Blog Tour: “What They Don’t Know” by Nicole Maggi + Giveaway!

36449964I’m excited to be a part of the ~*Official Blog Tour*~ for What They Don’t Know by Nicole Maggi, out today!

When their high school teacher assigns journal entries as homework, Mellie and Lise find they have plenty to offload into their diaries.

Mellie is the daughter of the mayor, who makes it well-known that he is super conservative — plus, now he’s running for senate. Mellie’s family is in the spotlight all the time, and it becomes increasingly more urgent that she deal with her secret. She was raped. And now she’s pregnant.

Lise has always felt that she was intuitive to people’s feelings. When her grade-school friend, Mellie, starts behaving differently, Lise is the only one who notices. She’s the only one that reaches out. And to Mellie’s luck, Lise is just the friend that she needs during this difficult time in her life.

What They Don’t Know takes a good, hard look at what it is like for someone to go through the tough decision to have an abortion as an unwed teen in a conservative world. Plus, Mellie has the added trauma of her pregnancy being a result of a rape. Stories come out daily of these abuses against women (and others, too), so it’s a poignant topic.

In these political climes, with laws restricting the bodily rights of cis female, non-binary, and trans individuals, books like this will become increasingly important. Abortion is a difficult life choice to make, and Nicole Maggi explores the feelings Mellie has — the knowledge she obtains, that no one can know how this situation feels until they find themselves in it. The decision to control one’s own body, to be free to make their own choice.

🌟🌟🌟🌟

Buy the book here.

You can also click here to enter to win a copy in this giveaway sponsored by Sourcebooks Fire!

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“Sadie” by Courtney Summers

IMG_0235It’s no secret to those who know me — I love a good mystery. I enjoy true crime books, shows, and podcasts (My Favorite Murder 😍), not to mention mystery books and detective stories, be they true or fiction.

So at BookExpo in May, when I heard about a YA mystery called Sadie, I was all in.

The story follows two threads:

The first thread is Sadie’s story, in which she vows to avenge her younger sister Mattie’s unsolved murder. Growing up in a trailer park with an addict mother, Sadie was neglected early in life. When Mattie was born, Sadie took over the role of mother, promising herself that Mattie would have a loving childhood to look back on.

The second thread follows a podcast called The Girls that reminded me of Serial and Up and Vanished. The host, West McCray, does his best to track down Sadie, doing research and interviewing those who knew her before, as well as those who meet Sadie on her quest for justice. Another cool thing to note: the podcast is actually real — it’s called The Girls: Find Sadie (find it anywhere you listen to podcasts). It follows the first several “podcast chapters” in Sadie, and man, is it chilling and well-done.

Sadie is equal parts thrilling, tragic, fascinating, and horrifying. There’s a murder, all kinds of abuse, road trips, new friends, new enemies, and ultimately, a mystery that you won’t be able to put down.

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Buy the book here.
Listen to the podcast on Apple here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

I HAD to have it…but why haven’t I read it yet?

If you’re anything like me, you have a lot of books you are anticipating the release date of, all the time. I am always excited for something big coming out, and most times I’ll have them pre-ordered to guarantee release date delivery and to take advantage of any pre-order incentives!

Yet, I find myself looking at my shelf, wondering why all of these highly-anticipated books remain unread! I have a feeling that it may be something of a worry that the book won’t live up to my hype-levels. Plus, there’s just so many AMAZING books coming out all of the time. LIKE SLOW DOWN Y’ALL, there are only so many hours in the day!

So here are the books that have been sitting neglected on my TBR pile, waiting to be read. If you’ve read any of them and liked them, please YELL at me in the comments to get on it!

  1. Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff
  2. Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  3. City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty
  4. Look Alive Out There by Sloane Crosley
  5. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
  6. Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
  7. Long May She Reign by Rhiannon Thomas
  8. This Savage Song *and* Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab
  9. Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
  10. Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu
  11. A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess
  12. Sourdough by Robin Sloan
  13. Armada by Ernest Cline
  14. Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
  15. Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst
  16. The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
  17. Saga Vol. 8 by Brian K. Vaughan

Now having looked at these…many of them are sequels or in a series! I hate having to try to remember a year ago and what happened in a book to read the newest installation! Sometimes I’ll even wait for more than one to come out so I don’t have to do that!

So what do you think? Are you shunning me yet? Which of these do I NEED to read, and which should I just skip?

“I Stop Somewhere” by T.E. Carter

29751533._UY1678_SS1678_(Content Warning: murder, rape, sexual assault)

New Release Tuesday! I Stop Somewhere is a very emotional, sad, and gripping book. In the vein of novels like The Lovely Bones, we follow Ellie as she watches her murderer from the afterlife as a ghost of sorts. Where it differs, is that this book alternates between the past leading up to Ellie’s murder, and the present as she watches girl after girl be assaulted just like her, unable to do anything to help.

Finally, one of the victims speaks up. It isn’t easy, as the two assailants are the sons of the most powerful man in town, the one buying up all the foreclosed houses and remodeling them to keep the town from shriveling up and dying. Ellie watches as the girls struggle with the repercussions of their attacks, the boys scramble to save themselves from prison, and the police struggle to solve Ellie’s now long-cold case.

