So, I don’t know about you, but I have a bad habit. I buy books. A lot of books. My To-Be-Read (TBR) pile is already enormous, but I just can’t stop myself. I see a book I want and most of the time I grab it. Everyday is a day to treat yourself to a book. While I may never be able to manage this book buying addiction, I thought I could at least share all the books I’ve bought so far this year and we could commiserate with each other over having way too many books and so little time to read them all. While I did manage to only buy 10 books so far this year, I have tried really hard to actually read some of the books I bought instead of just adding them to my Mt. Everest of TBR. So, without further ado, here is my quarterly YA books haul featuring some mini reviews!
1. The Dazzling Heights By Katharine McGee
The Dazzling Heights is the second book in The Thousandth Floor Trilogy. This book/series combines several of my favorite guilty pleasures: drama, a futuristic world, and glamour. Think Pretty Little Liars and Gossip Girl set a hundred years in the future. This book and series is told in alternating perspectives and follows several characters from different backgrounds. Most of the characters come from rich, luxurious backgrounds and live on the upper floors of the tallest building in the world. They are surrounded by amazing technology that makes everything easy, but also makes it incredibly easy to spy on people. Where there are rich teenagers with money and hormones, there are secrets, some of which are deadly and life-ruining. Characters lie to each while claiming they are best friends or lovers. This book is a wild ride of drama and action, with a touch of a weird and odd romance. It’s hard to go into detail about this book because the details can give away things about the characters and this is a spoiler-free zone! If you like drama and futuristic worlds, this book is for you. I loved reading it and can’t wait for the final book later this year!
2. Wonder Woman Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo
Wonder Woman! You must sing the words Wonder Woman in the tune of the theme song… Always. This is the first book in a long DC YA book series that is being written by multiple authors and about multiple DC characters. This particular book follows a young pre-Wonder Woman Diana who risks everything and breaks Amazon law just to save a mortal girl. But it is no ordinary girl that Diana saves. This girl, Alia, is a war bringer, a.k.a. a person who is destined to bring misery and war. These strong ladies must work together to fight off those who seek to harm Alia and save both of their worlds. Whoa! This whole description is just, “Wow!” I bought this book because I loved the Wonder Woman movie so much and you know I love a good strong female character. So when I saw this book I just had to buy it. I haven’t read this yet, but I am excited for when I do because Diana is one of my favorite strong, female characters in the superhero universe. And because I adored the movie so much, I very much look forward to stepping back into this world and experiencing more bad-assery.
3. Daughter of the Burning City by Amanda Foody
Sorina is special. She is the only illusion-worker born in a century and works at the Gomorrah festival. With her powers, she can create illusions for people that they can truly feel, see, and touch. Sorina adores her illusions, but knows that they are not reality. But suddenly, one of her illusions is murdered. Sorina becomes desperate to find out who killed something that isn’t even real, so she must band together with unlikely friend as they race the clock before another illusion is murdered. I had to have this book. It has murder, fantasy, and mystery, which are basically some of my favorite things ever. Also, it’s set in a festival/carnival setting and I love a good, creepy carnival. This book just seems so unique in its plot and setting that I couldn’t not buy it. Alas, I have not read this book yet. I have read the first few pages, which were fantastic. I can’t wait to read this soon!
4. There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins
Holy Scream movie, Batman! If you love the Scream movies, I highly suggest this book for you. I read this book in about 2 days. It’s short, but was so well done that I couldn’t stop reading. This book has the perfect mix of romance, gore, and suspense. I will say, this is not for the faint of heart or for those who have any anxieties or triggers that deal with violence or death. This book is incredibly detailed. It follows the story of Makani Young as she adjusts to life in Nebraska, flirts with the loner guy, and deals with the serial killer who is going around brutally murdering her classmate. But Makani has a secret. Does the killer know what she did? Is she next because of her haunting past? This is like a coming of age story mixed with any Scream or Friday the 13th movie. I adored this book. And while it’s a stand alone, I wish it was a series because I wanted to read more. If you’re looking for some spookiness in the middle of Spring, this book is for you.
5. Daughter of the Siren Queen by Tricia Levenseller
Think Captain Jack Sparrow, but a girl and more awesome. This is the sequel to Daughter of the Pirate King. Alosa is a freaking Queen (literally). She runs her ship of all female crew and she takes no shit, a woman after of my own heart. She is racing her father, the Pirate King, to the island of sirens for the biggest treasure ever. Her father is merciless in this race and she throws it right back in his face. She is the best kind of character, a strong female character. You are rooting for her and all her shipmates each time they get caught up in a fight with her father’s crew. You want her to win, not just because she’s a badass, but because she deserves to beat her cruel and abusive father. The world is also amazing. The life of a pirate is not for me, but I did enjoy this well crafted world and couldn’t wait to dive back into it each day. There is also the handsome and sarcastic Riden, who is absolutely delicious. This book, as well as the first, was amazing. I totally recommend it.
