Five Books on My Christmas Wish List

With the holidays coming, I think we all have the same things on our minds: what books are we going to be adding to our beloved and monstrous collections?! This time of year, I ask for a few books from loved ones who are so inclined to buy me a gift, but I also treat myself a bit more than usual. This year, here are five titles I’ve got my eye on!

The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon

In October, I took a solo trip to the west coast of the US. While I was there, I, of course, purchased a few books. One of those was Milk & Honey by Rupi Kaur. I sat in coffee shops, hostel living rooms, and by the beach pouring over Kaur’s beautiful words and art. Hers is a kind of poetry that I connect with very deeply. I found myself deep in contemplation, sometimes brought to tears. I am not alone in this, as Kaur is now a NYT bestseller. I love that. I’m so excited that poetry is making its way into the mainstream. This collection promises to be just as good as her last, so I absolutely cannot wait to get my hands on it. Read more…

What I’ve Been Reading Online

The word “Feminism,” and the rich history of its proponents, needs to be reclaimed by today’s teens, via The Guardian.

Hillary Clinton is neither a saint nor a demoness, via The Establishment. She is not our future, but she is an important figure that deserves to be heard. “There cannot and must not be any doubt that so much of the animus to Clinton is motivated by the audacity of her seeking power while female; it magnifies her real failings into demonic proportions, fit only to be screamed at…. The double standard is real and undeniable; it must be the starting point in any debate about Clinton, and seen as a bias to constantly acknowledge and correct for in one’s criticism.”

Understanding the early days of the HIV/AIDS through fiction, via Electric Literature.

Female author who are worth binge-reading, according to Modern Mrs. Darcy,

Contemporary YA books that feature interracial couples, via Book Riot.

“I’m also conscious of the continuing double standard: I have to be better than everyone; I have to work harder. There’s no margin for me when others have so much leeway. It’s a pressure cooker all the time. I try to pull the curtain back so that young, dynamic women like America (Ferrera) can see themselves in historic context and know they can overcome the obstacles in their way.” Hillary Clinton and America Fererra chat with the New York Times.

100 Must Read Books by Queer Authors, via Book Riot.

Women’s Media Summit’s White Paper calls for the public to boycott media that doesn’t include women. I mean, I already do this personally, and think it’s really important. Tell Hollywood what you want by the way you use your dollars! And the WMS, and I, want gender equity yo.

The best female-led horror movies, according to Vulture. Halloween marathon, anyone?

Shit I Read This Summer

Hey friends!

You may have noticed I haven’t been super active here this summer. I was on a sort of hiatus, getting out and about and enjoying life. You know what helps one enjoy the summer? Reading! I didn’t do as much reading as I thought I would, but I did have a great summer and did read some excellent books.

Without further ado, here’s what I got up to for summer reading:

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Hardcover, 380 pages
Published May 30th 2017 by Simon Pulse
Goodreads | Amazon | Indigo

One of the best YA contemporaries I’ve read, When Dimple Met Rishi is hilarious and adorable.  A cute, funny, quirky romance, it balances love and independence with the weight of family expectations. ​This was my pick for Book Riot’s Best Books of 2017 (So Far)!

Mockingbird Vol. 1: I Can Explain by Chelsea Cain (author) and Kate Niemczyk (artist)

Paperback, 136 pages
Published October 18th 2016 by Marvel
Goodreads | Amazon | Indigo

This is a great series with a hilarious, kick-ass main character, Bobbi Morse (AKA Mockingbird). Think you’re tired of Marvel? Give this one a shot. Especially if you love Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel! This should definitely have gotten a longer run, but I’m still excited to see where it goes in volume 2. Read more…

What I’ve Been Reading Online

Electric Lit gives its two cents about the gender-swapped Lord of the Flies and gets it all wrong.

Read It Forward gives some great recommendations of books for woke kids. Definitely going to be gifting a few of these this year!

We’re getting an adaptation of Stoner by John Williams and I won’t be able to see it because it will be starring a sexual predator. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

A new memoir involving the life of Bette Davis is going to be released. Quartz says it shows it’s time to stop letting men construct women’s stories. They are, of course, super right. If only that could go without saying.

