Categories
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 Audiobooks.com 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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, book lovers! Welp, what turned into being sick on vacation became an extended illness, so I am sorry to report I did not get any reading done this past week. 😭 Thank you to everyone who reached out to check on me. I am finally on the mend, and hope to be back to eating a couple books a day very soon! Luckily, I read titles in advance, so I have a few to tell you about today. YAY, BOOKS!

I want SO MANY of this week’s new releases! At the very top of my list of books to buy are City of Orange by David Yoon, The Shore by Katie Runde, Either/Or by Elif Batuman, You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi, and Avalon by Nell Zink. And I’d like to thank Danika for sitting in for me for this week’s episode of All the Books! I will be back next week! And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants.

cover of The Evening Hero by Marie Myung-Ok Lee; illustration of tree branches growing down from the top of the cover into several pastel-colored shapes

The Evening Hero by Marie Myung-Ok Lee

I’m so excited for everyone to read this, because Marie Myung-Ok Lee has been an important voice in the literary community for decades, and I think this book will finally get her the audience she deserves. It’s a powerful novel of immigration, belonging, and secrets about an aging doctor in a small town in Minnesota whose life is upended near his retirement. It starts when a letter arrives from Korea that might expose how his whole life, the “American Dream” he worked for, has been built on a lie. Faced with the truth, he must decide whether to own up to his past or hide his true self away for the remainder of his years. (CW for racism, xenophobia, violence, and war.)

Backlist bump: Miracle Creek by Angie Kim

cover of The Measure by Nikki Erlick; painting of a bundle of blue and black flowers tied with white string against a mustard yellow background

The Measure by Nikki Erlick

This is a compelling, heart-punch of a debut. One day, the boxes arrive. No one knows where they come from, but inside is a piece of string, and that string correctly predicts the remaining length of a person’s life. And it sends the world into upheaval. Some people don’t want to know, so they don’t open the boxes, some people are denied access to health care and treatment when it is discovered they have a short string. The world rages, and in the middle of it, the characters in this book find solace and comfort. This book is REALLY sad at times, and there’s a certain part that I think is going to infuriate readers. (I admit I was like “!!!” about it.) But it’s also an incredibly interesting and powerful take on the world we live in. (CW for chemical use and abuse, illness and death of loved ones including children, violence, suicide and suicidal ideation, grief and prolonged discussions of mortality.)

Backlist bump: Qualityland by Marc-Uwe Kling

cover of Sleepwalk by Dan Chaon; black with large font in blue and orange print with a black fingerprint pattern going through them

Sleepwalk by Dan Chaon

And last, but not least, this bananapants novel! I am Team Chaon, I’ve read all his books, so believe me when I say this is his wildest, most ambitious novel yet. It’s about a mercenary named Will Bear, a fifty-year-old man who has never lived on the grid. He has no social security number, no internet history, no government documents. The only people aware of his existence are his bosses…and the people he kills for them. But then he gets a weird message: a woman calls him, claiming to be his daughter, and wants his help. Unfortunately the people she needs saving from are Will’s employers. After several decades, Will is feeling emotions for the first time, and they’re interfering with the job. His indecision will bring him face-to-face with the people who have run his life as he tries to decide what to believe. This book is very funny and very dark. (CW for murder, death, child endangerment, violence, animal harm and death, chemical use and abuse, mental illness.)

Backlist bump: Ill Will by Dan Chaon

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

orange tabby cat surrounded by stacks of books; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I am reading The Wild Hunt by Emma Seckel and Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. Outside of books, I am tired of television, so I have been spending a lot of time looking out my window at our backyard, which is coming alive right now! The gladiolus are already almost ready to open, and I’ve been able to observe a fox and a raccoon for long amounts of time, and the feeders are buzzing with hummingbirds and goldfinches. It’s all so beautiful! The song stuck in my head today is Hope I Never Lose My Wallet by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. And as promised, here is a cat picture: This is Farrokh’s impression of Snoopy’s brother, Spike.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

It’s time for Tuesday new releases again, friends! Please forgive my brevity today as I am fighting an illness. Hopefully I will be back to 100% next week! In the meantime, I hope you have been able to find some time to relax and read good books. I know it always seems like I’m saying things like that, but it’s because sometimes you need to hear it, and I am happy to say it! I want you to read books and be happy. ❤️

Now, about today’s books: At the very top of my list of books to buy are She is Haunted: Stories by Paige Clark, We Measure the Earth with Our Bodies by Tsering Yangzom Lama, and Take Your Breath Away by Linwood Barclay. And for this week’s episode of All the Books! Tirzah and I discussed The Lesbiana’s Guide To Catholic School, This Time Tomorrow, The Cherry Robbers, and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants.

cover of The Stardust Thief (The Sandsea Trilogy Book 1) by Chelsea Abdullah; an illustration of a gold locket design surrounded by swirling flames

The Stardust Thief (The Sandsea Trilogy Book 1) by Chelsea Abdullah

Get your TBRs ready—here’s another entry into the fabulous adult fantasy trilogy genre! This one is about a the Midnight Merchant, who hunts and sells illegal magic, with the help of her jinn bodyguard. But she gets caught up in a blackmail scheme when the king ropes her into finding an ancient lamp. Adventure and peril follow! (CW violence, torture, and murder, child endangerment, animal death, loss of a loved one.)

