions and powers Doc and Gran would make for the people on their island. But Jez soon finds out her family’s power is much bigger than she ever could have imagined, and not a moment too soon. Because her family will have to deal with both natural and supernatural evil as it comes to town and it’s going to take every bit of Jez’s magic to see this problem through.

Amazon: Root Magic

3)The Forest of Moon and Sword

The Forest of Moon and Sword (Paperback)

Set in seventeenth-century Scotland at the height of the witch trials, when Art’s mother is accused of witchcraft she becomes determined to get her back.

Twelve-year old Art lives with her mother in a small village in Scotland, her mother has always helped the village by making potions to cure the sick, but now the townspeople claim she’s a with. One night she’s arrested and taken to England.

Art trust nature to get her mother back, she takes her horse, a sword, a tightrope, a herbal recipe book and begins a journey through the wild forests.\

But does she know enough about nature’s signs and symbols to not be led astray, will she reach her mother in time before it’s too late. In this lyrical adventure with folklore at its heart Art will have to trust herself and her connection with nature to find her mother.

Amazon: The Forest of the Moon and Sword.

4)The Nightmare Thief

Life was perfect for Maren Partridge before her sister’s accident. Now her sister is in a coma and her parent are talking about the hospital bills, and putting her sister Hallie in a long term care facility. Maren knows what this is code for, Hallie never getting better.

While Maren isn’t worried about Hallie she works in her family’s dream shop, with her Gran Gran Lishta where she can hand craft any dream imaginable. The shop only has one rule. Dreams cannot be given without the person consent.

Maren has never had a problem with this until Hallie got sick, if dream can help people with other problems then maybe they can help heal her sister. Maren’s certain she can cure Hallie with a few well-chosen dreams. And when no one is watching, she slips her a flying dream.

But someone is watching, a strange new customer, Ms. Malo to the shop has been watching Maren, and she knows what she’s been up to with trying to heal Hallie. Now she’s planning to blackmail Maren into creating custom nightmares’ for a dark and terrible purpose. Now she must make a choice protect her family or the town she loves?

Amazon: The Nightmare Thief

Photo by Aditya Vyas on Unsplash

Posted in new releases, Reviews

Keeper of the Lost Cities Unlocked Review

Unlocked Book 8.5


Unlocked definitely isn’t like any other Keeper of the Lost Cities book. First and foremost the illustrations are gorgeous, I have to acknowledge the issue with illustrator Laura Hollingsworth and her issue with not drawing LGBTQ content. As someone who is a writer myself I believe she has the right to draw or not draw what she believes in. I don’t agree with it. However as a creator on the LGBT spectrum I can understand where she’s coming from.

Besides the illustrations we have a lovely map, which apparently took lots of emails to get right, the main characters registry files, Keefe’s is extra delightful. We have a compendium of the different powers that elves can have, information about the different races and their rules and homelands. We also have Keeper recipes which I can’t wait to try.

Then we have the novella, we get to see inside Keefe’s head for the first time and it’s very interesting. He’s going through a lot so seeing through his eyes at this time is particularly unique. Sophie’s responses to what is going on are new as well. We get to see a different side to the Moonlark. As for what these new sides to Keefe and Sophie will mean in book 9 Shannon left us with another cliffhanger. No one in the Keeper fandom is surprised by now.


Shannon did a great job giving fans both a compendium to reference and a novella that will lead into book 9. Not sure how many authors could have pulled this off but she did a great job mixing the two, 5 stars.

Be sure to enter the contest it this week!

Posted in new releases

December New Releases YA

A Curse of Roses

A Curse of Roses by [Diana Pinguicha]

Princess Yzabel is cursed with just one touch she turns bread into roses, with a bite cheese to lilies. She’s close to starving and wasting food in her famine plauged country of Porugal while simply trying to eat.

If only it were possible to reverse her magic then she could turn flower…..into food and help feed herself and her starving country.

But Fatyan, an Enchanted Moura is the is the only one who can help. But she’s trapped by her own magical binds, she can teach Yzabel how to control her curse—but Yzabel has to set her free with a kiss

Fatyan, a beautiful Enchanted Moura, is the only one who can help. But she is trapped by magical binds. She can teach Yzabel how to control her curse–if Yzabel sets her free with a kiss.

