Femathon Weeks 3-4 | 2021 Edition

I kinda ran out of energy towards the end of the month … so here’s to publishing this blog post a bit late? lol whoops

Book 18 was The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab. I seem to be the only person with mixed thoughts on this one, because I neither loved nor hated it. The premise is really cool: what happens if you make a deal with the devil where he gets to keep your soul once you’re done with it, regardless of how many years you’ve been around – but in exchange no one can remember you were ever there? I think if you like memoires you’re going to like this book, because like most lives this book meanders and is not remotely evenly paced. The first 100 pages were interesting enough, but I wasn’t glued to the book. Pages 120-280ish were much more intriguing to me. The next 100 pages were pretty ok, but I could easily take breaks from the story. And I was definitely glued to the last 60ish pages. I’m very happy with the ending, and the meandering makes sense, but for me the pacing was a bit off. That being said, if you’re looking for a slow book to savor you might like this one. It could count towards Fem Positive, Wildcard, and Fems Fight Back.

A Life No One Will Remember. A Story You Will Never Forget.

France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.

Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

For read 19, I absolutely ADORED Margaret Atwood’s Dearly. Like most collections of stories, there were some poems I liked more than others, but I am VERY happy to have this book in my collection. If you like poetry that is both evocative and brief, I have a feeling you’ll like it too. I appreciated that parts of it reminded me a bit of William Carlos William’s work. In particular, I enjoyed “Ghost Cat”, “Double-Entry Slug Sex”, “Plastiscene Suite”, et al. 10/10 would recommend, but also maybe check the trigger warnings first. This could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, Disability/Neurodiversity, Fems Fight Back, and debatably Non Fiction.

A new book of poetry from internationally acclaimed, award-winning and bestselling author Margaret Atwood

In Dearly, Margaret Atwood’s first collection of poetry in over a decade, Atwood addresses themes such as love, loss, the passage of time, the nature of nature and – zombies. Her new poetry is introspective and personal in tone, but wide-ranging in topic. In poem after poem, she casts her unique imagination and unyielding, observant eye over the landscape of a life carefully and intuitively lived.

While many are familiar with Margaret Atwood’s fiction—including her groundbreaking and bestselling novels The Handmaid’s TaleThe TestamentsOryx and Crake, among others—she has, from the beginning of her career, been one of our most significant contemporary poets. And she is one of the very few writers equally accomplished in fiction and poetry.  This collection is a stunning achievement that will be appreciated by fans of her novels and poetry readers alike.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

For read 20 I read The Midwinter Witch is the third book in The Witch Boy Series by Molly Ostertag. Like the second book in this series it also focuses on found family, friendship, and being yourself. If you’re into graphic novels, I’d highly recommend you check this YA series out. It could count in Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Friendship, Wildcard, LGBTQIA+, and Fems Fight Back.

Magic has a dark side . . .

Aster always looks forward to the Midwinter Festival, a reunion of the entire Vanissen family that includes competitions in witchery and shapeshifting. This year, he’s especially excited to compete in the annual Jolrun tournament-as a witch. He’s determined to show everyone that he’s proud of who he is and what he’s learned, but he knows it won’t be easy to defy tradition.

Ariel has darker things on her mind than the Festival-like the mysterious witch who’s been visiting her dreams, claiming to know the truth about Ariel’s past. She appreciates everything the Vanissens have done for her. But Ariel still craves a place where she truly belongs.

The Festival is a whirlwind of excitement and activity, but for Aster and Ariel, nothing goes according to plan. When a powerful and sinister force invades the reunion, threatening to destroy everything the young witches have fought for, can they find the courage to fight it together? Or will dark magic tear them apart?

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Book 21 was The Castle of Tangled Magic by Sophie Anderson. I am absolutely loving her books, and I think she’s going to be an auto-by author for me. This is the author’s 3rd work and you can see the growth Sophie has had. In her first book, The House with Chicken Legs, the book was a bit slow for me until chapter 12-ish. Her second book, The Girl Who Speaks Bear, still took a little while to get into (maybe 4 or 6 chapters). And in this third book the story sucked me in pretty much from chapter 2. While the pacing is a bit faster in this one, there were some areas that were very repetitive. But honestly, that might be a good thing since this is aimed at middle grade readers. This book covers why it is important to look at things from different perspectives, what “home” means, and how to handle ugly history in your family’s past. I whole-heartedly adore the way Anderson makes these complex topics accessible to younger readers. Personally, The Girl Who Speaks Bear is still my favorite, but I can’t wait to see what Anderson comes up with next. Also, while it’s not necessary to read these books in order, I think you’ll appreciate reading The House with Chicken Legs before this one.

Olia lives with her parents in an old crumbling castle, filled with hidden turrets and secret doorways. When she follows a mysterious cat to one of the castle’s roof domes, she finds herself stepping through one such doorway into a magical land filled with wonders… But everything is not quite as it seems: the land is under threat from a scheming magician, Chernmor, and the magic is fading away.

With the help of an enchanted band of new friends, can Olia find a way to save both her own home, and the land of forbidden magic?

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Read 22 was The Shadow Rising by Robert Jordan which is the 4th book in The Wheel of Time Series … I can’t really talk about it since it’s later on in the series, but a lot of stuff happens in this book with both character and plot development. One thing I don’t understand about this series is whether to classify it as YA since most of the characters are in their late teens or to only shove it into the adult/high fantasy category. It definitely reads like a traditional high fantasy series. This could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fems Fight Back.

Book 23 was Burn Our Bodies Down by Rory Power. The book blurb for this one is on point. If you like a cross between magical realism mixed with sci-fi themes with a rather creepy feel, you’ll probably want to pick this book up. Just make sure to check the content warnings first on the author’s website (the familial relationships are very unhealthy). While this book is classified as YA and features several people in their late teens, it reads more like an adult book to me. The characters were that age in order for some of the plot to work, but they didn’t feel that young to me. This could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fems Fight Back.

Ever since Margot was born, it’s been just her and her mother. No answers to Margot’s questions about what came before. No history to hold on to. No relative to speak of. Just the two of them, stuck in their run-down apartment, struggling to get along. But that’s not enough for Margot. She wants family. She wants a past. And she just found the key she needs to get it: A photograph, pointing her to a town called Phalene. Pointing her home. Only, when Margot gets there, it’s not what she bargained for. Margot’s mother left for a reason. But was it to hide her past? Or was it to protect Margot from what’s still there? The only thing Margot knows for sure is there’s poison in their family tree, and their roots are dug so deeply into Phalene that now that she’s there, she might never escape.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Book 24 was The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner. I tried to branch out a bit from SFF to Historical Fiction for this one. While the book blurb is accurate, my brain interpreted it as there being more modern day murders afoot – that doesn’t happen – and I’m not exactly sure what that says about me 😅 This book could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, and Fems Fight Back.

A female apothecary secretly dispenses poisons to liberate women from the men who have wronged them—setting three lives across centuries on a dangerous collision course.Rule #1: The poison must never be used to harm another woman.
Rule #2: The names of the murderer and her victim must be recorded in the apothecary’s register.

One cold February evening in 1791, at the back of a dark London alley in a hidden apothecary shop, Nella awaits her newest customer. Once a respected healer, Nella now uses her knowledge for a darker purpose—selling well-disguised poisons to desperate women who would kill to be free of the men in their lives. But when her new patron turns out to be a precocious twelve-year-old named Eliza Fanning, an unexpected friendship sets in motion a string of events that jeopardizes Nella’s world and threatens to expose the many women whose names are written in her register.

In present-day London, aspiring historian Caroline Parcewell spends her tenth wedding anniversary alone, reeling from the discovery of her husband’s infidelity. When she finds an old apothecary vial near the river Thames, she can’t resist investigating, only to realize she’s found a link to the unsolved “apothecary murders” that haunted London over two centuries ago. As she deepens her search, Caroline’s life collides with Nella’s and Eliza’s in a stunning twist of fate—and not everyone will survive.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Read 25 was The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin. This is the first book in her Great Cities series that is yet to come out, and it very much reminded me of a book that’s used as a setup for the rest of a series. There’s a whole lot of character development and very little plot until the end. Some of the way things are phrased made me literally ROFL, but overall it is a slower book. It very much feels like a book that is set in NYC for a purpose (aka it actually feels like NYC [unlike When No One Is Watching by Alyssa Cole]), and I am super excited to see where this series goes.

Three-time Hugo Award-winning and New York Times bestselling author N.K. Jemisin crafts her most incredible novel yet, a “glorious” story of culture, identity, magic, and myths in contemporary New York City.

In Manhattan, a young grad student gets off the train and realizes he doesn’t remember who he is, where he’s from, or even his own name. But he can sense the beating heart of the city, see its history, and feel its power.

In the Bronx, a Lenape gallery director discovers strange graffiti scattered throughout the city, so beautiful and powerful it’s as if the paint is literally calling to her.

In Brooklyn, a politician and mother finds she can hear the songs of her city, pulsing to the beat of her Louboutin heels.

And they’re not the only ones.

