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When a shy online reviewer is forced to add video to her blog, she receives unexpected help from an aspiring actor who helps her finally find her voice. Start listening to the Yes & I Love You audiobook!
Hola Audiophiles! Remember how last week I promised to be done with my latest listen by now? Well, the universe laughed at me and my silly little plans. Since the last newsletter came out, I took my dad to the hospital three times in four days, and then he had emergency surgery on Monday. I’m not sure what day it is anymore and def didn’t finish this book. but I’m going to tell you about it anyway because I love it so far and feel confident enough to recommend it.
Ready? Let’s audio.
New Releases – Week of April 6
publisher descriptions in quotes
Pride and Premeditation by Tirzah Price
It’s finally here!!!! My former Read Harder co-host and wonderful friend, Book Riot’s own Tirzah Price, has a book out in the world! This is the first in a series of YA murder mystery Austen retellings (weeee!) In Pride and Premeditation, 17-year-old Lizzie Bennet is an aspiring lawyer. When a scandalous murder rocks London society, Lizzy is convinced authorities have imprisoned the wrong person and sets out to solve the murder on her own. But as the case and her feelings for the heir to the prestigious Pemberley Associates firm (Mr. Darcy, you may have heard of him) become more complicated, Lizzie realizes her dream job could very well get her killed. (YA mystery)
Oh and ehhem, the book is also Barnes & Noble’s April YA Book Club Pick. Just a casual flex for the people!
Caul Baby by Morgan Jerkins
Harlem,1998: after a series of pregnancies that’ve ended in heartbreak, Laila turns to the Melancons, an old and powerful Harlem family, for help. She makes a deal to obtain a piece of caul from them, a precious layer of skin that’s said to be the source of their healing power; but the deal falls through and another pregnancy ends in tragedy. Meanwhile another baby is about to be born to her cousin Amara and then given to the Melancons to raise as their own. The matriarchs of that family predict that this child, Hallow, will restore the family’s prosperity, but Hallow grows up to question her identity and the way she was raised. As the Melancons thirst to maintain their status grows, Hallow’s mother Amara is determined to avenge her longstanding grudge against the family. Mother and daughter will cross paths, forcing Hallow to decide where she really belongs. (fiction)
Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi
Helen Oyeyemi is an $@*# gem. Her books just take me out of my body! This latest is the story of Otto and Xavier Shin whose aunt has gifted them a magical train ride as a not-honeymoon honeymoon. The couple realizes that they appear to be alone on this former tea-smuggling train and soon realize that it’s not your average locomotive. When Otto discovers a secretive woman who issues a cryptic message, “further clues and questions pile up. As the trip upends everything they thought they knew, Otto and Xavier begin to see connections to their own pasts, connections that now bind them together.” (literary fiction)
Read by Ben Allen, Intae Kim, Jade Wheeler, Deana Taheri, Rosa Escoda, and Deepti Gupta. The only person I’m familiar with personally from that cast is Deep Gupta but I am already sold based on a preview!
Broken (in the Best Possible Way) by Jenny Lawson
If you don’t already know about Jenny Lawson and are looking for super candid, often hilarious, sometimes cringey (but charmingly so) musings on mental health peppered with personal anecdotes sharing some very honest struggles, look her up. This latest from Lawson “humanizes what we all face in an all-too-real way, reassuring us that we’re not alone and making us laugh while doing it. From the business ideas that she wants to pitch to Shark Tank to the reason why Jenny can never go back to the post office, Broken leaves nothing to the imagination in the most satisfying way.” (nonfiction, essays, autobiography/memoir)
Read by the author in her signature brand of wacky run-on sentences and relatable quirk. Love her so much.
Each of Us a Desert by Mark Oshiro
This is a stunning beautiful desert fantasy set in the Americas. The main character is sixteen year old Xochitl, the cuentista in her village of Empalme. The people in her village give her their stories, then Xochitl returns those stories to the earth, to Solís, at the conclusion of the ritual. The confessor walks away free from the guilt and burden of their story, and Xochitl gives it story back to Solís and promptly forgets it. She’s been told, as have all cuentistas, that this ritual is a necessity for the protection off her village.
Hers is a lonely existence and often a heavy one; she longs to be free and to share her heart with a kindred spirit. Then a horrible tragedy in the village forces Xochitl to consider whether what she’s been told about her role is a lie. It’s on a journey across the desert to get answers that Xochitl is joined by Emilia, the cold and beautiful daughter of the murderous conqueror responsible for the tragedy that sent Xochitl on this quest in the first place. They agree to complete the rest of the journey as companions and soon find themselves drawn to one another. Their hearts could be the match Xochitl longs for… if they can survive the terrors that wait for them in the desert each night when the sun goes down.
We often get asked for recommendations for books where the setting is a character and this is precisely that kind of book. The desert is a living, breathing entity, one that both gives with unexpected benevolence and takes with horrible cruelty. This book is an homage to both the beauty and the terror as well as the people that inhabit these spaces. It’s a gorgeous F/F love story, an action-packed ride full of tons of Espańol, and a thought-provoking examination of the weight of taking on other people’s stories.
As for narration, Frankie Corzo (Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Everyone Knows You Go Home by Natalia Sylvester, Incendiary by Zoraida Córdova) really hasn’t let me down. Her tone pairs perfectly with the story, emotional and vulnerable yet full of quiet power just like Xochitl herself. She handles the pacing wonderfully and gives distinct personalities to each character deftly. I so enjoy spending time with her warm and lovely performances.
From the Internets
at Audiofile: 5 Audio Novels for Spring
at The Washington Post: The top audiobooks of the last year, according to our readers
Libro.fm is also gearing up for Independent Bookstore Day! Spend at least $15 USD at your indie either online or in-person between April 24th and 26th then submit your receipt to get a free audiobook! See the list of awesome selections here.
Over at the Riot
Thanks for hanging with me today! Shoot me an email at email@example.com with with all things audiobook or find me on Twitter and the gram @buenosdiazsd. Sign up for the In The Club newsletter and catch me once a month on the All the Books podcast.
Stay bad & bookish, my friends.