As the betrothed to the King of Portugal Yzabel would be commiting treason, but would good is a king for is country if his country has starved to death.

So Yzabel sets Fatyan free, only the two become closer, and it becomes less about duty and more about love. She sought Fatyan out to help save her people now loving her could mean Yzabel’s destruction

Based on Portuguese legend, this #OwnVoices historical fantasy, this is an epic tale of mystery and magic and the impossible choices we have to make between love and duty.

A Curse of Roses includes themes, imagery, and content that might be triggering for some readers. Discussions of religious-based self harm, religious-based eating disorders, and religious-based internalized homophobia appear throughout the novel.

About the Author

Born and raised in the sunny lands of Portugal, Diana is a computer engineer graduate who currently lives in Lisbon. She can usually be found writing, painting, devouring extraordinary quantities of books and video games, or walking around with her bearded dragon, Norberta. She also has two cats, Sushi and Jubas, who would never forgive her if she didn’t mention them. She can be found online at

This book is due to be released December 1st 2020.


Brilliant Books

The Love Curse of Melody McIntyre

Melody McIntyre is a stage manager extraodinere, she always has a plan for everything.

Well everything except for one thing. Luck in love. Every time she falls for someone during a school performance during both the romance and the show end in catastrophe, talk about bad luck. That’s why she’s sworn off romance for her school’s production of Les Mis

Of course Mel didn’t count on Odile Rose, rising star in the acting world, auditioning for their spring performance. Or for her to be sweet, and funny and care as much about the play’s success as Mel.

That leave Melody McIntyre with only one plan now, try desperately not to fall in love

Which means that Melody McIntyre’s only plan now is trying desperately not to fall in love.

ROBIN TALLEY is a queer author who grew up in southwest Virginia and now lives in Washington, DC, with her wife and their kids. She is the New York Times bestselling author of six other novels for teen readers: Music From Another World, Pulp, Our Own Private Universe, As I Descended, What We Left Behind, and Lies We Tell Ourselves. You can find her on the web at

This book is due to be released December 1st 2020.


Brilliant Books

The Black Friend: On Being a Better White Person

“We don’t see color.” “I didn’t know Black people liked Star Wars!” “What hood are you from?”

Fredrick Joseph was a trasfer student to a largerly white high school and often had to suffer micro-aggressions. At the time he simply let these wince worthy moments go, as he grew older however he saw these as missed opportunities not only to stand up for himself but to spread awareness to those white people around him who didn’t see the negative impact they were having.

Joseph speak directly to the reader The Black Friend calls up race-related anecdotes from the author’s past, weaving in his thoughts on why they were hurtful and how he might handle things differently now. Each chapter features the voice of one artist or activist such as Angie Thomas author of The Hate U Give, April Reign, creator of #OscarsSoWhite and many more.

The book touches on everything from cultural appropriation, white privilege, and the tragic results of overt racism and much more. The book also serves as a conversation starter and tool kit with an encyclopedia of racism providing detail on relevant history and terminology.

Frederick Joseph is an award-winning marketing professional, media representation advocate, and writer who was recently selected for the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. He’s also the winner of the 2018 Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award, given by Comic-Con International: San Diego, and was selected for the 2018 Root 100 List of Most Influential African Americans. He lives in New York City.


Brilliant Books

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Posted in Blogmas, new releases, YARC

December New Releases Middle Grade

Never After: The Thirteenth Fairy (The Chronicles of Never After, 1)

North Pasadena, is the perfect town. The sun shines every day, the grass is always the perfect green, there even isn’t any bullying at Filomena Jefferson-Cho progressive school. Still she feels a little down an out about her sleepy suburban town. Until one day when she is walking home something strange happens.

Filomena is being followed by a character from her favorite book series, Jack Stalker. He’s one of the heroes in the Thirteenth Fairy series, a book series that Filomena loves about a brave girl with her ragtag group of friends who save the world from an evil enchantress.