Every great city has a soul. Some are ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. New York? She’s got six.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Read 26 was The Hazards of Love Vol. 1: Bright World by Stan Stanley which is a graphic novel about a non-binary character who attends an all girl’s school, makes a deal with an “evil” talking cat, gets sucked out of their world and into Bright World, and spends the rest of their time in this issue learning about Bright World while trying to get back to their world. I received this as an uncorrected proof/ARC through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. The art on the cover is completely indicative of the rest of the art inside. For some reason the author info on Goodreads isn’t actually linked to the author’s actual accounts so if you’re looking for more info on her you should look at this page. This could count in Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, LGBTQIA+, and Fems Fight Back.

The Hazards of Love follows the story of a queer teen from Queens who makes some mistakes, gets dragged into a fantastical place, and tries to hustle their way back home.

Amparo’s deal with the talking cat was simple: a drop of blood and Amparo’s name to become a better person. Their mother and abuela would never worry about them again, and they’d finally be worthy of dating straight-A student Iolanthe. But when the cat steals their body, becoming the better person they were promised, Amparo’s spirit is imprisoned in a land of terrifying, flesh-hungry creatures known as Bright World.

With cruel and manipulative masters and a society that feeds on memories, Amparo must use their cleverness to escape, without turning into a monster like the rest. On “the other side,” Iolanthe begins to suspect the new Amparo has a secret, and after the cat in disguise vanishes, she’s left searching for answers with a no-nonsense medium from the lesbian mafia and the only person who might know the truth about Bright World.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Book 27 (and my favorite read in March) goes to Legendborn by Tracy Deonn. The book blurb absolutely sets the stage for what to expect and I cannot say enough good things about this book. I’ve never read anything that wasn’t a thriller with pacing this good, and I’m not even sure the thrillers I’ve read could compare in pacing. Reading this book is like following a trail of breadcrumbs on a adventure to find out where you’re going – you can’t see them that far in advance, they’re little morsels to keep you occupied, and you’re excited the whole time to find out where the trail leads. If the book blurb sounds even remotely interesting then you’ll definitely enjoy the book. This could count in Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, LGBTQIA+, Fems Fight Back, and Disability/Neurodiversity (as mental health greatly impacts MC’s daily life).

After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus.

A flying demon feeding on human energies.

A secret society of so called “Legendborn” students that hunt the creatures down.

And a mysterious teenage mage who calls himself a “Merlin” and who attempts—and fails—to wipe Bree’s memory of everything she saw.

The mage’s failure unlocks Bree’s own unique magic and a buried memory with a hidden connection: the night her mother died, another Merlin was at the hospital. Now that Bree knows there’s more to her mother’s death than what’s on the police report, she’ll do whatever it takes to find out the truth, even if that means infiltrating the Legendborn as one of their initiates.

She recruits Nick, a self-exiled Legendborn with his own grudge against the group, and their reluctant partnership pulls them deeper into the society’s secrets—and closer to each other. But when the Legendborn reveal themselves as the descendants of King Arthur’s knights and explain that a magical war is coming, Bree has to decide how far she’ll go for the truth and whether she should use her magic to take the society down—or join the fight.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

My last read to end in March with book 28 goes to The Sad Ghost Club by Lize Meddings. This is a graphic novel that also has the interior match the art on the cover and is a YA contemporary about anxiety and depression. I felt very seen while reading this book and would highly recommend it. This could count in Fem Positive, Wildcard, Disability/Neurodiversity, and Fems Fight Back.

Ever felt anxious or alone? Like you don’t belong anywhere? Like you’re almost… invisible? Find your kindred spirits at The Sad Ghost Club.

This is the story of one of those days – a day so bad you can barely get out of bed, when it’s a struggle to leave the house, and when you do, you wish you hadn’t. But even the worst of days can surprise you. When one sad ghost, lost and alone at a crowded party, spies another sad ghost across the room, they decide to leave together. What happens next changes everything. Because that night they start the The Sad Ghost Club – a secret society for the anxious and alone, a club for people who think they don’t belong.

For fans of Heartstopper and Jennifer Niven, and for anyone who’s ever felt invisible. You are not alone. Shhh. Pass it on.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Femathon Week 2 | 2021 Edition

I’m having one of those moments where I feel like I haven’t read anything this week and now that I’m going back to actually write about it I’m realizing that I did…

On to the 10th book – When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole. I have very mixed feelings about this one. If you’re looking for a mashup between a contemporary, romance, and thriller this book probably has you covered. Personally, I hated the ending because it completely broke my willing suspension of disbelief. Also I had to pretend the whole time that this wasn’t set in Brooklyn because it feels much closer to small town America than it does NYC (Seriously, how are there no Jews in Brooklyn in this story, why does it feel like there are only six houses in this whole neighborhood, and also why are they taking Ubers instead of the subway?). On the other hand I loved how it talks about racism, social class, and economic suppression. This could count in Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Female Relationship, Wildcard, LGBTQIA+, and Fems Fight Back.

Books 11-12 were volumes 1 and 2 of The Way of the House Husband by Kousuke Oono, translated by Sheldon Drzka. I started reading this Manga series because my friend sent me the Netflix Anime trailer for it (which you should totally watch). I’m counting this series towards Femathon since it’s a bit of a typical gender flip where the husband is the homemaker and supports his wife being the “bread winner”. Did I mention the premise is based on a revered Yakuza gang leader retiring from gang life to become a homemaker – but he still looks intimidating and goes about his daily life as if the things he’s doing are still somewhat gang culture related? It’s a fabulous comedy. I just wish the stories were tied together a bit more from chapter to chapter. Each chapter mostly follows one incident/idea to show snippets of life. It’s almost completely episodic, and I kinda wish it also had an overarching plot. These could count in Fem Positive, Wildcard, and Fems Fight Back.

Book 13 was Elantris by Brandon Sanderson. I absolutely ADORE the main female protagonist, Sarene. She’s a princess who turned down her first engagement because she didn’t like the guy, became a pariah because of it, became a bit of a diplomat, volunteered for an arranged marriage with the prince of the neighboring kingdom in order to secure a safer future for her people, acted dumb and threw around a ton of soft power in the new country in order to undermine the sexist king and become a political powerforce, and she’s SUPER smart. There are more things I could go on about, but that would get into spoiler territory. If a character driven story with a magic system somewhat similar to alchemy sounds like a fun time to you then you’ll probably like this book. The characters struggle so hard during all of the groundwork in the book that by the time the climax comes around I literally, physically “whooped” because it felt so rewarding. This could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fems Fight Back.

Books 14-15 were the next two volumes of The Way of the House Husband. I don’t really have more to add since it’s still sticking to that same comedy route.

Book 16 was Not Your Mother’s Slow Cooker: Recipes for Entertaining by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufmann. As a disabled person who passes out at any given time, I greatly appreciate this cookbook. Slowcooker meals are something you can set and forget about without worrying if you left it on for too long. The vast majority of the recipes are virtually impossible to burn, and I don’t have to worry about passing out while the slow cooker is running. Most of the recipes sound great, and the book is extremely well written even for beginners in the kitchen. They not only provide a plethora of recipes, but also include a section to help you figure out how to make your own or adapt other non-slow cooker recipes. 10/10 would recommend. It doesn’t really fit the prompts well, but since it’s written by women it can count for Fem Positive I guess?

The 17th book I’ve read is the Manga Classics adaptation of Emma by Jane Austen. As a manga adaptation, I love it. As a story, I hate it. In my eyes it’s just old rich aristocracy doing old rich aristocracy things. It does some social commentary on how the way the aristocracy went about marriages, but I’m just really not interested in it. I’d rather read other things. This could count in Classic, Fem Positive, and Platonic Fem Relationship.

What books did you read this week? Have you read any of the ones I did? What did you think about them … please talk to me … I’m lonely LoL

February Reading Wrap-Up | 2021 Edition

I might finally be back in a reading groove. So far I’ve managed to read several books each month this year. Here’s what I thought about my February reads:

The Fire Ascending by Chris d’Lacey … works I guess? This is the 7th and final book in The Last Dragon Chronicles. I royally despised book 6 and then book 7 had to work in the events of book 6 in with what was already set up in book 5 (which is the last book in the series I enjoyed). It does wrap everything up, but I’m never ever touching this series ever again.

On Earth, at the battle of Scuffenbury Hill, time has been suspended. Dragons and their natural enemies, the Ix, are trapped in a bitter conflict. But at the dawn of history, a mysterious force is rewriting the timelines, turning what was once legend into startling reality. Is David Rain strong enough to save himself and those he loves from being written into a deadly new destiny? 

David, Zanna, Lucy, Alexa, and the Pennykettle dragons return, along with new friends and enemies, to embark on their most dangerous and most magical adventure yet. Bridging the magic of the first five books with the world and characters introduced in FIRE WORLD, this action-packed final installment of the Last Dragon Chronicles will have readers racing to the last page.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Far Sector by N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell is SO MUCH FUN. It is an adult comic book series featuring a queer, Black Green Lantern who is dispatched to a metropolis/world of 3 races where an unusual murder has happened. I read issues 1-10 in February and am impatiently waiting for the rest of the series to get wrapped up this year.