Backlist bump: The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy) by S. A. Chakraborty

cover of With Prejudice by Robin Peguero; outline of man's head and shoulders imposed over a jury box

With Prejudice by Robin Peguero

A great courtroom drama is a rare thing to find, but this one hits all the marks! As a homicide prosecutor himself, Peguero knows what he’s talking about. With Prejudice takes readers into the fascinating politics and undeniable prejudices of the courtroom. It’s really remarkable how all the pieces come together to tell the story of the murder of a young woman and the man accused of her crime. (There are a ton of content warnings for this one, including racism, sexism, and homophobia and related language, violence, sexual assault, gore, and murder.)

Backlist bump: Presumed Innocent by Scott Turow

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

Two orange cats sitting on a hardwood floor; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading Such Sharp Teeth by Rachel Harrison and The Charmed List by Julie Abe. Sadly, I was quite sick all vacation, so I couldn’t do much but stare at basketball games and sleep. And we did start watching Criminal UK, which is quite good. The song stuck in my head is Rock Star by Hole. And as promised, here is a cat picture: Farrokh and Zevon are practicing poses for their album cover.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, book lovers! As you read this, I am early in my reading vacation, and am hopefully shoving lots of amazing books in my brain. I have a houseful of books to choose from, so the odds are pretty good. (But just in case, I got more books, lol.) I am hoping that you had a good weekend, friend, and are reading books you love. I just want people to read books they will love and be happy. ❤️

Now, about today’s books: At the very top of my list of books to buy are Such Big Dreams by Reema Patel, Miss Chloe: A Literary Friendship with Toni Morrison by A. J. Verdelle, and I definitely need a copy of the best book of the week: The First Cat in Space Ate Pizza by Mac Barnett and Shawn Harris. (OMG it’s so cute.) And for this week’s episode of All the Books! Vanessa and I discussed Café Con Lychee, Forbidden City, The Hacienda, and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants.

cover of siren queen by nghi vo, blue tinted photo of young Asian woman

Siren Queen by Nghi Vo

Finally! This speculative sensation is now out in the world. It’s the first of two recs I have today featuring Hollywood starlets. Luli Wei is a Chinese American actress looking for her big break. But there aren’t many starring roles for her, and Hollywood is filled with monsters—seriously. A dark magic runs under the glitter and glamour. To get the great parts—and the girl she loves—Luli will have to become a monster to beat them at their own game. (CW for racism, sexism, violence, death, miscarriage, disordered eating, body shaming, chemical use and abuse, xenophobia and homophobia.)

Backlist bump: The Empress of Salt and Fortune (The Singing Hills Cycle, #1) by Nghi Vo

cover of The Lioness by Chris Bohjalian; photo of starlet with dark hair surrounded by foliage

The Lioness by Chris Bohjalian 

One of the most reliably great authors of the last couple decades is Chris Bohjalian. He has a way with words and he crafts interesting, compelling stories. His most recent follows a 1960s starlet who travels to Tanzania with her new husband and their friends for her honeymoon. The back stories of these people are woven into a tale of danger, when things take a violent turn and the group winds up being kidnapped by Russian mercenaries. Politics and danger are combined masterfully with Hollywood and history to create an excellent read. I will say that it’s being billed as a thriller and I found it to be a bit too slow-moving to be thriller-y, but it’s still great. (CW for racism, violence, murder, and animal death.)

Backlist bump: The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian

cover of Dark Stars: New Tales of Darkest Horror by John F.D. Taff; illustration of a skull surrounded by black spikes and a red sky

Dark Stars: New Tales of Darkest Horror by John F.D. Taff

And last but not least: What’s better than a horror story? A bunch of horror stories! Treat yourself to some scary stuff with this collection from Tor Nightfire, featuring several of the best in the genre writing today, such as Stephen Graham Jones, Alma Katsu, John Langan, and Josh Malerman. These are scary stories, so be warned that the collection features mentions of miscarriage, animal death, body shaming, disordered eating, sexual assault, violence, murder, and gore.

