New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, book lovers! It’s really starting to get green here in Maine. Everything is so lush and chirpy and beautiful, and it’s been such a balm for my heart and lungs. I am still on the mend, but I am getting better every day, and I thank you all for the well wishes. The hardest part about being sick was not being able to read very much. Thankfully, that is behind me now!

And speaking of reading, let’s talk books! At the very top of my list of new releases for this week to acquire are An Olive Grove in Ends by Moses McKenzie, Private Label by Kelly Yang, Rainbow Rainbow by Lydia Conklin, and Half-Blown Rose by Leesa Cross-Smith. And on this week’s episode of All the Books! Kelly and I discussed the best books we read for this week and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants.

cover of How to Be Eaten by Maria Adelmann; illustration of a large wolf face looking down at a very tiny Little Red Riding Hood

How to Be Eaten by Maria Adelmann

THIS BOOK. It is so dark and smart and will make you uncomfortable and you will thank it. It’s a contemporary twist on fairy tales, where several famous fairy tale characters meet in a support group for survivors. Women like Little Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard’s lover, and Gretel (she of the famous candy house), talk about their modern-day situations and what it is like to exist as a woman in the world and in the public eye. It’s wickedly delicious! I read it last year and still keep thinking about it. (CW for toxic masculinity, disordered eating, body horror, stalking, gaslighting, harassment, emotional abuse, sexual assault, self harm, violence, murder, imprisonment, mental illness.)

Backlist bump: For more unusual support groups pick up We Are All Completely Fine by Daryl Gregory and for more feminist fairy tale twists, pick up The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter.

cover of Theo Tan and the Fox Spirit by Jesse Q Sutanto; illustration of a young Chinese American boy in a blue hoodie with a fox on his shoulders reaching for a bright lantern

Theo Tan and the Fox Spirit by Jesse Q Sutanto

Here is a wonderful new start to a middle grade fantasy series for you and/or the young people in your life! Theo Tan isn’t interested in his Chinese heritage; he just wants to be thought of as a “normal” American. But when his brother Jamie dies, and he is visited by his brother’s fox spirit, Kai, it shakes him up. Kai isn’t any happier about the arrangement, but to find a solution to their new partnership and figure out what really happened to his brother, they will have to work together. And Theo will have to embrace his roots if he wants to get the truth. It’s an action-packed, compelling tale of family, grief, and heritage with a clue-filled mystery at its center. (CW for death of a loved one, grief.)

Backlist bump: Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia

This Is Not a Book About Benedict Cumberbatch by Tabitha Carvan; orange with a yellow jacket pin with an illustration of BC's face on it

This Is Not a Book About Benedict Cumberbatch: The Joy of Loving Something–Anything–Like Your Life Depends On It by Tabitha Carvan 

And finally, for my last pick, I chose this book even though I have not finished it, because it has surprised me. Yes, it would have been less of a surprise if I read the description but here we are. I picked it up, thinking it would be something light about the actor Benedict Cumberbatch for my recovering brain, but instead it’s a funny, honest memoir about shame and loving the things we love. Carvan developed a big interest in the Cumberbatch, and her fixation took her by surprise. She explores her thoughts on finding a new passion, why we feel embarrassed about loving some things, and how we need to break out of our shame and grab on to the things we enjoy for dear life. Because baby, this ride isn’t getting any longer. (So far, CW for body shaming, misogny, sexism, illness.)

Backlist bump: Broken (in the best possible way) by Jenny Lawson

Don’t forget you can get three free audiobooks at with a free trial!

orange cat sitting on a stack of cardboard; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I am reading Age of Vice by Deepti Kapoor and The Chinese Groove by Kathryn Ma. (Titles for 2023 whaaaaaaat.🤪) Outside of books, I have been taking a lot of naps and doing jigsaw puzzles. The song stuck in my head today is Government Center by The Modern Lovers. And as promised, here is a cat picture: One game I like to play is add empty soda flats to the stack and see if Farrokh will still sit on them. Spoiler: He will. He’s like a fuzzy Princess and the Pea.

Thank you, as always, for joining me each week as I rave about books! I am wishing the best for all of you in whatever situation you find yourself in now. And yay, books! – XO, Liberty ❤️