Saturday, October 31, 2020

Month in Review: October 2020

We don't know about you but 2020 feels like it has been 84 years long. Since it's been such a busy month on the IRL front, the Weres have been quiet again here on the blog but we did post a few things!

This is what the Weres were up to in October.

Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne
Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse
The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk
Written in the Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur
Archangel's Sun by Nalini Singh

Thursday, October 29, 2020

The Big Book Haul Post: October 2020

 We don't know about you all but October was filled with so many excellent book releases that our wallets and TBRs are crying a little bit.

Here's what we added to our TBR piles in October:

As always, keep in mind that books we got for free earlier in the month may not still be free, so look before you click.

Physical Book Haul

Added to My Kindle
Bitterburn by Ann Aguirre
Walking the Edge by Sue Ward Drake

The Secret by Elizabeth Naughton
RoomHate by Penelope Ward
Shades of Treason by Sandy Williams

Rose Red

Physical Book Haul

Added to My Kindle
Princess Floralinda and the Forty-Flight Tower by Tamsyn Muir
Winter's Orbit by Everina Maxwell
The Witch and the Beast, Vol. 1 by Kousuke Satake
How Do We Relationship?, Vol. 2 by Tamifull
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku, Vol. 4 by Fujita
Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks
The Engineer (Magic and Steam #1) by C.S. Poe

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
Return of the Thief (The Queen's Thief #6) by Megan Whalen Turner
The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby (Rogues and Remarkable Women #1) by Vanessa Riley
Starcrossed (Magic in Manhattan #2) by Allie Therin
Mrs. Martin's Incomparable Adventure (The Worth Saga #2.75) by Courtney Milan

A Ferry of Bones & Gold (Soulbound #1) by Hailey Turner
All Souls Near & Nigh (Soulbound #2) by Hailey Turner
A Crown of Iron & Silver (Soulbound #3) by Hailey Turner

A Vigil in the Mourning (Soulbound #4) by Hailey Turner
On the Wings of War (Soulbound #5) by Hailey Turner
Niall (Vigilance #2) by Silvia Violet

Down a Twisted Path (Soulbound #0.5) by Hailey Turner

What books did you all pick up this month?


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Review: Spoiler Alert by Olivia Dade

Spoiler Alert
Olivia Dade
Release: October 6, 2020
Goodreads Amazon
Olivia Dade bursts onto the scene in this delightfully fun romantic comedy set in the world of fanfiction, in which a devoted fan goes on an unexpected date with her celebrity crush, who’s secretly posting fanfiction of his own. 

Marcus Caster-Rupp has a secret. While the world knows him as Aeneas, the star of the biggest show on TV, Gods of the Gates, he's known to fanfiction readers as Book!AeneasWouldNever, an anonymous and popular poster.  Marcus is able to get out his own frustrations with his character through his stories, especially the ones that feature the internet’s favorite couple to ship, Aeneas and Lavinia. But if anyone ever found out about his online persona, he’d be fired. Immediately.

April Whittier has secrets of her own. A hardcore Lavinia fan, she’s hidden her fanfiction and cosplay hobby from her “real life” for years—but not anymore. When she decides to post her latest Lavinia creation on Twitter, her photo goes viral. Trolls and supporters alike are commenting on her plus-size take, but when Marcus, one half of her OTP, sees her pic and asks her out on a date to spite her critics, she realizes life is really stranger than fanfiction.

Even though their first date is a disaster, Marcus quickly realizes that he wants much more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. And when he discovers she’s actually Unapologetic Lavinia Stan, his closest fandom friend, he has one more huge secret to hide from her.

With love and Marcus’s career on the line, can the two of them stop hiding once and for all, or will a match made in fandom end up prematurely cancelled?

You all, I can't believe I have been sleeping on Olivia Dade's books. I can't tell you how many times that I've been recommended a book of hers by both online book community friends and IRL bookish friends. So when I saw her lastest book on Netgalley and saw that it was a fandom book, I decided to request it just to see if all the hype around this author was warranted. And you all, someone really needs to go kick past Rose Red in the butt because I absolutely adored Spoiler Alert!

ALL THE STARS! This book gets all the stars! It was absolutely glorious and unapologetically fabulous! It’s a love letter to fanfiction and fandom and I loved it so much! Add in the fact that it’s one of the best books I’ve read with a plus-sized main character and it shouldn’t surprise you that this is going to make my list of favorite books of the years. It was glorious! And perfectly angsty, sappy, brave, and soft all at the same time.

