Wednesday, June 5, 2019

World War II Nonfiction for Young Readers: D-Day Edition

June 6, 2019 is the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the landing at Normandy by the Allied Forces. As you know, I love a good commemorative post, and I wanted to put something together for this anniversary. This group of World War II history books for young readers has several books that include D-Day events. Though written with young readers in mind, these books are great for readers of any age.

D-Day: The World War II Invasion that Changed History by Deborah Hopkinson
On June 6, 1944 the allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy and began the final push that would end the war in Europe. This landing was product of months and years of planning and cost nearly 20,000 lives. Deborah Hopkinson's book is a great introduction to the Allied invasion. She very clearly lays out the circumstances leading up to the D-Day and then takes the readers through several of the crucial events of the day. With an event so momentous as D-Day, a history can get bogged down in the details. Hopkinson narrows the focus by primarily discussing the American efforts at Utah and Omaha beach, rather than trying to tackle the landings at all five beaches. My favorite part of the book is that it is filled with many firsthand and personal accounts, which helps the history come alive in a way that a strict military recounting cannot. This book would be a great resource for anyone who is doing a report or school project on D-Day or World War II, as it includes links to many other resources. Published August 28, 2018 by Scholastic Nonfiction.

Code Girls: The True Story of the American Women Who Secretly Broke Codes in World War II by Liza Mundy
I've long been fascinated by the stories of the codebreakers of World War II. However, I realized that most of the code breaking stories I was hearing came from the British, and I didn't know as much about the American codebreakers. Liza Mundy's young reader's adaptation of her bestselling book, tells the story of the more than ten thousand American women who were recruited to work as codebreakers for the U.S. Army and Navy. These women were recruited from colleges around the country. Many others had worked as teachers. Code breaking requires a variety of skills--language, math, pattern recognition, precision, etc. Those women who passed their crash course in code breaking, went on to help break the Japanese codes. They were not allowed to tell anyone what their real job was, and their work was classified for decades. I love books about the women's contributions to World War II, and this one is fascinating and informative. Published October 2, 2018 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

The Perfect Horse: The Daring Rescue of Horses Kidnapped by Hitler by Elizabeth Letts
Hitler claimed  so much for the Germans, including land, art, and Europe's most renowned horses. Elizabeth Letts' young readers edition of her New York Times bestseller, tells the story of the fight to keep these horses safe during World War II. The book brings together the stories of the famous Austrian Lipizzaner Stallions and the Polish Arabian Thoroughbreds. Keeping the horses safe and fed was not small feat. Many were transported several times during the war years. The Americans come into play near the end of the war, when the horses were sheltered at a Czechoslovakian breeding farm. With the Soviet Army, who had been known to slaughter even the finest horses to feed its army, fast approaching the caretakers made the daring decision to go to the American forces for help. The Perfect Horse is a facet of the war that I had never heard about before reading this book. It's an excellent choice for animal lovers. Published February 12th 2019 by Delacorte Press. 

Secret Soldiers: How the U.S. Twenty-Third Special Troops Fooled the Nazis by Paul B. Janeczko
The Twenty-Third Special Troops or Ghost Army was created to perfect and deploy deception techniques that would mislead the Nazis and give the Allies the advantage of surprise. It was a unit made up of artists, actors, sound engineers, and set designers. They pulled off their deceptions by employing inflatable dummy tanks and guns, phony radio messages, sonic deception, and good acting. One of the first missions of the Twenty-Third was to convince the Nazis that D-Day would occur at Calais rather than Normandy and at a much later date. Once the invasion was underway the troops came to the continent to execute many other deceptions. I think the Ghost Army is a really fascinating aspect of military history, and this book is a very detailed look into the role they played. I liked that the book had information boxes about some of the key weapons and tactics of WWII and artist notebooks that featured prominent members of the troop. I would recommend it to a young reader who is on the older side or to a reader who really likes military history. Published April 23rd 2019 by Candlewick Press. Review copy from NetGalley.

