Who can believe we are already in the last week of June?! Where has this month gone? I’ve had my first few beach read days (and a sunburn to go with it from today… I swear, I had sunscreen on!), and lots of good rainy days for reading, too. And of course, lots of picnics, barbecues, long walks, and sunshine. Much better summer than typical, so far! How is your summer going?
There are a lot of new releases this week, just in time for you to pick a new read for the upcoming holiday weekend.
What do you have your eye on? I think I need The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, but also Midnight Jewel and The Impossible Vastness of Us. So many good ones this week though! I really need to finish reading And I Darken before I get Now I Rise… but I know a lot of people who have been looking forward to seeing what Lada has been up to.
The Impossible Vastness of Us by Samantha Young
“I know how to watch my back. I’m the only one that ever has.”
India Maxwell hasn’t just moved across the country—she’s plummeted to the bottom rung of the social ladder. It’s taken years to cover the mess of her home life with a veneer of popularity. Now she’s living in one of Boston’s wealthiest neighborhoods with her mom’s fiancé and his daughter, Eloise. Thanks to her soon-to-be stepsister’s clique of friends, including Eloise’s gorgeous, arrogant boyfriend, Finn, India feels like the one thing she hoped never to be seen as again: trash.
But India’s not alone in struggling to control the secrets of her past. Eloise and Finn, the school’s golden couple, aren’t all they seem to be. In fact, everyone’s life is infinitely more complex than it first appears. And as India grows closer to Finn and befriends Eloise, threatening the facades that hold them together, what’s left are truths that are brutal, beautiful and big enough to change them forever…
From New York Times bestselling author Samantha Young comes a story of friendship, identity and acceptance that will break your heart—and make it whole again.
The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
A hilarious and swashbuckling stand-alone teen historical fiction novel, named one of summer’s 20 must-read books by Entertainment Weekly!
A young bisexual British lord embarks on an unforgettable Grand Tour of Europe with his best friend/secret crush. An 18th-century romantic adventure for the modern age written by This Monstrous Thing author Mackenzi Lee—Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda meets the 1700s.
Henry “Monty” Montague doesn’t care that his roguish passions are far from suitable for the gentleman he was born to be. But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quests for pleasure and vice are in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.
So Monty vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.
Witty, dazzling, and intriguing at every turn, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is an irresistible romp that explores the undeniably fine lines between friendship and love.
The Beautiful Lost by Luanne Rice
Here are three things to know about Maia:
1. Ever since her mother left, Maia’s struggled with depression — which once got so bad, she had to go to an institution for a while. She doesn’t want to go back.
2. Maia’s sure that if she finds her mother, if the two of them can talk about whale songs and constellations, then everything will be okay again.
3. She’s in love with Billy, the handsome, brooding boy who lives in the group home in town. He doesn’t seem to know that Maia exists… until now.
When Maia sets off on a road trip in search of her mom, Billy unexpectedly comes along. They drive up the East Coast, stopping along the way for lobster rolls and lighthouses. Maia learns that Billy has dark secrets of his own — and wants to outrun his past, too. But what will the future hold if they reach their destination?
From internationally bestselling author Luanne Rice, this is a sweeping, stunning story about the surprising directions our hearts can take.
Now I Rise (Conqueror’s Saga #2) by Kiersten White
The highly anticipated, mind-blowing sequel to Kiersten White’s New York Times bestseller, AND I DARKEN—the series that reads like HBO’s Game of Thrones . . . if it were set in the Ottoman Empire. Fans of Victoria Aveyard’s THE RED QUEEN and Sabaa Tahir’s A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT won’t want to miss this riveting and gorgeously written novel—the second in the And I Darken series.
Lada Dracul has no allies. No throne. All she has is what she’s always had: herself. After failing to secure the Wallachian throne, Lada is out to punish anyone who dares to cross her blood-strewn path. Filled with a white-hot rage, she storms the countryside with her men, accompanied by her childhood friend Bogdan, terrorizing the land. But brute force isn’t getting Lada what she wants. And thinking of Mehmed brings little comfort to her thorny heart. There’s no time to wonder whether he still thinks about her, even loves her. She left him before he could leave her.
What Lada needs is her younger brother Radu’s subtlety and skill. But Mehmed has sent him to Constantinople—and it’s no diplomatic mission. Mehmed wants control of the city, and Radu has earned an unwanted place as a double-crossing spy behind enemy lines Radu longs for his sister’s fierce confidence—but for the first time in his life, he rejects her unexpected plea for help. Torn between loyalties to faith, to the Ottomans, and to Mehmed, he knows he owes Lada nothing. If she dies, he could never forgive himself—but if he fails in Constantinople, will Mehmed ever forgive him?
As nations fall around them, the Dracul siblings must decide: what will they sacrifice to fulfill their destinies? Empires will topple, thrones will be won . . . and souls will be lost.
Midnight Jewel (The Glittering Court #2) by Richelle Mead
The Selection meets Reign in this dazzling trilogy of interwoven novels about three girls on a quest for freedom and true love from #1 internationally bestselling author Richelle Mead.
Mira is not like the other Glittering Court girls. She is a war refugee, cast out of her home country and thrust into another, where she has learned to fight against the many injustices around her. For some, the Glittering Court offers a chance at a life they’ve only ever dreamed of, one of luxury, glamour, and leisure. But for Mira, it’s simply a means to an end. In the new world, she plans to earn off her marriage contract price, and finally be free.
