While I’m absolutely an introvert, I’m also chatty as hell if you get me talking about the right things. Among the right things are these books, which I have not been giving their due diligence (PLEASE FORGIVE ME). At least Shanah @ Bionic Bookworm Blog is on top of things, and set up this week’s T5T to let these books shine!
And since I realize I don’t talk about books I’ve already read much outside of reviews and T5T posts, this is more of a “wow, maybe I should tweet about these or talk on IG about them more” sort of post!
The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon
I did actually tweet about PotOT, but MAN. I should tweet more, because this book was STUNNING. It has a f/f bodyguard/royal romance, a side character that I’m absolutely convinced is aromantic, another POV character whose bond with her dragon makes me cry because my heart is so full, and SO MANY DRAGONS. It’s basically a dream come true, and to top it off, it’s a standalone with a world that Samantha Shannon might one day revisit. I just have so many feelings and can’t possibly keep them all in, and the only reason I haven’t immediately reread this is because I don’t have time with all my upcoming ARCs being due.
Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
This is another one I suppose I’ve talked about relatively often, but Truly Devious is the fun, riddle-packed mystery of my heart! It’s got some modern-day Agatha Christie vibes, it’s the start of a trilogy, and there is MURDER. Plus, it has a riddle that was solved in The Vanishing Stair, and I DIDN’T SOLVE IT CORRECTLY, which is a huge bonus. I like to be wrong when the answer is crystal clear in hindsight. It means the author has successfully fooled me without withholding the information you need to solve something, and there’s no better feeling when reading a mystery.
Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan
GoPaF just WRECKED ME last fall because it’s absolutely stunning f/f, and I love Lei and Wren so damn much. The concept of established warrior and spy falling in love with the girl who’s becoming a fighter in her own right even without yet knowing there’s a rebellion she could be a part of just…has every ounce of my attention. Then, when you add the layer of these girls feeling safe with one another juxtaposed with the horrific threat of sexual assault they have to endure from the Demon King, my heart turns into jelly. I want these girls to have their freedom. I want them to have a happy ending. I want them to see the Demon King dead once and for all so they never have to fear him again.
Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand
This book makes the list for two huge reasons: it’s f/f between two perhaps unlikely lovers, and the ace rep had me in happy tears because for the first time, I read an asexual female character who wasn’t the cool, logical stereotype. This book, above all else, made me feel incredibly seen, and I can’t forget that for a moment. I got to see myself in girls who love girls, and more importantly, I saw myself in an ace character who’s plenty smart, but has all kinds of emotion to work through, including the fear of being “broken” (horrible as it is, god, that is a real ace feeling that I have been through), and raging anger about being kept in the dark. This is a book I love for the characters above all else, though the plot is excellent too, and I’m not sure I’ve ever talked quite enough about what it means to me to have this on my shelf.
The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud
Another one I’ve talked about before, but it seems to fly under the radar enough that it’s worth talking about again! The Lockwood and Co. series is spooky and fun and spread out into five books that come to a rock solid conclusion, and I still look back fondly on reading the series for the first time. This one is the scariest of the lot (since the others dig more into the long con plot, whereas this sets up the ghostly world), and since I’m a big old chicken, it was SUPER SPOOKY.
If you are not a big chicken like me, shhh. Just let me have this. Let it be spooky for me and just know that you are a braver person than I.
But really, it’s a fun, spooky romp, and I’m thinking of rereading it soon because it gave me so much joy (and more than a few chills).
Tbh, this list could have easily stretched into a T10T, but I’m going to do us all a favor and show some restraint. That said, there are SO MANY BOOKS I still want to shout about, and if you’ve read any of these, or others you suspect should have made the cut, we should definitely talk. 👀
Also, 3/5 of these are f/f. NICE.