I really love these posts personally because it makes me so excited for other’s & my TBR. But – latst time I did this it took closer to ten months for me to get around to reading all the books. It will hopefully be a lot sooner this time, as I made the list shorter. I already have a lot of these books on my shelf as well, so they’ll stare at me as a constant reminder.
The Hidden Girl & Other Stories by Ken Liu: I loved “The Paper Menagerie & other stories” by the same author, but it’s been years since I read the collection of short stories for the first time. It’s just stories that live in my head now. Just the day I remembered so I found this new release and then happened to walk right past it by accident in the (norwegian) library – my luck! I snatched it so fast. This collection is of sixteen fantasy & sci-fi short stories and a novelette.
Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas: The cover is awesome, but so is the description of “a trans boy determined to prove his gender to his traditional Latinx family summons a ghost who refuses to leave”. Trying to find a murderer, queer & trans people, cool ghosts! Brujos! I’ve seen both very positive and slighly let-down reviews, so I’m still a bit nervous because I’m so ready to love it.
Love and Math: The Heart of Hidden Reality by Edward Frenkel: I’ve somewhat started reading this already, on a very scenic train-ride, before forgetting it in my pile of physics textbooks. So I already know that it’s such a good writing and narrative about how we think about math, and felt very approchable to both the math student (young and older) and the ones that are just interested. I rally loved the points on reconfiguring how kids learn about math, like introducing category theory eariler, because it’s just boxes we put math things in, but gives the first step to the why’s that seem to rarely get answered in learning kids math.
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong: Ocean Vuong’s writing is already stunning and gets deep under your skin, that I know. I can’t imagine this debut novel – about being an immigrant, trauma, queer, family dynamics and love – being any less than his poetry.
Lore Olympus by Rachel Smythe (web comic link): I’ve always loved mythology and gods being modernized or otherwise rewritten, and I just got back into web comics so this very much loved web comic on greek gods seem like the perfect next one for me.
I made a post in June with five star predictions. It started with me believing I would love “Never let me go” by Kazuo Ishiguro because a lot of people compared it to other books I’d loved, and then it being a let-down. And now I’ve finally read all the books!
Heartstopper vol. 1 by Alice Oseman: review! This graphic novel with m/m romance was so precious and I loved it as much as I’ve loved Radio Silence and I Was Born for This by Oseman. The second volume is also definitely a five/five stars. 5/5 stars!!
The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson: review! The previous book, Truly Devious, was one of my favourites last year. It’s a good enough sequel, following the same type of mystery boarding-school vibe as the first one. You certainly get further in the story, especially about the old mystery at the school the main character is trying to solve. But it was also lacking the freshness and felt a bit repetitive. 4/5 stars!
These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling: review! So many queer witches and a lovely YA mystery witchy book. But it wasn’t without its problems plotwise and not interesting enough to get above four/five stars. Still would recommend! I’m so happy it delivered! 4/5 stars!
The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner: review! This post was a lot of fun until I had this single book left for months. After the second real try, I DNF’ed it. There’s just something about the writing that didn’t click with me, which is the one thing that makes it nearly impossible for me to care about a book. There was nothing luring me in. So I’m giving up on this, even though it has such good ratings and I can remember nothing from it already. not giving this a rating because I DNF’ed.
Fence vol. 1 by C. S. Pacat: review! I went into this expecting “The Foxhole Court” (by Nora Sakavic) vibes with the sport-focus and gay characters. But it definitely became the biggest let-down on this list, as this graphic novel just never developed its story enough. Far far below a full score. like 1/5, maybe 2/5 stars.
So this wasn’t a great result, but I really liked to do it and especially picking out the books I thought I would love and reading through reviews. Worst part was honestly having that one book left for months, ruining finishing this post. I would’ve just DNF’ed it on the first try if I did it again.
While I gave The Vanishing Stair and These Witches Don’t Burn 4/5 stars I see them as great successes along with Heartstopper.
After predicting Never let me go by Kazuo Ishiguro would be a five out of five stars and ending up being a disappointment, I looked at my TBR and what other books I think will be new favorites.
Hopefully I’ll revisit this in not too long and see if I predicted right! (And I might have already read some of the books when this is posted because a couple posts were postponed because they clashed with posts for the Pride Library challenge.)
Heartstopper vol. 1 by Alice Oseman: I’ve heard such great things, actually only great things, about this graphic novel and already know the art style is right in my alley! I love the colors so much, and Oseman is a great storyteller.
The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson: The previous book, Truly Devious, was one of my favourites last year, with boarding school & mystery it was probably one of my all-time fav YA books. So I have high hopes for this one as well, Maureen Johnson is a great author overall.
These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling: This book has a great synopsis with queer witches that seem badass and I just hope I love this new release.
The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner: Also a book I’ve heard great things about, with a close friendgroup and the main character (as me) looking at graduation with mixed feelings. It’s also another debut novel.
Fence vol. 1 by C. S. Pacat: I’ve seen so many book blogs love on these graphic novels as well. I’ve fallen in love with queer sports teams before, and fencing shouldn’t seem to be an exception? Also I’ve had mixed feelings about C. S. Pacat’s books before, but to me it’s no doubt that she has talent in making catchy characters.