Mira pitches herself as an asset to one of the passengers on board the ship: the sardonic and aloof Grant Elliot, whom she’s discovered is a spy for the prestigious McGraw Agency—and her ticket to buying her freedom. His cover blown, Grant has little choice but to take her on. Mira applies herself by day, learning the etiquette and customs that will help to earn her anonymity. By night, she dons a mask and slips into the city, fighting injustice and corruption on her own terms—and impressing Grant with her extraordinary abilities and insights into a brewing rebellion. But the rebellion isn’t all they’re fighting…
Neither of them can ignore the attraction burning between them—an attraction so powerful, it threatens to unravel everything Mira’s worked so hard for. With freedom finally within her grasp, can Mira risk it all for love?
If Birds Fly Back by Carlie Sorosiak
A sparkling debut about love, family, and the mysteries of the universe, perfect for fans of Jandy Nelson and Nicola Yoon.
Linny has kept a journal of famous disappearances ever since her sister Grace ran away in the middle of the night. Sebastian is an aspiring astrophysicist with a working theory for everything—but the one thing he can’t figure out is the identity of his birth father.
They haven’t met—yet—but Linny and Sebastian have one thing in common: an obsession with famous novelist and filmmaker Àlvaro Herrera, who who went missing three years ago and has just reappeared. As their lives converge around the mystery of Àlvaro, they begin to uncover the answers they’ve been looking for.
With humor and heart, debut author Carlie Sorosiak weaves a story of searching for those who leave—and loving those who stay.
“If Birds Fly Back feels like that last hazy, sun-drenched summer of high school, when you know you’ll need to find your place in the world, but you’re busy laughing and falling in love under starlit skies. It’s the rarest author who can pull off laugh-out-loud hilarious, profound, and breathlessly romantic, all in the most sparkling prose. That shortlist includes Rainbow Rowell, Nicola Yoon, and now, Carlie Sorosiak.”—Jeff Zentner, acclaimed author of The Serpent King and Goodbye Days
Girl on the Verge by Pintip Dunn
From the author of The Darkest Lie comes a compelling, provocative story for fans of I Was Here and Vanishing Girls, about a high school senior straddling two worlds, unsure how she fits in either—and the journey of self-discovery that leads her to surprising truths.
In her small Kansas town, at her predominantly white school, Kanchana doesn’t look like anyone else. But at home, her Thai grandmother chides her for being too westernized. Only through the clothing Kan designs in secret can she find a way to fuse both cultures into something distinctly her own.
When her mother agrees to provide a home for a teenage girl named Shelly, Kan sees a chance to prove herself useful. Making Shelly feel comfortable is easy at first—her new friend is eager to please, embraces the family’s Thai traditions, and clearly looks up to Kan. Perhaps too much. Shelly seems to want everything Kanchana has, even the blond, blue-eyed boy she has a crush on. As Kan’s growing discomfort compels her to investigate Shelly’s past, she’s shocked to find how it much intersects with her own—and just how far Shelly will go to belong…
Eden Summer by Liz Flanagan
It starts like any other day for Jess. Get up, draw on eyeliner, cover up tattoos, and head to school. But soon it’s clear that this is no ordinary day, because Jess’s best friend, Eden, isn’t at school . . . she’s gone missing.
Jess knows she must do everything in her power to find Eden. Before the unthinkable happens.
So Jess decides to retrace the life-changing summer she and Eden have just spent together. But looking back means digging up all their buried secrets, and she soon begins to question everything she thought the summer had been about, and everything she thought she knew about her best friend . . .
A tense and moving journey through friendship, loss, betrayal, and self-discovery, Eden Summer, will plunge its way into your heart and stay there forever.
Aftercare Instructions by Bonnie Pipkin
“Troubled.” That’s seventeen-year-old Genesis according to her small New Jersey town. She finds refuge and stability in her relationship with her boyfriend, Peter―until he abandons her at a Planned Parenthood clinic during their appointment to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. The betrayal causes Gen to question everything.
As Gen pushes herself forward to find her new identity without Peter, she must also confront her most painful memories. Through the lens of an ongoing four act play within the novel, the fantasy of their undying love unravels line by line, scene by scene. Digging deeper into her past while exploring the underground theater world of New York City, she rediscovers a long forgotten dream. But it’s when Gen lets go of her history, the one she thinks she knows, that she’s finally able to embrace the complicated, chaotic true story of her life, and take center stage.
Aftercare Instructions, a debut full of heart and hope, follows Gen on a big-hearted journey from dorm rooms to diners to underground theaters―and ultimately, right into readers’ hearts.
Reign of Serpents (Blood of Gods and Royals #3) by Eleanor Herman
As the end of an age approaches, blood soaks the earth, twisted prophecies wield immeasurable power and tyrants demand impossible sacrifices
Prince Alexander of Macedon’s mind has been touched by an incomprehensible evil, even as his betrothed travels from afar to unite their kingdoms against a terrible darkness that threatens both realms: the Spirit Eaters.
From the distant shores of Illyria to a small deserted island, the deadly consequences of Smoke Blood magic loom and lost civilizations emerge to reveal the existence of a weapon that may do the impossible—kill the last living god. As magic rises and warriors clash, the fate of all Macedon rests in the hands of the unstable prince and those whose loyalty can no longer be trusted.