Emma P's Picks

Emma "EP" Presnell is a college sophomore who is best known for getting tattoos for every book she loves and non-stop talking about her hyperfixations. She specializes in Young Adult, LGBTQIA+ lit, Middle Grade and Romance books. You can always see what she's reading at her Bookstagram Emmas.Bookish.Things and she also runs the Carmichael's Young Adult Book Club.

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Red, White & Royal Blue: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250316776
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: St. Martin's Griffin - May 14th, 2019

This is my favorite book in the world! Of all time! "Red, White & Royal Blue" is about the First Son of the United States, Alex, and the Prince of Wales, Henry, having to stage a fake friendship for the public appearance of their respective countries. Though they start as rivals, the two quicky realize they have more in common and if you know about anything fake relationships in books, I'm sure you can imagine where this is going. This book is full of heart and tackles themes like sexuality (featuring a 10 page bisexual crisis), family, status and growing into your own person beautifully while also having hilarious pop culture references and snarky jabs. I've read this book more times than I can count and always find something new and beautiful about it along the way. It's the perfect read and an absolute must you should add to your list.


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The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue (Montague Siblings #1) Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9780062382818
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - September 4th, 2018

This is the first book in quite possibly my favorite trilogy ever. "The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue" is about 3 teens in 1700s Europe who embark on a coming of age tour that turns into a chase through the continent, through the sea and underground. Not only does this book work perfectly as an adventure book, but it has amazing commentary on important issues from a 1700s lens such as sexuality, gender, education and mental health. On top of that, it's a trilogy AND has a novella! With a relatable cast of characters this trilogy just keeps on giving and will leave readers with a smile on their face. It's an absolute delight.


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I Kissed Shara Wheeler: A Novel Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781250244451
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Wednesday Books - May 3rd, 2022

Everybody get ready because Casey is back at it with another amazing book and this time, they're making their YA debut! "I Kissed Shara Wheeler" is a thrilling story about the school's it-girl Shara Wheeler who disappears after prom and after having kissed three people: her boyfriend, the stoner next door, and Chloe Green. After leaving a trail of pink notecards around for each of these three people, they must team up to find out where Shara went and why she disappeared in the first place. It's a thrilling debut and a lot of fun, with no character lacking and an exciting story for them to experience. McQuiston knocks it out of the park with this book which will surely be one of the best of the genre this year!


A Little Bit Country Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780063085657
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Balzer + Bray - June 7th, 2022

Emmett is a life long Wanda Jean fan, but Luke has grown up with a family who hates Wanda Jean. When the two start working at Wanda World, they meet and are instantly interested in one another. After some digging though, the two uncover some hidden family secrets that connect back to Wanda Jean and her rise to success. The two are tested both personally and with their families, and they must learn how to grow as people seperately and together. Brian D. Kennedy's debut YA novel is a delightful love letter to country music (especialy female country artists!) and Dolly Parton! For anybody with a soft spot for the south, this book is right up your ally and shows a promising future for Kennedy as a writer! Perfect for fans of Phil Stamper!


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The Witch King Cover Image
$11.99
ISBN: 9781335425843
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Inkyard Press - April 19th, 2022

"The Witch King" is the perfect read if you're looking for a tropey, queer, fantasy book. The story follows Wyatt, a transgender teen who is dragged back into his world of fae and witches, one that he has deliberately left behind. Bringing his best friend Briar with him, he reunites with his fiance (of an arranged marriage) and must confront the troubles he's left behind. Angsty at times and all around exciting, this book was impossible to put down and with the sequel coming out at the end of May, now is the perfect time to dive in!


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The Guncle Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780525542308
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - April 5th, 2022

If you're a fan of TJ Klune and need more of his found family wholesomeness, "The Guncle" should be your next read! "The Guncle" follows Patrick, a somewhat-faded Golden Globe winning actor, as he is forced out of his isolation to take care of his brother's kids after their mother dies of cancer. Forced to take care of the kids, Patrick works with them through their grief and learns how to take care of them. It's a beautifully written story that is at times funny, and at others, a bittersweet reflection on losing someone so important to you. If you're a fan of audiobooks, I highly recommend checking out the audiobook, as Steven Rowley himself narrates it! I flew through this book in three days and have a feeling it will be at the top of my books for the year!


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Bath Haus: A Thriller Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780593311318
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Anchor - May 24th, 2022

Coming from someone who doesn't read a lot of thriller, I can't express how wild this book was and how much I loved it. Oliver is in a hard place in his life. He's in a 5 year long relationship but isn't completely happy, but his sobriety is dependent on the relationship. In an act of rebellion, he goes to a Bath Haus to have anonymous sex, but is almost strangled to death within the establishment. What launches is an insane chain of events that is as thrilling as it is mysterious. "Bath Haus" is a gripping story about shame, want, and relationships that make up the human experience. You won't be able to put this book down!