Defying the Nazis: The Story of German Officer Wilm Hosenfeld by Hermann Vinke
Wilm Hosenfeld initially supported Hitler's conquests. He was stationed in Poland as the games director, and quickly grew disillusioned with the Nazi party. He quietly helped as many Poles and Jews as he could, employing them in his office, reunited them with their families, and doing his best to protect them from Nazi brutality. Older readers might have seen one of Hosenfeld's heroic acts of charity in the Oscar-winning film, The Pianist. Wladyslaw Szpilman, a Polish Jew Hosenfeld helped, did not even know the name of his benefactor for decades. What is perhaps most fascinating about Vinke's book is how he's able to reconstruct Hosenfeld's transformation through the many letters that he wrote to his wife and children. In them, we see Hosenfeld's eyes open slowly to the horrors of the Nazi regime. Vinke's book includes excerpts from many of Hosenfeld's letters and photographs of Hosenfeld and his family. Out September 30th 2018 from Star Bright Books. Review copy from NetGalley.

Standing Up Against Hate: How Black Women in the Army Helped Change the Course of WWII by Mary Cronk Farrell
The military was segregated during World War II, and this segregation extended to the newly formed women's units. This book tells the story of the African American women who enlisted in the Women's Army Corps (WAC). These black women faced discrimination from their commanders and from civilians. However, these segregated units also gave black women a large amount of autonomy and leadership opportunities. Charity Adams commanded the only black WAC battalion to serve overseas. Tasked to sort an enormous amount of mail, these women served with distinction and honor. Their time in England and France, countries which were far less prejudice than the United States, gave these women a glimpse of what America could become. This book is very engaging and well written, and I really enjoyed learning about these remarkable women and their legacy. This book and Steve Sheinkin's Port Chicago 50 are an excellent pair. I would definitely recommend reading them together. Published January 8th 2019 by Harry N. Abrams. Review copy from NetGalley.

The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights by Steve Sheinkin
The military was segregated during World War II, and the African American men who joined the Navy were not permitted to go to sea. 300 men from an all-black unit stationed in Port Chicago, California were killed when the ammunition they were loaded onto ships at port exploded. When the men were ordered back to work, 244 refused to go, seeking safer working conditions; 50 would be charged with mutiny. Steve Sheinkin's book is an informative look at segregation and racism. I found the racism really horrifying, especially as it plays out in the courtroom. This book a very fast read that almost reads like a court procedural. Sheinkin makes a good case for this event being instrumental in the eventual desegregation of the military as well as an prelude to the Civil Rights movement. Published January 21, 2014 by Roaring Brook Press.

More World War II Wednesday posts here.
More History Books for Young Readers here.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Reading on a Theme: Daughters of Immigrants

Today's Reading on a Theme features books about immigration and the children of immigrants. This subject is perfect for thematic readers because there are so many different immigrant experiences, but there are also some common threads that weave through stories like these. I had a pretty long list of books that I was considering for this list (so watch for more later), and fully admit that I selected these because of their beauty both inside and out. Those covers are so pretty together.

Last Day in New York City:
Natasha's family is about to be deported back to Jamaica. With only hours left, Natasha is desperately running around New York City trying to find some way to stay. Daniel, who has the soul of an artist, is the son of Korean immigrants who expect him to become a doctor. The two will have one day together on the streets of New York. I really enjoyed the way this story was told. Natasha and Daniel each take their turns narrating the story, but, what I really loved, is how Yoon also briefly tells the stories of the people they interact with throughout the day. Also, (and this is hugely important in a story with this set-up) I was very happy with the ending of the book.

