Wednesday, June 30, 2021

June Wrap-Up


 *Contains spoilers for the May FairyLoot book*


A Curse So Dark and Lonely (Cursebreakers, #1) by Brigid Kemmerer - hardback - 4/5 stars

Heartstopper: Volume 3 (Heartstopper, #3) by Alice Oseman - paperback - 3.5/5 stars

The Ghost Tree by Christina Henry - eARC - 3/5 stars - read my review here.

Bridge of Souls (Cassidy Blake, #3) by Victoria Schwab - audiobook - 3/5 stars


Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam - audiobook - 4/5 stars.

The Bone Way by Holly J. Underhill - eARC - 2.5/5 stars - read my review here.

All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries, #1) by Martha Wells - audiobook - 3.5/5 stars

A Heart So Fierce and Broken (Cursebreakers, #2) by Brigid Kemmerer - 3.5/5 stars

The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes - eARC - 3/5 stars - read my review here.



Physical books:

Witches Steeped in Gold was the May FairyLoot book and I got The Thursday Murder Club off Bookswap.


 NetGalley eARCs:


 My thanks to the publishers!




 As well as the reviews linked above, I also posted the following:

My June TBR

Can't-Wait Wednesday - Gearbreakers

Top Ten Tuesday - Books on My Summer 2021 TBR

Book Hooked Box Unboxing - It Is Here (May Box)





Forest of Souls (Shamanborn, #1) by Lori M. Lee

The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix



 What did you read in June?



Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Top Ten Tuesday - Most Anticipated Releases of the Second Half of 2021


 Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week the topic is 
Most Anticipated Releases of the Second Half of 2021
There are so many exciting books still to come out this year.
Here are the ten I'm most excited to read . . .

1. Six Crimson Cranes (Six Crimson Cranes, #1) by Elizabeth Lim
8th July 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.

Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.

Peniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama's betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she's been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her.

2. She Who Became the Sun (The Radiant Emperor, #1) by Shelley Parker-Chan
20th July 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

Mulan meets The Song of Achilles in Shelley Parker-Chan's She Who Became the Sun, a bold, queer, and lyrical reimagining of the rise of the founding emperor of the Ming Dynasty from an amazing new voice in literary fantasy.

To possess the Mandate of Heaven, the female monk Zhu will do anything

“I refuse to be nothing…”

In a famine-stricken village on a dusty yellow plain, two children are given two fates. A boy, greatness. A girl, nothingness…

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. For the starving peasants of the Central Plains, greatness is something found only in stories. When the Zhu family’s eighth-born son, Zhu Chongba, is given a fate of greatness, everyone is mystified as to how it will come to pass. The fate of nothingness received by the family’s clever and capable second daughter, on the other hand, is only as expected.

When a bandit attack orphans the two children, though, it is Zhu Chongba who succumbs to despair and dies. Desperate to escape her own fated death, the girl uses her brother's identity to enter a monastery as a young male novice. There, propelled by her burning desire to survive, Zhu learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes, no matter how callous, to stay hidden from her fate.

After her sanctuary is destroyed for supporting the rebellion against Mongol rule, Zhu takes the chance to claim another future altogether: her brother's abandoned greatness.

3. Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
17th August 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

From the New York Times bestselling author of Mexican Gothic comes a “delicious, twisted treat for lovers of noir” about a daydreaming secretary, a lonesome enforcer, and the mystery of a missing woman they’re both desperate to find.

1970s, Mexico City. Maite is a secretary who lives for one thing: the latest issue of Secret Romance. While student protests and political unrest consume the city, Maite escapes into stories of passion and danger.

Her next-door neighbor, Leonora, a beautiful art student, seems to live a life of intrigue and romance that Maite envies. When Leonora disappears under suspicious circumstances, Maite finds herself searching for the missing woman—and journeying deeper into Leonora’s secret life of student radicals and dissidents.

Meanwhile, someone else is also looking for Leonora at the behest of his boss, a shadowy figure who commands goon squads dedicated to squashing political activists. Elvis is an eccentric criminal who longs to escape his own life: He loathes violence and loves old movies and rock ’n’ roll. But as Elvis searches for the missing woman, he comes to observe Maite from a distance—and grows more and more obsessed with this woman who shares his love of music and the unspoken loneliness of his heart.

