Slay – Brittney Morris

43723509Slay by Brittney Morris

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Simon & Schuster Canada
Published: September 24th, 2019
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Gaming, Black Culture, Racism, High School, Relationships, Family, Friendship


REVIEW:

This isn’t the type of story that I would typically read. Mainly because I prefer to actually play games than to read about them. But SLAY is such a unique and thematic MMORPG that I couldn’t help but get curious about it. I also loved the fact that it was created by a teenage girl with a normal life many people can relate to. Keira Johnson’s voice is equally strong and gentle. She is kind, patient, loving, smart … but not one to let disrespect slide. Continue reading

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All-American Muslim Girl – Nadine Jolie Courtney

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All-American Muslim Girl by Nadine Jolie Courtney

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: November 12th, 2019
Publisher: FSG
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Religion, Race, Family, Contemporary Romance, High School


REVIEW:

This book starts with a bang.

It’s a book that is impossible to ignore. Once you start it, that’s it. It has you. You won’t be able to put it down, and honestly, you won’t want to. It is a real page-turner and one of the most engaging YA stories about religion and race that I have ever read in my entire life. I don’t know what people are waiting for. It should get at least a thousand requests on NetGalley and ten times as many pre-orders. Continue reading

The Good Luck Girls – Charlotte Nicole Davis

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The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: October 1st, 2019
Publisher: Tor Teen
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Adventure, Feminism, Dystopia, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Sisterhood


REVIEW:

This story will intrigue many people and there’s a reason for that. It’s a mash-up of different genres and themes: historical fiction, dystopia, western, adventure, action, sisterhood, romance, fantasy. You’d think the result would be a mess or a really complex plotline that one cannot make heads and tails of but actually the author manages to explain everything well and ease us into the world-building without dumping every information on us in the first chapter. Continue reading

Lifestyles of Gods and Monsters – Emily Roberson

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Lifestyles of Gods and Monsters by Emily Roberson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: October 20th, 2019
Publisher: FSG
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mythology, Retelling, Forbidden Love, Competition, Reality TV


REVIEW:

This book was such a pleasurable experience. I feel like sincerely thanking the author for writing it because we all need positive distractions in our lives. I’m a university student who takes school seriously but I also need time to chill with a fun and surprising book. This story combines so many of the things I enjoy immersing myself in: mythology, retellings, forbidden love, competition and reality TV. I especially liked the ways in which Emily Roberson negotiated antiquity and modernity. On the one hand, Ariadne and everyone else in her world believe in the gods—Poseidon, Athena and such—and will do anything to please them. On the other hand, technology is very much present in everyday life and myths are understood as truths to be remembered but also, to some, truths to be questioned. Continue reading

The Infinite Noise – Lauren Shippen

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The Infinite Noise by Lauren Shippen

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: September 24th, 2019
Publisher: Tor Teen
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Romance, Fantasy, High School, Bullying, Mental Health


REVIEW:

This is a story that is centered on human emotion, and we all know that teenagers have a lot of them as they are struggling to figure out who they are and where they belong and who is a friend and an enemy. This book brought me back to being a high school student and unsure of anything but still trying hard to find myself and stand out from the crowd. Caleb and Adam are two such young souls who need guidance and whose presence helps the other tremendously. Watching them grow closer made me very happy. Continue reading

Cupid’s Match – Lauren Palphreyman

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Cupid’s Match by Lauren Palphreyman

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: October 1st, 2019
Publisher: Wattpad Books
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Paranormal, Action, High School


REVIEW:

I like when stories first published online become traditionally published because their hype is contagious to me. I become really curious about them and want to find out what makes them special. Cupid’s Match is the kind of YA paranormal romance that you’ve read before… but with a twist. I’m okay with that, since I don’t think the wheel always needs reinventing and as long as a story is catching my interest I am a happy reader. Continue reading

Girls Need Not Apply: Field Notes from the Forces

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Girls Need Not Apply: Field Notes from the Forces by Kelly S. Thompson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: August 20th, 2019
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Memoir, Military, Coming of Age, Feminism


REVIEW:

I have such mixed feelings about this memoir. I was very excited to read it because I don’t recall ever reading a memoir from someone who served in the army, let alone a woman, and because I could feel it in my bones that it would be impactful. I enjoy both light and heavy stories so I was ready for an arrow to pierce my heart. Continue reading