This book is very graphic, but it is also very addictive. I flew through it, pausing to reflect on how sad the story was, getting pissed at the bad guys, and wishing I didn’t have to do real life things instead of reading.

Here is an excerpt of the Walt Whitman poem “Song of Myself” that the title was taken from:

I depart as air—I shake my white locks at the runaway sun;
I effuse my flesh in eddies, and drift it in lacy jags.

I bequeathe myself to the dirt, to grow from the grass I love;
If you want me again, look for me under your boot-soles.

You will hardly know who I am, or what I mean;
But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
And filter and fibre your blood.

Failing to fetch me at first, keep encouraged;
Missing me one place, search another;
I stop somewhere, waiting for you.

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“The Stranger Beside Me” by Ann Rule

1262745The Stranger Beside Me was originally published in 1980, and it had a 20th anniversary edition that came out in 2000. It’s been on my to-read shelf for…… longer than I care to admit.

Ann Rule, as you may know, is an acclaimed true crime author known for many of her works. Back in the 80’s, there was a suspected serial killer sexually assaulting and bludgeoning young women to death. The case was in full swing when Rule’s publisher asked her to follow the story and write a book about it.

A short time before this, Ann had done some work for a suicide hotline to honor her brother’s memory (he had committed suicide many years before). She became close to another volunteer there named Ted Bundy. Bundy was kind of a charmer, and Rule felt almost sisterly love for him, giving him rides and attending events together.

As Ann followed the serial killer case, she began to hear things that brought Ted to mind. But no, nice Ted that she worked with would never do something that horrible! Eventually, Ted was caught and sentenced to death by electrocution. Rule continued to communicate with Ted, even with him knowing she was writing this book, up until when he was executed.

Doesn’t that sound like an amazing, unbelievable story? In case you didn’t catch it, this is a T R U E  S T O R Y. You could not make this stuff up.

This is a very solid read, even with its age. If you like serial killers and well-researched procedural and mystery books, you should definitely put this on your list.

🌟🌟🌟🌟

Buy the book here.

Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman (Arc of a Scythe, Book 2)

33555224I read an ARC of Scythe by Neal Shusterman last year, and it absolutely blew my mind. It is on my list of top favorites of all time. Check out my gushy ramblings about book 1 here. Obviously if you haven’t read Scythe, you will not understand all the spoilers for book 1 below. Come back after you’ve read Scythe and you’ll thank me!

Just as a refresher, when we left off last time, Citra had just been named the newest Scythe in Mid-Merica. Her first task was to glean Rowan, but due to her brilliance, he got away.

Enter Thunderhead, the second book in the trilogy. The Thunderhead is the all-knowing being that controls and regulates everything on earth, with one exception—anything dealing with the Scythedom. The main theme through the entirety of the book is whether it’s right or wrong for the Thunderhead to police the Scythedom, especially with the rise of the New Order Scythes. They love to cause pain, fear, and revel in their celebrity and immortality.

Citra has continued her fellowship with Scythe Curie, now as her new identity: the Honorable Scythe Anastasia. They continue to glean as they are required, and always ensure they perform the grim duty with dignity and humility. When there’s a shake-up at the Mid-Merican conference, they are both thrown into deep political drama.

Rowan, meanwhile, is cavorting around as Scythe Lucifer, all dressed in black like the grim reaper. He has taken on the task of hunting down, gleaning, and burning the bodies of the Scythes who have gone bad. He makes one mistake, and definitely suffers the consequences.

The rest of the plot will just absolutely blow your mind. It is literally unreal and haunting. I sat catatonic for quite an embarrassing amount of time when I finished reading.

So anyway, this series is incredible and you are missing out so hard if you haven’t picked it up yet. It has amazing characters, enchanting world building, puzzling moral questions, and twist after twist after twist.

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Buy the book here.
Buy Scythe (Book 1) here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“Bonfire” by Krysten Ritter

We all know the actress, Krysten Ritter, from a myriad of things: The B in Apartment 23, Gilmore Girls, Breaking Bad, Jessica Jones, etc. But in her debut novel, Bonfire, we get to know another side of her. And it is full of thrilling, scheming, curious characters.

krysten-ritter-and-bonfire

Abby heads back to her small hometown in Indiana to work a case for her environmental law firm against the big corporation in town, Optimal Plastics. She has bad memories of the town, it being where she was teased and harassed incessantly in her high school. She runs into many of her old classmates, and notices the absence of her old friend, Kaycee. When they were in high school, Kaycee and many other girls came down with a mysterious illness that caused them to seize, vomit blood, and pass out. The illness eventually passed, and Kaycee left town. But no one knows where she went.

Abby is working the case against Optimal, but she also falls back into town gossip and rumor, and tries to figure out what happened to Kaycee.

This book is like Erin Brockovich meets Gillian Flynn, with the big corporation  (think Sweetums in Parks and Rec) with their hands in everything. And I do mean everything.

★★★★

Buy the book here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.