Down the TBR hole #8

down the TBR hole

Down the TBR Hole is a weekly meme hosted by Lia @Lost in a Story. These are the rules:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

(I’m doing a softcore version of this, and some books will end up on my “maybe” shelf!)

TBR count after the last post: 486

Current TBR count: 534

Okay so I haven’t done this meme since March 10th when life was easy so please give me a break for the fact that between then and now I’ve ended up with 48 books more in my TBR. Also I’ve actually written the core of this post back in March and I’ve had it in my drafts for months and the only thing I’m writing now is this introduction, and reading it is like a letter from naive past me and that’s kinda scary. Anyway enjoy the post and I hope I can get to posting this meme more regularly because my TBR clearly needs it!


Key:

✅ = keep
❓ = maybe
❌ = remove

 

Femme by Marshall Thornton – This is supposed to be an m/m romance with a coming out as an adult plot line, if I’m not mistaken, which is something I’d love to see. It’s also under the category “humor” on GR so it sounds like fun. ✅

Thief by Ava March – I’m generally rarely in the mood for historical romance so I guess nope ❌

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor – I’m torn about this. I’ve also just learned that it’s a novella and I generally don’t like fantasy/sci-fi novellas because I feel like there’s not enough time to understand what’s going on. ❌

The Otherlings and other stories by Anne Leinonen – Umm I’m entirely convinced that this was added by mistake because I’m rarely into short stories collections and I’m even more rarely into sci-fi ❌

Magic of Blood and Sea by Cassandra Rose Clarke – Okay I actually have a not very exciting story about this book, but basically I’ve been wanting to buy it since forever, since the book was split in two and it was called The Assassin’s Curse and the cover was so much prettier than this new one (also the books were just ? shorter ? I’d honestly much rather read two 250 pages books than a 500 one oops). It sounded so fun buT!!! I guess they had discontinued producing it before the new edition came out, but anyway I kind of forgot about it while waiting for it to come out again AND NOW I’ve read the blurb again and I can say I still 100% want to read this even though none of my friends have read it but listen, listen……..this is about pirates and assassins okay, I’m weak ✅

Senlin Ascends by Josiah Bancroft – this sounds………….boring I’m sorry ❌

Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff – I love Jay Kristoff but I think I’ve heard that there is some controversy about this book and also I kind of have a hard time reading old releases by authors I love, simply because they’re usually not up to the standards that I’ve become used to. So I think it’s an undecided nope but a nope nevertheless ❌

Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed – this sounds too sad I can’t ❌

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake – YES! I do wanna read it! The only criticism I’ve heard is that nothing happens for most part of the novel and I find that when other reviewers say that, it means I’m actually going to enjoy the novel lmao. Also everybody screams about the ending so I really wanna try it once I’m more in a fantasy mood. ✅

Sabriel by Garth Nix – I don’t really have any comment, the blurb just sounds too generic ❌


FINAL TBR COUNT: 527

Have you read any of these? Do you agree with my decisions to keep/remove them from my TBR?

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Favorite LGBTQIAP+ Books that Don’t Feature AlloCis M/M Relationships

I originally wanted to post this for T5W this week but I didn’t manage to find time for it until now. I still couldn’t pass an opportunity to talk about queer books that aren’t what most people read.

It’s perfectly okay to read a lot of m/m and I completely understand that it’s easier to get into for reasons I’m not going to talk about now because I think they deserve their own discussion post. But if you keep only reading about allocis m/m, that’s not enough. I think we’re at a point where there are so many diverse queer books that reading exclusively m/m doesn’t give you the right to claim you read diverse, or that you support the LGBT+ community. If you only support the G in the acronym you need to take a step back and realize that you’re not being a good ally.

For brevity’s sake, this was T5W’s prompt:

Favorite LGBTQ+ Books That Don’t Feature [Allo]Cis M/M Relationships.
In honor of Pride being this month, I wanted to have a topic to celebrate LGBTQ+ books. But, the book community tends to, when given the chance, lift up [allo]cis m/m pairings the most. And while those books are still important and valued, I wanted to shine the spotlight on some of those lesser known, recognized, and celebrated books. 

I took the liberty to add that [allo], which wasn’t there in the original T5W prompt, because there are books with a cis M/M relationship where one or both characters aren’t allo (meaning they’re aromantic and/or asexual) and I don’t think it’s right to erase those types of books.