N.K. Jemisin, the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Broken Earth and Inheritance science fiction trilogies, makes her comic book debut with bestselling Naomi artist Jamal Campbell as they thrust you into a stunning sci-fi murder mystery on the other side of the universe!

For the past six months, newly chosen Green Lantern Sojourner “Jo” Mullein has been protecting the City Enduring, a massive metropolis of 20 billion people. The city has maintained peace for over 500 years by stripping its citizens of their ability to feel. As a result, violent crime is virtually unheard of, and murder is nonexistent.

But that’s all about to change in this new maxiseries that gives a DC Young Animal spin to the legacy of the Green Lanterns!

– Goodreads Book Blurb

In Love and Pajamas by Catana Chetwynd is an absolutely adorable graphic novel about being yourself with your partner. I’ve been following Catana Comics for years now and I hope to be following her for many years to come.

When you’ve reached that sweatpants-wearing cozy place in your relationship, it’s all In Love & Pajamas This brand-new collection of Catana Comics presents some fan favorites and half of the book features never-before-seen comics that delight and amuse readers of all ages.  Wholesome, sweet, feel-good humor!

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi is a harrowing tale about a young Nigerian person who is born with a fractured sense of self thanks to being a human born with a god inside them. This book explores mental health, self identity, and gender identity. Content warning for rape – the scenes are not gratuitous and are used specifically for talking about how this affects the main character. I really enjoyed this story, though I don’t see myself constantly rereading it.

An extraordinary debut novel, Freshwater explores the surreal experience of having a fractured self. It centers around a young Nigerian woman, Ada, who develops separate selves within her as a result of being born “with one foot on the other side.” Unsettling, heartwrenching, dark, and powerful, Freshwater is a sharp evocation of a rare way of experiencing the world, one that illuminates how we all construct our identities.

Ada begins her life in the south of Nigeria as a troubled baby and a source of deep concern to her family. Her parents, Saul and Saachi, successfully prayed her into existence, but as she grows into a volatile and splintered child, it becomes clear that something went terribly awry. When Ada comes of age and moves to America for college, the group of selves within her grows in power and agency. A traumatic assault leads to a crystallization of her alternate selves: Asụghara and Saint Vincent. As Ada fades into the background of her own mind and these selves–now protective, now hedonistic–move into control, Ada’s life spirals in a dark and dangerous direction.

Narrated by the various selves within Ada and based in the author’s realities, Freshwater dazzles with ferocious energy and serpentine grace, heralding the arrival of a fierce new literary voice.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter is a work classified as historical fiction based on hand-me-down stories from the author’s Jewish family that survived the Holocaust. I checked out the audiobook from my library for this one and I wish I had kept a notebook of all the content warnings, suffice it to say you’ll want to keep some hankies or a box of tissues around for when you read this one. It’s a realistic story based on people who experienced the atrocities that was the Holocaust.

It is the spring of 1939 and three generations of the Kurc family are doing their best to live normal lives, even as the shadow of war grows closer. The talk around the family Seder table is of new babies and budding romance, not of the increasing hardships threatening Jews in their hometown of Radom, Poland. But soon the horrors overtaking Europe will become inescapable and the Kurcs will be flung to the far corners of the world, each desperately trying to navigate his or her own path to safety. 

As one sibling is forced into exile, another attempts to flee the continent, while others struggle to escape certain death, either by working grueling hours on empty stomachs in the factories of the ghetto or by hiding as gentiles in plain sight. Driven by an unwavering will to survive and by the fear that they may never see one another again, the Kurcs must rely on hope, ingenuity, and inner strength to persevere. 

An extraordinary, propulsive novel, We Were the Lucky Ones demonstrates how in the face of the twentieth century’s darkest moment, the human spirit can endure and even thrive.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee: Native America from 1890 to the Present by David Treuer. If you’re looking for an own-voices book about Native/Indigenous American history then you need to pick this up. It is a fantastic resource of sociological insight that communicates historical accounts without being dry. Even if you don’t consider yourself a history fan, I think you might enjoy this one.


A sweeping history—and counter-narrative—of Native American life from the Wounded Knee massacre to the present.

The received idea of Native American history—as promulgated by books like Dee Brown’s mega-bestselling 1970 Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee—has been that American Indian history essentially ended with the 1890 massacre at Wounded Knee. Not only did one hundred fifty Sioux die at the hands of the U. S. Cavalry, the sense was, but Native civilization did as well. 

Growing up Ojibwe on a reservation in Minnesota, training as an anthropologist, and researching Native life past and present for his nonfiction and novels, David Treuer has uncovered a different narrative. Because they did not disappear—and not despite but rather because of their intense struggles to preserve their language, their traditions, their families, and their very existence—the story of American Indians since the end of the nineteenth century to the present is one of unprecedented resourcefulness and reinvention. 

In The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee, Treuer melds history with reportage and memoir. Tracing the tribes’ distinctive cultures from first contact, he explores how the depredations of each era spawned new modes of survival. The devastating seizures of land gave rise to increasingly sophisticated legal and political maneuvering that put the lie to the myth that Indians don’t know or care about property. The forced assimilation of their children at government-run boarding schools incubated a unifying Native identity. Conscription in the US military and the pull of urban life brought Indians into the mainstream and modern times, even as it steered the emerging shape of self-rule and spawned a new generation of resistance. The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee is the essential, intimate story of a resilient people in a transformative era.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty -what can I say? This is the third and final installment of the Daevabad Trilogy, and it was GLORIOUS. I’m definitely going to be rereading this series for years to come.

The final chapter in the Daevabad Trilogy, in which a con-woman and an idealistic djinn prince join forces to save a magical kingdom from a devastating civil war.

Daevabad has fallen.

After a brutal conquest stripped the city of its magic, Nahid leader Banu Manizheh and her resurrected commander, Dara, must try to repair their fraying alliance and stabilize a fractious, warring people.

But the bloodletting and loss of his beloved Nahri have unleashed the worst demons of Dara’s dark past. To vanquish them, he must face some ugly truths about his history and put himself at the mercy of those he once considered enemies.

Having narrowly escaped their murderous families and Daevabad’s deadly politics, Nahri and Ali, now safe in Cairo, face difficult choices of their own. While Nahri finds peace in the old rhythms and familiar comforts of her human home, she is haunted by the knowledge that the loved ones she left behind and the people who considered her a savior are at the mercy of a new tyrant. Ali, too, cannot help but look back, and is determined to return to rescue his city and the family that remains. Seeking support in his mother’s homeland, he discovers that his connection to the marid goes far deeper than expected and threatens not only his relationship with Nahri, but his very faith.

As peace grows more elusive and old players return, Nahri, Ali, and Dara come to understand that in order to remake the world, they may need to fight those they once loved . . . and take a stand for those they once hurt.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher made for a very interesting Middle Grade read. It’s about a town where wizards are disappearing and the only one left to help defend the city is a young girl whose magic only works on bread. If a somewhat living sourdough starter that can understand some speech being used in medieval combat sounds like a fun time to you, you’ll probably like this book.

Fourteen-year-old Mona isn’t like the wizards charged with defending the city. She can’t control lightning or speak to water. Her familiar is a sourdough starter and her magic only works on bread. She has a comfortable life in her aunt’s bakery making gingerbread men dance.

But Mona’s life is turned upside down when she finds a dead body on the bakery floor. An assassin is stalking the streets of Mona’s city, preying on magic folk, and it appears that Mona is his next target. And in an embattled city suddenly bereft of wizards, the assassin may be the least of Mona’s worries… 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan is the first book in The Wheel of Time series. Will I finally finish them all this year? I hope so. This is the third time I’ve read this book while in the process of trying to finish the series because I usually keep getting distracted by other books even though I really enjoy this series. On my first read through of this book I found it rather boring until the end because it focuses on so much character development, but now that I’m on the third read through I’m really liking it because I’m still picking up on new details and seeing the foreshadowing I just didn’t even notice before.

The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time.

The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and go, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth returns again. In the Third Age, an Age of Prophecy, the World and Time themselves hang in the balance. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

When The Two Rivers is attacked by Trollocs-a savage tribe of half-men, half-beasts- five villagers flee that night into a world they barely imagined, with new dangers waiting in the shadows and in the light.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Golden Goose by Jacob Grimm is a classic fairytale which I feel like everyone has heard at some point. I stumbled across it again one day because I had half a migraine and couldn’t see straight, but I wanted to be entertained — so I told my smart speaker to read me a story. As a child, this story was plenty entertaining, but as an adult I have some questions. Why is the whole family so cruel to the third boy? Why are none of the boys surprised by a person coming up to them asking for food? Why do they not talk more to this person? Is this goose quite literally made of gold? Why did the boy have to pluck a feather- shouldn’t the goose have naturally shed one by now? Why is the boy not frightened that he starts a conga line of people hanging on to his goose? Is he stuck to his goose? Who controls the sticking, the boy or the goose? And perhaps most importantly: HOW DID THEY FIND A CONTENT GOOSE THAT DOESN’T WANT TO BEAT UP EVERY HUMAN THAT COMES NEAR IT? Seriously though, I’ve spent a fair amount of time on a farm that kept several types of birds including geese, and I’ve never met one that will let you snuggle it in your sleep.

