Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Anticipated July 2022 Releases!


If you though June was packed full of new releases, then you may want to make sure you're sitting down for this post because there are so many releases coming in July as well! At this point, I will likely never catch up on all my reading, haha, but I accepted that a long time ago. I am so very excited for so many of these releases, and have already read a number of them as well. The Daughter of Doctor Moreau and What Moves the Dead are two ARCs I'm reading very soon, and I really loved The Book of Gothel. I can't wait to check the rest of these out (one day?). What books are you most looking forward to being released in July?

What Moves the DeadThe Daughter of Doctor MoreauYmirDead WaterUpgradeMary: An Awakening of TerrorNight of the Living RezThe Book of GothelThe Pallbearers ClubJust Like HomeThe Splendid CityThe Darkening (The Darkening, #1)August Kitko and the Mechas from SpaceSilk FireWake the BonesThe RuinsDark EarthA Strange and Stubborn EnduranceThe House of Fortune (The Miniaturist #2)The It GirlRavenous ThingsThe DisplacementsTen Thousand Stitches (Regency Faerie Tales #2)

What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Ymir by Rich Larson || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Dead Water by C.A. Fletcher || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Upgrade by Blake Crouch || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Mary: An Awakening of Terror by Nat Cassidy || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Night of the Living Rez by Morgan Talty || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne || July 26th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Pallbearer's Club by Paul Tremblay || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Just Like Home by Sarah Gailey || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Splendid City by Karen Heuler || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Darkening by Sunya Mara || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

August Kitko and the Mechas from Space by Alex White || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Silk Fire by Zabe Ellor || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Wake the Bones by Elizabeth Kilcoyne || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Ruins by Phoebe Wynne || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Dark Earth by Rebecca Stott || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

A Strange and Stubborn Endurance by Foz Meadows || July 26th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The House of Fortune by Jessie Burton || July 7th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The It Girl by Ruth Ware || July 12th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Ravenous Things by Derrick Chow || July 26th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

The Displacements by Bruce Holsinger || July 5th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

Ten Thousand Stitches by Olivia Atwater || July 19th -- Amazon | Bookshop.org

What are your anticipated July releases?

Friday, June 24, 2022

The Friday Face-Off: A Father-Figure Role

      Friday Face Off New

Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a weekly meme at Books by Proxy. Join us every Friday as we pit cover against cover, and publisher against publisher, to find the best artwork in our literary universe.  You can find a list of upcoming topics at Lynn's Books.

This week's topic is:

I had a few ideas for this one, with Inkheart by Cornelia Funke and Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend first coming to mind, but I've already featured both of those in past posts and so had to keep looking. I finally settled on Andrzej Sapkowski's The Witcher series since Gerald has a great father-type role towards Ciri. I've decided to share editions of the first book, Blood of Elves, since Ciri has a larger role in it. There were so many covers and I want to share them, but that would be far too long so here's a small sampling. Let's check them out!

Blood of Elves (The Witcher, #1)Krew elfów (Saga o Wiedźminie, #1)Blood of Elves (The Witcher, #1)
2009 US Mass Market | 2007 Polish | 2009 UK

Das Erbe der Elfen (Hexer, #3)Il Sangue degli Elfi (La saga di Geralt di Rivia, #1)Krev elfů (Zaklínač, #3)
2009 German | 2012 Italian | 1998 Czech

Le Sang des elfes (Sorceleur, #3)Кръвта на eлфите (Вещерът, #3)Кровь эльфов (The Witcher, #1)
2011 French | 2009 Bulgarian | 1998 Russian

Krv vilenjaka (Saga o Vešcu #3)La sangre de los elfos (Geralt de Rivia, #1)Tündevér
2012 Serbian | 2015 Spanish | 2013 Hungarian

AlvblodHaldjate veri (Nõidur)خون الف‌ها (ویچر #3)
2020 Swedish | 2017 Estonian | 2018 Persian

ელფების სისხლი (მხედვარი, #3)Кровь эльфов (Ведьмак, #3)O Sangue dos Elfos (The Witcher, #3)
2016 Georgian | 2016 Russian | 2019 Portuguese

My choice(s):
It always bothered me that the main US editions featured covers taken from the games!? Especially since a lot of them featured scenes that weren't even in the books. (Orbit actually has a lot of new awesome covers for them coming out later this year if you're looking for better ones!) I really love just how much variety there is in all of these covers, and I have to say that I really like the Portuguese, Swedish, Spanish, and Bulgarian the most out of these options.

What cover(s) do you like the most?

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Mini-Review: Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater


Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater
Publication Date: June 28th, 2022
Hardcover. 288 pages.

About Half a Soul:

"It's difficult to find a husband in Regency England when you're a young lady with only half a soul. 

Ever since she was cursed by a faerie, Theodora Ettings has had no sense of fear or embarrassment - a condition which makes her prone to accidental scandal. Dora hopes to be a quiet, sensible wallflower during the London Season - but when the strange, handsome and utterly uncouth Lord Sorcier discovers her condition, she is instead drawn into dangerous and peculiar faerie affairs. 

