Welcome to my weekly wrap-up! Here is where you can see my books read during the past week, books to be read next week, books I have added to my shelves, any bookish happenings and the like. I have linked to Stacking the Shelves, the Saturday Situation, the Saturday Review of Books, Talk of the Town, Bought, Borrowed & Bagged, The Sunday Salon, Caffeinated Book Reviewer’s Sunday Wrap-Up, It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? and Mailbox Monday. So check out what I’ve been up to these past two weeks.
Books Added This Week
Iron Cast by Destiny Soria – It’s Boston, 1919, and the Cast Iron club is packed. On stage, hemopaths—whose “afflicted” blood gives them the ability to create illusions through art—Corinne and Ada have been best friends ever since infamous gangster Johnny Dervish recruited them into his circle. By night they perform for Johnny’s crowds, and by day they con Boston’s elite. When a job goes wrong and Ada is imprisoned, she realizes how precarious their position is. After she escapes, two of the Cast Iron’s hires are shot, and Johnny disappears. With the law closing in, Corinne and Ada are forced to hunt for answers, even as betrayal faces them at every turn.
Lucy and Linh by Alice Pung – Lucy is a bit of a pushover, but she’s ambitious and smart, and she has just received the opportunity of a lifetime: a scholarship to a prestigious school, and a ticket out of her broken-down suburb. Though she’s worried she will stick out like badly cut bangs among the razor-straight students, she is soon welcomed into the Cabinet, the supremely popular trio who wield influence over classmates and teachers alike. Linh is blunt, strong-willed, and fearless—everything Lucy once loved about herself. She is also Lucy’s last solid link to her life before private school, but she is growing tired of being eclipsed by the glamour of the Cabinet. As Lucy floats further away from the world she once knew, her connection to Linh—and to her old life—threatens to snap. Sharp and honest, Alice Pung’s novel examines what it means to grow into the person you want to be without leaving yourself behind.
The Lost and the Found by Cat Clarke – THE LOST – When six-year-old Laurel Logan was abducted, the only witness was her younger sister, Faith. Since then, Faith’s childhood has revolved around her sister’s disappearance—from her parents’ broken marriage and the constant media attention, to dealing with so-called friends who only ever want to talk about her missing sister.
THE FOUND – Now, thirteen years later, a young woman is found in the front yard of the Logans’ old house, disoriented and clutching the teddy bear Laurel was last seen with. Can her sister finally be back? Faith always dreamed of her sister coming home; she just never believed it would happen. But soon a disturbing series of events leaves Faith increasingly isolated from her family and paranoid about her sister’s motives. Before long, Faith begins to wonder if it’s the abduction that’s changed her sister, or if it’s something else. . . .
A City Dreaming by Daniel Polansky – M is an ageless drifter with a sharp tongue, few scruples, and the ability to bend reality to his will, ever so slightly. He’s come back to New York City after a long absence, and though he’d much rather spend his days drinking artisanal beer in his favorite local bar, his old friends—and his enemies—have other plans for him. One night M might find himself squaring off against the pirates who cruise the Gowanus Canal; another night sees him at a fashionable uptown charity auction where the waitstaff are all zombies. A subway ride through the inner circles of hell? In M’s world, that’s practically a pleasant diversion. Before too long, M realizes he’s landed in the middle of a power struggle between Celise, the elegant White Queen of Manhattan, and Abilene, Brooklyn’s hip, free-spirited Red Queen, a rivalry that threatens to make New York go the way of Atlantis. To stop it, M will have to call in every favor, waste every charm, and blow every spell he’s ever acquired—he might even have to get out of bed before noon. Enter a world of Wall Street wolves, slumming scenesters, desperate artists, drug-induced divinities, pocket steampunk universes, and demonic coffee shops. M’s New York, the infinite nexus of the universe, really is a city that never sleeps—but is always dreaming.
Fate of Flames (The Effigies #1) by Sarah Raughley – Four girls with the power to control the elements and save the world from a terrible evil must come together in the first epic novel in a brand-new series. When Phantoms—massive beasts made from nightmares and darkness—suddenly appeared and began terrorizing the world, four girls, the Effigies, each gained a unique power to control one of the classical elements: earth, air, fire, and water. Since then, four girls across the world have continually fought against the Phantoms, fulfilling their cosmic duty. And when one Effigy dies, another girl gains her power as a replacement. But now, with technologies in place to protect the world’s major cities from Phantom attacks, the Effigies have stopped defending humanity and, instead, have become international celebrities, with their heroic feats ranked, televised, and talked about in online fandoms. Until the day that New York City’s protection against the Phantoms fails, a man seems to be able to control them by sheer force of will, and Maia, a high school student, unexpectedly becomes the Fire Effigy. Now Maia has been thrown into battle with three girls who want nothing to do with one another. But with the first human villain that the girls have ever faced, and an army of Phantoms preparing for attack, there isn’t much time for the Effigies to learn how to work together. Can the girls take control of their destinies before the world is destroyed forever?
Unlocked by Margo Kelly – 17-year-old Hannah is losing her grip on reality, which is affecting not only her but her friends and family too. She wrecked the car when bugs crawled over her hands, but were the creepy things even real? Now someone is moving Hannah’s possessions around in her room, or is she imagining that also? Why does she feel like she isn’t in control of her own brain anymore? Hannah is terrified she’s headed for a horrible life in and out of the mental institution, just like her dad. When her friends bail, Hannah is left floundering. Her boyfriend, Manny, doesn’t believe her wild stories, and new girl Chelsea is practically replacing her at school. Only artsy outsider and self-proclaimed occult expert, Plug, agrees to help Hannah discover the truth, but even he can’t help Hannah reclaim her mind from whatever is taking over. She’ll have to do that on her own, especially if she wants to save her friends, her mom, and herself.