It’s a day like any other when young Hans enters the forest to chop wood for his father. Then he discovers the Golden Goose. 

With gentle humor [this story] brings children a delightful traditional tale with a favorite folkloric theme–the success of someone who’s kind and good.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Across the Green Grass Fields by Seanan McGuire is the 6th book in The Wayward Children series. This one could be read as a standalone novella about an intersex girl who is whisked off to a land of sentient centaurs and unicorns. If you’ve ever struggled with being bullied for not fitting in, you may resonate with this book. Do I see myself rereading this book often? Probably not, but I am very glad I read it.

A young girl discovers a portal to a land filled with centaurs and unicorns in Seanan McGuire’s Across the Green Grass Fields, a standalone tale in the Hugo and Nebula Award-wining Wayward Children series.

“Welcome to the Hooflands. We’re happy to have you, even if you being here means something’s coming.”

Regan loves, and is loved, though her school-friend situation has become complicated, of late.

When she suddenly finds herself thrust through a doorway that asks her to “Be Sure” before swallowing her whole, Regan must learn to live in a world filled with centaurs, kelpies, and other magical equines―a world that expects its human visitors to step up and be heroes.

But after embracing her time with the herd, Regan discovers that not all forms of heroism are equal, and not all quests are as they seem…

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan is the second book in The Wheel of Time – I’m very much enjoying my reread of it.

The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Oh look, it’s the third book in The Wheel of Time: The Dragon Reborn by Robert Jordan, and I’m still enjoying my reread of this series.

The Dragon Reborn—the leader long prophesied who will save the world, but in the saving destroy it; the savior who will run mad and kill all those dearest to him—is on the run from his destiny.

Able to touch the One Power, but unable to control it, and with no one to teach him how—for no man has done it in three thousand years—Rand al’Thor knows only that he must face the Dark One. But how?

Winter has stopped the war—almost—yet men are dying, calling out for the Dragon. But where is he?

Perrin Aybara is in pursuit with Moiraine Sedai, her Warder Lan, and Loial the Ogier. Bedeviled by dreams, Perrin is grappling with another deadly problem—how is he to escape the loss of his own humanity?

Egwene, Elayne and Nynaeve are approaching Tar Valon, where Mat will be healed—if he lives until they arrive. But who will tell the Amyrlin their news—that the Black Ajah, long thought only a hideous rumor, is all too real? They cannot know that in Tar Valon far worse awaits…

Ahead, for all of them, in the Heart of the Stone, lies the next great test of the Dragon reborn….

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The House with Chicken Legs by Sophie Anderson is an absolutely wonderful book that I decided to make a dedicated review of. You should totally go watch it. 💜

All 12-year-old Marinka wants is a friend. A real friend. Not like her house with chicken legs. Sure, the house can play games like tag and hide-and-seek, but Marinka longs for a human companion. Someone she can talk to and share secrets with. 

But that’s tough when your grandmother is a Yaga, a guardian who guides the dead into the afterlife. It’s even harder when you live in a house that wanders all over the world . . . carrying you with it. Even worse, Marinka is being trained to be a Yaga. That means no school, no parties–and no playmates that stick around for more than a day. 

So when Marinka stumbles across the chance to make a real friend, she breaks all the rules . . . with devastating consequences. Her beloved grandmother mysteriously disappears, and it’s up to Marinka to find her–even if it means making a dangerous journey to the afterlife. 

With a mix of whimsy, humor, and adventure, this debut novel will wrap itself around your heart and never let go.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Witch Boy by Molly Ostertag is the first in this graphic novel series known by the same name. This book has queer and BIPOC representation and focuses on why having arbitrary rules about what only men and only women can do may lead to disastrous results. 100/10 would recommend and I totally see myself rereading this frequently as a quick pick-me-up kind of read.

In thirteen-year-old Aster’s family, all the girls are raised to be witches, while boys grow up to be shapeshifters. Anyone who dares cross those lines is exiled. Unfortunately for Aster, he still hasn’t shifted . . . and he’s still fascinated by witchery, no matter how forbidden it might be.

When a mysterious danger threatens the other boys, Aster knows he can help — as a witch. It will take the encouragement of a new friend, the non-magical and non-conforming Charlie, to convince Aster to try practicing his skills. And it will require even more courage to save his family . . . and be truly himself.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Maya and the Rising Dark by Rena Barron. A godling girl going on an adventure with her friends to save her dad from a dark dimension – SIGN ME UP. This was a fun middle grade read.

Twelve-year-old Maya’s search for her missing father puts her at the center of a battle between our world, the Orishas, and the mysterious and sinister Dark world.

Twelve-year-old Maya is the only one in her South Side Chicago neighborhood who witnesses weird occurrences like werehyenas stalking the streets at night and a scary man made of shadows plaguing her dreams. Her friends try to find an explanation—perhaps a ghost uprising or a lunchroom experiment gone awry. But to Maya, it sounds like something from one of Papa’s stories or her favorite comics.

When Papa goes missing, Maya is thrust into a world both strange and familiar as she uncovers the truth. Her father is the guardian of the veil between our world and the Dark—where an army led by the Lord of Shadows, the man from Maya’s nightmares, awaits. Maya herself is a godling, half orisha and half human, and her neighborhood is a safe haven. But now that the veil is failing, the Lord of Shadows is determined to destroy the human world and it’s up to Maya to stop him. She just hopes she can do it in time to attend Comic-Con before summer’s over.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Lumberjanes, Vol. 12 by Shannon Watters was another middle grade read. I’m enjoying their adventures as a whole, but I wasn’t super into the story arc in this issue. That being said, I’m not mad I read it, and I’d probably read it again at some point when I reread the Lumberjanes series.

When Counselor Jen takes the Roanoke scouts on a mission to find a Jackalope, they end up stumbling on a young cowgirl who’s been living in the woods surrounding camp with her herd of unusual critters!

In the aftermath of the time shenanigans set off by Jo’s Mysterious Time Thingy, the Roanoke scouts are a little bit uneasy on their feet. It’s up to Jen to cheer them up and help them get back up and off adventuring again, with a quest to seek out the most mysterious mythological monster of all…the mighty JACKALOPE! This New York Times bestseller and multiple Eisner Award and GLAAD Award-winning series features danger, adventure, and life-long friendships. Get in on the fun with this brand-new adventure written by Shannon Watters and Kat Leyh (Super Cakes) and illustrated by Ayme Sotuyo.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab is the first book in the Cassidy Blake middle grade trilogy. Think “Ghost Whisperer” with a twist but for children, and that’s basically what this series is. I re-read the previous books in the series in anticipation of the third book launching in March. Personally, I think the series gets a bit better with every book, so this one isn’t my favorite — but it’s also a very quick read.

Cassidy Blake’s parents are The Inspecters, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can REALLY see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspecters head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass—and Jacob—come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn’t sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn’t belong in her world. Cassidy’s powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Tunnel of Bones by Victoria Schwab is the second book in the Cassidy Blake trilogy. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Trouble is haunting Cassidy Blake . . . even more than usual.

She (plus her ghost best friend, Jacob, of course) are in Paris, where Cass’s parents are filming their TV show about the world’s most haunted cities. Sure, it’s fun eating croissants and seeing the Eiffel Tower, but there’s true ghostly danger lurking beneath Paris, in the creepy underground Catacombs.

When Cass accidentally awakens a frighteningly strong spirit, she must rely on her still-growing skills as a ghosthunter — and turn to friends both old and new to help her unravel a mystery. But time is running out, and the spirit is only growing stronger.

And if Cass fails, the force she’s unleashed could haunt the city forever.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Princess Princess Ever After by Katie O’Neill — two princesses getting married and showing people gender roles are dumb? YES, PLEASE! This is an absolutely adorable graphic novel for all ages.

“I am no prince!”

When the heroic princess Amira rescues the kind-hearted princess Sadie from her tower prison, neither expects to find a true friend in the bargain. Yet as they adventure across the kingdom, they discover that they bring out the very best in the other person. They’ll need to join forces and use all the know-how, kindness, and bravery they have in order to defeat their greatest foe yet: a jealous sorceress, who wants to get rid of Sadie once and for all.

Join Sadie and Amira, two very different princesses with very different strengths, on their journey to figure out what happily ever after really means — and how they can find it with each other.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Aquicorn Cove by Katie O’Neill is another beautiful work of art for all ages. This book features some grieving for the loss of a loved one along with caring for the people and things around you — especially the health of the ocean. Also, did I mention there’s a sapphic relationship? We love a queer queen.

When Lana and her father return to their seaside hometown to help clear the debris of a storm, the last thing she expects is to discover a colony of Aquicorns—magical seahorse-like residents of the coral reef. As she explores the damaged town and the fabled undersea palace, Lana learns that while she cannot always count on adults to be the guardians she needs, she herself is capable of finding the strength to protect both the ocean, and her own happiness. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Manga Classics: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, adaptation by Crystal S. Chan. I already talked about it in this post if you haven’t already seen it.

Have you read any of the books on this list, or do you plan to pick up any of them now?