If Dora's reputation can survive both her curse and her sudden connection with the least-liked man in all of high society, then she may yet reclaim her normal place in the world. . . but the longer Dora spends with Elias Wilder, the more she begins to suspect that one may indeed fall in love, even with only half a soul."

Half a Soul follows Theodora Ettings, who has only half of her soul due to an unfortunate meeting with a Fae man in her youth, meaning that she now experiences life without a full range of strong emotions. When her cousin Vanessa decides to travel to London with the apparent intention of finding a husband, Dora accompanies her and is introduced to London society as well, which results in meeting a variety of new characters, including a rather grumpy sorcerer who may be key in helping Dora recover her full soul.

What I liked: This was such a cute and fun comfort read. I don't really read a lot of books like this, so this was an incredibly welcome fresh breath of air and I'm excited to read more of Olivia Atwater's books. I loved the idea of Dora having half a soul and seeing how that affects her life on a regularly basis. Dora is a fantastic and utterly compelling character to follow and I loved seeing the world through her eyes and experiences. She's really not all that different from you or I, and I liked seeing her adapt to new situations and really thrive in new environments in her own unique ways. There a nice mix of the main plot and some side stories that meld together really well to give Dora her own story and to keep this story moving at a steady, flowing pace.

What I disliked: The main issues that arose for me in Half a Soul had to do with the magic and some of the plot. There was a certain lack of information given around the magic used in this story which left me feeling uncertain about how any of it worked or what it's role was within the society as a whole. Since Dora herself doesn't really use magic, I understand why it wasn't focused on more, but since magic was such a large component of this book in other ways and it played a rather important role in the end, I do wish there had been just a bit more expanded upon regarding it. In regards to the plot, I enjoyed the first half of this book much more than the latter half and felt as though some of the main focus of the story was lost a little bit once we reached the halfway point. Still, this was a really fun book that doesn't give me too much to complain about!

Overall, it's 3.75 stars from me for Half a Soul!

*I received a copy of Half a Soul courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

Buy the book: Amazon | Bookshop.org

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Can't-Wait Wednesday: The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne & Mary: An Awakening of Terror by Nat Cassidy


Can't-Wait is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings that spotlights exciting upcoming releases that we can't wait to be released! This meme is based off of Jill @ Breaking the Spine's Waiting on Wednesday meme.
This week's upcoming book spotlights are: 
The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne
Publication: July 26th, 2022
Hardcover. 384 pages.

Amazon | Bookshop.org

From Goodreads:
"Everyone knows the tale of Rapunzel in her tower, but do you know the story of the witch who put her there? 
Haelewise has always lived under the shadow of her mother, Hedda—a woman who will do anything to keep her daughter protected. For with her strange black eyes and even stranger fainting spells, Haelewise is shunned by her medieval village, and her only solace lies in the stories her mother tells of child-stealing witches, of princes in wolf-skins, of an ancient tower cloaked in mist, where women will find shelter if they are brave enough to seek it. 
Then, Hedda dies, and Haelewise is left unmoored. With nothing left for her in her village, she sets out to find the legendary tower her mother used to speak of—a place called Gothel, where Haelewise meets a wise woman willing to take her under her wing. 
But Haelewise is not the only woman to seek refuge at Gothel. It’s also a haven for a girl named Rika, who carries with her a secret the Church strives to keep hidden. A secret that unlocks a dark world of ancient spells and murderous nobles behind the world Haelewise has always known…"
I love Rapunzel retellings and I don't think we have enough of them! I already read an ARC and I adored it. I can't wait to see it published!

Mary: An Awakening of Terror by Nat Cassidy
Publication: July 19th, 2022
Tor Nightfire
Hardcover. 416 pages.

Amazon | Bookshop.org

From Goodreads:
"Nat Cassidy’s highly commercial, debut horror novel Mary: An Awakening of Terror, blends Midsommar with elements of American Psycho and a pinch of I'll Be Gone in the Dark. 

Mary is a quiet, middle-aged woman doing her best to blend into the background. Unremarkable. Invisible. Unknown even to herself. 

But lately, things have been changing inside Mary. Along with the hot flashes and body aches, she can’t look in a mirror without passing out, and the voices in her head have been urging her to do unspeakable things. 

Fired from her job in New York, she moves back to her hometown, hoping to reconnect with her past and inner self. Instead, visions of terrifying, mutilated specters overwhelm her with increasing regularity and she begins auto-writing strange thoughts and phrases. Mary discovers that these experiences are echoes of an infamous serial killer. 

Then the killings begin again. 

Mary’s definitely going to find herself."
This sounds like such a weird horror and I am so here for it!

What do you think about these upcoming releases? What are your anticipated upcoming releases?

Monday, June 20, 2022

Review: The Clackity by Lora Senf


The Clackity by Lora Senf
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: June 28th, 2022
Hardcover. 288 pages.