Separated from her Mother:
Fabiola Toussaint's mother is detained by U.S. immigration leaving Fabi to travel to her aunt's house in Detroit by herself. There, Fabiola tries to fit in with her three cousins, Chantal, Donna, and Princess, and their street-smart Detroit lives. Worried about how she's going to get her mother out of the detention center, Fabiola gets in over her head in this unfamiliar world. American Street is a beautiful book. The story telling is perfection. I love how Fabiola's tale is interspersed with the stories of the new people and places in her life. Best of all is how Ibi Zoboi brings Fabiola's Haitian Voodoo beliefs into the gritty reality of life in Detroit; the result is a book that could almost be classified as magical realism.

Memoir of an Undocumented Teenager:
Sara Saedi immigrated to the United States with her family just after the Iranian Revolution. She didn't find out that she was living in the country illegally until she was thirteen. Americanized is the memoir of Sara's teen years. As she participated in the coming-of-age rituals of an average American teen, worries about deportation were a constant undercurrent. I really enjoyed reading this book. Sara Saedi is exactly my age, and it was fun to read about a teenager who from my generation. Saedi also deftly steers her readers through the ins and outs of Iranian history and culture and what the legalization process is like for an undocumented immigrant. Review copy from NetGalley. 

Finding Her Voice:
Xiomara Batista is the daughter of Dominican immigrants growing up in Harlem. She finds solace in words and spends much of her time writing. The Poet X, a verse novel from slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo, is a coming-of-age story. Xiomara is looking to for her voice. She's trying to figure out who she is in relation to her parents and her twin brother. I really liked how this book approached the question of religion. Xiomara's relationship with her mother made me so sad. I love that Xiomara got involved with the poetry club at school. I really enjoyed her relationship with her brother and her best friend. The writing in this book is superb. (See all those stickers!) I highly recommend the audiobook, which is read by the author. 

Three Generations: 
You Bring the Distant Near tells the story of three generations of Bengali-American women navigating life in America. It begins in the 1960s when Ranee and her daughters Tara and Sonia move to New York City. In subsequent chapters, Tara and Sonia's daughters, Anna and Chantal, get their say. Mitali Perkins's book is incredibly good. Through these five women, she covers a vast range of experiences and expectations. Each woman is an fully-formed individual with attitudes toward race, religion, and culture specific to her. The writing in this book is also quite lovely. I feel like this book is an underrated gem, and I really hope more people will read it. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Reading on a Theme: Mental Health Matters

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and every May I try to read and hopefully post a Reading on a Theme dedicated to books that address mental health. I'm so impressed with the many YA books that handle mental health issues with deft and love. More books on this topic here.

Family in Iran:
Darius Kellner doesn't feel like he fits in anywhere. Half Persian, half American, he feels like he's not enough of either. His father oscillates between being overbearing about Darius's depression and being unapproachable. When Darius's grandfather is diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor, the whole family journeys to Iran to see him. Darius the Great is Not Okay is a book about connection to family and friends. In Iran Darius meets Sohrab, who becomes the first really close friend he's ever had, and with that relationship Darius begins to understand himself. The love in Adib Khorram's book radiates off the page--the embrace of family, the joy of a true friend, the acceptance of self. A truly special book.

Fearful of the Future:
With just a few months left of high school, Nick and June should be looking forward to what's to come, but instead things are falling apart for the pair. June's mental health has been unraveling for months. Finally, the situation comes to a head, and she finds herself in the hospital. Nick finally decides he's done stealing cars for his manipulative boss, but he can't convince himself that his fate is not already sealed. I really liked Shalanda Stanley's debut, Drowning is Inevitable, and I think Nick and June Were Here is even better. This book deals with some really serious and powerful issues: mental illness, poverty, abandonment. The rural South setting is pitch perfect, and Nick and June will break your heart. Nick and June Were Here was out February 12, 2019. Review copy from NetGalley.