Good As Gone by Amy Gentry – Thirteen-year-old Julie Whitaker was kidnapped from her bedroom in the middle of the night, witnessed only by her younger sister. Her family was shattered, but managed to stick together, hoping against hope that Julie is still alive. And then one night: the doorbell rings. A young woman who appears to be Julie is finally, miraculously, home safe. The family is ecstatic—but Anna, Julie’s mother, has whispers of doubts. She hates to face them. She cannot avoid them. When she is contacted by a former detective turned private eye, she begins a torturous search for the truth about the woman she desperately hopes is her daughter.
The Wangs vs. the World by Jade Chang – Charles Wang is mad at America. A brash, lovable immigrant businessman who built a cosmetics empire and made a fortune, he’s just been ruined by the financial crisis. Now all Charles wants is to get his kids safely stowed away so that he can go to China and attempt to reclaim his family’s ancestral lands—and his pride. Charles pulls Andrew, his aspiring comedian son, and Grace, his style-obsessed daughter, out of schools he can no longer afford. Together with their stepmother, Barbra, they embark on a cross-country road trip from their foreclosed Bel-Air home to the upstate New York hideout of the eldest daughter, disgraced art world it-girl Saina. But with his son waylaid by a temptress in New Orleans, his wife ready to defect for a set of 1,000-thread-count sheets, and an epic smash-up in North Carolina, Charles may have to choose between the old world and the new, between keeping his family intact and finally fulfilling his dream of starting anew in China. Outrageously funny and full of charm, The Wangs vs. the World is an entirely fresh look at what it means to belong in America—and how going from glorious riches to (still name-brand) rags brings one family together in a way money never could.
Books Read This Week x 2
All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda
We Could Be Beautiful by Swan Huntley
The Trouble With Lexie by Jessica Anya Blau
We Own the Night by Ashley Poston
First Comes Love by Emily Giffin
Party of One by Dave Holmes
In the Shadow of the Gods by Rachel Dunne
An Idiot in Love by David Jester
Surprise Me by Deena Goldstone
The Life of the World to Come by Dan Cluchey
The Marked Girl by Lindsey Klingele
Books to be Read Next Week
This Week in Review…
I was sick again these past few weeks. For some reason I have more flare-ups of my auto-immune disease in the summer. I think extreme temps wack my system out and a few days of 119 degrees made me shut down. I am now feeling much better but am super behind in reading and my reviews, so I will be spending this coming week playing catch-up.
Personally though, other than feeling like crap on a cracker, this has been a great week. One, I was promoted – I am now the chief financial and operations officer (CFOO) at my company! Not bad for a 37 year-old. And two – as you read this I will be flying to see one of my best friends in Miami and we will be seeing the best band ever (The Cure!) on Sunday. Then I made plans to see my other out of town bestie who lives in Vegas the weekend of July 9th, so I am super stoked that I get to spend some time with my girls.
I hit 2,000 subscribers on June 15th which is just amazing, so as always thanks to all of you who hang out with me.
I also had two fun author interactions since I last updated (please read this and know all of the sarcasm intended). One did not enjoy my snarky take on their characters name (it’s a nickname for a body part) and made a Goodreads comment and tweeted me that their IRL friend has the same name and hopes the friend doesn’t see the review with a smiley face added. So that was super passive aggressive and fun. I hope the friend is smart enough to know I’m speaking of a fictional character. Second I had another author comment on my Goodreads review of their book that “There are unfortunately a lot of reading comprehension errors in this review.” No, I read, I comprehended, the review was my opinion…so I guess my opinion is not valid. This author also followed me on Twitter, so I’m not sure if they are trying to see if I say something about them, but whatever. I am allowed to have an opinion on the books I read, so whatever.
Stuff I Enjoyed This Week…
Ardis at Pondering the Prose – Representation of People on the Autism Spectrum in the Media
Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction – Is Celibacy Shaming a Thing?
Brittany at The Book Addicts Guide – Kicking ARCS to the Curb (Sort of)
Up Next – July 5, 2016 – C.H. Armstrong author of The Edge of Nowhere.
My Weekly Posts
- [13 Jun] United States of Books – The Betsy-Tacy Treasury by Maud Hart Lovelace
- [13 Jun] Top Ten Tuesday – What’s Next?
- [14 Jun] Author Tuesday Countdown – Suzanne Redfearn
- [14 Jun] The Marked Girl by Lindsey Klingele ★★★★
- [14 Jun] Unplugged by Donna Freitas ★★★★
- [14 Jun] The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman ★★★★
- [14 Jun] Waiting on Wednesday – Arcana Rising
- [15 Jun] That’s Just Crazy!!
- [20 Jun] To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee ★★★★½
- [20 Jun] I Swear I’m Still Alive
- [21 Jun] Author Tuesday Interview and Giveaway – Suzanne Redfearn
- [21 Jun] Stars Over Sunset Boulevard by Susan Meissner ★★★½
- [21 Jun] The Life of the World to Come by Dan Cluchey ★★★★
- [21 Jun] Surprise Me by Deena Goldstone ★★★★
- [21 Jun] Change Places with Me by Lois Metzger ★★★★
- [23 Jun] First Comes Love by Emily Giffin ★★★★
- [25 Jun] Weekly Wrap-Up times Two
So how was your bookish week?