Kiss & Tell Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780593325261
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Dial Books - March 22nd, 2022

Adib Khorram can't write a bad book and this book continues to prove that statment! "Kiss & Tell" furthers the trend of boy band YA books but makes it diverse. Hunter is in a Canadian boy band and is the only gay member of the band. After a very public breakup, he is forced to play damage control from the label to fit the role of a perfect boy band member, but it all starts to become too much. Pulled in one direction from his own self interests, one from his label, one from a cute new boy and another from his role in society, he must decide what he wants to do and where to go from there. If you liked the Darien duology you'll be sure to fall back in love with Khorram's writing!


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Saga Volume 1 (Saga (Comic Series)) Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9781607066019
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Image Comics - October 23rd, 2012

Take it from somebody who doesn't read a lot of graphic novels, Saga has been an absolute delight to read thus far! Saga follows star-crossed lovers Marko and Alana on the run with their newborn daughter (Hazel) as they are hunted down by bounty hunters and other forces. It's a wild ride that essentially drops you right into the story and explains things as the story goes on. The art style is absolutely beautiful and each volume will have you reaching for the next one. And it's the perfect time to dive into this world because it just resumed this year!


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Golden Boys Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781547607372
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Bloomsbury YA - February 8th, 2022

I. Love. Phil. Stamper. And I can't recommend him enough. Stamper's third book continues to prove his place in the YA genre as a great author who continues to grow with each book. In "Golden Boys," we follow four high school friends (Reese, Heath, Sal and Gabriel) as they spend the summer between junior and senior year in different parts of the world. As they each venture out into the world, they have time to reflect on their own lives, paths and relationships both old and new. This book will gut punch people out of college reflecting on their old friend groups and how those relationships change while growing up. "Golden Boys" is brilliant and a must read for the genre!


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Loveless Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781338751932
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Scholastic Press - March 1st, 2022

Alice Oseman's amazing novel "Loveless" has finally been published in the US and with a beautiful cover and bonus story to go with it! "Loveless" follows Georgia, a college/university freshman who loves romance, but can't find any luck for love for herself. After a horrible first kiss, she starts to wonder why nobody has ever caught her eye, and what launches is a beautiful, funny, and messy story of self discovery. Great representation and filled with fun pop culture references, this book deserves your time and education!


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All That’s Left in the World Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780063054974
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Balzer + Bray - March 8th, 2022

This YA dystopia/contemporary book is both a genre bender and a delightful (yet horrifying) story of two teens navigating the appocalypse. I had no idea what to expect going in but was absolutely delighted by Brown's debut novel. Andrew and Jamison are stuck as the last ones alive in their family, and after Andrew stumbles into Jamison's cabin in the woods, the two boys are forced to trust each other against the world with hardly any hope left. It's, at times, scary, funny and will have you flying through it. Brown is an upcoming author with a great start!


The Complete Maus: A Survivor's Tale (Pantheon Graphic Library) Cover Image
$35.00
ISBN: 9780679406419
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Pantheon - November 19th, 1996

It's been a while since I've read anything about the Holocaust, but was eager to get my hands on "Maus" once it was banned from a school in Tennessee, and can safely say this is a must read for everyone. Spiegelman cleverly tells his parents' stories of being a Jew during the rise of Hitler and their time at Auschwitz, but as cats, pigs and mice. His father's tale of resilience is honorable and heartbreaking as the cast of characters grows and shrinks, and the living conditions get stricter and harsher to deal with. It's a beautiful reflection on viewing parents as we grow up, hearing their stories and paving the way for generations to come. I can't stress how important this book is enough.


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Heartstopper #1: A Graphic Novel Cover Image
By Alice Oseman, Alice Oseman (Illustrator)
$14.99
ISBN: 9781338617436
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Graphix - May 5th, 2020

If you're looking for something that will just put a smile on your face the entire day, might I recommend "Heartstopper" by Alice Oseman. "Heartstopper" centers on Nick and Charlie, two boys who quickly become the best of friends and fall for each other in the cutest graphic novel you'll ever read. Oseman has a gorgeous art style that evolves over the course of the novel's duration and is completed with the greenish-blue color scheme that's exclusive to the US edition. Not only are Nick and Charlie main characters to fall for, but their friends all add diverse perspectives that creates easy to understand commentary on different topics including mental health and being members of the LGBTQ+ community. I can't stress how lovely this story is!