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🏳️‍🌈 Not M/M:

The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie: pirate girlfriends fight sea monsters and badass female villain. Rep: f/f relationship; Chinese lesbian MC, lesbian LI

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard by Rick Riordan: PJO but diverse and with the Norse gods. Rep: m/genderfluid relationship; unlabeled, (probably) pansexual MC, Mexican genderfluid (she/he) LI

A&B by J.C. Lillis: musical competition rivals get together and deal with a viral video and watch an idol fall from her pedestal. Rep: f/f relationship; bi MC, black lesbian LI

The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed: a modern intersectional feminist manifesto & girls fighting rape culture in America. Rep: f/f relationship; Latina sapphic MC and sapphic LI

All Out: the No-Longer Secret Stories of Queer Teens Throughout the Ages by Various: it’s exactly what the title says, there’s plenty of f/f and some noncis m/m

Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden: girls fall in love in the Eighties; the book itself got censored and burned in front of schools because it’s gay. Rep: f/f relationship, lesbian MC and LI

The Pros of Cons by Allison Cherry, Lindsay Ribar and Michelle Schusterman: three girls attending different conventions become friends, plot revenges and improvise a podcast. Rep: f/nb relationship; Mexican-Irish homoflexible (=mostly likes girls) MC, enby sapphic LI

Rock and Riot by Chelsey Furedi: queer Grease with every type of sexuality (including non-allo ones) and genders. Read here!

Always Human by Ari Walkingnorth: girls in distant-future Australia fall in love and deal with life together. Rep: f/f relationship, sapphic MC and LI. Read here!

 

 

🌈 M/M but not allocis:

• The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic: morally questionable underdog team of made-up sport find their family in each other while MC is on the run from criminal family. Rep: m/m relationship feat. demisexual MC

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman: focus on fandom, academic life and platonic relationships. Rep: side m/m relationship feat. ace-spec character

Peter Darling by Austin Chant: trans Peter Pan retelling where Peter and Hook get together. Rep: m/m feat. trans MC

Syncopation by Anna Zabo: band of queer rockstars do music together. Rep: m/m feat. pansexual aromantic MC

 

 

🏳️‍🌈 M/F but one of them is queer:

Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody: proper young lady finds herself in a city of sins and magic and the only person who can help her is a street lord and con man. Rep: black bisexual MC (the guy)

The Princess Trap by Talia Hibbert: Scandinavian prince gets fake engaged to protect a woman’s life and they fall in love for real. Rep: black fat MC (she), bisexual MC (he)

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Have you read any of these? What are your favorite queer books that aren’t all about an allocis M/M romance?

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

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Blog Tour: Da Nemici ad Amanti: la Serie Completa (Enemies to Lovers #1-#4 Italian Edition) by Anyta Sunday

A special post today for those of you who read in Italian! You know how much I love Anyta Sunday, and a lot of her books get translated in other languages, including Italian (my first language, in case you didn’t know).

On June 12th she released not one, not two, not three, but FOUR books!

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Da nemici ad amanti – la serie completa di Anyta Sunday

La serie completa, Libri 1 – 4:

“Quello che non sai”

“Quello che non dici”

“Quello che non vuoi”

“Quello che non ami”

Publisher: Anyta Sunday

Release Date: June 12th, 2018 (e-book only)

Length (Print & Ebook):  1034 pages / 282000 words

Subgenre: sweet & sexy new adult gay romance, enemies to lovers

Buy here

 

Book blurb:

Ottieni quattro romanzi gay divertenti e sexy in questo set! Storie romantiche con un cuore leggero e dolce su ragazzi che si trasformano da nemici in amanti.

 

Libro 1: Quello che non sai

Shane si sente un po’ fregato. Ha appena iniziato il college e ha scoperto di dover condividere la stanza con quel bastardo di Trey.

Il ragazzo di sua sorella. Il bellissimo ragazzo di sua sorella.

Oh-oh. No, non può succedere.

Ma per quanto si sforzi, c’è qualcosa tra loro che è troppo difficile da ignorare…

 

Libro 2: Quello che non dici

A parte la sua preziosa Lamborghini, Karl Andrews non possiede niente. La fortuna non gira dalla sua parte, il denaro sta finendo e il suo sogno di diventare un cuoco professionista sembra sempre più irraggiungibile. Soprattutto quando i ristoranti non lo vogliono assumere nemmeno come cameriere. Ma non prenderà mai in considerazione di vendere l’unica cosa che possiede. Non importa quanto potrebbe guadagnarci. Non succederà mai.

