Blog Tour: Mirage – Somaiya Daud

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Mirage by Somaiya Daud

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: August 28th, 2018
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, War, Romance, Feminism, Royalty, Culture


BLURB:

In a star system dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation; she dreams of writing poetry like the old-world poems she adores; she dreams of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventure, and travel beyond her isolated moon. But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped by the regime and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double, someone to appear in public as Maram, ready to die in her place. As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty—and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear. If Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection…because one wrong move could lead to her death. Continue reading

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Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World

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Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World by Pénélope Bagieu

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Distributor
Published: March 2018
Publisher: First Second
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Graphic Novel, Biography, Feminism, Coming of Age, Art, Science, History


BLURB:

Throughout history and across the globe, one characteristic connects the daring women of Brazen: their indomitable spirit. Against overwhelming adversity, these remarkable women raised their voices and changed history. With her one-of-a-kind wit and dazzling drawings, celebrated graphic novelist Pénélope Bagieu profiles the lives of these feisty female role models, some world-famous, some little known. From Nellie Bly to Mae Jemison or Josephine Baker to Naziq al-Abid, the stories in this comic biography are sure to inspire the next generation of rebel ladies. Continue reading

Year of Yes – Shonda Rhimes

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Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Bought
Published: 2015
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Memoir, Personal Development, Self Help, Feminism, Womanhood, Motherhood, Celebrity


BLURB:

In this poignant, hilarious and deeply intimate call to arms, Hollywood’s most powerful woman, the mega-talented creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away with Murder and Catch, reveals how saying YES changed her life – and how it can change yours too. With three hit shows on television and three children at home, Shonda Rhimes had lots of good reasons to say no when invitations arrived. Hollywood party? No. Speaking engagement? No. Media appearances? No. And to an introvert like Shonda, who describes herself as ‘hugging the walls’ at social events and experiencing panic attacks before press interviews, there was a particular benefit to saying no: nothing new to fear. Then came Thanksgiving 2013, when Shonda’s sister Delorse muttered six little words at her: You never say yes to anything. Profound, impassioned and laugh-out-loud funny, in Year of Yes Shonda Rhimes reveals how saying YES changed – and saved – her life. And inspires readers everywhere to change their own lives with one little word: Yes. Continue reading

5 to 1 – Holly Bodger

5 to 1 by Holly Bodger

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: May 12th, 2015
Publisher: Knopf BFYR
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Dystopian, Feminism, Freedom, Competition


BLURB:

In the year 2054, after decades of gender selection, India now has a ratio of five boys for every girl, making women an incredibly valuable commodity. Tired of marrying off their daughters to the highest bidder and determined to finally make marriage fair, the women who form the country of Koyanagar have instituted a series of tests so that every boy has the chance to win a wife. Sudasa, though, doesn’t want to be a wife, and Kiran, a boy forced to compete in the test to become her husband, has other plans as well. As the tests advance, Sudasa and Kiran thwart each other at every turn until they slowly realize that they just might want the same thing.
Continue reading

Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions

33585392Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Borrowed
Published: March 2017
Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Nonfiction, Feminism, Gender Stereotypes, Education, Short essays


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A few years ago, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie received a letter from a dear friend from childhood, asking her how to raise her baby girl as a feminist. Dear Ijeawele is Adichie’s letter of responseHere are fifteen invaluable suggestions–compelling, direct, wryly funny, and perceptive–for how to empower a daughter to become a strong, independent woman. From encouraging her to choose a helicopter, and not only a doll, as a toy if she so desires; having open conversations with her about clothes, makeup, and sexuality; debunking the myth that women are somehow biologically arranged to be in the kitchen making dinner, and that men can “allow” women to have full careers, Dear Ijeawele goes right to the heart of sexual politics in the twenty-first century. It will start a new and urgently needed conversation about what it really means to be a woman today. Continue reading

I Stop Somewhere – T.E. Carter

29751533I Stop Somewhere by T.E. Carter

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
First Published: February 27th, 2018
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Abuse, High School, First Love, Investigation


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Tormented throughout middle school, Ellie begins her freshman year with a new look: she doesn’t need to be popular; she just needs to blend in with the wallpaper. But when the unthinkable happens, Ellie finds herself trapped after a brutal assault. She wasn’t the first victim, and now she watches it happen again and again. She tries to hold on to her happier memories in order to get past the cold days, waiting for someone to find her. The problem is, no one searches for a girl they never noticed in the first place. Continue reading

Rebel with a Cupcake – Anna Mainwaring

34722536Rebel with a Cupcake by Anna Mainwaring

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
First Published: April 3rd, 2018
Publisher: KCP Loft
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Body Image, Feminism, Humour, Dieting


BLURB:

Jesobel Jones is bold and brash, the daughter of a hand model and a washed-up rock star. Jess sees no need to apologize for her rambling house, her imperfect family, her single status … or her weight. Jess is who she is. She makes her own cupcakes and she eats them, too. No regrets. That is, until Own Clothes Day rolls around at school. Jess and her friends dedicate the requisite hours of planning to their outfits, their hair and their makeup for the one day they are free from school uniforms. But a wardrobe malfunction leaves Jess with a pair of leggings split open at the worst spot, and a mean girl calling her the one thing that’s never bothered her before: fat. The encounter shakes Jess’s formerly iron-clad confidence, and she starts to wonder if she’s been just a little too comfortable in her own skin. When the boy of her dreams invites her to a party, she must decide whether to try to fit in for the first time in her life, or remain true to herself — whoever that really is. Continue reading