Now as Maite and Elvis come closer to discovering the truth behind Leonora’s disappearance, they can no longer escape the danger that threatens to consume their lives, with hitmen, government agents, and Russian spies all aiming to protect Leonora’s secrets—at gunpoint.

4. Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
7th September 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

From the New York Times bestselling author of Mexican Gothic comes a pulse-pounding neo-noir that reimagines vampire lore.

Welcome to Mexico City, an oasis in a sea of vampires. Domingo, a lonely garbage-collecting street kid, is just trying to survive its heavily policed streets when a jaded vampire on the run swoops into his life. Atl, the descendant of Aztec blood drinkers, is smart, beautiful, and dangerous. Domingo is mesmerized.

Atl needs to quickly escape the city, far from the rival narco-vampire clan relentlessly pursuing her. Her plan doesn't include Domingo, but little by little, Atl finds herself warming up to the scrappy young man and his undeniable charm. As the trail of corpses stretches behind her, local cops and crime bosses both start closing in.

Vampires, humans, cops, and criminals collide in the dark streets of Mexico City. Do Atl and Domingo even stand a chance of making it out alive? Or will the city devour them all?

5. The Origins of Iris by Beth Lewis 
19th August 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

Author of the critically-acclaimed debut The Wolf Road, Beth Lewis returns with her brand new novel The Origins of Iris where Wild meets Sliding Doors.

'I opened my eyes and the woman wearing my face opened hers at the same time.'

Iris flees New York City, and her abusive wife Claude, for the Catskill Mountains. When she was a child, Iris and her father found solace in the beauty and wilderness of the forest; now, years later, Iris has returned for time and space to clear her head, and to come to terms with the mistakes that have led her here. But what Iris doesn't expect in her journey of survival and self-discovery is to find herself - literally.

Trapped in a neglected cabin deep in the mountains, Iris is grudgingly forced to come face to face with a seemingly prettier, happier and better version of herself. Other Iris made different choices in life and love. But is she all she seems? Can she be trusted? What is she hiding?

As a storm encroaches, threatening both their lives, time is running out for them to discover why they have been brought together, and what it means for their futures.

An important, searing novel about one woman's journey in fleeing an abusive relationship and confronting the secrets of her past.
6. The Apollo Murders by Chris Hadfield
12th October 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:

New York Times bestselling astronaut Chris Hadfield is back with an exceptional Cold War thriller from the dark heart of the Space Race.

1973: a final, top-secret mission to the Moon. Three astronauts in a tiny module, a quarter of a million miles from home. A quarter of a million miles from help.
As Russian and American crews sprint for a secret bounty hidden away on the lunar surface, old rivalries blossom and the political stakes are stretched to breaking point back on Earth. Houston flight controller Kazimieras ‘Kaz’ Zemeckis must do all he can to keep the NASA crew together, while staying one step ahead of his Soviet rivals. But not everyone on board Apollo 18 is quite who they appear to be.
Full of the fascinating technical detail that fans of The Martian loved, and reminiscent of the thrilling claustrophobia, twists and tension of The Hunt for Red October, The Apollo Murders puts you right there in the moment. Experience the fierce G-forces of launch, the frozen loneliness of Space and the fear of holding on to the outside of a spacecraft orbiting the Earth at 17,000 miles per hour, as told by a former Commander of the International Space Station who has done all of those things in real life.
Strap in and count down for the ride of a lifetime.

7. Bright Ruined Things by Samantha Cohoe
26th October 2021

 Blurb from Goodreads:
"A deftly-plotted tale about ambition and belonging, Bright Ruined Things takes Shakespeare’s The Tempest and brilliantly reimagines its themes of family and love. Cohoe writes with a magic that dazzles and cuts right to the core." - Chloe Gong, New York Times bestselling author of These Violent Delights

Forbidden magic, a family secret, and a night to reveal it all...

The only life Mae has ever known is on the island, living on the charity of the wealthy Prosper family who control the island’s magic and its spirits. Mae longs for magic of her own and to have a place among the Prosper family, where her best friend, Coco, will see her as an equal, and her crush, Miles, will finally see her.