Piuttosto… Piuttosto…

Piuttosto risponde a un annuncio per un lavoro come ragazza alla pari.

A parte la definizione in sé, il lavoro gli sembra buono. Dovrà cucinare un po’, pulire, niente che non possa gestire.

Davvero.

Fin quando non si reca al colloquio e scopre che l’uomo che dovrebbe assumerlo è lo stesso che ha bullizzato, deriso e terrorizzato da bambino. Ma Paul Hyte è ovviamente un uomo migliore di lui, gentile e clemente. E si fida di lui, visto che la parte principale del suo lavoro sarà prendersi cura di suo figlio.

Nonostante il perdono da parte di Paul, le cose tra loro sono incerte, ed entrambi devono riconciliarsi con il loro passato se vogliono lasciarselo alle spalle. Mentre i due uomini imparano a conoscersi, un’innegabile attrazione cresce tra loro. Ma riusciranno a forgiare il loro futuro su un passato così difficile e un presente così complicato?

 

Libro 3: Quello che non vuoi

William deve imparare a pensare prima di aprire bocca.

Dopo aver inavvertitamente svelato l’omosessualità del suo ultimo ragazzo davanti alla sua famiglia di bigotti, vuole ripartire da zero, così fugge nel posto più lontano che gli viene in mente: la Nuova Zelanda. Lì è ospite di una madre e di suo figlio, Heath, che è fin troppo sexy per essere vero.

Ma Heath e il suo amico omofobo, Rory, vogliono che William si levi di torno prima che vada tutto “in malora”, qualsiasi cosa significhi.

Sfortunatamente, a William non è bastato viaggiare fino in capo al mondo per lasciarsi alle spalle la sua boccaccia inopportuna. Sarà sufficiente per lasciarsi alle spalle la solitudine?

 

Libro 4: Quello che non ami

Rory A. Phillips è stanco di essere tormentato dai fantasmi del passato. Stanco di soffrire come un cane. Stanco di sentirsi sperduto. Ogni volta che “vede” William, il suo migliore amico, fa i bagagli e fugge via in sella alla sua moto. Esisterà un posto in cui scappare per essere libero da lui? Un posto in cui potrà imparare ad amare? Un posto da poter chiamare casa?

Dopo aver perso l’ultimo parente rimastogli, Eric Graham si trasferisce a Wellington per cominciare un nuovo lavoro e una nuova vita. È solo, se si escludono le ceneri di suo nonno che non si convince a disperdere in mare. L’unica persona che conosce in città è uno stronzo omofobo con cui preferirebbe non avere nulla a che fare, ma non fa altro che imbattersi in lui.

Rory ed Eric, entrambi soli e in lutto, cercano la maniera di andare avanti.

Forse il modo migliore è farlo insieme.

 

Excerpt #1 (from “Quello che non sai”):

Parcheggiai dall’altra parte della strada davanti a casa sua. Sapevo dove viveva perché ci avevo lasciato June un paio di volte. Mi sembrava strano essere lì senza mia sorella, però. Ma era stata lei a suggerirmi di andare lì e scoprire – e pregavo Dio che non fosse quello il caso – se lui avesse ricevuto una lettera con il mio nome.

Visto che non avevo l’aria condizionata, mi ero assicurato di tenere abbassati i finestrini. Faceva decisamente troppo caldo, e anche con la lieve brezza che entrava nell’abitacolo stavo sudando. Tenevo il volante con talmente tanta forza che i miei palmi erano caldi e scivolosi.

Assottigliai lo sguardo sulla sua casa così perfetta con le sue aiuole perfette, e poi su Trey, che stava falciando l’erba. Cazzo, mi sentivo uno stalker seduto nella mia auto a guardarlo. Ma non riuscivo a scendere. Cosa diavolo stavo pensando quando mi ero deciso ad andare lì? Lui mi aveva sentito fare coming out. E se avesse voluto picchiarmi? Davvero mi interessava scoprirlo? Diavolo, no. Ma del resto, se fosse stato il mio compagno di stanza – deglutii – avrei dovuto vivere spaventato a morte dai suoi pugni per tutto il semestre. Meglio farsi crescere subito un bel paio di palle. Questa poteva essere considerata una sorta di preparazione mentale. Avrei valutato la sua reazione e avrei capito come rapportarmi con lui al meglio prima di andare al college. Quindi avanti, cosa stai aspettando? Esci da questa cazzo di macchina.