Filomena figures she must be dreaming or something, but Jack insists he’s real and he also needs Filomena to follow him at once. Filomena soon finds herself in a magical world of evil fairies and and beautiful princesses. But Filomena must find the truth behind the fairy tales if she wants to save herself and the kingdom of Westphalia from an evil queen and her armies.

MELISSA DE LA CRUZ is the #1 New York Times, #1 Publisher’s Weekly and #1 Indie Bound bestselling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for readers of all ages, and edited the inspiring anthology of true stories, Because I Was a Girl. She grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. At Columbia University, she majored in art history and English. Melissa de la Cruz lives in West Hollywood with her husband and daughter.


Brilliant Books

This book is due out on December 1st.

A Wolf for a Spell

Zima’s wolf family has long feared humans–especially witches–but when her family is threatened Zima must seek the help of the infamous Baba Yaga.

But Baba Yaga’s help never comes for free, and it just so happens she need a wolf keen nose for the plan she’s brewing. Before Zima knows what’s happened the witch has cast a body switching spell and run off into the wood in her body, leaving her in Baba Yaga’s.

Just as Zima’s getting this all sorted out a young village girl named Nadya is also seeking Baba Yaga’s help, and when she meet Zima (as Baba Yaga) the two realize they have a common enemy. But with danger closing in Zima must unite the wolves, the witches and the villagers against an evil that seeks to threaten them all.

Karah Sutton has loved Baba Yaga, ballet, and blini ever since she had to do a research project on her Russian heritage in the third grade. Her hunger for adventure inspired her to move from Kentucky to New Zealand, where it was rumored she would find talking trees and the occasional wood elf. Karah spent four years as a bookseller before she turned to writing her own fiction. A Wolf For a A Spell is her first novel.

Visit her online at or follow her on Twitter @Karahdactyl

Pauliina Hannuniemi is a Finnish illustrator with her Bachelor of Arts from Metropolia UoAS. This is her first book.


Brilliant Books

This book will be released December 1st.

Girl Giant and the Monkey King

Eleven-year-old Thom Ngho just wants to fit in at her middle school. It’s kind of hard to do that when you’re keeping a secret. Thom secret is big she’s strong like super duper strong. Freakishly strong.

Soon Thom finds herself swept up in an ancient and fantastical world of demon and dragons. But magic can’t cure everything and when she tries to make a deal with the trickster god the Monkey King to get rid of her super strength, she might realize she’s in over her head.

Van Hoang earned her bachelor’s degree in English at the University of New Mexico and her master’s in Library Information Science at San Jose State University. Girl Giant and the Monkey King was her debut novel. She was born in Vietnam, grew in up Orange County, California, and now resides in Los Angeles with her husband and two dogs.


Brilliant Books

This book will be released December 1st.

A special thanks to Brilliant Books for helping me find these titles and extra information.

Posted in Blogtober, new releases, YARC

November YA New Releases

Now we’ve established I’m not the hugest reader of Young Adult but some of these look really good. Also the Factory Witches of Lowell has a super cheap pre-order making it almost a crime not to buy.

The Factory Witches of Lowell

The Factory Witches of Lowell by [C. S. Malerich]

Seriously, it’s a book about maybe queer witches and class warfare, sign me up.

They’ve got abominable working conditions, unsympathetic mill owners and hard hearted managers. The mill girls at Lowell know when enough is enough. They are going on strike, but with everything against them they may have to rely on their secret weapon: a little bit of witchcraft to be sure no one leave the picket line.

The women of Lowell, Massachusetts aren’t asking for much. They just want their freedom, in the form of fair wages, decent room and board. And a chance to escape the cotton mills before the lint clogs their lungs, but when Boston owners decide to raise the worker’s rent.

The girls go on strike. Their ringleader is Judith Whittier, she may be new to Lowell but she’s no stranger to the picket line and the class warfare that goes with it. She’s already seen one strike fold and she’s intent to never see one fold again. Fortunately her best friend-and maybe first love?-Hannah has a gift for the dying art of witchcraft.

Amazon: The Factory Witches of Lowell

The book is due to be released November 10th.

I’m in no way affiliated with the book or author but seriously the Kindle is like $4

The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling

Anna Chiu got a lot on her plate and that’s not just because she help’s out at her father’s restaurant. When she’s not helping there she’s looking after her brother and sister or her mother whose debilitabing mental illness making it impossible for her to get out of bed.