But tonight is First Night, when the Prospers and their high-society friends celebrate the night Lord Prosper first harnessed the island’s magic and started producing aether – a magical fuel source that has revolutionized the world. With everyone returning to the island, Mae finally has the chance to go after what she’s always wanted.

When the spirits start inexplicably dying, Mae realizes that things aren’t what they seem. And Ivo, the reclusive, mysterious heir to the Prosper magic, may hold all the answers – including a secret about Mae’s past. As Mae and her friends unravel the mysteries of the island, and the Prospers’ magic, Mae starts to question the truth of what her world was built on.

In this YA fantasy, Samantha Cohoe wonderfully mixes magic and an atmospheric setting into a fantastically immersive world, with characters you won’t be able to forget.
8. You've Reached Sam by Dustin Thao
2nd November 2021

Blurb from Goodreads:
If I Stay meets Your Name in this heartfelt novel about love, loss, and what it means to say goodbye.

Seventeen-year-old Julie has her future all planned out—move out of her small town with her boyfriend Sam, attend college in the city, spend a summer in Japan. But then Sam dies. And everything changes.

Heartbroken, Julie skips his funeral, throws out his things, and tries everything to forget him and the tragic way he died. But a message Sam left behind in her yearbook forces back memories. Desperate to hear his voice one more time, Julie calls Sam’s cellphone just to listen to his voicemail.

And Sam picks up the phone.

In a miraculous turn of events, Julie’s been given a second chance at goodbye. The connection is temporary. But hearing Sam’s voice makes her fall for him all over again, and with each call it becomes harder to let him go. However, keeping her otherworldly calls with Sam a secret isn’t easy, especially when Julie witnesses the suffering Sam’s family is going through. Unable to stand by the sidelines and watch their shared loved ones in pain, Julie is torn between spilling the truth about her calls with Sam and risking their connection and losing him forever.

9. Jade Fire Gold by June C.L. Tan
4th November 2021 

 Blurb from Goodreads:
Her destiny. His revenge.

In an empire on the brink of war . . .

Ahn is no one, with no past and no family.

Altan is a lost heir, his future stolen away as a child.

When they meet, Altan sees in Ahn a path to reclaiming the throne. Ahn sees a way to finally unlock her past and understand her lethal magical abilities.

But they may have to pay a far deadlier price than either could have imagined.

Girls of Paper and Fire meets A Song of Wraiths and Ruin in June CL Tan's stunning debut, where ferocious action, shadowy intrigue, rich magic, and a captivating slow-burn romance collide.
10. Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood
 9th November 2021

 Blurb from Goodreads:
Kiersten White meets Tomi Adeyemi in this Ethiopian-inspired debut fantasy retelling of Jane Eyre.

Andromeda is a debtera—an exorcist hired to cleanse households of the Evil Eye. When a handsome young heir named Magnus Rochester reaches out to hire her, Andromeda quickly realizes this is a job like no other, with horrifying manifestations at every turn, and that Magnus is hiding far more than she has been trained for. Death is the most likely outcome if she stays, but leaving Magnus to live out his curse alone isn’t an option. Evil may roam the castle’s halls, but so does a burning desire.
What are your most anticipated releases for the rest of 2021?

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Review - The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes




 Title: The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1)

Auhor: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Pages: 376

Publisher: Penguin

Release Date: 3rd September 2020


Blurb from Goodreads:

A Cinderella story with deadly stakes and thrilling twists.

Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why--or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where every room bears the old man's touch--and his love of puzzles, riddles, and codes.

Unfortunately for Avery, Hawthorne House is also occupied by the family that Tobias Hawthorne just dispossessed. This includes the four Hawthorne grandsons: dangerous, magnetic, brilliant boys who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne is convinced that Avery must be a con-woman, and he's determined to take her down. His brother, Jameson, views her as their grandfather's last hurrah: a twisted riddle, a puzzle to be solved. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon US | Bookshop

My Review:

*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Penguin Random House Children's UK and NetGalley*

Teenager Avery Grambs keeps her head down at school, waiting for the day she can leave. But when Avery is named as the heir to the recently deceased billionaire Tobias Hawthorne's fortune, her life is turned upside down.