About The Clackity:

"Evie Von Rathe lives in Blight Harbor—the seventh-most haunted town in America—with her Aunt Desdemona, the local paranormal expert. Des doesn’t have many rules except one: Stay out of the abandoned slaughterhouse at the edge of town. But when her aunt disappears into the building, Evie goes searching for her. 

There she meets The Clackity, a creature who lives in the shadows and seams of the slaughterhouse. The Clackity makes a deal with Evie to help get Des back in exchange for the ghost of John Jeffrey Pope, a serial killer who stalked Blight Harbor a hundred years earlier. Evie must embark on a journey into a strange otherworld filled with hungry witches, penny-eyed ghosts, and a memory-thief, all while being pursued by a dead man whose only goal is to add Evie to his collection of lost souls."

The Clackity is a horror-tinged middle grade fantasy story that I absolutely loved. It had the perfect mix of spooky, creepy, hopeful, and quirky elements to capture the attention of pretty much any age. 

The Clackity follows Evie von Rathe who now lives with her Aunt Desdemona in Blight Harbor after her parents went missing four years earlier. Blight Harbor is the seventh-most haunted town in America–and also one of my new favorite fictional towns. Aunt Desdemona is considered a paranormal expert in the town of Blight Harbor and regularly writes articles and investigates the paranormal, as well as answers a column where people write in to ask all about their paranormal woes (you know, like what you’re supposed to do when you can’t get a ghost to move out of your home!). One day, Aunt Desdemona goes missing after visiting the mysterious abandoned slaughterhouse that Evie has been forbidden to enter. Of course, Evie decides she has to go find her aunt because she refuses to let yet another family member go missing and thus begins a dark, unpredictable, and disturbing journey through the shadowy  depths of the slaughterhouse, where Evie enters a place that is both familiar and anything but. 

Evie is a true delight of a character and I absolutely adored her as we followed her on this terrifying and unpredictable journey. Evie appears to struggle with anxiety and panic attacks, and I related to this quite a lot and I really enjoyed seeing her using different techniques to try to calm herself down whenever she was confronted with a particularly frightening or difficult challenge. It was also really nice to see her as a very self-aware character who is constantly aware of and mindful of her own health, safety, and general wellbeing. She was also always very concerned for others around her, both those she already knows and those she meets on her dangerous journey, whether or not they seemed friendly towards her. The best part of this journey, however, was getting to see Evie find her own strength piece by piece along the way and realize that she did have the ability to overcome any fear or obstacle standing in her way when she needed to. 

Lora Senf's writing is captivating and charismatic. I was constantly enraptured by this story, the characters, and the incredible descriptions and imaginative components that Senf created.  I really loved the general setup through the slaughterhouse of having multiple houses with different themes and obstacles that existed within each one that Evie had to explore and overcome. I was always really excited to explore a new house and a new setting and see what was going to come at us this next time, and I think it was a really great way to explore a lot of the different ideas that the author wanted to in this book, and I think it did so in a really imaginative way. There are also a few illustrations littered throughout the story that are lovely and match the overall tone and atmosphere really well.
The Clackity is both really cute and really creepy at the same time. It definitely is a middle grade novel, but it also felt fairly scary at times, almost in the same vein of the creepiness level that Neil Gaiman’s Coraline has: it's great for kids, but at the same time as an adult you're almost constantly caught up thinking how dark and creepy it actually is. It doesn't really talk down to kids or hold their hands too much; rather, it lets you explore everything on your own in a way that feels explained and compelling. There were a lot of really wonderful themes and messages explored in this book, including those about self acceptance, grief, what it means to be yourself, finding your own strength amidst despair and feelings of hopelessness, and much more. I can definitely see fans of The Thickety by J.A. White, Coraline, or Katherine Arden's middle grade series really enjoying this one as well. 

Overall, I've given The Clackity 4.5 stars!

*I received a copy of The Clackity courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

Buy the book: Amazon | Bookshop.org

Friday, June 17, 2022

The Friday Face-Off: Pretty Covers

      Friday Face Off New

Welcome to The Friday Face-Off, a weekly meme at Books by Proxy. Join us every Friday as we pit cover against cover, and publisher against publisher, to find the best artwork in our literary universe.  You can find a list of upcoming topics at Lynn's Books.

This week's topic is:

This was a hard topic only because there were far too many options, and far too many of those options only had one or two cover variations! As such, I've decided to simply share a small variety of pretty book covers from different titles that always stand out to me when I see them–you can never have too many beautiful book covers, right!?

The Illumination of Ursula Flight  Midnight in Everwood
2018 Allen & Unwin | 2021 HQ

The Sisters of the Winter Wood  Unnatural Magic
2018 Redhook | 2019 Ace

The Betrayals  The Fox and the Star
2021 William Morrow | 2015 Penguin

My choice(s):
You have to be crazy if you think I could ever choose just one of these as a favorite! That being said, I will always be captivated by the cover for The Illumination of Ursula Flight, there's just something so classic yet unique about it at the same time. I also adore the little fox on The Fox and the Star. 

What cover(s) do you like the most?