The Beast is An Animal

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: Peternelle van Arsdale
Publication Date: February 28
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Series: N/A

A girl with a secret talent must save her village from the encroaching darkness in this haunting and deeply satisfying tale.

Alys was seven when the soul eaters came to her village.

These soul eaters, twin sisters who were abandoned by their father and slowly morphed into something not quite human, devour human souls. Alys, and all the other children, were spared—and they were sent to live in a neighboring village. There the devout people created a strict world where good and evil are as fundamental as the nursery rhymes children sing. Fear of the soul eaters—and of the Beast they believe guides them—rule village life. But the Beast is not what they think it is. And neither is Alys.

Inside, Alys feels connected to the soul eaters, and maybe even to the Beast itself. As she grows from a child to a teenager, she longs for the freedom of the forest. And she has a gift she can tell no one, for fear they will call her a witch. When disaster strikes, Alys finds herself on a journey to heal herself and her world. A journey that will take her through the darkest parts of the forest, where danger threatens her from the outside—and from within her own heart and soul. 

I love any kind of fairytale retelling, but this one – which is so divorced from the traditional Beauty and the Beast – sounds fantastic. Not to mention, it comes out just in time to read it before going to see Disney’s remake starring Emma Watson (which will be perfect!!!)

The cover is perfect for this story I think. Its very beautiful, but at the same time somewhat haunting. Its a nice break from putting a generic stock photo model in a dress on all book covers.

Long May She Reign

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: Rhiannon Thomas
Publication Date: February 21
Publisher: HarperTeen
Series: N/A

The Girl of Fire and Thorns meets The Queen of the Tearling in this thrilling fantasy standalone about one girl’s unexpected rise to power.

Freya was never meant be queen. Twenty third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne.

Freya may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don’t respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, Freya knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom – and her life.

Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can’t trust anyone. Not her advisors. Not the king’s dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her, but also wanted more power for himself.

As Freya’s enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown. 

I’m very excited about this book. Usually I don’t go for books because of something its been compared to, but The Queen of the Tearling and The Girl of Fire and Thorns are two of the best books I’ve read in the last year or so since I started paying more attention to what I was reading and blogging about it.

The synopsis itself excites me as well because of how completely absurd (and somewhat frightening it is) to consider the 23rd person in line becoming the queen. I love a book with a good political plot, following court drama from the POV of someone who seems to be an outsider.

I do really love the cover as well, its very magical and extravagant and I’m not exaggerating when I say I would be tempted to buy the book just for the cover.

Wintersong

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: S. Jae-Jones
Publication Date: February 7
Publisher: Thomas Dunne
Series: N/A

Beware the goblin men and the wares they sell.

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

This reminds me somewhat of Sun and Moon; Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George, which is that it has a girl being married off to a monstrous character and I think it will be a very different story.

I’m not ashamed to say that one of the things that drew me to this book was the cover, which is absolutely gorgeous!!

Caraval

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: Stephanie Garber
Publication Date: January 31
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Series: Caraval #1

Whatever you’ve heard about Caraval, it doesn’t compare to the reality. It’s more than just a game or a performance. It’s the closest you’ll ever find to magic in this world . . .

Welcome, welcome to Caraval―Stephanie Garber’s sweeping tale of two sisters who escape their ruthless father when they enter the dangerous intrigue of a legendary game.

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

This sounds like a fantastically different book, anything set around a carnival aka, “Caraval” sounds amazing and magical. I’m very excited to read it when it comes out.

The cover is very simple, it easily could have been something overblown and brightly colored with a circus tent on it, but what they’ve designed is unexpected but also perfectly fitting.

Ever the Hunted

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine
NaBloPoMo 2016 #2

Author: Erin Summerill
Publication Date: December 27, 2016
Publisher: Harcourt Childrens Books
Series: Book One of Clash of Kingdoms

Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer.

However, it’s not so simple.

The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force. 

I’m going to be a bit corny, and say that my initial attraction to this book is due to the cover. Theres something timelessly classy that really draws me to it. The story sounds fascinating as well, so there is more than one good reason to pick up this book.

Marian

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: Ella Lyons
Publication Date: November 3
Publisher: Harmony Ink Press

When Marian Banner moves to the glittering city of Nottingham with her father, Sir Erik the Fortunate, her entire life changes. She is no longer allowed to run about the countryside in leggings and braids, climbing fences and shooting turkeys, but is thrust into a life of dresses and jewels and dancing lessons, none of which Marian is particularly pleased about. Her dark mood changes when she meets a tiny whip of a girl called Robin Hood. Robin is fierce and brave and wants more than anything to become a knight, regardless of her gender. Together they explore the city, becoming fast friends along the way.

As time passes, their friendship changes into something bigger and scarier and far more wonderful. But then Marian’s father is killed in service to the king, and she catches the king’s eye.

Can Robin save her one more? Or will Marian discover how to save herself?

So not only is it a Robin Hood retelling (which I love, doesn’t everyone?) its a LESBIAN Robin Hood retelling.

When the Moon Was Ours

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme held by Breaking the Spine

Author: Anna-Marie McLemore
Publication Date: October 4
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town. But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

Atmospheric, dynamic, and packed with gorgeous prose, When the Moon was Ours is another winner from this talented author.

Gay witches. Do I need to say more?