How It Feels to Float – Helena Fox

41454344How It Feels to Float by Helena Fox

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: May 7th, 2019
Publisher: Dial Books
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mental Health, LGBTQIA+, Family Death, Friendship


REVIEW:

I will not always remember what happened in this book but I will always remember how this book made me feel. It is so lyrical I can remember clearly how it increased my heartbeat during stressful scenes and reduced it during really comfortable moments between Biz and the new people she meets. Everything Biz felt, I felt, which was heavy at times because she is not in a right space of mind right now. Her father’s death affects her tremendously even if it was a while ago. I can relate to that because my own father passed away when I was a baby and even if my heart doesn’t squeeze when I think of him I still wonder oh so many times what it would have been like to get to know him. Yet this book never got too overwhelming. Biz is drowning in her own mind—or floating out of it rather—but has people in her life who help her stay grounded. But you can’t always depend on others to feel sane and so Biz is losing herself more and more. Continue reading

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We Contain Multitudes – Sarah Henstra

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We Contain Multitudes by Sarah Henstra

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: May 2019
Publisher: Penguin Teen
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Romance, Family, Friendship, Death, Abuse, Bullying


REVIEW:

That was an intense reading experience. A rollercoaster ride, really. A thorn to the heart and a sunrise of a thousand different colours. Let me tell you right from the start that if Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe did not work for you, you will probably hate this. If you dislike epistolary novels, you will probably hate this. If you prefer your LGBTQIA+ reads to be light and entertaining, kind of like Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, you will hate this. Actually, it will hate you because this book deserves a reader who is ready for baggage and heartbreak and a hundred different conflicting emotions. Continue reading

A Ladder to the Sky – John Boyne

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A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: PRH Canada
Published: 2018
Publisher: Hogarth Press
Recommended Age: 14+
Genres & Themes: Adult, Literary Fiction, LGBTQIA+, Historical Fiction, Books about Books, Writing, Family, Success


REVIEW:

I have never before genuinely despised an antihero. Antiheroes are hella fun. By that I mean that I love to root for them because they’re often unpredictable, unconventional and unusual and they don’t care to play the role of the good guy. They live by their own rules and that can be really entertaining to witness. Continue reading

Tell Me How You Really Feel – Aminah Mae Safi

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Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: June 11th, 2019
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Romance, Filmmaking, Coming of Age, Family Dynamics, Enemies to Lovers


REVIEW:

This is a decent enemies-to-lovers story. I say ‘‘decent’’ because so many so-called love/hate relationships are so… tame. There’s no real hate, just annoyance. There’s also no real reason to hate the other person, just mild disagreements. But what I liked about this book is that it shows how two people—in this case two teen girls—can misjudge one another completely, assuming they have nothing in common and no way to connect, only to find themselves being drawn to one another almost unconsciously. Continue reading

You Asked for Perfect – Laura Silverman

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You Asked for Perfect by Laura Silverman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: March 2019
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, LGBTQIA+, Mental Health, Romance, School Pressure, Friendship, Family Dynamics


REVIEW:

I could have used this book a year before applying to college. That year, and the one before actually, I was intensely focused on my studies and cancelled many plans with friends, so many that by the end of the school year, I barely had anyone to say goodbye, good luck to. And I only realized my mistake when I did get into university, went to a few classes and realized that it’s harder to make friends when the teacher lectures and there’s little time to discuss in or between classes. Unless you go to events, socialize. Continue reading

Going Off Script – Jen Wilde

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Going Off Script by Jen Wilde

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Raincoast Books
Published: May 2019
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Film Industry, LGBTQIA+, Coming of Age, Celebrity, Family Bonds, Romance, Fandom


REVIEW:

June is Pride Month—not that you need me to remind you—so I’m reading almost exclusively books with LGBTQIA+ characters in order to show my support, thus highlighting LGBTQIA+ themed stories. And this is a beautiful, under-the-radar gem you should definitely check out if you, too, want to join the Pride wagon but aren’t sure what would make a great summer read. Continue reading

Her Royal Highness – Rachel Hawkins

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Her Royal Highness by Rachel Hawkins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Penguin Random House Canada
Published: May 2019
Publisher: Putnam BFYR
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Romance, LGBTQIA+, Boarding School, Royalty, Love/Hate Relationships


REVIEW:

Another royal romance!

This is the companion novel to Royals (or Prince Charming) but it can safely be read as a standalone. Daisy, her sister and boyfriend make only a short appearance and you will not feel lost at any point. But you can certainly get lost in the interesting and unusual romance between Peasant Millie and Princess Flora, I’ll allow it. Continue reading