Femathon Week 1 | 2021 Edition

Well, 1-7 March 2021 has certainly been a wild ride. My doctors started me on a new medication to raise my blood pressure because they think I may have vasovagal syncope. I told them I’m pretty darn sensitive to medication and to please start me off on a low dose … the 4th pill gave me an overdose. So basically, the 1st-2nd I had some really bad insomnia and read 4 books. I finally slept some on the 3rd and basically took the day off from the readathon to film my January reading wrap-up and spend some time editing. On the 4th I was starting to feel pretty funky since that was dose 2 and 3 of the new medication; I opted to finish The Girl Who Speaks Bear by Sophie Anderson — which might be my favorite book of the month. On the 5th I almost had a stroke 2 hours after the 4th dose; my blood pressure shot up to 150/110 and stayed there which has NEVER happened to me before. I couldn’t see right and my headache was insane and yet not a migraine (which clued me in that something was really off since I never have those sorts of headaches). I’m used to hypotension, not hypertension. Given the choice between the two I’ll take Hypo over Hyper any day — at least I know how to raise my bp relatively quickly when that’s necessary. Hyper is a lot more difficult for me to deal with…I find it scarier. Which I know might be weird? At least with hypotension I can just lay down for a while, have some salt, and pass out for a while until my body reboots. With hypertension caused by a drug that specifically aims to raise your bp more while lying down, I had to put myself in a recliner so I wouldn’t pass out and fall forward out of a chair, shove a ton of fluids (but not too fast because too much water too quickly can also raise blood pressure), and wait two hours for my body to cope and start getting that drug out of my system. I slept for 12 hours between the 5th-6th (which almost never happens) and was rested enough to play D&D for 1.5 hours and then hop on the PJ Party Livestream from my recliner, but that used all my spoons. Thankfully I had enough concentration to finish the manga version of Sense and Sensibility? And the 7th has been another recovery day since I went to bed and woke with a migraine, so I still haven’t filmed anything because holding up a camera would just take too many spoons right now.

So let’s get into actually talking about the books I’ve read so far?

Read #1, the Manga Classics adaptation of Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, I technically started on February 28th in my time zone (but it was March 1st in Spain). The art style matches that which is depicted on the cover though most of the book is in black and white (as is normal for manga). Personally, I don’t care to read a whole lot of Abrahamic religion content anymore – which this book features quite a bit of. So did I like it? Well, it was just ok I guess. It’s definitely not my cup of tea, so I won’t be picking up the source material. That being said, I’m glad I’ve read a classics adaptation. This book counts towards Classic, Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back.

Orphaned as a child, Jane has felt an outcast her whole young life. Her courage is tested once again when she arrives at Thornfield Hall, where she has been hired by the brooding, proud Edward Rochester to care for his ward Adèle. Jane finds herself drawn to his troubled yet kind spirit. She falls in love. Hard.

But there is a terrifying secret inside the gloomy, forbidding Thornfield Hall. Is Rochester hiding from Jane? Will Jane be left heartbroken and exiled once again?

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 2nd book I’ve read is This Is My America by Kim Johnson. If you’ve read The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas and are looking for something along those lines, you definitely need to pick this book up. Also you need to go check out Ashley from BookishRealm’s review because own-voices. My only gripe (that is very minor and did not greatly impact my enjoyment of the story) was how often “the big project” (which is very obviously going to be the story driver) was mentioned before anybody actually did anything related to it. It’s used realistically, many people talk a lot about things before they go acting on things, but I’m just generally not really one for that sort of thing. This book counts towards Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back.

Dear Martin meets Just Mercy in this unflinching yet uplifting YA novel that explores the racist injustices in the American justice system.

Every week, seventeen-year-old Tracy Beaumont writes letters to Innocence X, asking the organization to help her father, an innocent Black man on death row. After seven years, Tracy is running out of time—her dad has only 267 days left. Then the unthinkable happens. The police arrive in the night, and Tracy’s older brother, Jamal, goes from being a bright, promising track star to a “thug” on the run, accused of killing a white girl. Determined to save her brother, Tracy investigates what really happened between Jamal and Angela down at the Pike. But will Tracy and her family survive the uncovering of the skeletons of their Texas town’s racist history that still haunt the present?

Fans of Nic Stone and Jason Reynolds won’t want to miss this provocative and gripping debut.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 3rd book I read was The Hidden Witch by Molly Ostertag, which is the second book in The Witch Boy series. I am absolutely loving this graphic novel series. The Witch Boy covers masculine and feminine magic and why it shouldn’t be restricted to gender. The Hidden Witch covers what happens when we let anger fester and what it means to make good friends. The art style on the cover is indicative of what to expect in the rest of the book, and the whole thing is in color. This counts towards Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Relationship, and LGBTQIA+.

Aster and his family are adjusting to his unconventional talent for witchery; unlike the other boys in his family, he isn’t a shapeshifter. He’s taking classes with his grandmother and helping to keep an eye on his great-uncle whose corrupted magic wreaked havoc on the family.

Meanwhile, Aster’s friend from the non-magical part of town, Charlie, is having problems of her own — a curse has tried to attach itself to her. She runs to Aster and escapes it, but now the friends must find the source of the curse before more people — normal and magical alike — get hurt.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 4th book I read was Living with Mochi by Gemma Gené. This is a graphic novel I received an e-copy ARC of for review from NetGalley. I believe it’s slated for sale starting 6 April 2021. Unless the publisher fixes some of the spread issues I sent to them in the e-copy on the final release, I’d recommend picking up the physical copy as some of the spreads make more sense when in a side by side layout. The cover is indicative of what to expect in the book linework wise – some of the spreads are colored and some are in black and white. If you’re interested in a graphic novel about a pug, this would be great to add to your collection. You can check out my full thoughts on it in this video. This book counts in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, and Wildcard.

Gemma Gene’s adorable comics celebrate fur-parenthood and the extreme love you experience when you look into your dog’s eyes. If you are never alone when you go to the bathroom, are forced to share your food, and find your life ruled by a sassy fur ball, Living With Mochi is the perfect book for you. 

When architect-turned-cartoonist Gemma Gené first met her pet pug, Mochi, she felt as if time stopped. This dramatic moment and her adoring relationship with the rambunctious pug led her to begin chronicling her adventures with Mochi in a series of incredibly cute webcomics that have gained a social media following of half a million loyal readers. The comics chronicle Mochi’s life from puppyhood to adulthood, featuring Mochi’s unrequited dog friendships, his jealousy of his two dog-brothers, and his love of food. Readers and dog parents will love this humorous tale of a sincerely loyal friendship between one grumpy pug and his adoring owner.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 5th book I read was Bridge of Souls by Victoria Schwab. I absolutely adore the Cassidy Blake trilogy, so I was ecstatic when book 3 showed up on my doorstep on launch day. In this series, Cassidy’s parents are filming a TV show based on their book “The Inspecters” (haaaaa puns) where her dad provides the historical background and her mother provides the believer/spooky background. One year before this series started Cassidy fell in a river and almost drowned, but as she was about to die she got tangled up with a ghost and somehow managed to make it to shore. Now as her parents travel the world to film their show, Cassidy gets into all sorts of shenanigans by “crossing the veil” in these spooky places. Think of it like Ghost Whisperer, but make it middle grade. This book counts in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back.

Where there are ghosts, Cassidy Blake follows … unless it’s the other way around?

Cass thinks she might have this ghost-hunting thing down. After all, she and her ghost best friend, Jacob, have survived two haunted cities while travelling for her parents’ TV show.

But nothing can prepare Cass for New Orleans, which wears all of its hauntings on its sleeve. In a city of ghost tours and tombs, raucous music and all kinds of magic, Cass could get lost in all the colourful, grisly local legends. And the city’s biggest surprise is a foe Cass never expected to face: a servant of Death itself.

Cass takes on her most dangerous challenge yet…

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 6th book I read was The Girl Who Speaks Bear by Sophie Anderson. This is by far one of my favorite reads ever. I loved the way the main storyline and short stories/folk tales were woven together in a way I’ve never seen before to cover issues like finding yourself, strength in community, and the bravery in asking for help. This book counts in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back.

Found abandoned in a bear cave as a baby, 12-year-old Yanka has always felt out of place in her small village. When she wakes up to find that her legs have become bear legs, she sets off into the forest to discover who she is, on a journey that takes her from icy rivers to smouldering mountains, with an ever-growing group of misfits alongside her… Interwoven with traditional stories of bears, princesses and dragons, Yanka’s journey is a gorgeously lyrical adventure from the best-selling author of The House With Chicken Legs.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 7th Book I read was the Manga Classics adaptation of The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. I have actually read the source material for this one once in high school, and I can wholeheartedly say I greatly prefer this adaptation to the original. The original is already rather melodramatic since it’s realistically based in Puritan New England in the 17th century. It was perhaps forward for its time and place in 19th century America when it was written, but comparing this flavor of women’s rights writing to today’s women’s rights … we’ve come a LONG way. I love how this manga adaptation basically turned into a dramatic anime in my head as I was reading it. I still hate the ending, but that’s not the manga’s fault – they really stuck to the source material. I lowkey love this story until the ending, and I kinda need a modern retelling. This counts in Classic, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back … I don’t find it particularly Fem Positive, but I could see an argument for it to a small degree.