Highly Illogical Behavior is the story of Solomon, who hasn't left his house in three years, Lisa, the girl who believes she can fix him, and Clark, Lisa's charming boyfriend. This book is both extremely entertaining and very thought-provoking. I really like that John Corey Whaley was willing to show both good and bad examples when it comes to loving and accepting those with mental health concerns. The characters are so endearing. I loved reading about Solomon and Clark geeking out over their love of Star Trek: The Next Generation. And Lisa, oh, she makes terrible decisions, but as a reader, you still have a soft spot in your heart for her. I read this book in one morning. I just gulped it down in one go.

Prepping for a Catastrophe:
One way that Ellis's anxiety condition manifests is in an obsessive need to prepare for the apocalypse. One afternoon, Ellis meets Hannah in her therapist's waiting room, and Hannah claims she knows when and how the world will end. The two girls clearly need each other. Katie Henry tackles a lot in Let's Call it a Doomsday. Besides the mental health issues, Ellis is dealing with her faith as a believing Mormon, her sexuality, and her family, who doesn't seem to really understand Ellis or want to fully accept that she needs medical help. I like that this book handled religion respectfully. The Mormon elements are very accurate, but, one should remember, that there is a lot of variation within all religions in terms of practice and belief. Let's Call it a Doomsday is out August 6, 2019. Review copy from Edelweiss.

A Sister's Death:
Julia's mother has certain expectations for her daughter, and Julia feels like she never measures up. She can't be the daughter her mother wants her to be. Everything gets worse when Julia's seemingly perfect older sister, Olga, is killed in a car accident. As Julia learns more about her sister's life, her world begins to spiral out of control. I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter is a really good book, but it's also a really hard one. Erika L. Sanchez's novel is a story of a girl who is not handling her mental health, who is not getting the help she needs, and it's so painful and sad to be in her head sometimes. The dynamic between Julia and her Mexican mother is complicated. This book is very, very real.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Reading on a Theme: Young Women in World War I

In 2016 I did a World War I Reading on a Theme, and I'm excited to finally be doing another one.   I took a class in college on World War I and Modernism, and I'm always on the lookout for a good World War I setting. (They are much rarer than World War II novels.) My only wish is that I could have posted this in 2018 for the centennial of the war's conclusion, but alas, that was not possible, as three of these book came out in early 2019. 

The Russian Revolution:
Martha Hall Kelly's debut, Lilac Girls, was a favorite in 2016. I eagerly read the prequel which is about Caroline Ferriday's mother, Eliza, who aided Russian refugees fleeing from the revolution. Lost Roses is narrated by three women: Eliza, Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanovs, and Varinka, a Russian peasant. As World War I ramps up and the Russian Revolution heats up, the three women have to navigate increasingly terrifying circumstances. Reading about the terrible circumstances surrounding the Russia Revolution is always difficult, but I really liked this book. I'm excited to read Kelly's next book, the story of Caroline's great-grandmother, a Civil War nurse. Out April 9, 2019.

Coded Messages:
In 1918 Lady Mina Tretheway returns to her family home after receiving a coded telegram from her father. There she finds her missing brother's best friend, Andrew Graham and a young American, Lucas Miller. They need her help with an upcoming mission. But Hallington Manor might have a spy that could ruin everything. I really enjoyed All is Fair. I loved the Downton Abbey vibe with the big house that's emptied for war work. Plus Mina is so smart and capable, and I enjoyed watching her put the pieces of the puzzle together. Dee Garretson's book has plenty of spies, romance, danger, and adventure. It is definitely the book that's aimed at the youngest audience on this list and would be perfect for younger teens. All is Fair was out January 22, 2019.

Spies and Spiritualism:
American Ginger Stuyvesant is a member of Britain's secret weapon, The Spirit Corps, a group of mediums who confer with deceased soldiers before they pass on completely. Ghost Talkers is a fun genre-bender. It is an alternate history, a love story, and a murder mystery. The book plays with the real network of female spies who served during World War I and the popularity of spiritualism during this period in history. I enjoyed the characters and the mystery. It's a good choice if you are looking for more World War I fiction or if you are going for a spooky Halloween vibe. I recommend the audiobook which is narrated by the author, Mary Robinette Kowal, who is also a professional voice actor.