However, there is one catch - to receive the inheritance Avery must live at Hawthorne House for an entire year, and she won't be the only one there as Tobias Hawthorne's family still live there. A family who aren't happy about Avery being named heir. A family that includes four enigmatic grandsons.

Tobias Hawthorne loved puzzles and the grandsons are convinced that Avery is one last puzzle for them to solve.

Can Avery survive one year in Hawthorne House?

Avery was a likeable and relatable protagonist. She hadn't had the easiest time of things and, given the magnitude of the way her life changed when being named Hawthorne's heir, I thought that Avery coped really well.

Avery's relationship with her sister, Libby, was interesting and I would have liked to read more interactions between the two of them.

I enjoyed reading as Avery got to know the Hawthorne family and tried to solve the puzzles left by Tobias.

The plot was enjoyable, but I wasn't gripped and nothing that happened surprised me particularly.

The writing style was easy to follow and quite quick to read. The short chapters made it seem like I was getting through the book quite quickly.

The premise for the book intrigued me, but I don't think it quite reached its potential for me.

I'm not sure if I will read the sequel or not.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read.



Saturday, June 26, 2021

Review - The Bone Way by Holly J. Underhill



 Title: The Bone Way

Author: Holly J. Underhill

Publisher: Nyx Publishing

Release Date: 26th June 2021


Blurb from Goodreads:

 Teagan’s wife, Cressidae, is missing. She has left for the Shadow Realm, a kingdom of the dead filled with untold nightmares—and the only place that can save Teagan from a lethal poison that’s killing her slowly. It is ruled by a princess said to make powerful deals with those brave enough to find her, and Cressidae has gone to bargain for Teagan’s life. Cressidae has forgotten one very important thing: no one makes it out on their own.

Despite the risks to her own safety, Teagan is determined to save her wife—and perhaps even herself in the process. The princess of the Shadow Realm, however, doesn’t let mortals roam her territories without opposition. In this thrilling tale inspired by the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, Teagan and Cressidae must face both the horrors of the Shadow Realm as well as their own past.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon US | Nyx Publishing


My Review:

 *I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Nyx Publishing*

When Teagan wakes up to find her wife Cressidae missing, she instantly knows that she has gone to the Shadow Realm which is ruled by a princess who wields dark magic.
Cressidae has gone there to make a deal with the Princess to save Teagan from the poison that is slowly killing her.
Teagan is determined to go after Cressidae, but the way through the Shadow Realm to the palace is full of danger, and Teagan might not survive long enough to find her wife.
Will Teagan and Cress be reunited?
Will Cressidae succeed in making a deal with the Princess?

When I heard that The Bone Way was inspired by the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice with a F/F romance, I instantly wanted to read it.
Teagan was an interesting protagonist, but because of the short length of the book I don't feel that I really know that much about Teagan or her wife, Cress. However, I did feel sorry for them both. While I knew that Teagan and Cress cared about each other a lot, it was more because I was told so and not because I could feel the connection between the two characters.
The Princess was intriguing, as was her story, the Shadow Realm, and the creatures that lived there.
The plot was enjoyable, but it didn't grip me and there were times when I questioned a few things that happened. I felt that there could have been more details/descriptions about several things, and the shortness of the book made the plot feel rushed at points.
The writing style felt a bit clunky at times and could have been smoother. I also found some of the dialogue and reactions odd.
I'm disappointed that I didn't enjoy this more as it had a lot of potential, but this was an occasion where the execution didn't quite work for me. However, I can see other people enjoying this a lot.

Overall, this was a mixed read.



Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Book Hooked Box Unboxing - It Is Here (May Box)


Book Hooked Box is a UK-based bi-monthly YA book subscription box that includes five items as well as a new YA release.

The theme of the May box was 

It Is Here



Here's what was inside . . .


A flower-themed treat from Gardners Cookies which is vegan and looks delicious.

A hot chocolate stirrer from Pendragon Drinks.

A candle inspired by the book of the month from Bookworm Candles. This is a 4oz candle that is handpoured, has an autumnal scent and floral toppings.

Vegan body polish from Ascent Bath & Body, which is a three-in-one whipped soap, sugar scrub and moisturiser. I love the bronze colour.

The book of the month was The Forest of Stolen Girls by June Hur. This came with a letter from the author, a signed bookplate and a bookmark from Felfira Moon Designs.