6. The Case for Jamie by Brittany Cavallari
This book is the third book in the Charlotte Holmes series. I adore anything Sherlock Holmes, so this series was right up my alley since book one. (No spoilers here for those who haven’t read the first two books.) In this book, Holmes and Watson have been separated for over a year. Both needed time and space to deal with the dangerous and traumatic things they went through together. Going through anxiety and PTSD is not always easy with a Holmes around, so Jamie has gone back to school and is determined to give up this detective tag-along lifestyle, finish school, and get into college. Well, when you’re a Watson, the Holmes family and the detective life doesn’t always let you go so easily. This book follows Jamie’s year away from Holmes and the ways the universe and some meddling family members are shoving Holmes and Watson back together once more. Gosh, that was hard to describe without giving away spoilers. I have read this book! I adored the first book, the second book was alright, and this one was great. I enjoyed this book more because it had so much character development for both Holmes and Watson and it was so nice to see that and see both of them trying to handle mental illness, addiction, and toxic relationships like real people (no easy fixes just because they are Watson and Holmes). Seriously, go read these books so that we can talk in more detail!
7. Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
I don’t really like stories where romance is one of the main themes, but Rainbow Rowell is a goddess who takes romance and mixes it with self discovery, perseverance, and a strong dose of reality. I will read anything she writes. When I read the description for this book, I knew I had to get it. This book is about two work friends, Beth and Jennifer, who exchange e-mails with each other and the IT guy who reads and sorts through those e-mails. Slowly, the IT guy, Lincoln, begins to fall in love with Beth just from reading the e-mails she sends. How do you talk to someone you’re secretly in love with? How do you introduce yourself to someone you already know? This story follows Lincoln on his journey to finally talk to Beth and mostly to stop standing still. This summary sort of reminds me of The Office, purely from the office setting and I sort of hope Beth and Lincoln will turn into Jim and Pam. I can’t wait to read this and swoon!
8. The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James
I am actually currently reading this book. Romy Silvers is the loneliest girl in the universe, like seriously. She is on a spaceship that is traveling to a new planet and it is going to take decades to get there. She had her parents with her, but they died when she was young, so she has mostly been by herself her entire life, which just blows my mind. The book is told in 3rd person narrative featuring e-mails that Romy receives from NASA and fellow spaceship commander, J. J is on a separate ship that is flying to catch up with Romy’s and when it does, the two ships will become one, and they will finish the journey to Earth II together. But until then, Romy is all alone. This book has had a little bit of romance, but mostly a lot of what it’s like to be in space, be alone most of your life, and mental health. I bought this book for several reasons. One, I love books about space. Two, his book seems to be a unique take on life in space. Three, the cover is so pretty. And four, the reviews for this book mentioned a huge plot twist that they didn’t see coming and which changed their whole perception of the book. How could I not buy it? I adore the book so far. And if you like space and plot twists, you should read it too!
9. Final Girls by Riley Sager
There is a group of people the media calls The Final Girls, as in the sole survivors of traumatic and deadly events. This book follows Lisa, Sam, and Quincy, who are all Final Girls. Lisa escaped a brutal attack on her sorority that left nine of her sorority sisters dead. Sam survived a run-in with the Sack Man. And Quincy went out into a cottage in the woods with five friends and was the only one left alive. These girls have never met, but they all share the bond of survival and wanting to move on with their lives. Years later, Quincy has everything she wants. She has dealt with what she went through and is happy with her life now. Until Lisa is found dead. Quincy is thrust back into her past when Sam shows up in her life and demands help and information. Quincy is suspicious of Sam and her real intentions. Quincy is forced to face what really happened at the cottage in the woods, figure out what Sam is hiding, and evade the media and police, all before someone comes for her next. WOW. This description had the hair standing up on the back on my neck. This will definitely be a book that I read and then keep all the lights on when I go to sleep. This book seems like it will be really intense, but it also seems like it will put a twist on the horror genre and I’m here for that.
10. Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
I did reverse on this one. I saw the movie first and then read the book. While the movie was cute and I 1000% recommend it, I adored the book way more. Book Simon was so precious and funny and kind and I just loved him so much. I also loved the whole premise of the book. Simon juggles his friends, family, a play, and figuring out how to come out and when and where. He finally feels like he has someone to talk to who understands exactly how he feels when he meets Blue. The two exchange e-mails back and forth and it is honestly the most adorable thing ever. But someone discovers Simon’s secret and threatens to expose him to the whole school before he’s ready. This book will have you laughing, crying, and rooting for the happy ending everyone deserves. I highly, highly recommend this book. Also, please read this book or go see the movie so that we can show the big Hollywood guys and publishers that we want diverse stories and characters. Diversity is what makes us great!
So these are all the books I’ve bought in this first quarter of the year (January-March) and I’m so surprised I only bought 10. Good job me for showing restraint! I should reward myself with a new book…
If you also have a book buying addiction, tell me in the comments what books you’ve bought so far this year and let me know if you’ve read any of the books on my list so that we can chat about them!
Stay bookish, geeky friends!