Love and War:
The Passion of Dolssa was one of my favorite books of 2017, and I was thrilled when I saw Julie Berry had a book coming out set during World War I. Lovely War is the story of two couples. Hazel and James meet in 1917, and, like so many young couples of the period, have just a few short days together. Aubrey is a jazz musician and a member of the 15th New York Infantry, an all-African-American regiment. He meets Colette, a Belgian with a beautiful voice and a tragic history, in France. This is a book about love, music, ambition, and fear. It tackles race issues and women's contributions to the war effort. Lovely War also has such an interesting framing device. It's a story told by the Greek Gods, who take turns recounting the appropriate parts. I loved it. Lovely War was out March 5, 2019.

The Spanish Influenza:
As Bright as Heaven is set in Philadelphia during the 1918 flu pandemic.The Bright family is new in town and their father is training to take over his great-uncle's funeral home business. So, that's our setting: Philadelphia, WWI, Spanish Influenza, in a funeral home. Great set-up for sure. The novel is narrated by all four Bright women, the mother, Pauline, and the daughters Evelyn, Maggie, and Willa. The war and the flu changes their lives forever, and then many years later the consequences of some of those changes play out. I picked up this book because it hit a lot of my sweet spots, morbid as they may be (funeral home setting, World War I, epidemics). I'll be reading more by Susan Meissner.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Reading on a Theme: Schools of Magic

Honestly, I love a good school setting. Even better is if that school is a boarding school. And, best of all, is if that boarding school is a school for magic. This post features five books that will take you into the hallowed halls of the most desirable schools of all.

An Old Friend:
Although I came to Tamora Pierce's books relatively late in life, I can say, without any reservations, that I have thoroughly made up for this delay. She is to date my most read author. Tempests and Slaughter was a long-awaited book among Tamora Pierce fans. It follows the training of the young Arram Draper whom we first met in the Immortals series as Numair. Arram is the youngest student to ever enter the Imperial University of Carthak. Much of the book follows Arram's day-to-day life: going to school, hanging out with his best friends, Ozorne and Varice, dealing with unexpected magical occurrences. This book is so typically Tamora Pierce, and it is big on the nostalgia factor, which I completely lapped up. 

An Alternate History: 
The Philosopher's Flight was one of my favorite reads of 2018. I found it so incredibly entertaining. In this alternate World War I era novel, magic (called empirical philosophy) has been part of society for generations. Women are naturally more gifted in empirical philosophy, flipping the gender dynamics in intriguing ways. Robert Weekes's mother is an empirical philosopher, and, though it's slightly unorthodox, she's taught her son. A daring rescue gives Robert the confidence to apply to college to study empirical philosophy, despite the fact that they seldom accept boys. Tom Miller's debut novel is such an entertaining work of feminist fiction. A good alternate history is one that is both entertaining and thought-provoking, and this book is definitely those things. I'm excited to read the sequel, The Philosopher's War, out July 2019.

A Deadly Disease:
Nedra Brysstain has been awarded a scholarship to the prestigious Yugen Academy where she plans to study medicinal alchemy. Nedra's studies are frantic; a deadly disease is sweeping across her island home and her only hope is to find a cure. I loved so many things about this book. Not only do we have a magic school, mysterious tutors, and a girl who doesn't fit in, but there's also a plague. (And oddly, that seems to be one of my buzzwords. It's not the only book in this post that features a deadly disease.) Give the Dark My Love is deliciously creepy, and things really take a turn toward the dark side about halfway through. Beth Revis's new series is one to watch. I have no idea what to expect from the sequel.