Set in 17th-century Puritan Boston, Massachusetts, during the years 1642 to 1649, it tells the story of Hester Prynne, who conceives a daughter through an affair and will not reveal her lover’s identity. The scarlet letter A (for adultery) she has to wear on her clothes, along with her public shaming, is her punishment for her sin and her secrecy. She struggles to create a new life of repentance and dignity. Throughout the book, Hawthorne explores themes of legalism, sin, and guilt.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 8th book I read was the Manga Classics adaptation of Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. I think I’ve finally found a classic that I like and have officially ordered a used World Cloud Classics Flexibound edition. While I enjoyed the brevity that is the manga version, I actually wanted to know more. The shortened dialogue works just fine, but I kinda want to see the whole thing unfold. I honestly have a hard time choosing between Elinor and Marianne, though if I were there at the time I definitely would have been closer to a Marianne. This counts in Classic, Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, and Fem Fights Back.

‘The more I know of the world, the more am I convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!’

Marianne Dashwood wears her heart on her sleeve, and when she falls in love with the dashing but unsuitable John Willoughby she ignores her sister Elinor’s warning that her impulsive behaviour leaves her open to gossip and innuendo. Meanwhile Elinor, always sensitive to social convention, is struggling to conceal her own romantic disappointment, even from those closest to her. Through their parallel experience of love—and its threatened loss—the sisters learn that sense must mix with sensibility if they are to find personal happiness in a society where status and money govern the rules of love.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The 9th book I read was the 11th Volume of the Lumberjanes. This is a young middle grade graphic novel/comic series about a group of hard-core lady types at a somewhat magical summer camp. This issue covers a time-shenanigans arc (which leaves off on a cliffhanger of who actually caused it in the first place that isn’t answered in Volume 12 – because I accidently read them in the wrong order). You will definitely need to read the other books in the series to grasp what’s going on in this one. This series counts in Fem Positive, BIPOC Rep, Platonic Fem Relationship, Wildcard, LGBTQIA+, and Fem Fights Back.

Time is freezing at camp, and it’s up to Roanoke Cabin to stop the nefarious and mysterious forces behind it. 

When Molly makes a deal with a mysterious Voice in the woods surrounding Miss Qiunzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for Hardcore Lady Types to slow down time, she isn’t hoping for an endless summer! All she wants is more time to spend with her friends at camp, hiking and doing crafts, and playing music and having fun. What she doesn’t bargain for is time starting to skip, and freeze, and make campers’ ages jump forward and back… It’s up to Roanoke Cabin to to set time right again, and save camp! 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I can’t say this is all that I’ve read on March 1-7, but it will be close. Now if you’ll excuse me I think my library copy of When No One Is Watching by Alyssa Cole is calling my name.

Femathon Fems Fight Back Recommendations

I’ll be co-hosting Femathon in March; come join in! I’ve already made loads of recommendations that could have gone directly on this list, so check out my other Femathon Posts for additional options. Let me know if you’ve read any of the books on this list or what others you’re looking forward to reading!

If you’re looking for the OG SciFi book, it’s Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Women weren’t supposed to be writers back in the day and Mary said, “pshhhhhhh – let me invent a new genre; you’ll that me later” … or something like that. This could also count in Classic.

Obsessed with natural philosophy, young Victor Frankenstein succeeds in creating life from its basic elements – and abandons the newborn monstrosity in terror when he cannot bear to look at it. The rejected creature vanishes, and Victor attempts to forget what he has done…

But the monster survives. It learns. Deprived of everything, fated to forever be alone, it has nothing left but revenge.

Manga Classics® proudly present a frightening new manga adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein – a classic tale of creation and destruction!

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Home Maker by Dorothy Canfield Fisher is definitely old enough to be considered a Classic, though for some reason I had never heard of it when I started researching books to make recommendations for this readathon. I may already be changing my March TBR to incorporate this one.

Although this novel first appeared in 1924, it deals in an amazingly contemporary manner with the problems of a family in which both husband and wife are oppressed and frustrated by the roles they are expected to play. Evangeline Knapp is the perfect, compulsive housekeeper, while her husband, Lester, is a poet and a dreamer. Suddenly, through a nearly fatal accident, their roles are reversed: Lester is confined to home in a wheelchair and his wife must work to support the family. The changes that take place between husband and wife and particularly between parents and children are both fascinating and poignant.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty is the first book in her Daevabad Trilogy, and let me tell you – I was glued to my seat the whole time I was reading this series. Think Napoleonic Egypt era fantasy. This could also count in Fem Positive and BIPOC Rep (especially if you count fey diversity).

Nahri has never believed in magic. Certainly, she has power; on the streets of 18th century Cairo, she’s a con woman of unsurpassed talent. But she knows better than anyone that the trade she uses to get by—palm readings, zars, healings—are all tricks, sleights of hand, learned skills; a means to the delightful end of swindling Ottoman nobles. 

But when Nahri accidentally summons an equally sly, darkly mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, she’s forced to accept that the magical world she thought only existed in childhood stories is real. For the warrior tells her a new tale: across hot, windswept sands teeming with creatures of fire, and rivers where the mythical marid sleep; past ruins of once-magnificent human metropolises, and mountains where the circling hawks are not what they seem, lies Daevabad, the legendary city of brass, a city to which Nahri is irrevocably bound. 

In that city, behind gilded brass walls laced with enchantments, behind the six gates of the six djinn tribes, old resentments are simmering. And when Nahri decides to enter this world, she learns that true power is fierce and brutal. That magic cannot shield her from the dangerous web of court politics. That even the cleverest of schemes can have deadly consequences. 

After all, there is a reason they say be careful what you wish for…

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Are you looking for a YA Paranormal Fantasy involving a demonic-book librarian and the shenanigans that happen around said books? Then check out Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson. This could also count in Fem Positive.

All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.

Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.

As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Want a fun graphic novel about an anti-hero? Check out Nimona by Noelle Stevenson. This could also count in Fem Positive and Platonic Fem Relationship.

The graphic novel debut from rising star Noelle Stevenson, based on her beloved and critically acclaimed web comic, which Slate awarded its Cartoonist Studio Prize, calling it “a deadpan epic.”

Nemeses! Dragons! Science! Symbolism! All these and more await in this brilliantly subversive, sharply irreverent epic from Noelle Stevenson. Featuring an exclusive epilogue not seen in the web comic, along with bonus conceptual sketches and revised pages throughout, this gorgeous full-color graphic novel is perfect for the legions of fans of the web comic and is sure to win Noelle many new ones.

Nimona is an impulsive young shapeshifter with a knack for villainy. Lord Ballister Blackheart is a villain with a vendetta. As sidekick and supervillain, Nimona and Lord Blackheart are about to wreak some serious havoc. Their mission: prove to the kingdom that Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin and his buddies at the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics aren’t the heroes everyone thinks they are.

But as small acts of mischief escalate into a vicious battle, Lord Blackheart realizes that Nimona’s powers are as murky and mysterious as her past. And her unpredictable wild side might be more dangerous than he is willing to admit.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The cover for I Hate Fairyland, Vol. 1 Madly Ever After by Skottie Young pretty well sets the tone for this graphic novel series. This could also count in Fem Positive.

From superstar writer and artist Skottie Young (Rocket RaccoonWizard of OZFortunately, The Milk), comes the first volume of an all-new series of adventure and mayhem.

An Adventure Time/Alice in Wonderland-style epic that smashes its cute little face against grown-up, Tank Girl/Deadpool-esque violent madness. Follow Gert, a forty year old woman stuck in a six year old’s body who has been trapped in the magical world of Fairyland for nearly thirty years. Join her and her giant battle-axe on a delightfully blood-soaked journey to see who will survive the girl who HATES FAIRYLAND.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I will say I’m not a huge fan of how Home Before Dark by Riley Sager starts out. I found it a bit slow, but the MC does kick-ass and take names in this horror/thriller. Once I finally got into it I couldn’t put it down. This could also count in Fem Positive.

What was it like? Living in that house.

Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later recounted in a nonfiction book called House of Horrors. His tale of ghostly happenings and encounters with malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity—and skepticism.

Today, Maggie is a restorer of old homes and too young to remember any of the events mentioned in her father’s book. But she also doesn’t believe a word of it. Ghosts, after all, don’t exist. When Maggie inherits Baneberry Hall after her father’s death, she returns to renovate the place to prepare it for sale. But her homecoming is anything but warm. People from the past, chronicled in House of Horrors, lurk in the shadows. And locals aren’t thrilled that their small town has been made infamous thanks to Maggie’s father. Even more unnerving is Baneberry Hall itself—a place filled with relics from another era that hint at a history of dark deeds. As Maggie experiences strange occurrences straight out of her father’s book, she starts to believe that what he wrote was more fact than fiction.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

For some reason I tucked into Lock Every Door by Riley Sager much faster than I did Home Before Dark. This is another Fem Positive mystery/horror/thriller.