When she meet her father’s new delivery boy Rory, he is a welcome distraction and a look into what being a normal teen could be like, even though she knows truly that things aren’t right at home. But when her mother finally does get out of bed and her condition worsens Anna and her family question everything they understand about themselves and each other.

Themes of culture, mental illness and family are balanced with a sweet romance. For a feel good read with and important message.

Amazon: The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling

The Surprising Power of a Good Dumping will be released November 10th


Soulswift by [Megan Bannen]

In Gelya world she is a Vessel, a girl who channels the word of the One True God through song. She lives cloisted with other vessels of her faith, and she believes, —as all Ovinists do—that the world was saved when a saint imprisoned Elath the Great Demon centuries ago, saving humanity from earthly temptation.

But things are never that simple and when Gelya stumbles into a deadly cover-up by the Ovinist’s military she find herself reluctantly teamed up with Tavik, an enemy solider to survive. Tavik, belives Elath is actually a mother goddess who must be set free, but while he manages to open her prison he accidently turns Gelya into Elath unwilling human vessel.

Now the Ovinists are after them and they are in a race against the clock, she and Tavik must find a way to exorcise Elath’s presence from her body. A lot is on the line, but they aren’t sure what. If they are successful will they stop the countdown to the end of the world, or will they be the cause of the earth’s destruction.

Finally as Tavik and Gelya spend more time together another question remains, once Elath is exocised what will become of Gelya?

Amazon: Soulswift

Soulswift is due for release November 17th.

Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

Posted in Blogtober, new releases

November MG New Releases

The winter must be a slow time for publishing I’m having a hard time finding middle grade titles that are coming out this month. Maybe it’s me? Let me know if there is anything you are looking forward to. There is certainly plenty of YA.

Stick With Me

Izzy’s best friend’s seem to be ditching her for the meanest girl in middle school Daphne Toll. All Izzy wants is to fit in and have some real friends. But all she really has is her art and the fact that she is attending theatre camp. It doesn’t help that her family rents out their house during winter break for some extra cash, so that family’s daughter is sleeping in her room and attending the same camp, a fact that Izzy isn’t one bit happy about.

Meanwhile the Wren, the girl from the family that is renting out Izzy’s house has problems of her. Before ending up at Izzy’s house Wren was focused on perfecting her ice skating routine after tanking at a big competition last year. But when her sister qualifies for a chance to participate in a life saving treatment for her epilepsy, Wren must forget about all that and stay in a rented home near Boston, what’s worse she has to attend the local theater camp where it seems like the mean girls are making her their number one target.

Izzy and Wren may both be targets of the mean girls, but with their differences is that enough to bring them close enough to have a chance at trying to be friends or will middle school drama win out in the end.

Told from dual perspective this is a story about fitting in and figuring yourself out.

Out November 3rd

Amazon: Stick with Me

Serena Says

A perfect story told by award winning author Tanita S. Davis about a young black girl who finds her voice.

Serena’s friend JC has never had a problem casting a light, she just shines. She’s got the biggest and best idea, the funniest laugh and the party starts when she arrive. Serena St. John is proud just to be known as her best friend.

But JC needed a kidney transplant and time in the hospital, Serena expects everything to be the same when JC returns home but not only does she have a new kidney she’s got a new best friend. Out of JC’s spotlight Serena feels lonely and life just doesn’t have that shine.

Serena works on perfecting her vlogs, hoping to earn a shot at becoming a classroom reporter. But if she can be smart and funny on video, why can’t she do it in real life. If only real life had pause, edit and delete functions for conversations. It would be so much easier to say then right thing when she’s supposed to, instead of not saying what she should or blurting out a secret that wasn’t hers to share.

But life doesn’t have a pause button and as Serena discovers her voice through vlogging, she learns that she’s not just there to reflect JC’s light, she’s fully able to shine on her own.

Tanita S. Davis is an American author of young adult novels, best known for her NAACP Image Award-nominated and Coretta Scott King Award-winning novel Mare’s War.