A Multi-Generational Curse:
Bianca Monroe has inherited a deadly curse. Determined to break it, she enrolls at Miss Mabel's school of magic intent on winning the competition to become the headmistress's apprentice, despite the fact that she is only a first year. Miss Mabel's School for Girls is a bit different than other books that feature magical schools because the teacher, rather than being a mentor for our young student, is the antagonist. I enjoyed the ways that Katie Cross's book overturns the tropes that have become pretty standard for books like this. This is a good series for fans of witches. I really liked Bianca's friends and found their abilities intriguing. It's clear that the series is going to become more complex in the following books as Bianca's world expands beyond the walls of her school.

A Government Conspiracy:
Teddy Cannon has always had an unnatural ability to read people that has served her well in side-stepping trouble. When her luck runs out, a stranger offers her a place at the School for Psychics. Teddy enters unsure if she could really be psychic but quickly discovers that is the least of her problems. School for Psychics has mystery, conspiracy, and a little bit of magic. I love that it is set in a world like our own, making it feel like we could run into Teddy and her friends on the street. K.C. Archer really captured the university feeling, and I loved following Teddy as she sought to uncover the mysteries within this government-run school. The sequel, The Astral Traveler's Daughter, is out April 2, 2019.

Tempests and Slaughter, The Philosopher's Flight, Give the Dark My Love, and Miss Mabel's School for Girls reviewed by JoLee.
School for Psychics reviewed by Paige.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Reading on a Theme: Portals to Fictional Worlds

This post is for anyone who has ever wished they could visit a fictional world. But beware. It might not be all that you hoped.

The Woodlands:
During a World War II bombing raid, Evelyn, Philippa, and Jamie Hapwell crossed from their world into The Woodlands. They lived there for years, but when they returned they came back at the exact same moment they departed. Forced to relive their childhood again, Philippa flourishes, but Evelyn is an absolute mess. The Light Between Worlds explores what happens after the fantastical adventure is over. How can life resume when you are keeping a secret this big? Laura E. Weymouth's book was much more serious and sober than I was expecting. A book about sibling bonds and finding where you belong, The Light Between Worlds was out October 2018. Review copy from Edelweiss. 

The Hinterland:
Alice and her mother have lived a nomadic life and seem to have the worst luck, but when Alice's mother goes missing things start to get really strange. Her mother was stolen away by a character from the Hinterland, the setting of Alice's grandmother's famous collection of fairy tales. Alice, forbidden to read her grandmother's stories, has no idea what she's getting herself into, so she teams up with her classmate, Hinterland fanatic Ellery Finch. Melissa Albert's debut novel is so deliciously creepy. The line between fiction and reality is so thin. I love how The Hazel Wood weaves together the stories of the Hinterland with Alice's past and present. I'm eager to read the sequel. The Hazel Wood was out January 2018.

Summer Marks was brutally murdered five years ago, and everyone thinks her best friends, Mia and Brynn, driven by their obsession with the fantasy novel The Way Into Lovelorn, did it. It's true that the girls believed they had found a way to enter the fictional world. On the anniversary of their friend's death, Mia and Brynn finally start talking again about really happened. Broken Things was so eerie and awesome. The melding of fiction and reality is what really sold me on this book. I loved the excerpts from The Way Into Lovelorn and the fanfic the friends were writing. Lauren Oliver's book is so disturbing, but it also features a really fantastic group of characters. Out October 2018. 

Verdopolis and Gondal:
Living in relative isolation on the Yorkshire moors, the Bronte siblings, Charlotte, Branwell, Emily, and Anne, keep themselves entertained by writing stories about fictional lands. However, their fictional worlds are not just stories. The Bronte siblings routinely crossover to direct and experience the stories from within.What makes Lena Coakley's book stand out is that this book is strongly influenced by history. The Brontes did write many stories in their youth, creating the elaborate worlds of Verdopolis, Gondal, and Angria, and they populated them with the characters featured in Worlds of Ink and Shadow. I enjoyed thinking about the books the sisters would eventually write  and how they might be tied to their youthful musings. The plot itself was at times super creepy and at others clever and amusing.