 Here's everything all together . . .


I specifically got this box because I knew what the book would be and it's one that I really want to read. However, I'm really happy with everything else in the box (although I can't have the marshmallows in the chocolate stirrer as they have gelatine). The candle is gorgeous and I'm looking forward to eating the flower biscuit.

Did you get this box?

What's your favourite item?

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Top Ten Tuesday - Books on My Summer 2021 TBR


 Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week the topic is 
Books on My Summer 2021 TBR

There are soooo many books I could include in this post (some of which have already been included in previous seasonal TBRs), but here are the ten books that I most want to read this summer . . .

1. The Gilded Ones (Deathless, #1) by Namina Forna

Blurb from Goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity--and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki--near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire's greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she's ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be--not even Deka herself.

2. An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1) by Sabaa Tahir

Blurb from Goodreads:

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death.

When Laia’s grandparents are brutally murdered and her brother arrested for treason by the empire, the only people she has left to turn to are the rebels.

But in exchange for their help in saving her brother, they demand that Laia spy on the ruthless Commandant of Blackcliff, the Empire’s greatest military academy. Should she fail it’s more than her brother’s freedom at risk . . . Laia’s very life is at stake.

There, she meets Elias, the academy’s finest soldier. But Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined – and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

3. Legendborn (Legendborn, #1) by Tracy Deonn

Blurb from Goodreads:

After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus.

A flying demon feeding on human energies.

A secret society of so called “Legendborn” students that hunt the creatures down.

And a mysterious teenage mage who calls himself a “Merlin” and who attempts—and fails—to wipe Bree’s memory of everything she saw.

The mage’s failure unlocks Bree’s own unique magic and a buried memory with a hidden connection: the night her mother died, another Merlin was at the hospital. Now that Bree knows there’s more to her mother’s death than what’s on the police report, she’ll do whatever it takes to find out the truth, even if that means infiltrating the Legendborn as one of their initiates.

She recruits Nick, a self-exiled Legendborn with his own grudge against the group, and their reluctant partnership pulls them deeper into the society’s secrets—and closer to each other. But when the Legendborn reveal themselves as the descendants of King Arthur’s knights and explain that a magical war is coming, Bree has to decide how far she’ll go for the truth and whether she should use her magic to take the society down—or join the fight.
4. The Prison Healer (The Prison Healer, #1) by Lynette Noni

Blurb from Goodreads:

Here at Zalindov, the only person you can trust is yourself.

Seventeen-year-old Kiva Meridan is a survivor. For ten years, she has worked as the healer in the notorious death prison, Zalindov, making herself indispensable. Kept afloat by messages of hope from her family, Kiva has one goal and one goal only: stay alive.

Then one day the infamous Rebel Queen arrives at the prison on death's door and Kiva receives a new message: Don't let her die. We are coming.

The queen is sentenced to the Trial by Ordeal: a series of elemental challenges against the torments of air, fire, water, and earth, assigned to only the most dangerous of criminals. Aware the sickly queen has little chance of making it through the Trials alive, Kiva volunteers to take her place. If she succeeds, both she and the queen will be granted their freedom.

But no one has ever survived.

And with an incurable plague sweeping Zalindov, a mysterious new inmate fighting for Kiva's heart, and a prison rebellion brewing, Kiva can't escape the terrible feeling that her trials have only just begun.

From bestselling Australian author Lynette Noni comes a masterful and action-packed YA fantasy perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Sabaa Tahir.

5. Ariadne by Jennifer Saint

 Blurb from Goodreads:
 As Princesses of Crete and daughters of the fearsome King Minos, Ariadne and her sister Phaedra grow up hearing the hoofbeats and bellows of the Minotaur echo from the Labyrinth beneath the palace. The Minotaur - Minos's greatest shame and Ariadne's brother - demands blood every year.

When Theseus, Prince of Athens, arrives in Crete as a sacrifice to the beast, Ariadne falls in love with him. But helping Theseus kill the monster means betraying her family and country, and Ariadne knows only too well that in a world ruled by mercurial gods - drawing their attention can cost you everything.

In a world where women are nothing more than the pawns of powerful men, will Ariadne's decision to betray Crete for Theseus ensure her happy ending? Or will she find herself sacrificed for her lover's ambition?

