Out of the Blue by Sophie Cameron
Genre: Magical Realism
Release Date: 22nd March 2018
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
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Ten days after Jaya Mackenzie’s mum dies, angels start falling from the sky. Smashing down to earth at extraordinary speeds, wings bent, faces contorted, not a single one has survived.
Hysteria mounting with every Being that drops, Jaya’s father uproots the family to Edinburgh intent on catching one alive. But Jaya can’t stand this obsession and, struggling to make sense of her mother’s sudden death and her own role on that fateful day, she’s determined to stay out of it.
When her best friend disappears and her father’s mania spirals, things hit rock bottom and it’s at that moment something extraordinary happens: An angel lands right at Jaya’s feet, and it’s alive. Finally she is forced to acknowledge just how significant these celestial beings are.
Set against the backdrop of the frenzied Edinburgh festival, OUT OF THE BLUE tackles questions of grief and guilt and fear over who we really are. But it’s also about love and acceptance and finding your place in this world as angels drop out of another.
I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed Out of the Blue considering paranormal books aren’t typically my thing. I picked this book up because I’d heard some amazing things from early reviewers, and thankfully it didn’t disappoint!
I’ve read quite a few books recently that I really, really enjoyed, and I was shocked to have not heard much about them. There are a bunch of books that I think deserve more hype in this community, so I thought I’d showcase a few of my more recent reads in an attempt to entice you.
A Girl Like That by Tanaz Bhathena
I absolutely adored A Girl Like That. It’s my favourite book of the year so far, and I honestly cannot recommend it enough or rate it more highly. It’s a contemporary about a Muslim girl who lives in Saudi Arabia. There are a lot of rumours and gossip surrounding her, because she’s unconventional. This book shines a light on what it’s like to grow up in the Middle East, and particularly what teenage girls have to deal with.
Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman
I read this one more recently even though it had been on my TBR ever since it was announced. There was a bit of hype surrounding it back in 2016 when it was released, but I think The Girl From Everywhere kind of overshadowed it. This is a Blackbeard origin story, and while none of it is set on a pirate ship, it gives a good background on Blackbeard and what led him to the sea. I’m really looking forward to seeing where the second book takes these characters, particularly Anne, who I loved.
The Radium Girls by Kate Moore
This is a non-fiction book about the girls who worked in the factories that painted dials using radium paint. Their employers told them that the radium was safe, but then they all started getting ill. The book follows what happened to the girls after they left the factories, and their lawsuits against these companies. It’s a fantastic book, and it gave me a lot of information on a topic that I didn’t know anything about, while also keeping it very personal.
The Queen's Rising by Rebecca Ross
Series: The Queen's Rising #1
Release Date: 6th February 2018
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When her seventeenth summer solstice arrives, Brienna desires only two things: to master her passion and to be chosen by a patron.
Growing up in the southern Kingdom of Valenia at the renowned Magnalia House should have prepared her for such a life. While some are born with an innate talent for one of the five passions—art, music, dramatics, wit, and knowledge—Brienna struggled to find hers until she belatedly chose to study knowledge. However, despite all her preparations, Brienna’s greatest fear comes true—the solstice does not go according to plan and she is left without a patron.
Months later, her life takes an unexpected turn when a disgraced lord offers her patronage. Suspicious of his intent, and with no other choices, she accepts. But there is much more to his story, and Brienna soon discovers that he has sought her out for his own vengeful gain. For there is a dangerous plot being planned to overthrow the king of Maevana—the archrival kingdom of Valenia—and restore the rightful queen, and her magic, to the northern throne. And others are involved—some closer to Brienna than she realizes.
With war brewing between the two lands, Brienna must choose whose side she will remain loyal to—passion or blood. Because a queen is destined to rise and lead the battle to reclaim the crown. The ultimate decision Brienna must determine is: Who will be that queen?
Full disclosure, I went into this book thinking it was a standalone, and I spent the majority of my reading time still thinking that, so that affected my view of the book. I later learnt that The Queen’s Rising is the first in a series, so now my feelings are a bit off. Continue reading
Welcome to my monthly post where I talk about my most anticipated book releases for the upcoming month. May has some very promising new releases, and I’m looking forward to a lot of them.
I had a really good reading month in April, so I’m hoping the same thing will happen in May. I’ve been very ambitious with with TBR, but at the same time it’s good to have choices, right?
I’m only really dying to read a couple of new releases this month, and they’re big ones. War Storm is (obviously!) the final book in the Red Queen series. Admittedly, it’s not a masterpiece, but it’s a really enjoyable series and I’m hooked. I’m looking forward to seeing how it ends, and I’m considering going to an author event next month, so I’d like to read the book before then. Furyborn is one that’s getting a tonne of hype, and I really hope it lives up to it.