Afferrai la maniglia e sganciai la cintura di sicurezza. Poi mi bloccai di nuovo quando Trey spense il tagliaerba. Si passò il dorso della mano sulla fronte madida di sudore e poi si passò le dita nei capelli scuri.

Si avviò verso il patio e mentre lo faceva il sole creò un piccolo miracolo giocando con la lucentezza del sudore, facendo sembrare che brillasse. Era così ingiusto. Era davvero meglio che non fosse il mio coinquilino. Insomma, sì, un figo come lui sarebbe stata un’ottima cosa, ma cacchio, datemi uno che soffre di flatulenza cronica piuttosto che un Trey così.

Lasciai andare la maniglia. Oh, merda. Ero un pappamolle. Non volevo parlargli. No. Non l’avrei fatto. June me l’avrebbe sempre potuto dire dopo. E così poi mi sarei iscritto in una palestra per arrivare al suo livello. Okay, forse solo a malapena. Ma sarebbe stato qualcosa.

Gemetti e battei la testa contro il volante. «Caaaaazzo.»

«Hai intenzione di uscire prima o poi?»

La mia testa scattò verso l’alto. Ora, in una maglietta attillata bianca, Trey stava arrivando nella mia direzione. Il suo sguardo mi penetrò e mi causò un brivido. «Mmmm.» Sì? No? Forse? Col cazzo?

Sollevò leggermente le sopracciglia, poi camminò attorno all’auto e si lasciò cadere sul sedile del passeggero.

Cercai di determinare cosa avrei fatto se avesse iniziato a prendermi a pugni. Sarei potuto scappare. Probabilmente avrei avuto forza sufficiente per spingerlo fuori dall’auto. E poi dare gas. Stavo pensando troppo? Sì, probabilmente. In fin dei conti questo tizio era il ragazzo di mia sorella. Se il suo amore per lei si avvicinava a quello che lei provava per lui, non mi avrebbe fatto poi tanto male.

«Non mi ero reso conto che mi avessi visto,» dissi infine.

«La tua auto è rossa, amico. L’ho notata.»

Che grande stalker sarei stato.

Trey prese un respiro e lo fece sibilare tra i denti. «Allora, come va?» Si appoggiò allo schienale e guardò fuori dal parabrezza. In qualche modo quel gesto calmò di parecchio i miei nervi.

Mi schiarii la gola. Dovevo partire con: Tutto okay, tu? Oppure arrivare al punto? Buffo come mia sorella fosse uscita con questo tipo per sei mesi e avessi avuto con lui solo una manciata di conversazioni. E non erano state propriamente rivelatrici. Tipo, sapevo che aveva un fratello, ed era stra-strabravo a giocare a basket, ma quelle erano parole di mia sorella.

«Mmm,» finii con uno schiocco. Con tutti i miei mmm e uhm nessuno avrebbe creduto che stavo per studiare logopedia. Lanciai un’occhiata a Trey, che mi sorprese con un sorriso. «Sai chi sarà il tuo compagno di stanza al college?» buttai fuori.

«Shane?» Il mio nome unito alla sua voce profonda… dannazione, era… sexy? Whoa! Distolsi lo sguardo, sentendo il calore salirmi alle guance. E quella da dove mi era venuta? «Saremo coinquilini,» disse lui.

About Anyta Sunday:

asSono una grande, GRANDISSIMA fan dei romance a “cottura lenta”. Amo leggere storie dove i personaggi si innamorano pian piano.

Alcune delle situazioni di cui preferisco leggere e scrivere sono: da nemici ad amanti, da amici ad amanti, ragazzi che proprio non vogliono saperne di cogliere i segnali, bisessuali, pansessuali, demisessuali, tutti (gli altri) se ne sono accorti, l’amore non ha confini.

Scrivo storie di vario genere: romance contemporanei con una buona cucchiaiata di angst, romance contemporanei spensierati e, a volte, persino storie con una spruzzata di fantasy.
Se volete saperne di più sui miei libri, visitate il mio sito: www.anytasunday.it.

