Emma "EP" Presnell is a college junior who is best known for getting tattoos and talking about her hyperfixations nonstop. She primarily reads middle grade and young adult and loves stories with queer characters, magic realism, found family, and very angry teens. You can find her making Frankfort listen to Fall Out Boy or Taylor Swift depending on the day.
This is 100% the book I didn't know I needed in my life but am so incredibly happy it exists. I grew up loving emo music and have continued to devour it well into my adult life, so when I heard there was an oral history book coming out I jumped at the opportunity to read it, and I absolutely loved it. Not only does this cover the biggest bands of the emo explosion like My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, Paramore, and more, but it does the era justice. Payne interviewed tons of members from these bands to deliver their first hand experiences of this time in pop culture history and you can tell there was lots of care and attention put into making this book. He does a great job at making this time feel personal and the interviewees feel like they're talking to you directly. This book is a raw look into the early 2000s leaving no stone unturned and is perfect for fans interested in this genre and time. Go read this!! You will not be disappointed!
I am over the moon excited (yes pun intended) to see Klune's older works getting republished with the Tor treatment! And let me tell you, if you haven't read any of Klune's works before Cerulean Sea, you are in for a game changer and culture shock. Get ready to have your heart ripped out with this angsty masterpiece of a first installment to the Wolfsong/Benett brothers series. When a family moves into the house at the end of the street and the youngest kid takes a liking to him, Ox is thrust into a world of magic and family unlike he's ever seen before. This has to be Klune's best series and you will be itching for the next ones before you know it.
This striking and gory debut is not for the faint of heart, but for those willing to venture into this wasteland are in for a phenomenal ride. "Hell Followed With Us" is an anger filled view of what would happen if the world killed almost everybody and we were left with far religious extremists as rulers. This book is nasty and angry, but oh so perfect for it. I couldn't put this book down and was mesmerized with its takes on the end of the world. Andrew Joseph White is a force to be reckoned with and I can't wait to see what he does next.
Andrew Joseph White is back again with another book full of rage, passion and blood with "The Spirit Bares Its Teeth". This title is more plot than his first one, following Silas, a trans boy in the 1800s as he is thrown into a boarding school for "young women" with purple eyes following their diagnosis of veil sickness. When he realizes there's a much darker story behind the school, he must team up with anyone willing to lend a hand and what's hiding in the dark corners is worse than you could imagine. Accompanying this story and world building is White's signature wit and anger, as well as a softer side this time to look more into the trans experience and how everyone is impacted so differently. This is not one to miss! Sophomore novels can be hard when the first is so good, but I promise this solidifies White as an author you will hear about for years to come.
Some books, graphic novels especially, feel like watching a movie. The fast paced stories leave you unable to put it down, and "Project Nought" is one of those phenomenal titles. Ren is suddenly transported to the year 2122 (from the 90s) and is thrown into a university program where he is paired with a current student to learn about the 90s. Ren is paired with Mars, a nervous energy, lovable student who can't wait to learn from Ren, but nothing is as it seems and there is a much more sinister plan beneath it all. Furedi's art is beautiful and the story takes so many turns that I quite literally read it in one sitting. This book delivers all the feels and is a title that reminds you how exciting storytelling can be. This is not one you will want to miss!
Personally, nothing makes me love a book more than when it delivers a healthy balance of humor and tear jerking sadness, and Steven Rowley seems to keep delivering on that front. By the end of "The Celebrants" I was a sobbing mess but in the best way. 5 college graduates make a pact to come together when one of them calls on the rest to host a fake funeral for said member. It's a wacky concept with even wackier tales, but in Rowley's signature bittersweet and hilarious style. This book gave me so much hope for growing up and a refreshed sense of love for the friends we make and the silly ideas we come up with. Everyone needs a serving of Rowley's writing, it's such a healing and enjoyable experience.
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.
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.
This is the book of dreams for fans of the Percy Jackson series, and it absolutely lives up to the hype. Remember when Annabeth and Percy fell into Tartarus? Imagine that but a whole book, and finally get the chance to read through the eyes of two fan favorites, Nico and Will. Rick has teamed up with beloved YA and Middle Grade author Mark Oshiro to write about the different experiences these boys have lived and it delivers such a powerful punch. Read about Nico's loneliness and fear of abandonment while also discovering Will's fear of loving somebody from the underworld. I physically could not put this book down once I started and devoured every word. This does Nico and Will's stories so much justice and is an incredibly rewarding treat to dedicated fans of the series. A must read!!!
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As an avid My Chemical Romance fan, I have been meaning to get around to this graphic novel for a while but am so happy I waited to grow as a reader and revive my "Danger Days" obsession. This graphic novel picks up years after the music videos from this album and takes you back to battery city, into the world the Killjoys were fighting against. While a little all over the place, fans of the album and band will be able to spot lyrics, titles and references that pack a punch. I had the best time reading this and can't wait to revisit the world in "National Anthem!"
Molly Knox Ostertag is a delightful author, and "Dungeon Club: Roll Call" might be her best book yet. This vivid story follows two middle school girls, Jess and Olivia, as they navigate middle school, their friendship and their favorite game, Dungeons and Dragons.Xanthe Bourna's illustrations beautifully illustrate the difference between reality and their campaign and how Jess specifically clings to and learns from her character. Furthermore, Jess deals with a lot of mature feelings and fears that many age groups can relate to such as growing apart from a friend and learning to stand up for yourself and others. I simply loved this first installment and can't wait to see what's next for these characters!
I didn't grow up always listening to the Foo Fighters, but they were part of my rotation and I was eager to get my hands on this book. I can safely say that this has to be the best memoir I have ever read. Grohl is a natural storyteller and he cleverly takes readers through his life with snapshots of a crazy life lived. Not only does Grohl have fascinating stories, but he tells them in such an entertaining and meaningful way. If you love rock music, this is a must read!
This was my first time reading one of Cole's books and I cannot express how insanely I was blown away and captivated by just the first 10% of this story. Alicia is dealing with the aftermath of being sexually assaulted by a beloved teacher at her school while also having the reputation of being her school's slut. Cole beautifully illustrates the inner turmoil of being a teen trying to change and grow while the world fights her. Alicia learning to change her world view and acknowledge that she may have painted the world a little too harshly is a deeply personal storyline that made this book hit close to home. I look forward to reading Cole's work again, this is not one to be missed.
While Shakespeare retellings may be overdone and “Romeo and Juliet” is one of the most retold stories, I may have found one of the best ones in Chloe Gong’s “These Violent Delights” duology. Imagine Romeo and Juliet but it’s set in 1920s Shanghai, the two are members in rival gangs and there’s a monster on the run causing civilians to rip out their own throats. Sounds a lot more interesting, right? Gong captures Shakespeare’s style and somehow makes it feel modern at the same time which adds all the bonus points in terms of a successful retelling. Making the cast more diverse, more sensible and overall more interesting, this is not a retelling to miss! I couldn’t put them down!
I haven't read much contemporary YA fiction this year, but this is one of the few that has shined and is an exciting new addition to the YA genre. Ben has a one night stand with a friend of his which ends in her getting pregnant and asking Ben to sign adoption papers, but he is determined to keep his baby despite being 16 years old. What ensues is a challenging and heartfelt tale of a young boy being pulled in many directions, attempting to appease everyone in his life while figuring out what he wants. It's a much more serious book about family and the sacrifices we make for the ones we love, and that's why it stands out the way it does. Don't miss this release this fall!