In Ink, Iron, and Glass we have a character journeying from a fictional world into the real world. When Elsa's mother disappears from the pages of their world, Elsa travels to the real world to find her. Gwendolyn Clare's historical fantasy is a steampunk world of mad scientists, alchemists, mechanics, and scriptologists. I really enjoyed the 19th-century Italian setting, the inventions, and the whole concept of scriptology. The jumps from world to world and the way that the text could create something real was so fun and interesting. Beware, this book does have a bit of the "chosen one" trope, as Elsa, as a polymath, is unique and special. The sequel, Mist, Metal, and Ash, was out February 19th, 2019.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Highly Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2019

I really try to keep these highly anticipated releases posts to a reasonable number because once I put a book on this list I feel a lot of pressure to read it. But...there are just so many great books coming out in the first few months of 2019. It was hard to limit this list even this much.

A Thousand Sisters by Elizabeth Wein:
A book about World War II female pilots is something that I will always read. (Books about women aviators here, here, and here.)

The Vanishing Stair by Maureen Johnson:
I might have to listen to the first book in the series again before I begin this one to remind myself of all the details--a must for a mystery.

In An Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire:
I'm always eager for the next addition to the Wayward Children series.

Rayne & Delilah's Midnite Matinee by Jeff Zentner:
I've loved everything Jeff Zentner has written, and this book about two girls who run a public access TV show sounds so great. (Jeff Zentner's other books featured here and here.)

Early Riser by Jasper Fforde:
Massive Jasper Fforde fan. He is one of my most read authors, after all.

Courting Darkness by Robin LaFevers:
Sybella is my favorite character from the His Fair Assassin series, and I'm looking forward to this add-on series about her family. (Series featured here, here, and here.)

Bloodwitch by Susan Denard:
Windwitch knocked my socks off. I'm eager to diving back into this world. (Series featured here and here.)

Killing November by Adriana Mather:
I really loved Adriana Mather's How to Hang a Witch series, and I'm excited to see what else she can do.

The Queen's Resistance by Rebecca Ross:
I really liked the first book in Rebecca Ross's debut series. It was probably the biggest surprise of 2018. Yes please, to the sequel.

The Lovely War by Julie Berry:
Julie Berry and World War I. I really don't need any more convincing. (More books by Julie Berry featured here.)

The Shadow Glass by Rin Chupeco:
I've been dying to read this ever since I finished the astonishing second book in The Bone Witch series. (Series featured here and here.)

The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton:
Again, I really enjoyed the first book, and I want to know what is going to happen next.

The Raven's Tale by Cat Winters:
This book is inspired by the life of Edgar Allen Poe, and I live near Baltimore where you can tour Poe's house and visit his grave. So no convincing needed.

Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly:
Lilac Girls was one of my favorite books of 2016. This new book follows Caroline Ferriday's mother and is set during World War I.

Serious Moonlight by Jenn Bennett:
Alex Approximately and Starry Eyes topped my summer reading last year, and I'm eager for another Jenn Bennett romance.

Defy the Fates by Claudia Gray:
I'm ready to finish off this series about space travel, wars, disease, and artificial intelligence. (Series featured here.)

Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff:
We all know how much I love their Illuminae trilogy. I'm thrilled we get more space books from this duo. (Series Salute here.)

Finale by Stephanie Garber:
The final book in the Caraval trilogy. I liked the second book even more than the first one, so I have high expectations. (Series featured here and here.)

The Language of Fire by Stephanie Hemphill:
I read Ms. Hemphill's verse novel about Mary Shelley in the fall. This new book is a verse novel about Joan of Arc.

Call It What You Want by Brigid Kemmerer:
Huge fan of Letters to the Lost. I'm looking forward to another contemporary from Ms Kemmerer. (More books by Brigid Kemmerer here.)

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