Amazon: Serena Says

Serena Says comes out November 3rd.


So book eight of this series was a terrible horrible rip your heart out cliff hanger. But since book nine won’t be out till next year the author is doing something special for the fans.

She’s doing a special kind of book and a half. Taking some of the pain out of the cliffhanger by revealing what happened in a way she’s never done before, from the heroine Sophie whose perspective we usually follow, as well as Keefe one of Sophie’s friend who was particularly affected by the way the last book ended. It will allow for more insight into both characters, as new powers are discovered and tough truths come to light and all of the Keeper of the Lost Cities crew find themselves tested in new ways they could have never imagined.

Not only that! The book also promises to reveal a comprehensive guide to the world of the Lost Cities where we will get new character and world details that haven’t been revealed to readers before. We are also promised cute things like Keeper themed recipes full color illustrations and more.

I for one cannot wait!

Unlocked will be released on November 17th

Amazon: Unlocked

Image by Pepper Mint from Pixabay

Posted in Blogtober, new releases, Reviews

BSC: Logan Likes Mary Anne!

Logan Likes Mary Anne!

So I’ve enjoyed every graphic novel adaptation of The Babysitters Club that Graphix books has put out. They have kept the heart of the story while making the characters relevant for today’s readers. And don’t think I don’t love the added diversity.


In this latest volume Mary Anne has a crush on a boy at school, Logan. He reminds her of a pop star she likes, he seems to like her too, but she’s too busy being nervous to notice. But after advertising at a PTA meeting the Babysitter’s Club is up to their ears in calls and they have to come through on them all or risk the club’s reputation. So they advertise for more babysitters and Logan is one of the applicants, along with a friend of their Junior Officer Mallory.

The Club agrees to give both of their new candidates trial runs, with one of the club members watching over them while they babysit, the schedule works out so that it’s Logan and Mary Anne babysitting together. Cue Mary Anne’s nerves but as they start to babysit she forgets to be nervous much in part to a very rambunctious kid. The kid loves both Logan and Mary Anne so he ask for them again, and they have a chance to get to know each other better.

Mary Anne begins to feel more confident and even ask Logan to the dance where they have a great time, but there is a suprise lurking around the corner, one Mary Anne might not like? Will she make it through and will things be okay with her friends and with Logan afterwards?


Maybe it’s because I’m partial to Mary Anne, but this is one of my favorite books in the series especially since you can see the growth of her character since the beginning of the series. She’s come a long way since Book 1 and I can’t wait to see where the series takes her and the other girls.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Image by DearlyReloved from Pixabay

Posted in new releases

September New YA Releases

Fable: A Novel

Fable: A Novel by [Adrienne Young]

Fable is the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, and the sea is the only home she’s ever know. But after her mother dies her father leaves on a legendardy island filled with thieves and little food.

Using the skills her mother taught her she learns to keep to herself and survive. Four years later she has one goal getting of the island and finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew.

Fable must take a risk though and trust a trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father. But her father’s enemies have grown since Fable last saw him and when she find out that West isn’t what he seems, the two are going to have to work together to stay alive to survive more than just the dangerous storms that run through the Narrows.

Release Date: September 1st 2020.

Amazon: Fable

Even If We Break

Maybe I’m just a fan of her work after Before I Let Go and because we are headed into the spooky season but I’m really looking forward to Even if We Break.

The book is set around thriller set around a group of friend and a game and deadly weekend that tears them apart.

FIVE friends go to a cabin.
FOUR of them are hiding secrets.
THREE years of history bind them.
TWO are doomed from the start.
ONE person wants to end this.

Are you ready to play?

Release Date: September 15th 2020.

Amazon: Even if We Break

Miss Meteor

Miss Meteor by [Tehlor Kay Mejia, Anna-Marie McLemore]

I know people are going to make comparisons to Dumplin for this but I think it’s going to have it own different charm. This is another book that I’ve been waiting to come out since I heard about it on Twitter as well. It’s also a collaboration between two previously successful YA authors.

Two girls are looking to break the mold for the Miss Meteor beauty pageant, after all no one who looks like Lita Perez or Chicky Quintanilla has won in it’s entire history.