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Chef's Kiss Cover Image
By Jarrett Melendez, Danica Brine (Illustrator), Hank Jones (Colorist), Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou (Letterer)
$14.99
ISBN: 9781620109045
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Oni Press - April 12th, 2022

"Chef's Kiss" was an unexpected delight! Ben is fresh out of college with an English degree but can't land a job without some professional experience. Therefore he jumps at the first chance for a job which just so happens to be at a vegan restaurant with an adorable pig (who really runs the place) and some sweet (and attractive) chefs. Ben has to complete 3 rounds of tasks to keep his job while also balancing life with his friends and the lie he's telling to his parents about his employment status. This graphic novel is about chasing your dreams and learning how to balance your life as you get older. If you liked "House in the Cerulean Sea" this should be your next read!


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Ophelia After All Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781250797308
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Feiwel & Friends - February 8th, 2022

Racquel Marie debuts with an absolutely adorable novel. Ophelia (who is indeed names after the Shakespeare character) is obsessed with flowers and her garden and has always been called her parent's "boy crazy daughter" but as high school comes to an end, she starts to question all these different aspects of her life, including if she only likes boys. This book has so much care put into it that is evident through Marie's writing. Whether you're in high school currently going through this stage of life or reflecting on it, "Ophelia After All" is a charming book that is sure to keep readers enchanted until the end.


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Icebreaker Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781250777119
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) - January 18th, 2022

"Check Please" meets "All For the Game" in this exciting debut by A.L. Graziadei! Mickey James III is the third in line of an iconic hockey/skating family, and though it should be easy for him, he's dealing with a lot of mental issues that leave him conflicted on what he wants to do with his life. In addition, his first draft spot is threatened by another player, Jaysen Caulfield. The book is their story dealing with mental health in sports, catching feelings and what it means to be part of a team. A fast and encapsulating read, "Icebreaker" uses fun tropes to create an important narrative to learn from, with a fun team dynamic you'll fall for. If you've read "Check Please" this is the next book for you!


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Ravensong (Green Creek #2) Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781732399976
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
This book cannot be returned.
Published: R. R. Bowker - September 21st, 2019

Guys. If you've ever read TJ Klune's book and thought "wow I'd love to read more from him" look no further. The "Wolfsong" series is my favorite work from TJ Klune and it's an absolute delight to read. You may be thinking, "can a werewolf series really be that good?" and I am here to say yes. It is absolutely amazing. Each book tells the story of a different couple within a family of werewolves and the way Klune writes these characters will have you frantically reaching for the next book and will melt your heart. It's such an emotional series with consequences for the characters actions. This book continus Klune's theme of found family and is simply the best. Start this series and read these books!


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The Charm Offensive: A Novel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781982170714
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Atria Books - September 7th, 2021

I'm so excited for this book to come out! In this Bachelor parody, anti-social tech genius Charlie is the prince charming looking for his bride to be, but he's having trouble being intimate with any of the girls. Dev, whose been working on the show for 6 years, is obsessed with the fairy tale romances that come from the show. Dev works on Charlie to shape him into the prince charming the show needs him to be, but what happens when the person Charlie falls for isn't one of the contestants? What ensues is a fun and wild ride between the two. This book is fun and such an easy read to lose yourself in--a must have this fall!


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Under the Whispering Door Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781250217349
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Tor Books - September 21st, 2021

Although I highly recommend this book, it needs a warning that it is heavy and will make you cry. I'm not sure I trust you if you don't cry during this. Wallace spends his life only worried about working and making money, and when he dies unexpectedly, he has nobody show up to celebrate his life well lived. When a reeper takes him to a cozy tea shop in the middle of the woods and he is forced to confront a life of relaxation and slows down to realize he wasn't happy with his life. It's a beautiful way to imagine the afterlife and a heavy, yet encapsulating book on how we live our lives. I loved it from beginning to end and recommend it to anyone who loved Klune's writing and/or is looking for a deep read that will make you wonder about the balance of life and death.


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Be Dazzled Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781492682691
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Sourcebooks Fire - January 5th, 2021

Both of Ryan La Sala's books are absolute joys, but "Be Dazzled" takes the cake. The story flips between the past and present as Raffy and Luca grow from a young couple in love to hardly speaking. All of this takes place with the backdrop of cosplay and conventions which makes this book so unique. Raffy and Luca have a genuinely interesting story that had me swooning and hoping the best for them, while also breaking knowing their destined ending. This book shines like it's covered in turquoise sequins and will have you flying through it to see if there's anything left for this lovely pair.