No visitors. No nights spent away from the apartment. No disturbing the other residents, all of whom are rich or famous or both. These are the only rules for Jules Larsen’s new job as an apartment sitter at the Bartholomew, one of Manhattan’s most high-profile and mysterious buildings. Recently heartbroken and just plain broke, Jules is taken in by the splendor of her surroundings and accepts the terms, ready to leave her past life behind.

As she gets to know the residents and staff of the Bartholomew, Jules finds herself drawn to fellow apartment sitter Ingrid, who comfortingly, disturbingly reminds her of the sister she lost eight years ago. When Ingrid confides that the Bartholomew is not what it seems and the dark history hidden beneath its gleaming facade is starting to frighten her, Jules brushes it off as a harmless ghost story—until the next day, when Ingrid disappears.

Searching for the truth about Ingrid’s disappearance, Jules digs deeper into the Bartholomew’s dark past and into the secrets kept within its walls. Her discovery that Ingrid is not the first apartment sitter to go missing at the Bartholomew pits Jules against the clock as she races to unmask a killer, expose the building’s hidden past, and escape the Bartholomew before her temporary status becomes permanent. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Femathon Non Fiction Recommendations

I’ll be co-hosting Femathon in March; come join in! As you might have guessed from my other posts, I generally don’t reach for Non Fiction, so this post is going to be rather short. If you have any recommendations, please do let me know! So far, I’ve only read one of the books on this list.

Behind the Scenes: Or, Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House by Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley is, well, I’ll let the book blurb speak for itself. This could also count in BIPOC Rep, Fem Positive, and Fems Fight Back. I’m not sure if it counts as a Classic, but I don’t see why it couldn’t be?

“I have often been asked to write my life . . . it has been an eventful one,” wrote Elizabeth Keckley in her autobiography Behind the Scenes: Or, Thirty Years a Slave, and Four Years in the White House. First published in 1868, it is one of the most candid and poignant slave narratives. It also looks beyond Emancipation and is, in the words of historian William L. Andrews, “the first major text to represent the interests and aims of this nascent African American leadership class in the postwar era.” Born into slavery, Keckley endured untold hardships but she eventually purchased her freedom in the 1850s. Self-reliant and enterprising, Keckley used her dressmaking skills to set up a successful business in Civil War-era Washington, DC, where she became the modiste of choice for many of the city’s most fashionable women. Her talents and warmth led her to become seamstress to Mary Todd Lincoln and confidante to both Mary and Abraham Lincoln. After President Lincoln’s assassination, Keckley became caretaker to the former First Lady, whose financial troubles mounted and mental health declined. In an effort to buoy their financial fortunes and restore Mary Lincoln’s battered public image, Keckley wrote Behind the Scenes. Much to her surprise, it was labeled as “treacherous” and ended her relationship with Mary Lincoln. Elizabeth Keckley is now remembered as an entrepreneur, fashion designer, community activist, educator, writer, as well as friend to Mary Todd Lincoln. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Suffragette: My Own Story by Emmeline Pankhurst could also count in Classic and Fems Fight Back.

The closing paragraphs of this book were written in the late summer of 1914, when the armies of every great power in Europe were being mobilised for savage, unsparing, barbarous warfare-against one another, against small and unaggressive nations, against helpless women and children, against civilisation itself. How mild, by comparison with the despatches in the daily newspapers, will seem this chronicle of women’s militant struggle against political and social injustice in one small corner of Europe. Yet let it stand as it was written, with peace-so-called, and civilisation, and orderly government as the background for heroism such as the world has seldom witnessed. The militancy of men, through all the centuries, has drenched the world with blood, and for these deeds of horror and destruction men have been rewarded with monuments, with great songs and epics. The militancy of women has harmed no human life save the lives of those who fought the battle of righteousness. Time alone will reveal what reward will be allotted to the women.

This we know, that in the black hour that has just struck in Europe, the men are turning to their women and calling on them to take up the work of keeping civilisation alive. Through all the harvest fields, in orchards and vineyards, women are garnering food for the men who fight, as well as for the children left fatherless by war. In the cities the women are keeping open the shops, they are driving trucks and trams, and are altogether attending to a multitude of business.
When the remnants of the armies return, when the commerce of Europe is resumed by men, will they forget the part the women so nobly played? Will they forget in England how women in all ranks of life put aside their own interests and organised, not only to nurse the wounded, care for the destitute, comfort the sick and lonely, but actually to maintain the existence of the nation? Thus far, it must be admitted, there are few indications that the English Government are mindful of the unselfish devotion manifested by the women. Thus far all Government schemes for overcoming unemployment have been directed towards the unemployment of men. The work of women, making garments, etc., has in some cases been taken away.

At the first alarm of war the militants proclaimed a truce, which was answered half-heartedly by the announcement that the Government would release all suffrage prisoners who would give an undertaking “not to commit further crimes or outrages.” Since the truce had already been proclaimed, no suffrage prisoner deigned to reply to the Home Secretary’s provision. A few days later, no doubt influenced by representations made to the Government by men and women of every political faith-many of them never having been supporters of revolutionary tactics-Mr. McKenna announced in the House of Commons that it was the intention of the Government, within a few days, to release unconditionally, all suffrage prisoners. So ends, for the present, the war of women against men. As of old, the women become the nurturing mothers of men, their sisters and uncomplaining helpmates. The future lies far ahead, but let this preface and this volume close with the assurance that the struggle for the full enfranchisement of women has not been abandoned; it has simply, for the moment, been placed in abeyance. When the clash of arms ceases, when normal, peaceful, rational society resumes its functions, the demand will again be made. If it is not quickly granted, then once more the women will take up the arms they to-day generously lay down. There can be no real peace in the world until woman, the mother half of the human family, is given liberty in the councils of the world.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank could also count in Classic. I don’t know how this wasn’t on my high school required reading list, but it’s one of the books I still need to get to at some point.

Discovered in the attic in which she spent the last years of her life, Anne Frank’s remarkable diary has become a world classic—a powerful reminder of the horrors of war and an eloquent testament to the human spirit. 

In 1942, with the Nazis occupying Holland, a thirteen-year-old Jewish girl and her family fled their home in Amsterdam and went into hiding. For the next two years, until their whereabouts were betrayed to the Gestapo, the Franks and another family lived cloistered in the “Secret Annexe” of an old office building. Cut off from the outside world, they faced hunger, boredom, the constant cruelties of living in confined quarters, and the ever-present threat of discovery and death. In her diary Anne Frank recorded vivid impressions of her experiences during this period. By turns thoughtful, moving, and surprisingly humorous, her account offers a fascinating commentary on human courage and frailty and a compelling self-portrait of a sensitive and spirited young woman whose promise was tragically cut short.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I’ll let the blurb speak for this one too. Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriet Jacobs could also count in BIPOC Rep, Fems Fight back, and possibly Classic and Fem Positive – again, I haven’t read it yet to know.

The true story of an individual’s struggle for self-identity, self-preservation, and freedom, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl remains among the few extant slave narratives written by a woman. This autobiographical account chronicles the remarkable odyssey of Harriet Jacobs (1813–1897) whose dauntless spirit and faith carried her from a life of servitude and degradation in North Carolina to liberty and reunion with her children in the North.

Written and published in 1861 after Jacobs’ harrowing escape from a vile and predatory master, the memoir delivers a powerful and unflinching portrayal of the abuses and hypocrisy of the master-slave relationship. Jacobs writes frankly of the horrors she suffered as a slave, her eventual escape after several unsuccessful attempts, and her seven years in self-imposed exile, hiding in a coffin-like “garret” attached to her grandmother’s porch.

A rare firsthand account of a courageous woman’s determination and endurance, this inspirational story also represents a valuable historical record of the continuing battle for freedom and the preservation of family. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut’s Rise to Power in Ancient Egypt by Kara Cooney is the only book on this list I’ve actually read. It’s a historical account that isn’t dry – at least to me. This could also count in Fems Fight Back and possibly BIPOC Rep if you count ancient Egyptian history?

An engrossing biography of the longest-reigning female pharaoh in Ancient Egypt and the story of her audacious rise to power in a man’s world.

Hatshepsut, the daughter of a general who took Egypt’s throne without status as a king’s son and a mother with ties to the previous dynasty, was born into a privileged position of the royal household. Married to her brother, she was expected to bear the sons who would legitimize the reign of her father’s family. Her failure to produce a male heir was ultimately the twist of fate that paved the way for her inconceivable rule as a cross-dressing king. At just twenty, Hatshepsut ascended to the rank of king in an elaborate coronation ceremony that set the tone for her spectacular twenty-two year reign as co-regent with Thutmose III, the infant king whose mother Hatshepsut out-maneuvered for a seat on the throne. Hatshepsut was a master strategist, cloaking her political power plays with the veil of piety and sexual expression. Just as women today face obstacles from a society that equates authority with masculinity, Hatshepsut had to shrewdly operate the levers of a patriarchal system to emerge as Egypt’s second female pharaoh.