Backlist bump: The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Volume 1 edited by James Jenkins and Ryan Cagle

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

orange cat sitting in a stack of boxes; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading ALL THE BOOKS. At least I hope so, lol. Early vacation reading plans include all of Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata and All This Could Be Different by Sarah Thankam Mathews. Outside of books, I watched all of Our Flag Means Death (more, please!) and Slow Horses (more, please!), and I’ve started Midsomer Murders and the British version of Ghosts. (I *adored* the US remake.) The song stuck in my head is Cell Block Tango from the Chicago musical. And as promised, here is a cat picture: We’re currently stacking boxes to see how many Farrokh will sleep in at a time. Right now it’s up to eight.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

New Books for the First Tuesday of May!

Greetings and salutations, Tuesday friends! I hope you were able to enjoy your weekend and get some reading done. I don’t know what switch has flipped in my brain, maybe it’s the warmer weather, but I am extra-excited to read these days. I spent almost the whole weekend with my nose in a book, and I was able to read a couple wonderful things that you’ll be hearing me talk about a whole bunch in the future!

Now, today’s books: I do these first Tuesday megalists because the first Tuesday of each month has so many new releases, and it’s fun to round some of them up. Below, you’ll find titles (loosely) broken up into several categories, to make it easier for your browsing convenience. I hope you have fun with it! And as with each first Tuesday newsletter, I am putting a ❤️ next to the books that I have had the chance to read and loved.

And speaking of today’s great books, for this week’s episode of All the Books! Danika and I discussed some of the wonderful books that we’ve read, such as Book of Night, I Kissed Shara Wheeler, Trust, and more. And thank you to everyone who has sent us all the adorable pet pictures. 😘

Biography and Memoir

cover of Managing Expectations by Minnie Driver; photo of author as a child in a red swimsuit and red floaties

Managing Expectations: A Memoir in Essays by Minnie Driver 

The Year of the Horses: A Memoir by Courtney Maum ❤️

My Seven Black Fathers: A Young Activist’s Memoir of Race, Family, and the Mentors Who Made Him Whole by Will Jawando

Fiction

Trust by Hernan Diaz ❤️

The Change by Kirsten Miller ❤️

Circa by Devi S. Laskar

Here Goes Nothing by Steve Toltz 

The Stand-In by Lily Chu 

cover of Circa by Devi S. Laskar; black line illustration of two faces over yellow and pink spray paint background

Poguemahone by Patrick McCabe 

Companion Piece by Ali Smith 

Vigil Harbor by Julia Glass

The Book Woman’s Daughter by Kim Michele Richardson 

Mother Country by Jacinda Townsend 

Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt 

All the Lovers in the Night by Mieko Kawakami, Sam Bett and David Boyd (translators) 

The Other Mother by Rachel M. Harper 

Our Little World by Karen Winn 

Acts of Service by Lillian Fishman

We Do What We Do in the Dark by Michelle Hart ❤️

cover of We Do What We Do in the Dark by Michelle Hart; repeating image of orange and pink arms holding hands

Little Rabbit by Alyssa Songsiridej

One Day I Shall Astonish the World by Nina Stibbe

The Immortal King Rao by Vauhini Vara ❤️

Patience Is a Subtle Thief by Abi Ishola-Ayodeji

Homesickness by Colin Barrett

Liarmouth: A Feel-Bad Romance by John Waters 

Middle Grade

Freddie vs. The Family Curse by Tracy Badua 

Seed by Caryl Lewis

Monsters in the Mist by Juliana Brandt

The Prince of Nowhere by Rochelle Hassan

Mystery and Thriller

cover of The Murder of Mr. Wickham by Claudia Gray; illustration of a mansion lit up at night with a carriage sitting out front

The Murder of Mr. Wickham by Claudia Gray

Magpie by Elizabeth Day

Breathless by Amy McCulloch

The Devil Himself by Peter Farris

Nonfiction

Seen and Unseen: Technology, Social Media, and the Fight for Racial Justice by Marc Lamont Hill and Todd Brewster 

The Last Days of Roger Federer: And Other Endings by Geoff Dyer 

Trailed: One Woman’s Quest to Solve the Shenandoah Murders by Kathryn Miles

The Hawk’s Way: Encounters with Fierce Beauty by Sy Montgomery

This Woman’s Work: Essays on Music edited by Kim Gordon and Sinead Gleeson

The Premonitions Bureau: A True Account of Death Foretold by Sam Knight

Poetry

cover of Inheritance- A Visual Poem by Elizabeth Acevedo; illustration of many women of color with many different hairstyles