But that’s not the only reason Lita wants to enter the contest and her ex-best friend Chicky want to help her. The road to becoming Miss Meteor isn’t about being perfect it’s about being genuine and sharing who you are with the world-and being comfortable with parts of yourself no one else understands.

But to pull off this unlikely underdog story, Lita and Chicky are going to have to forget the past and prove that girls like them are more than enough, they are everything.

Release Date: September 22nd 2020

Amazon: Miss Meteor

Are you planning on reading any new releases for September?

Posted in new releases, Recommendations

September MG Releases

Fly on the Wall

Henry Khoo is tired of his family treating him like a baby. He’s not allowed to go anywhere without his, sister/bodyguard. And he surely CAN’T take a journey halfway around the world all by himself.

Except he decides he’s doing just that after his family’s annual trip to visit his father in Singapore is cancelled. Henry doesn’t want to be cooped up with his family who won’t let him do anything and his former best friend forever turned Not Best Friend Forever.

Plus he’s got a secret he can’t let get out, a secret that his life will be over if he’s caught. He’s the creator of an anonymous gossip cartoon and he’s on the verge of getting caught.

Wanting to prove his indepence and avoid punishment for his crimes Henry embarks on the greatest adventure ever. Hopefully it won’t turn into the greatest disaster ever.

Release Date: September 15th 2020

Amazon: Fly on the Wall

Three Keys (A Front Desk Novel)

Front Desk was one of my favorite stories of 2018 so I honestly have been waiting for this book since I heard it was announced.

Mia Tang thinks she’s going to have the best year ever, after all the trouble of the past she and her parents are finally the proud owners of Calivista Motel. Mia even gets to run the front desk with her best friend Lupe. What’s more she’s finally getting somewhere with her writing.

However she hasn’t seen what sixth grade has to throw at her.

  1. Mia’s new teacher doesn’t think her writing is all that great. And her whole class finds out she lives in a motel.
  2. Speaking of the motel it’s struggling and Mia has to answer to the Calvista’s many many worried investors.
  3. If that weren’t enough there is a new immigration law looming and if it passes it will threaten everything and everyone in Mia’s life.

This year may have new challenges to throw at her but if anyone has the key to handling these ups and downs it’s Mia Tang!

Release Date: September 15th 2020

Amazon: The Three Keys

When Life Gives You Mangos

Twelve year old Clara doesn’t know why vistitors call her island home exotic. There is nothing exotic about to her. She doesn’t see what the big deal is about eating ripe mangos off the ground, and running outside in the rain with her Papa during the rainy season. She also loves going to her secret hideout with Gaynah-even though lately Gaynah isn’t acting much like a best friend.

Clara only has one thing that is really out of the ordinary for her. Something has happened to her memory that made her forget everything that happened last summer after a hurricane hit.

Occasionally she has flashbacks, other times her Mama fills in the blanks, she only knows those aren’t her memories and it’s hard being different from everyone else. But Clara knows this summer is going to be different for her, the village is buzzing with excitement with a new girl who is not like other visitors. Clara doesn’t know it yet but this girl is going to make waves and give Clara a summer she won’t forget!

Release Date: September 15th 2020

Amazon: When Life Gives You Mangos

The Torchbearers

I’ve been very much looking forward to this one. I finished the first two in the series in probably two weeks, so I’m looking forward to see where the series is going.

After the Dark Halloween in the last book, the town of Timber is having a full blown monster panic! This is making life very difficult for the Torchbearers—Opal, Nico, Tyler Emma and Logan.

While they are all part of the group they each have their own tasks at hand. Nico is investigating the mysterious Rift and the strange natural phenomena that occur as a result of it, all while juggling worries about his dad’s potential work transfer.

Opal meanwhile has her hands full researching the founding Torchbearer Yvette Dumont and deciphering clues from another realm sent by the mysterious Thing in a Jar.

Emma meanwhile has started a wildly popular Youtube show that has brought her new found fame, but has also earned her some enemies. Logan is busy trying to unlock secrets of his own family history and what role it might have played in founding Torchbearer Order

Finally Tyler the self-proclaimed Beastmaster strives to find a way to communicate and not be eaten by the mercurial and deadly alien sea creature living in Still Cove.