Hatshepsut had successfully negotiated a path from the royal nursery to the very pinnacle of authority, and her reign saw one of Ancient Egypt’s most prolific building periods. Scholars have long speculated as to why her images were destroyed within a few decades of her death, all but erasing evidence of her rule. Constructing a rich narrative history using the artifacts that remain, noted Egyptologist Kara Cooney offers a remarkable interpretation of how Hatshepsut rapidly but methodically consolidated power—and why she fell from public favor just as quickly. The Woman Who Would Be King traces the unconventional life of an almost-forgotten pharaoh and explores our complicated reactions to women in power.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Femathon Disability/Neurodiversity Recommendations

I’ll be co-hosting Femathon in March; come join in! I really need to up my disability/neurodiversity reads game, so if you have any suggestions for more books on this topic please do let me know.

I have had Disfigured: On Fairy Tales, Disability, and Making Space by Amanda Leduc on my radar for a while now and recently found it on sale, so I’ll probably be reading this one in March. The book blurb tells you everything I currently know about it. I would say it could probably also count as Fem Fights Back?

In fairy tales, happy endings are the norm—as long as you’re beautiful and walk on two legs. After all, the ogre never gets the princess. And since fairy tales are the foundational myths of our culture, how can a girl with a disability ever think she’ll have a happy ending?

By examining the ways that fairy tales have shaped our expectations of disability, Disfigured will point the way toward a new world where disability is no longer a punishment or impediment but operates, instead, as a way of centering a protagonist and helping them to cement their own place in a story, and from there, the world. Through the book, Leduc ruminates on the connections we make between fairy tale archetypes—the beautiful princess, the glass slipper, the maiden with long hair lost in the tower—and tries to make sense of them through a twenty-first-century disablist lens. From examinations of disability in tales from the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen through to modern interpretations ranging from Disney to Angela Carter, and the fight for disabled representation in today’s media, Leduc connects the fight for disability justice to the growth of modern, magical stories, and argues for increased awareness and acceptance of that which is other—helping us to see and celebrate the magic inherent in different bodies.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I absolutely ADORE Katie O’Neill’s art style, and the story she has created in The Tea Dragon Society is equally adorable. I’m not sure whether to classify this as a “Children” children’s book or as a Middle Grade level novel. Either way, everyone needs this book in their life. This could count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, LGBTQIA+, and possibly BIPOC (if you count fey diversity that are very humanoid and of multiple skin tones).

From the award-winning author of Princess Princess Ever Aftercomes The Tea Dragon Society, a charming all-ages book that follows the story of Greta, a blacksmith apprentice, and the people she meets as she becomes entwined in the enchanting world of tea dragons. 

After discovering a lost tea dragon in the marketplace, Greta learns about the dying art form of tea dragon care-taking from the kind tea shop owners, Hesekiel and Erik. As she befriends them and their shy ward, Minette, Greta sees how the craft enriches their lives—and eventually her own. 

– Goodreads Book Blurb

The Yellow Wall Paper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is a LANDMARK book that changed how mental illness patients were treated back in the day. You should totally check out this crash course literature video about it. If you’re looking for a short story about severe mental illness that’s considered a Gothic Horror Classic, you need to read this novella – it originally came out in the 1890’s and can be found for free online from many sources. This could also count in Classic and Fems Fight Back.

A woman and her husband rent a summer house, but what should be a restful getaway turns into a suffocating psychological battle. This chilling account of postpartum depression and a husband’s controlling behavior in the guise of treatment will leave you breathless.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I started following Molly Burke before I was diagnosed with EDS. When I found out she was publishing her book, It’s Not What It Looks Like, I knew I had to get it. Unfortunately I think it’s only available via audiobook, but also that totally makes sense since Molly is blind. This could also count in Fem Positive, Non Fiction, and Fems Fight Back.

In an audiobook like none you’ve ever heard before, blind YouTube star Molly Burke speaks with authenticity and candor about being a purple-haired, pink-loving fashion and makeup lover in a seeing world. 

Diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, Burke has been legally blind since age five, and became completely sightless as a teenager. Here, she tackles the preconceived notions we have around blindness, her struggles with bullying and anxiety, inclusivity, how she built her successful influencer business (with over 1.8 million followers), and what it’s really like to travel the globe with her service dog, Gallop, now that everyone has an emotional support animal. (Hint: Really hard!) 

This is a beautifully voiced, honest, and rousing journey of a young woman who has made it her mission to make us see her and the disability community in a totally new way.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Do you want SciFi with disabled representation? As long as you like YA intro to SciFi level books you’ll probably like Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. Yes, it’s very StarTrek reminiscent, and yes, the authors are very aware of that (so much so that the second book in the series references TNG and Voyager). This series could also count in Fem Positive and Fems Fight Back.

From the internationally bestselling authors of THE ILLUMINAE FILES comes an epic new science fiction adventure.

The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the Academy would touch…

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem—that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline-cases and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

They’re not the heroes we deserve. They’re just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

I haven’t read Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert yet, but I’ve heard many good things about it on BookTube. The only thing that’s kept me from reading it is that I haven’t exactly been in the mood for a RomCom, but when I am I will be reaching for this book. This could also count in Fem Positive and BIPOC Rep.

Chloe Brown is a chronically ill computer geek with a goal, a plan, and a list. After almost—but not quite—dying, she’s come up with seven directives to help her “Get a Life”, and she’s already completed the first: finally moving out of her glamorous family’s mansion.
The next items

• Enjoy a drunken night out.
• Ride a motorcycle.
• Go camping.
• Have meaningless but thoroughly enjoyable sex.
• Travel the world with nothing but hand luggage.
• And… do something bad.

But it’s not easy being bad, even when you’ve written step-by-step guidelines on how to do it correctly. What Chloe needs is a teacher, and she knows just the man for the job.

Redford ‘Red’ Morgan is a handyman with tattoos, a motorcycle, and more sex appeal than ten-thousand Hollywood heartthrobs. He’s also an artist who paints at night and hides his work in the light of day, which Chloe knows because she spies on him occasionally. Just the teeniest, tiniest bit.

But when she enlists Red in her mission to rebel, she learns things about him that no spy session could teach her. Like why he clearly resents Chloe’s wealthy background. And why he never shows his art to anyone. And what really lies beneath his rough exterior…

– Goodreads Book BLurb

Okay, this is a bit of a stretch putting LifeL1k3 by Jay Kristoff on this list, but hear me out. This YA Dystopian SciFi book has augmented characters, characters that have gone through traumatic life changes, some of them are very “different” from the majority of society (I can’t tell you why without giving away spoilers), and some of the characters in this series have to reinvent themselves after going through some changes. Also, on the daily I feel like my life is not my own since my body often controls how I get to live my life – often contrary to what I’d rather be doing. This could also count in Fem Positive, Platonic Fem Relationship, and Fems Fight Back.

It’s just another day on the Scrap: lose the last of your credits at the WarDome, dodge the gangs and religious fanatics, discover you can destroy electronics with your mind, stumble upon the deadliest robot ever built When Eve finds the ruins of an android boy named Ezekiel in the scrap pile she calls home, her entire world comes crashing down. With her best friend and her robotic sidekick in tow, she and Ezekiel will trek across deserts of irradiated glass, battle cyborg assassins, and scour abandoned megacities to save the ones she lovesand learn the dark secrets of her past.

– Goodreads Book Blurb

Have you read any of the books on this list? What did you think of them? What else should I add to this list? ❤

My Meditation Journey | Episode 1

I’m starting this blog series in an attempt to find my way to “chill” because yo gorl has no chill – only now instead of that being a personality trait it’s causing hormonal fluctuations that my body doesn’t know how to process anymore which then leads to me passing out … which is no bueno. I consider myself agnostic because I’m not sure there is/are a god/s, but I’m not going to tell you they can’t possibly exist either. I do however enjoy the idea of trying out different forms of meditation to see if any of them will work for me, which brings me to my latest adventure – using tarot cards as a point of focus for meditation. Let’s see what card I pull today, shall we?

The Two of Wands

leaving the nest
urge to discovery

The basic jist I’m getting from this card is that planning your next “big thing” can be beneficial – as in being ready to move on to next steps and plan the next big adventure. On the other hand, staying where things are currently can lead to boredom and frustration.

Lately I’ve felt stuck in a bit of a rut – my body has really not been cooperative. It’s like I’ve hit a wall with physical and occupational therapy. I’m still making progress, but that progress is very VERY slow. The last couple of days I’ve been trying to switch things up a bit. Even though I’m in pain from joints not being where they should always be, I’ve been trying to, for lack of better words, exercise my brain more by working on creative projects like this blog and with YouTube videos. The differences have been in how I’ve been planning that workload with being more careful to pace myself, and instead of working at my desktop with my favorite monitor, try editing from my ipad (especially when my fingers are sore) and from my laptop (even though the screen is much smaller). Sometimes I feel lost trying to plan what to do in a week because EDS is never consistent, but planning the day – sometimes just hour to hour has been beneficial so far. Sometimes it would be nice to plan things in greater advance, but it’s also been helpful to create a list of a few ideas and break that down into much much smaller pieces that can be done in 10 minute chunks. IDK where I’m really going with this, but that’s my reflection on this card for the day.

The card I pulled for today’s reflection comes from the deck The Key Tarot by Scarlet Ravenswood and Jamie Gold – thanks to my BFF and cousin-in-law extraordinaire, Dillon.