Inheritance: A Visual Poem by Elizabeth Acevedo and Andrea Pippins

Plans for Sentences by Renee Gladman

Line and Light: Poems by Jeffrey Yang 

Romance

Book Lovers by Emily Henry

Queerly Beloved by Susie Dumond ❤️

Chef’s Kiss by T.J. Alexander 

By the Book by Jasmine Guillory

Never Been Kissed by Timothy Janovsky

Sci-fi, Fantasy, and Horror

cover of book of night by holly black; dark green with illustration in the middle of a sliver of a moon at night

Book of Night by Holly Black ❤️

When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill

Seasonal Fears (Alchemical Journeys Book 2) by Seanan McGuire 

Elektra by Jennifer Saint 

The Hacienda by Isabel Cañas ❤️

Young Adult

The Marvellers by Dhonielle Clayton

The Agathas by Kathleen Glasgow and Liz Lawson 

If You Change Your Mind by Robby Weber

the cover of I Kissed Shara Wheeler by casey mcquiston; green with illustration of a young blonde woman holding a pink envelope covered in red lipstick kisses

I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston

Burn Down, Rise Up by Vincent Tirado

When You Call My Name by Tucker Shaw

Ballad & Dagger by Daniel José Older

Confessions of an Alleged Good Girl by Joya Goffney

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


two orange cats sitting on a desk; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading All This Could Be Different by Sarah Thankam Mathews and The Lifestyle by Taylor Hahn. Outside of books, I started watching Slow Horses and I like it a lot, and the song stuck in my head is Queen of Cans and Jars by Guided by Voices. And here’s a cat picture: Look at these two orange creepers.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, book lovers! I hope you all had a lovely weekend and were able to find something marvelous to read. I did a jigsaw puzzle and the cats only managed to chew one of the pieces, which I think is a record. And I also read books, of course! My book indecisiveness is at an all-time high these days. I want to read everything, so I end up having a hard time choosing anything. When this happens, I rely on my trick of picking titles from a hat. I don’t know why I listen to a hat, but it works! (It’s a very assertive hat.) I used to set several of the books I wanted to read on the floor and let the cats pick. But it doesn’t work anymore, since most of what I read now is on my computer, and the cats can’t be trusted with my laptop.

Now, about today’s books: At the very top of my list of books to buy are Maria, Maria: & Other Stories by Marytza K. Rubio, Lucky Turtle by Bill Roorbach, and Jagged Little Pill: The Novel by Eric Smith, Alanis Morissette, Diablo Cody, and Glen Ballard. And for this week’s episode of All the Books! Patricia and I discussed Nettle & Bone, Winnie Zeng Unleashes a Legend, Kaikeyi, and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants. Somehow, they’re all thriller-y today:

cover of I'll Be You by Janelle Brown; bright pink and orange sunset with the black outline of a desert tree in the foreground

I’ll Be You by Janelle Brown 

When identical twins Sam and Elli were young, they were beloved child actors and as close as could be. But the pressures of fame and growing up drove them apart. Sam turned to drugs and alcohol, while Elli threw herself into being a model homemaker and wife. The sisters haven’t spoken in a long time. But when Sam learns that Elli moved out of her home and is now hiding away at a suspicious retreat, she decides it’s time to figure out what is happening and reconcile with her sister. But there are a lot of secrets to unravel before that happens! (CW for chemical use and dependency, infidelity, mental illness, trauma, infertility, bullying, kidnapping, child endangerment.)

Backlist bump: Pretty Things by Janelle Brown

cover of The Fervor by Alma Katsu; photo of a woman with long dark hair looking away into the distance at a guard tower, image is tinted red

The Fervor by Alma Katsu

This is a supernatural exploration of the incarceration camps where Japanese Americans were held during World War II. It follows Meiko Briggs and her daughter, Aiko, who are removed from their home in Seattle and confined in a camp in the Midwest. Once there, they are confronted by terrors both human and otherworldly. The Fervor is a commentary on a past that is scarily similar to today, and the violence and destruction fear has on the nation. (CW for racism and racialized violence and incarceration, xenophobia, illness, murder, miscarriage, trauma, grief.)

Backlist bump: The Hunger by Alma Katsu

cover of Unmasked: My Life Solving America's Cold Cases by Paul Holes; image arranged to look like the title is made from several newspaper cutouts

Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Cases by Paul Holes

And last, but not least: This memoir is by a detective who helped catch the Golden State Killer. Holes talks about his lifelong interest in forensics (starting with Quincy M.E.), and how he became one of the foremost cold case detectives in the country. Spoiler: It was by being obsessive about his work, sometimes to the detriment of his health, his family, and everything else around him. This is his honest account of a side of crime that needs to be explored more: the numerous victims left after a crime and how the trauma affects them, including the families, the detectives, the people who write about crimes (like Michelle McNamara), the jurors, and everyone else who is exposed to the aftermath. (The content warnings are too numerous to list, so keep in mind that this is a book about serial killers.)