Never Been Kissed (Boy Meets Boy) Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781728250588
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Sourcebooks Casablanca - May 3rd, 2022

If you're looking for some good queer representation (including some demisexual rep!) "Never Been Kissed" is a fun, sweet read to kick off the summer. Wren has (as the title says) never been kissed, and he's saving this moment for someone special. He's come close though, and has had many almost kisses, experiences he's written about, and one night he drunkingly sends out these emails to all of his past crushes. The next day, he hears from one of them, his old crush Derick and is desperate to stay away from him. Luck is not on Wren's side though, as Derick is recruited to work at the drive-in theater that he works at. A fun story about second chances, nostalgia and learning about yourself, "Never Been Kissed" is an easy and sweet debut novel that will have you rooting for them until the end.


As Far As You'll Take Me Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9781547608645
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Bloomsbury YA - March 29th, 2022

Phil's second novel has a beautiful new paperback cover which is the best opportunity to launch into it! Stamper's sophomore novel is an amazing follow-up from his first novel that talks about travel, growing into maturity and figuring yourself out along the way. For anybody who feels like they're finding themselves and needs to ust jump in and do something crazy, this is the book for you! After this, follow it up with "Golden Boys" and keep the ball rolling! Stamper only gets better the further in you get!


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Lore Olympus: Volume One Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780593160299
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Random House Worlds - November 2nd, 2021

Persephone and Hades retellings seem to be very overdone at this point, but I stumbled across "Lore Olympus" and found one definitely worth the hype. Rachel Smythe's beautiful art tells the story of modern Greek Gods as they navigate the beginnngs of Hades and Persephone's story. Persephone is a young 19 year old who is learning how to navigate college and being on her own, and Hades (who is to die for!!) is lonely in the underworld but finally has a chance at something with her. It's one you won't want to end and is a great gift for a friend this holiday season!


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Winter's Orbit Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9781250758835
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Tor Books - February 2nd, 2021

An arranged marriage book set in outer space between two people who don't know anything about each other but must work against all odds to come together? You had me at the first three words. Kiem is the least favorite grand-son of the Emperor. Deemed useless, he is set to be married off to Jainan to keep help with singing a treaty. After the two wed it's clear this will be a wedding of convenience, but when rumors start to pop up that Jainan's ex-husband (Taam) may have been murdered and that he was comitting crimes on Taam's main project, they realize they're going to need each other more than they know. Dspite being a slow burn, I absolutely loved this book. It's heartwarming and a beautiful tale about falling for someone and learning to move on from past trauma. Each of these characters grow so much from where they start which makes a book you'll remember for weeks to come.


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The Inheritance Games Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780759555402
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - July 27th, 2021

I picked this book up completely on a whim but it was quite a fun read! Avery is living her normal life when she is suddenly summoned to the will hearing of a famous billionare who has recently passed away. At the hearing, she finds he has cut off his family and has left almost all of his inheritance to Avery, but she has no idea how he knows who she is. Furthermore, in order for her to keep the inheritance she must live in the manor with the Hawthorne family. What launches is a story of twists and puzzles as Avery struggles with her newfound fame and the confusing, angry family she must deal with. The first in a trilogy, this is great for any young readers interested in YA. If you loved "Knives Out" this was a good read!


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The Nobleman's Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks (Montague Siblings #3) Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780062916013
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - November 16th, 2021

Do yourself a favor and get started on "The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue" so you can read this outstanding finale to the trilogy. In the third and final installment of the "Montague trilogy" by Mackenzi Lee, the Montague baby from the first one (little goblin/Adrian) is engaged and ready to take over his father's estate but after his mother myseriously dies and leaves behind a spy glass she never removed, he goes hunting for answers and finds a lot more than he could have anticipated. This story revisits every part of the first two books you loved and has familiar face after familiar face. It's one of the best endings you could ask for in a trilogy and, if you love these characters as much as I do, will leave you in tears.


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Radio Silence Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062335715
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: HarperTeen - March 28th, 2017

While we're talking about Alice Oseman, they have some amazing novels such as this one, "Radio Silence"! RS follows Aled (yes the one from Heartstopper!) and a new character, Frances, as they become friends. Aled is the creator of a podcast called "Universe City" and Frances, who just so happens to be a fan of the podcast, finds out Aled's identity as the creator which launches them together. "Radio Silence" is an amazing look at mental health and friendship in high school/college.


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Taylor Swift: In Her Own Words (In Their Own Words) Cover Image
$12.95
ISBN: 9781572842786
Availability: Not currently on our shelves, but available to order (usually within a few days)
Published: Agate B2 - September 17th, 2019

This is really a recommendation on this cute series but the "In Their Own Words" series is great! I am a huge Taylor Swift fan so this was a really fun gift I received. The series focuses on one person per book and is just a series of quotes from that person about their life. There's some on politicians and others about stars like Taylor and Dolly Parton. It's a great gift if you're scramming last minute, or a fun insight into some of your favorite icons.


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