They announced the long list for the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature and The Hate U Give is on it!

An interesting piece from Teen Vogue about how our culture’s obsession with white male serial killers is glamorizing and deifying them.

Bitch Media’s 15 Bitch-Approved September reads!

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 25, 2017 by Simon & Schuster Canada
Note: I received a copy of this book for review from the publisher.

The text message is just three words: I need you.

Isa drops everything, takes her baby daughter and heads straight to Salten. She spent the most significant days of her life at boarding school on the marshes there, days which still cast their shadow over her now.

Something terrible has been found on the beach. Something which will force Isa to confront her past, together with the three best friends she hasn’t seen for years, but has never forgotten. Theirs is no cosy reunion: Salten isn’t a safe place for them, after what they did.

A dark, atmospheric tale of old friends, secrets, and our pasts that will always find us. I loved every minute of this book. It’s exactly the kind of mystery I like: atmospheric, slow-burning, character-based. It’s a gorgeous, quietly sinister tale.

For the most part, the action in this story takes place in the past. Through the relationships between these old friends, more and more is revealed. Why are they in Salten together right now? What secret binds them together, but also tore them apart?

It kept me turning the pages, but it’s not a pulse-pounder. In The Lying Game, we try to unravel the past as the past unravels the lives of the four main characters. In this story, the stakes are not life or death, like in many mysteries. The stakes are personal. What would you sacrifice for the ones you love? Can we ever escape the past?

If you like a slow-burning, atmospheric, personal mystery, definitely pick this one up. I loved it!

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Paperback, 400 pages
Published June 13th by Atria
Goodreads | Amazon | Indigo

Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review.

Today, Evelyn Hugo is 79. She is making headlines again with the impending auction of her most famous gowns.

Who is Evelyn Hugo, you ask? She is an actress, an icon. She is an Elizabeth Taylor, a Marilyn Monroe. And she hasn’t done an interview in decades.

Her people reach out to Vivant magazine, offering an exclusive interview. There is, however, a catch. Evelyn does not want just anyone interviewing her. She insists on being interviewed by Monique Grant, a veritable unknown reporter working for the magazine, writing mainly puff pieces.

Monique is shocked, and so is the editor. However, neither of them are willing to give up this amazing opportunity. Everyone has so many questions. Why Vivant? Why Monique? Why does Evelyn want to give an interview now? Read more…

Tantalizing and Electric–White Fur by Jardine Libaire

White Fur by Jardine Libaire

Hardcover, 305 pages
Published May 30th 2017 by Hogarth Press
Amazon | Indigo | Goodreads

Note: I received a copy of this book for my participation in the TLC book tour.

Young, dumb, and in love, Elise and Jamey will take you for one hell of a ride.

Romeo and Juliet with more grit, these two passionate, obsessively in love, twenty-somethings find themselves in a motel with a shotgun on the first page. How do they get there? You have to dive in to find out.

When? The 1980s. Where? Connecticut and New York.

Elise Perez is a rough-and-tumble girl from the wrong side of the tracks. She doesn’t graduate high school, and instead picks up the slack of her single mother, caring for her half siblings. One day she can’t take it anymore. She runs away from home and finds herself sleeping in a car in New Haven. There, a kind stranger finds her and ends up becoming her roommate.

Next-door lives a couple of Yale students in an off-campus townhouse. One of them is Jamey Hyde. He is indisputably from the right side of the tracks in every possible way. He was born and bred from money, and immediately placed on the conveyor belt. Heir to an investment-bank fortune, he is fully expected to fit the mold and join the family business. Read more…

Missing | A New YA Mystery from Kelley Armstrong

missing kelley armstrong book coverMissing by Kelley Armstrong

Young Adult Mystery
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published April 18th, 2017 by Doubleday Canada
Goodreads | Amazon | Indigo

An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review. 

The only thing Winter Crane likes about Reeve’s End is that soon she’ll leave it. Like her best friend did. Like her sister did. Like most of the teens born in town have done. There’s nothing for them there but abandoned mines and empty futures. They’re better off taking a chance elsewhere.