Backlist bump: I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara

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

orange cat stretched out on a blue blanket; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading Tread of Angels by Rebecca Roanhorse and Valleyesque: Stories by Fernando A. Flores. Outside of books, I’ve been watching a lot of the first round games of the NBA playoffs, and also SpongeBob Squarepants. I watched the first few episodes last year and then somehow got distracted, but I am back to it. (I was SO delighted to see Jim Jarmusch and John Lurie!!!) The song stuck in my head is Tongue Tied by Grouplove. And as promised, here is a cat picture: Look at this orange cat taffy. “Enjoy every stretch.”—Warren Zevon (the cat).


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Hello, star bits! How is everyone doing today? The warmer weather is doing wonders for me. I am finally getting into the groove of the new All the Books! format, and was able to get my reading done and still relax a bit this weekend. I did a jigsaw puzzle and watched MTV videos from the ’80s. It was good fun! Does anyone else do a 1000-piece puzzle in one sitting? My husband says I am doing them too fast, lol. That’s not a thing. 😂

Back to books: At the very top of my list of books to buy is End of the World House by Adrienne Celt. And for this week’s episode of All the Books! Tirzah and I discussed The Memory Librarian, Queen of the Tiles, Debating Darcy and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:

Cover of Spear by Nicola Griffith; illustration of a black kettle with fire coming out of the top

Spear by Nicola Griffith

If you haven’t read Nicola Griffith before, let 2022 be the year you correct that. This novella would be a great place to begin. Griffith is writing some of the best fantasy and historical fiction being published today. Spear is a gender-bent, queer Arthurian retelling, featuring a young woman named Peretur who travels as a man to Caer Leon to join the court of King Artos. It’s a rich, beautifully realized story of adventure, romance, and action. (CW for chemical use, violence, and death of a loved one.)

Backlist bump: Hild by Nicola Griffith

Cover of The Memory Librarian by Janelle Monáe; photo of author dressed in futuristic white outfit

The Memory Librarian and Other Stories from the World of Dirty Computer by Janelle Monáe

The multi-talented Monáe and a group of contributors—Yohanca Delgado, Eve L. Ewing, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Danny Lore, and Sheree Renée Thomas—have put together a selection of futuristic stories exploring race, gender, queerness, and love. These tales are full of characters who push back against society. The stories are built off Monáe’s album Dirty Computer, but you don’t have to have listened to the record to enjoy the book. (I read it first, then listened to it.) I would love more album/book tie-ins, please! (CW for racism, homophobia, and transphobia)

Backlist bump: Reconstruction: Stories by Alaya Dawn Johnson

cover of Fevered Star by Rebecca Roanhorse; image of woman with gold rays emanating from her head

Fevered Star (Between Earth and Sky Book 2) by Rebecca Roanhorse

I haven’t read this sequel yet, but I figured it was a good time to remind people who are fans of the first book, Black Sun, that it’s out (because whoa cliffhanger.) Or to remind you that you’ve always wanted to read it! It’s about a society inspired by Pre-Columbian Americans, where a ship carrying a mysterious passenger is headed to the holy city of Tova in time for the winter solstice, which will coincide with a solar eclipse. Doesn’t sound ominous at all, does it??? (I don’t remember all the specifics, but there are definitely content warnings for violence and gore, suicide, war, child abuse, and murder.)

Backlist bump: Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse

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

On your mark…get set…add to your TBR!

cover of Apprentice Lord of Darkness by CED, Jean-Philippe Morin; illustration of cartoon monsters sitting on a throne

Apprentice Lord of Darkness by CED, Jean-Philippe Morin (Yellow Jacket, July 5)

So this is SUPER ADORABLE. The Apprentice Lord of Darkness (ALoD from here on out) reminds me of Ludo from Star vs the Forces of Evil. ALoD wants to rule the kingdom, so decides to put together a group of flunkies and make a play for the throne. But the flunkies are a sweet, silly bunch and none of the plans ever go the way they want. Together, as they attempt to take over the world, they end up doing more good than evil. Does that mean the ALoD is really all that evil? And who IS the ALoD, anyway?