Sign up for Anyta’s newsletter now and get a free EXCLUSIVE look at the first chapters in her next book, Scorpio Hates Virgo in Italian: http://anytasunday.us11.list-manage1.com/subscribe?u=9493c349bc1384654ed4cc802&id=99ff913305

www.anytasunday.it | www.facebook.com/anytasundaybooks www.twitter.com/anytasunday | www.instagram.com/anytasunday

Giveaway: 2 backlist e-copies of any Anyta Sunday book in Italian! 

Cover Reveal: Birth of Chaos (Wish Quartet #3) by Elise Kova and Lynn Larsh

Birth of Chaos Cover FINAL sm

Title: Birth of Chaos (Wish Quartet, #3)

Publication Date: June 28, 2018

Author: Elise Kova

Publisher: Silver Wing Press

Genre(s): New-Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Summary: A WISH FOR DESTRUCTION…
HAS JOSEPHINA UNRAVELING

A new wish is pushing the weary members of the Society to their breaking points. But as Jo’s complex relationship with their leader reveals dangerous truths about who she truly is, and was, her priorities quickly change. Now, she seeks to expose the enemy lurking in their midst, but it may already be too late to thwart an ancient goddess bent on stealing Jo’s power and destroying everything she loves.

Wish Quartet Three Books

Pre-Order on Amazon: http://viewbook.at/BoC

(NOTE: The book is FREE to Kindle Unlimited subscribers. Readers who don’t have a Kindle can send proof of purchase from Amazon to Elise.Kova.Author@gmail.com to get a “read anywhere” link when the book is out.)

Elise’s Website: http://elisekova.com

Lynn’s Website: https://www.lynnlarsh.com/

Release Giveaway: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/39698f6c26/?

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39695547-birth-of-chaos

May Wrap-Up

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Welcome to my May wrap-up! I don’t really know what to say about this month. I started an internship and a lot of things in my life changed. I moved a few days ago and I still haven’t brought my few physical books with me to the new place (that’s why I love ebooks). All in all I feel like I’m a mess but also like I can actually make it?? I’m trying to accept the fact that it takes me longer sometimes to do things that others get done in no time.

Anyway, in all this I read 10 books in May, which isn’t bad at all. If you’ve been long enough to have seen my March and April wrap-ups, you’ll see I’m still on my Riordan bs and I’m loving it. The audiobooks are just so much fun and I love not having to read with my eyes. Oh and if you think audiobooks don’t count you can unfollow my blog right now btw 🙂

highlights

The House of Hades (Heroes of Olympus #4) by Rick Riordan: so. much. character. development. I honestly think Riordan outdid himself here.

The Hidden Oracle (The Trials of Apollo #1) by Rick Riordan: I can’t understand how anyone could not love Apollo. Just say you hate character development. I love his disaster bisexual self more than anything, and the rep is so casual and amazing. Also, the SolAngelo scenes. And I love Meg so much. The abuse rep hit me in the gut.

Fence #6 by C.S. Pacat and Johanna the Mad: holy épée this issue. So much happened and FINALLY we got to see some more of the dynamics between Seiji and Nicholas. Also, I would die for Aiden.

A Tiny Piece of Something Greater by Jude Sierra: I loved this for the mental illness rep and the healthy relationship between the two MCs. I also think it’s a perfect example of how to write a sexy but not fetishized M/M romance.

The Pros of Cons by Allison Cherry, Lindsay Ribar and Michelle Schusterman: this was so much fun! I still haven’t written a review for it although I’m planning to, but basically it’s a book that’s a bit in the style of Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde, in that it follows not one but three cons, one of which is a fandom one. There’s three MCs and one of them is a queer girl and although the book isn’t too focused on romance, her love interest is an enby person, which is so rare to find in YA!

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🏳️‍🌈 Autoboyography by Christina Lauren: I’ve heard so much about this book, so when I saw that it was available to read for free on Riveted I knew it was the right moment to start reading it! It will be available for the whole month of June (Pride Month yay ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜). Other books available are We Are the Ants and Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and I will make sure to read the first one for sure, and maybe reread Ari&Dante too! Btw I’m not sponsored or anything (I wish), but Riveted is one of the few ways I know of reading diverse books for free and legally so I always point out if there’s books that have been on my radar!