The only thing Winter will miss is the woods. Her only refuge. At least it was. Until the day she found Lennon left for dead, bleeding in a tree.

But now Lennon is gone too. And he has Winter questioning what she once thought was true. What if nobody left at all? What if they’re all missing?

If you know me, you know that I’m a huge K.A. fangirl. The Cainsville series is one of my all time favourites, and I’ve been known to gush about her Casey Duncan books, too.

But you might also remember my first foray into her young adult books. If not, here is how I felt about The Masked Truth (spoiler, not good). I was worried that this reading experience was going to go the same way, but I was willing to give it a chance.

So, when I picked up Missing, I was worried. But I didn’t need to be! It was not a perfect book, and sure, some things were a little over the top. However, I didn’t really notice that when I was reading it. I was easily able to suspend my disbelief, nothing managing to be enough to pull me out of the story. I was completely engaged the whole time. I had to know what would happen next.

One thing I love about Kelley Armstrong is her knack for writing intense, independent, kick-ass women. Missing is no exception. Winter Crane is not a girl you want to mess with.

Fun and exciting throughout, this mystery will keep you on your toes. If an easy to read, gripping mystery in the woods and a creepy small town sounds up your alley… definitely pick this one up.

Dope Linkz–Rad Stuff I’ve Been Reading on the Internet

A friendly reminder that people are idiots. Dudes Flipped out about this women only Wonder Woman screening. Via Flavorwire.

But also, a reminder that Teen Vogue is awesome.

Another reminder that people are idiots, in case you needed one. Dudes react to Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. Via Jezebel.

Women’s Representation in Film Actually Getting Worse Not Better, Via Quartz.

Jessica Chastain furthers the point of the of the above Quartz artivle in her role on the jury of the Cannes film festival. Which Misogynistic Cannes Films Was Jessica Chastain Putting on Blast? Via Vulture.

Something that is more hopeful. Band Aid, a Cannes favourite, was made with an all-female crew: “all-female enough that Lister-Jones’s co-star Adam Pally was, for a week, the only man in sight.” Zoe Lister-Jones is dope as hell. Via Vulture.

A really rad lady, doing really rad things. Kakenya Ntaiya Is Fighting Female Genital Mutilation and Promoting Education Through the Kakenya Center for Excellence​. Via Teen Vogue.

We Need to Fix Racism in our Institutions, Not Black Hair. “While dress codes disproportionately target girls’ bodies, black girls often face the double whammy of sexism and racism when trying to attend school.” Via Feministing.

Big Ol’ Side Eye at this Snow White retelling?? Chloe Grace Moretz Apologizes for Her New Animated Movie’s Terrible, Body-Shaming Ad. Via i09.

Woman No. 17 by Edan Lepucki

Cover of Woman No. 17 by Edan LepuckiWoman No. 17 by Edan Lepucki

Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 9th, 2017 by Hogarth Press
I received a copy of this book for my participation in the TLC book tour.

High in the Hollywood Hills, writer Lady Daniels has decided to take a break from her husband. Left alone with her children, she’s going to need a hand taking care of her young son if she’s ever going to finish her memoir. In response to a Craigslist ad, S arrives, a magnetic young artist who will live in the secluded guest house out back, care for Lady’s toddler, Devin, and keep a watchful eye on her older, teenage son, Seth. S performs her day job beautifully, quickly drawing the entire family into her orbit, and becoming a confidante for Lady.


But in the heat of the summer, S’s connection to Lady’s older son takes a disturbing, and possibly destructive, turn. And as Lady and S move closer to one another, the glossy veneer of Lady’s privileged life begins to crack, threatening to expose old secrets that she has been keeping from her family. Meanwhile, S is protecting secrets of her own, about her real motivation for taking the job. S and Lady are both playing a careful game, and every move they make endangers the things they hold most dear.

Darkly comic, twisty and tense, this mesmerizing new novel defies expectation and proves Edan Lepucki to be one of the most talented and exciting voices of her generation.

Read more…