I liked reading this because while it’s a continuing story throughout the book, each page is its own contained bit of a story with its own completed jokes. And the characters are delightfully silly and the art is adorable and colorful. It’s a good starter book for kids who are not quite old enough for Bone yet, and great for anyone who needs some light, silly reading in their life.

orange cat with copy of The Caretakers by Amanda Bestor-Siegal; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading The Children on the Hill by Jennifer McMahon and With Prejudice by Robin Peguero. Outside of books, I’ve been watching the first round of post-season NBA games and 1980s music videos. And the song stuck in my head is Snowcones and Puppies by Say Hi. And as promised, here is a cat picture: Zevon is posing with one of my favorite books of the year so far, The Caretakers by Amanda Bestor-Siegal.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, my little book dragons. I hope you enjoyed your weekends. I kept myself busy by rereading Gideon the Ninth and Harrow the Ninth in preparation for Nona the Ninth, because I hear that galleys are going to be available in the next few weeks. Fingers crossed! I also made a new Instagram post of upcoming titles to blow up your TBR.

As always, there are a gazillion books out today that I want. At the top of my list, I hope to pick up Theatre Of Marvels by Lianne Dillsworth, Constructing a Nervous System: A Memoir by Margo Jefferson, Activities of Daily Living by Lisa Hsiao Chen, and Take My Hand by Dolen Perkins-Valdez.

For today’s newsletter, I somehow ended up with three very emotional reads that will kick you in the feels. It’s fine, it’s good for you. And for this week’s episode of All the Books! Vanessa and I discussed Unlikely Animals (my favorite book of the year!), The Devil’s Half Acre, The Caretakers, and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:

cover image of Bomb Shelter by Mary Laura Philpott; pink cover with photo of a turtle

Bomb Shelter: Love, Time, and Other Explosives by Mary Laura Philpott

From the delightful Philpott (you should really follow her on Twitter) comes a new humorous and heart-squeezing collection of essays about life and anxiety, family and love. She discusses how no matter how you worry or prepare, you never know what is going to happen. It’s based around an incident involving her teenage son that woke her in the middle of the night. In these relatable essays Philpott talks about how despite all the frightening unknowns in the world, we still have love and joy to keep us anchored. And we get to hear about her nature friend, Frank the Turtle. (That’s him on the cover!) Philpott is very funny, very wise, and a joy to spend time with. (CW for illness, child peril, health issues, pandemic talk, anxiety, death.)

Backlist bump: I Miss You When I Blink: Essays by Mary Laura Philpott

cover of An Arrow to the Moon by Emily X.R. Pan; illustration of a white arrow flying to the moon in front of a dark blue night sky

An Arrow to the Moon by Emily X.R. Pan

This compelling drama about two young people meeting in high school is inspired by Chinese mythology and Romeo and Juliet. (Which, tbh, is not a Shakespeare play I enjoy but I did love Pan’s last novel, so I had to read it anyway.) Hunter Yee and Luna Yang are two teens caught up in the lies and mistakes made by their families. They both feel misunderstood and despite the problems between their families, they are drawn to one another like moths to a flame, leading to a slightly magical and angsty romance, and an ending that will punch you in the heart. I will say that this is definitely a slow-burn of a book, but I think Pan is a wonderful writer. (CW for infidelity, illness, physical and emotional abuse, torture, violence.)

Backlist bump: The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan

cover of Hello, Molly!: A Memoir by Molly Shannon; photo of the author in a red dress with her arms held out

Hello, Molly!: A Memoir by Molly Shannon and Sean Wilsey 

This is a candid and heartbreaking memoir by actress Shannon, a Saturday Night Live alum. She opens up about the car accident that claimed the lives of family members when she was young, and how her grieving father, who was severely injured in the accident, was left to raise his children alone. Shannon explores how she was bitten by the acting bug at a young age and her journey to the most famous sketch comedy show in the world, with lots of great anecdotes about people she has worked with along the way. It’s a really honest and sweet story of her love for her father and for life, and the unexpected moments, good and bad, that make us who we are. (CW for car accident, injury and loss of a loved one, chemical dependency, trauma, grief, sexual harassment.)

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

On your mark…get set…add to your TBR!

cover of Summer's Edge by Dana Mele; illustration of young woman swimming in a red lake, with large yellow font

Summer’s Edge by Dana Mele (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, May 31)

This book was compared to I Know What You Did Last Summer, and I’ve been missing a good Lois Duncan-esque read, so I picked it up. And it is indeed a fun YA thriller, about a group of friends who may be being haunted by their best friend. Last year, Chelsea and her friends spent a week at a lake house for summer vacation. At the end of that week, Emily was dead.