🌈 The Princess Trap by Talia Hibbert: holy crap this book. I’m barely halfway in but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a five star. This book is. Wow. Yeah. Just. Um. Hot. The protagonists are a fat black woman and a bisexual Scandinavian Prince, and there’s a diverse surrounding cast (the MC’s sister is sapphic and disabled, one of the prince’s friends is a Muslim and possibly sapphic (?) woman). Plus who doesn’t love a fake engagement trope??

🏳️‍🌈 The Burning Maze by Rick Riordan: I love it and I’m so mad that because of work and me moving to a different house I haven’t been able to give it the attention it deserves. Apollo continues to be a true bi icon and I love that we get to see many familiar faces (from PJO and HoO). I’m also scared because I heard it’s gonna be heartbreaking 😦

 

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• I finally posted my F/F romance recs! I was so scared to write this because I feel like I have simultaneously read really famous ones (aka books everyone has already rec’d) but also not enough of the ones everyone is talking about?? But I’m so glad the post had such a good reception! ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

• I had a lot of fun doing the 20 questions book tag!

• I talked about which characters I’d want to have as family

• I ranted about how bad A Court of Frost and Starlight is. I feel made fun of by the author and the publisher. I didn’t even expect much from it, and it still managed to disappoint me more than I imagined was possible.

• One minor change I did to my blog is that I decided to start adding short descriptions in the titles of my reviews. This happened because after I posted my Come to the Rocks review I realized that no one would know it had a f/f romance unless they actually read my review. So now my titles will usually be like this: “Review: Title // small description of the book especially about the type of rep that’s in it”.

I got a Ko-fi! You definitely don’t need to do anything about it but I got it and it’s always there in my sidebar now. I might also add the link to it at the end of posts or discussions that I feel are useful or that took me long to write, but other than that you won’t see me advertise it much.

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What have you been reading in May? Found any new favorites? Are you excited for Pride Month? Are you doing anything special for it? I started two threads, one for recs and one that’s more of a general queer commentary on stuff that I’ve been feeling I should talk about but I never knew where to write! Feel free to check them out!

F/F Romance Recs

Welcome to a post I’ve been super anxious to share but I couldn’t postpone any longer, especially since Pride Month is approaching!

It’s no secret that F/F relationships are hugely under-represented, but that doesn’t mean they’re not there. What we need to do is find them, read them, recommend them as such, because it’s not enough to support authors if you’re not going to address other readers and tell them that the representation they’re looking for is right under their eyes.

Too many times I’ve read about people commenting under someone’s review or status, thanking them for stating that a specific rep is present in a book they’ve already heard about, but they didn’t know until then had it. I’ve been guilty of this (not making it clear what kind of rep is in a book) in the past and I still am sometimes, but I’m trying to do better.

Don’t get me wrong, F/F is still miles ahead if we compare it to books featuring, for example, enby/f or enby/m or enby/enby, but for some reason a lot of people tend to hide the fact that two women love each other within a book.

Anyway, this isn’t going to be a post about how deeply rooted in all of us misogyny is, so let’s move on to my recs! These are all books or graphic novels that I’ve read myself. Some of them I loved, some I liked, some I at least partly enjoyed and I felt like they deserve their place in this post. If you notice some aren’t here it’s because I either didn’t read them yet or I simply didn’t like them.

I tried to mention all the rep I could remember from each book, but as I said I didn’t always keep track of that in my past reviews and sometimes even after doing some research in other people’s reviews I still can’t find which rep is there exactly. Other times the book itself doesn’t make it explicit for whatever reason. Every book has a link to goodreads and to my review (if I’ve written one).

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Contemporary:

🌈 Annie on my Mind by Nancy Garden

This is a rather old and one of the first explicitly queer YA novel about two teenage girls falling in love with each other and it’s also one of the best-developed relationships I’ve ever had the pleasure to read about.

Rep: lesbian MC and LI

Goodreads | My review

🏳️‍🌈 A&B by J.C. Lillis

This is technically the sequel to another YA m/m novel (and you should definitely read that one too!) but it features different MCs and the characters from the first novel are also pretty important but the central plot and relationship is about two girls who are rivals at a musical competition. One thing I loved about it other than the relationship is the discussion about artistic creativity and how the two girls approach the artistic process differently. It’s also about letting go of your idols when you realize they’re not as perfect as you thought they were. Basically, I loved everything about this book, and J.C. Lillis is an incredible writer whose writing is so clever and funny you can’t not love it.