6. The Wolf of Oren-Yaro (Chronicles of the Bitch Queen, #1) by K.S. Villoso

Blurb from Goodreads:

A queen of a divided land must unite her people, even if they hate her, even if it means stopping a ruin that she helped create. A debut epic fantasy from an exciting new voice.

"I murdered a man and made my husband leave the night before they crowned me."

Born under the crumbling towers of Oren-yaro, Queen Talyien was the shining jewel and legacy of the bloody War of the Wolves that nearly tore her nation apart. Her upcoming marriage to the son of her father's rival heralds peaceful days to come.

But his sudden departure before their reign begins fractures the kingdom beyond repair.

Years later, Talyien receives a message, urging her to attend a meeting across the sea. It's meant to be an effort at reconciliation, but an assassination attempt leaves the queen stranded and desperate to survive in a dangerous land. With no idea who she can trust, she's on her own as she struggles to fight her way home.
7. Beach Read by Emily Henry

Blurb from Goodreads:
 He doesn't believe in happy endings.
She's lost her faith that they exist.
But could they find one together?

January is a hopeless romantic who likes narrating her life as if she's the heroine in a blockbuster movie.
Augustus is a serious literary type who thinks true love is a fairy-tale.
January and Augustus are not going to get on.

But they actually have more in common than you'd think:

They're both broke.
They've got crippling writer's block.
They need to write bestsellers before the end of the summer.

The result? A bet to see who can get their book published first.
The catch? They have to swap genres.
The risk? In telling each other's stories, their worlds might be changed entirely...
8. The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix 

 Blurb from Goodreads:
 In a slightly alternate London in 1983, Susan Arkshaw is looking for her father, a man she has never met. Crime boss Frank Thringley might be able to help her, but Susan doesn't get time to ask Frank any questions before he is turned to dust by the prick of a silver hatpin in the hands of the outrageously attractive Merlin.

Merlin is a young left-handed bookseller (one of the fighting ones), who with the right-handed booksellers (the intellectual ones), are an extended family of magical beings who police the mythic and legendary Old World when it intrudes on the modern world, in addition to running several bookshops.

Susan's search for her father begins with her mother's possibly misremembered or misspelt surnames, a reading room ticket, and a silver cigarette case engraved with something that might be a coat of arms.

Merlin has a quest of his own, to find the Old World entity who used ordinary criminals to kill his mother. As he and his sister, the right-handed bookseller Vivien, tread in the path of a botched or covered-up police investigation from years past, they find this quest strangely overlaps with Susan's. Who or what was her father? Susan, Merlin, and Vivien must find out, as the Old World erupts dangerously into the New.
9. Jane Austen at Home by Lucy Worsley

 Blurb from Goodreads:
 'This is my kind of history: carefully researched but so vivid that you are convinced Lucy Worsley was actually there at the party - or the parsonage.' Antonia Fraser
On the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen's death, historian Lucy Worsley leads us into the world in which our best-loved novelist lived.
This new telling of the story of Jane's life shows us how and why she lived as she did, examining the rooms, spaces and possessions which mattered to her, and the way in which home is used in her novels to mean both a place of pleasure and a prison. It wasn't all country houses and ballrooms, in fact her life was often a painful struggle.
Jane famously lived a 'life without incident', but with new research and insights Lucy Worsley reveals a passionate woman who fought for her freedom. A woman who far from being a lonely spinster in fact had at least five marriage prospects, but who in the end refused to settle for anything less than Mr Darcy.
10. Little Women (Little Women, #1) by Louisa May Alcott

 Blurb from Goodreads:
'I'm not afraid of storms, for I'm learning how to sail my ship.'

Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth - four "little women" enduring hardships and enjoying adventures in Civil War New England The charming story of the March sisters, Little Women has been adored by generations. Readers have rooted for Laurie in his pursuit of Jo's hand, cried over little Beth's death, and dreamed of travelling through Europe with old Aunt March and Amy. Future writers have found inspiration in Jo's devotion to her writing. In this simple, enthralling tale, both parts of which are included here, Louisa May Alcott has created four of American literature's most beloved women.

 What books do you want to read this summer?