Now it’s a year later and the friends have all been sent anonymous invitations back to the lake house, by someone claiming that one of them is a murderer. No one is particularly excited to go back and stir up the pain and grief of losing Emily, but they feel like they have no choice. As the story unfolds, we get more and more info about just what happened last summer. And as suspicions among the remaining friends grow, someone continues to toy with the friends. And as far as they can tell, it’s Emily herself. But…how? This is a fun, super-fast read with all the thrills of a horror movie and a resolution I didn’t see coming! (CW for infidelity, stalking, violence, murder, drowning, house fires, and animal death.)

orange cat peeking in the door; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading Anywhere You Run by Wanda M. Morris and Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake. Outside of books, this weekend the Celtics ended their regular season in second place in the East, so it’s time to get my brain in playoff mode. I also started watching Fresh Off the Boat (the little brothers are the cutest), and rewatching Gravity Falls for the zillionth time. And the song stuck in my head is The Kill (Bury Me) by Thirty Seconds to Mars. And as promised, here is a cat picture: “Is there room in there for me?” —Farrokh


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

New Books for the First Tuesday of April!

Hello, Tuesday friends! Did you get a lot of rest over the weekend? Because today is the biggest new release day of the first half of 2022 and you are going to need to use all your energy making Muppet arms when you see all the books! I hope you find tons of amazing things here to read and they bring you joy. Today’s new books include the latest from Emily St. John Mandel, Ocean Vuong, Charlie Jane Anders, Jennifer Egan, and more! It’s just how I like it: Books all day, every day.

I do these first Tuesday megalists because the first Tuesday of each month has so many new releases, and it’s fun to round some of them up. Below, you’ll find titles (loosely) broken up into several categories, to make it easier for your browsing convenience. I hope you have fun with it! And as with each first Tuesday newsletter, I am putting a ❤️ next to the books that I have had the chance to read and loved.

And speaking of today’s great books, for this week’s episode of All the Books! Danika and I discussed some of the wonderful books that we’ve read, such as Memphis, At Least You Have Your Health, Lessons in Chemistry, and more. And thank you to everyone who has sent us lovely messages about the new show format. 😘

Biography and Memoir

cover of Burning Butch by R/B Mertz; illustration of person on a matchbook cover

Burning Butch by R/B Mertz 

Riverman: An American Odyssey by Ben McGrath

Easy Beauty: A Memoir by Chloé Cooper Jones ❤️

Fiction

Memphis by Tara Stringfellow ❤️

At Least You Have Your Health by Madi Sinha

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus ❤️

Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang ❤️

True Biz by Sara Nović ❤️

Song for Almeyda and Song for Anninho by Gayl Jones 

cover of Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li; photo of Asian man wearing sunglasses

Young Mungo by Douglas Stuart 

Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li

Delphine Jones Takes a Chance by Beth Morrey 

Atomic Anna by Rachel Barenbaum 

Let’s Not Do That Again by Grant Ginder

Post-traumatic by Chantal V. Johnson

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan

Little Foxes Took Up Matches by Katya Kazbek

The Return of Faraz Ali by Aamina Ahmad

Heartbroke: Stories by Chelsea Bieker ❤️

The Wise Women by Gina Sorell

cover of Heartbroke by Chelsea Bieker; picture of piles of candy necklaces

I Was the President’s Mistress!! by Miguel Syjuco 

Cover Story by Susan Rigetti 

Middle Grade

Rabbit Chase by Elizabeth LaPensée and KC Oster (illustrator)

Behind the Mountains by Edwidge Danticat

Witchlings by Claribel A. Ortega 

Aru Shah and the Nectar of Immortality by Roshani Chokshi 

A Duet for Home by Karina Yan Glaser ❤️

It’s the End of the World and I’m in My Bathing Suit by Justin A. Reynolds

cover of a duet for home by karina yan glaser

Swan Lake: Quest for the Kingdoms by Rey Terciero, Megan Kearney ❤️

Mystery and Thriller

Our Lady of Mysterious Ailments (Edinburgh Nights Book 2) by T. L. Huchu 

The Younger Wife by Sally Hepworth

Nonfiction

Fine: A Comic About Gender by Rhea Ewing

When Women Kill by Alia Trabucco Zerán, Sophie Hughes (translator)

Learning America: One Woman’s Fight for Educational Justice for Refugee Children by Luma Mufleh 

In Praise of Good Bookstores by Jeff Deutsch 

cover of The Trayvon Generation by Elizabeth Alexander; photo of a young Black boy

The Trayvon Generation by Elizabeth Alexander

Of Blood and Sweat: Black Lives and the Making of White Power and Wealth by Clyde W. Ford 

Wired for Love: A Neuroscientist’s Journey Through Romance, Loss, and the Essence of Human Connection by Stephanie Cacioppo 