Rep: bi MC; lesbian LI

Goodreads | My review

🌈 Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

I loved the bisexual rep and the f/f relationship in it. There is one scene that didn’t sit well with me and with others, and I acknowledge that without automatically “cancelling” the book, which is something a lot of people have done when they’re not even part of the rep portrayed here. This is not the place for a discussion about all this but basically this is one of the reasons I still haven’t reviewed this book, so all I’m saying is that I loved it but be aware of the fact that Leah at some point does try to police her love interest’s sexuality and this is not called out in the book.

Rep: fat bi MC; sapphic (still figuring out a label) LI

Goodreads

🏳️‍🌈 Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

This was really fun! I don’t remember the details but I know that I loved the issues it brought up and I think the con setting was so fun to read about.

Rep: Chinese-Australian bi MC, fat&autistic MC (not the queer one but the other POV character), sapphic (bi?) LI

Goodreads | My review

🌈 The Melody of You and Me by M. Hollis

I love this author and this book made for a delightful and steamy contemporary read while also touching on important issues that new adults face (like the pressure to have your life completely figured out before you’re thirty).

Rep: pan MC; Filipino lesbian LI

Goodreads

🏳️‍🌈 The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed

This is probably one of the absolute best contemporary YA novels I’ve read. It focuses mostly on three girls but it’s so much more universal than that, and one of the three MCs is queer and she Gets The Girl in the course of the novel.

Rep: Latina sapphic MC; queer LI

Goodreads | My review

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SFF:

🌈 The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie

Pirate girlfriends fighting sea monsters, forbidden love and power dynamics. Do you honestly need me to say more?

Rep: Chinese, sapphic MC; sapphic LI

Goodreads | My review

🏳️‍🌈 Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh

I have to say the f/f relationship didn’t start as something I loved, but I grew to like it in the end. I also found the world very interesting and the fact that some of the themes in this book aren’t usually present in YA novels, as they’re really kind of dark. So definitely make sure to check the TWs before you read it because this story doesn’t pull any punches.

Rep: bi MC; sapphic LI

Goodreads | My review

🌈 The Queen of Ieflaria by Effe Calvin

The relationship was really cute and my favorite part of the book, plus there’s a lot of fun mythological creatures and a kitten.

Rep: pan-coded MC/LI

Goodreads | My review

🏳️‍🌈 Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff

This is the sequel to Nevernight and while Nevernight only hinted at Mia’s bisexuality, it is fully explored here. I will go as far as saying this was one of the best portrayals of bisexuality I’ve read so far in a fantasy novel. And the relationship itself is something I think about every day once a day at the very least. Plus, the whole book is a total mind-fuck until the very end.

Rep: bi MC; bi (?) LI

Goodreads

🌈 Moon-Bright Tides by RoAnna Sylver

This short story is about a mermaid and a witch falling in love and it features amazing worldbuilding. It’s really sweet and hopeful and the romance is very cute.

Rep: sapphic MC and LI

Goodreads | My review

🏳️‍🌈 Come to the Rocks by Christin Haws

This is yet another mermaid/human romance that I enjoyed very much, but it also deals with heavy themes: the MC is being stalked by her ex boyfriend and there’s a constant feel of danger that makes it impossible to classify this as a fluffy romance, even though the romance itself is really cute. So, if you’re in the mood to read a short f/f thriller with a happy ending, this is for you.

Rep: fat, bi MC; sapphic LI

Goodreads | My review

🌈 Perfetto (Trilogia di Lilac #1) by Alessia Esse

This is only in Italian so sorry if you can’t read in this language, but I’m pretty sure this was the first f/f story I’ve ever read and I couldn’t not include it. I also didn’t know going into it that it was going to be f/f and that’s because nobody ever talks about it (pretends to be shocked). Anyway, this trilogy is set in a dystopian world where only women survived a disease that wiped out all men. The disease was so devastating that talking about that time, talking about men and any piece of art where men are portrayed, is forbidden. Like with any good dystopian, what the protagonist believed to be the truth is slowly deconstructed throughout the trilogy. I’ve read this ages ago when I wasn’t as much of a critical reviewer as I am now, but I remember not being able to take my eyes off the page until I finished all three books (plus the novellas), and I even gave them to my best friend as a present and he loved them too.