But if their not bust enough something cryptic has surfaced in the Darkdeep and Questions arise and the friends find themselves at odds.

Then there is the enigmatic new girl who is new in town and has an agenda of her own. As the five friends discover shocking secrets about the Torchbearers, their houseboat houseboat hangout, the Rift, and the Darkdeep itself.

But as signs point to realms beyond the ones they know, their friendships are put to the test, are their bonds strong enough to hold up against this new threat.

Amazon: The Torchbearers

Release Date: September 29, 2020

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Posted in Author Recommendations, new releases, Recommendations, YARC, Year of the Asian Reading Challenge

August New Releases

Sorry this a little late, life had been interesting which I should hopefully get back to telling you about in my Saturday reports. So I’m mostly back to my roots of adorable middle grade with these new releases. So looking forward to some of these.

A Place at the Table 

There is a cute sub-genre of middle grade fiction that I like to call cute food fiction. Think of Summer of 1000 Pies, Midsummer Mayhem, books where food is the focus and the plot happens around it. I always find them to be especially cute, and I think this one will fall onto the list.

Sixth graders Sara and Elizabeth couldn’t be more different. Sara is Pakistani American and used to her small Islamic school, only this year she’s attending a newer bigger school. Elizabeth has her own problems, who is white and Jewish, has her own problems, like her mom struggling with depression.

The girls meet in an after school South Asian cooking class Elizabeth picked up the class because her mother stopped cooking. Sara is only there because she has to be, after all her mom is the teacher, but Sara hates to cook.

The two girls slowly become friends and come up with a plan to make an amazing cross cultural dish together, that will win them a spot on a local food show. The question is, they make good cooking partners, but can they be true friends?

This will be out August 11th.

Amazon: A Place at the Table

Eva Evergreen, Semi-Magical Witch

I’ve been waiting for this book to come out since the beginning of the year. For one thing it looks cute as heck, and for two the young witch reminds me of myself.

Eva Evergreen is determined to earn the rank of novice witch before her thirteenth birthday. If she doesn’t she’ll loose her magic forever. For most witches and wizards it’s a simple enough test. It has three steps.

One: Help your town, do good all around.
Two: Live there for one moon, don’t leave too soon.
Three: Fly home by broomstick, the easiest of tricks.

Eva has a problem though, she’s not exactly as magical as she would like and when her magic does work, it’s not always in the way she plans. She summons heads of cabbage instead of flowers, and gets sunburn instead of calling down rain. The worst of it, when she uses too much magic she falls asleep.

When she lands in the tranquil coastal town of Auteri, she’s not what the residents are expecting. But she’s determined to prove herself. So she sets up a magical repair shop to aid the citizens of the town, she may only be semi-magical but her fixes help the townspeople in ways they could have never imagined

The only problem is Eva’s bit of magic might not be enough when the biggest magical storm in history threatens the town she’s grown to love. She must use all her magic, bravery and cleverness, if she wants to have any chance at saving Auteri or becoming a witch.

This will be out August 4th.

Amazon: Eva Evergreen, Semi-Magical Witch

Kind of a Big Deal

I really like Shannon Hale as an author so I thought I’d give this a try plus the concept seemed interesting.

There is nothing peaking in high school, and Josie Pie learned that lesson the hard way.

She dropped out of high school to be a star only have her Broadway dreams dashed. The bigger you are the harder you fall after all.

The rest of her life isn’t much better her best friend is distant. Boyfriend-busy, and her mom, she clearly has other things on her mind.

Josie escapes into books to get away from her slowly imploding life

Only thing is she really escapes, she reads a book and suddenly she’s inside it. She a different character: a post-apocalyptic heroine, the lead in a YA rom-com, and so on for every book she reads

At first she’s worried but then she’s amazed. It’s the perfect way to for the failed Broadway star to finally find new ways to shine. The thing is the longer she stays in a story the harder it is to escape.

Will Josie find a story so good that she just stays forever.

This will be out August 25th.

Amazon: Kind of a Big Deal

What new releases are you looking forward to this month?

Photo by Alyson McPhee on Unsplash