The Unwritten Book: An Investigation by Samantha Hunt 

Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole by Susan Cain 

Poetry

Time Is a Mother by Ocean Vuong ❤️

Against Heaven: Poems by Kemi Alabi

Romance

cover of The Wedding Crasher

The Wedding Crasher by Mia Sosa

Fool Me Once by Ashley Winstead

The Date from Hell (Match Made in Hell Book 2) by Gwenda Bond

Reputation by Lex Croucher

Sci-fi, Fantasy, and Horror

Braking Day by Adam Oyebanji 

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel ❤️

The Bladed Faith by David Dalglish

Young Adult

cover of Dreams Bigger Than Heartbreak by Charlie Jane Anders; illustration of white girl with pink hair and Black girl with purple braids

Dreams Bigger Than Heartbreak (Unstoppable Book 2) by Charlie Jane Anders

She Gets the Girl by Rachael Lippincott and Alyson Derrick 

Nothing Burns as Bright as You by Ashley Woodfolk

Does My Body Offend You? by Mayra Cuevas and Marie Marquardt 

Sense and Second-Degree Murder (Jane Austen Murder Mysteries, 2) by Tirzah Price ❤️

In a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power

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


orange cat in silver bowl; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading Our Missing Hearts by Celeste Ng and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin. Outside of books, I’m enjoying the last week of the regular NBA season and the song stuck in my head is People Ain’t No Good by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds. And here’s a cat picture: Zevon leans far over the side, but somehow manages to stay upright.


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 ❤️

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Hello, Tuesday friends! I hope you all had lovely weekends. I had a terrible headache, but I got to relax and spend a lot of time looking out the window. There were so many birds in my backyard! A dozen different types came to visit, including a gorgeous broad-winged hawk, and it was amazing. Er, unless you don’t like birds, lol.

Back to books: We get an extra Tuesday this month, and we are being rewarded with a lot of great new releases. I want to get so many of them, including How Strange a Season by Megan Mayhew Bergman, Four Aunties and a Wedding by Jesse Q. Sutanto, Conversations with People Who Hate Me by Dylan Marron, and So This Is Ever After by F.T. Lukens.

For this week’s episode of All the Books! all the hosts of ATB had a special chat about burnout and self-care, and then Patricia and I discussed A House Between the Earth and Moon, Ten Steps to Nanette, A Magic Steeped in Poison, and more. And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite game show: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:

cover of Ancestor Trouble by Maud Newton; images of family members over different colored shapes

Ancestor Trouble: A Reckoning and a Reconciliation by Maud Newton

I have been a big fan of Maud Newton since the first week I started using the internet. She had the first literary blog I had ever heard of (and she was also the first person I knew who had their blog hacked.) She has been pouring her heart and soul into this memoir for many years and it shows. It’s a fascinating investigation into her Southern family, beginning with the wild story she was told about a relative who murdered someone in Texas. It’s a remarkable look at family and the lasting powers of stories, whether true or not. (CW for illness and death, loss of a loved one.)

Backlist bump: Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love by Dani Shapiro

Cover of Survive the Dome by Kosoko Jackson; image of young Black man surrounded by a white circle

Survive the Dome by Kosoko Jackson

This is an excellent YA sci-fi thriller! After another police killing of a young Black man, residents of Baltimore lead a city-wide protest. Jamal Lawson is a young Black aspiring journalist who hopes to cover the story, but then the government uses a new total militarized tactic: the Dome. It covers the city, trapping people inside and keeping information from getting out. Suddenly, Jacob is now a part of the story, and he joins up with two other people trapped alongside him who may be able to find a way out if they work together.

Backlist bump: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

cover of The Temps by Andrew DeYoung, fluorescent green with fluorescent yellow and pink stencil images of people in suits wearing gas masks

The Temps by Andrew DeYoung

And last, but not least, a fun dystopian satire about office work and a hazardous outbreak in a tech company building. On Jacob’s first day as a temp at Delphi Enterprises, a Google-like tech company, a deadly contaminant is released into the world and only the temps manage to survive. As they search around for supplies and answers, they uncover a much darker conspiracy that may go all the way to the top. It’s kind of a locked room mystery with a high body count and some serious swipes at Silicon Valley. (CW for mentions of mass illness and death, chemical use, violence, assault, and murder.)

Backlist bump: Severance Package by Duane Swierczynski

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

orange cat standing on a book; photo by Liberty Hardy

This week: I’m currently reading Now Is Not the Time To Panic by Kevin Wilson (I know, right?!!) and The Oleander Sword by Tasha Suri. Outside of books, I have been making collages, and the song stuck in my head is Mrs. Potter’s Lullaby by Counting Crows. And as promised, here is a cat picture: Zevon is learning to read by paws-mosis. (Sorry not sorry.)


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 ❤️