I loved April so much! I'm always here for a heroine in STEM but it's even better when you can just tell that the character on the page is actually in love with her STEM field. She isn't afraid to wear what she wants even if it is not the most flattering. She's going to enjoy her food and isn't going to be ashamed for writing smutty fanfic. I want to be April Whittier when I grow up is all I'm saying. Plus, I wouldn't say no to my very own Marcus.

Can we talk about Marcus's character for a second? I love seeing a soft, cinnamon roll hero in romance books that combat the alpha hero stereotype. Don't get me wrong, I still love me a good alpha hero. But we need more love interest characters like Marcus who fight against toxic masculinity and are all around good men with a code of ethics they stick to. I loved everything about Marcus's character even when he was being an idiot because he felt real in a way that makes me want to pull him from the page so I can date him myself. The washboard abs are just a bonus when compared to everything else we learn about him.

Characters aside, I felt seen reading this book. Not only was the fandom and fanfic community represented stellarly, the STEM aspect of April's career and how she has to hide parts of herself to get ahead in her chosen field really resonated with me because I had to do the same thing when I worked in my field before I started teaching. It was also glorious seeing a character who is plus-sized like me getting the guy and the happily ever after. This is why representation matters in books.

That's all I'm going to say about the book because if I'm not careful I'll start shouting about some spoilery bits I really want to talk about with someone. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go read all of Olivia Dade’s backlist. If all of her books have the same heart as this one, then all the hype and gushing about her books in Romancelandia is totally deserved.

Also, can we take a moment to bask in the perfection that is the cover for this book? It’s amazingly awesome and beautiful! I would have bought this book for my personal library for the cover alone. I can't wait to get my hands on Alex and Lauren's book because I am dying to see how that relationship plays out.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

  5 / 5 Stars

Book #58- Drive-In Movie- Read a Book Where the H/H is a Movie Star or Works in the Film Industry

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Review: There Are Things I Can't Tell You by Edako Mofumofu

There Are Things I Can't Tell You
Edako Mofumofu
Release: July 21, 2020
Goodreads Amazon
Trigger Warnings: Themes of Depression and Neglect and Internalized Homophobia

Kasumi and Kyousuke are polar opposites when it comes to personality. Kasumi is reserved, soft-spoken and shy; Kyousuke is energetic and has always been popular among their peers. As the saying goes though, opposites have a tendency to attract, and these two have been fast friends since elementary school. To Kasumi, Kyousuke has always been a hero to look up to, someone who supports him and saves him from the bullies. But now, school is over; their relationship suddenly becomes a lot less simple to describe. Facing the world -- and one another -- as adults, both men find there are things they struggle to say out loud, even to each other.

Before I even talk about my thoughts on this manga, can we talk about the art style? This is my first Edako Mofumofu manga and the art style alone makes me want more volumes by this mangaka. It was very beautifully drawn and the illustrations really lent themselves to telling the story which was an angsty yet sweet friends-to-lovers romance.
Friends-to-lovers is always a trope I'm up for reading and There Are Things I Can't Tell You is a great example of two friends finding their way to being together. This is an angsty but touching read about confronting internalized homophobia and choosing your own happiness. I really enjoyed reading this manga!
I'm a sucker for an opposites attract romance and the two main characters are so very different from each other. Kyousuke is popular, outgoing, and creatively driven while Kasumi is shy, disorganized, and a bit of a klutz. They've known each other since they were young through high school but an incidental confession in high school causes them not to see each other until they meet up at a school reunion.

The amount of yearning and wishing for the other's happiness is palpable from the start. These two are in so in love with each other but neither will act upon it for different reasons. In classic Boys Love manga style, they think they're doing what is best for the other. I firmly believe that they would have gone on hurting each other in the name of having the other's welfare in mind if things hadn't come to a head.

I enjoyed watching Kasumi and Kyousuke work through the issues that were holding them apart from each other to finally get to the point where they chose to be together even though being together scared both of them. It was sweet and just the kind of story I needed when I picked it up.
While I really enjoyed this, I did have one issue with it. I felt that it ended too soon after they got together. I needed to see more of them being a couple. What we saw was adorable and heartwarming, but didn't feel like enough of a payout after all the angst in the lead up to them ending up together. I really feel like this would have been a five star read for me if it had had twenty more pages of them being in a relationship after they finally got their act together.

Overall, this manga was a delightfully emotional read that provided a nice break from the current reality. I'd would recommend giving it a try.

*ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley

  3.5 / 5 Stars

Recommended for fans of:
Our Dining Table by Mori Orita

Book #56- BFF's House (Sun Pack)- Read a Friends-to-Lovers Romance

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