Rep: sapphic MC and LI

Goodreads

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Historical/Retelling:

🏳️‍🌈 The Unbinding of Mary Reade by Miriam McNamara

This is weird because the book follows two romances, one taking place in the past and one in the present, and I weirdly enjoyed the past one (m/f) more because I thought it had more chemistry (until a certain point at least). I also didn’t love some of the tropes used when it comes to the relationships, and you can read more in my actual review, but the f/f romance is nevertheless probably worth checking out if the premise of the book intrigued you and if you can deal with the massive trigger warnings (that my friend Acqua helpfully listed in her review)

Rep: bi MC and LI

Goodreads | My review

🌈 All Out by Various

You all probably already know about this anthology, it’s not only f/f but eight out of seventeen stories feature an f/f romance!

Rep: ace girls, bi girls, lesbian girls, it’s kinda hard to tell sometimes because these labels weren’t used in historical contexts

Goodreads

🏳️‍🌈 Ripped Pages by M. Hollis

This Rapunzel retelling made me cry a lot in a cathartic way and I think everyone should read it.

Rep: lesbian MC, pan or bi LI, side mlm characters

Goodreads | My review

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Comics:

🌈 Princess Princess Ever After by Katie O’Neill

This was SO cute and it’s a middle grade queer fairy tale (which honestly should be enough for you to start reading it right now, especially since it’s free). Trigger warnings for abusive sister and fat-shaming.

Rep: fat lesbian (?) MC, pan (?) LI

Goodreads | Read here | My review

🏳️‍🌈 Always Human by Ari Walkingnorth

Listen, this is my favorite graphic novel ever and I love it so freaking much and also my biggest accomplishment in my >20 years on this planet has been making all the gay side of goodreads and twitter read it and fall in love with it. Just read it!!!

Rep: sapphic MC; disabled, Chilean-Australian LI

Goodreads | Read here | My review

🌈 Rock and Riot by Chelsey Furedi

This is queer and diverse Grease and it has A LOT of different reps: aro, ace, aro-ace, pan, bi, lesbian, gay, trans, genderqueer, etc etc. I was a fool for not writing down all the specific rep for all the specific characters, but it features two f/f romances and it’s literally the greatest thing on the internet.

Goodreads | Read here | My review

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Poetry:

🏳️‍🌈 Heaven or This by Topaz Winters

This is a sapphic poetry collection and I had to include it in this post. It’s really best if you read it for yourself because I don’t know how to do poetry justice, but believe me that you need to read it.

GoodreadsRead here | My review

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And there you have it! I actually can’t wait until I’ve read enough f/f romances to be able to write another rec post. If I got something wrong about the rep or anything else please feel free to comment and I will fix it.

I would also like to know your favorite book or comic with a f/f relationship, or your favorite f/f relationship in general. Basically, give me all your recs so I can add them to my TBR! 

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Lastly, this type of posts actually takes a lot of time and research to write. I do it because it’s my hobby and it’s something I love doing, and I would never expect anything in return other than moral support and recognition of my work. That said, I ended up creating a Ko-Fi account because it’s free and Why Not! So while I’ll leave the button down here and I would definitely appreciate any small contribution, I also definitely don’t want anyone to feel obligated to do anything!

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

ARC Review: The Queen Of Ieflaria by Effie Calvin // F/F romance with princesses, kittens, dragons and unicorns

I was sent this book as an advanced copy by the publisher via NetGalley for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own.  

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book review - pink

★★★.5

Short review: this was good and very gay and it had kittens, dragons and unicorns. You can stop here if that sounds like something you need in your life (and honestly, you can never have enough of all those things).

Actual review: I liked a lot of the stuff in this, and that’s also the biggest problem of this book.

Let me explain, but first let’s talk about what I liked, because as you can see from my rating I did like it.

I liked the main characters Adale and Esofi. I liked them in their differences and on their own. Their romance was sweet, slow paced and even if there was miscommunication it was almost always resolved pretty soon and easily.

The world felt well researched and thought out, and I felt like if given more page time this could become something big and epic. Unfortunately, I think this is where the book fell short: there were a lot of elements that were interesting and I would have loved to see more of, but there just wasn’t enough time to explore everything. I would have liked fewer elements but explored more deeply. One example of this is the science vs religion thing that was only briefly mentioned. The thing is, I can live with something being mentioned in passing, but the way this was shown felt like it was going to have a lot of weigh in the story, when in fact it didn’t. The same could be said about other worldbuilding elements as well as the relationships between the main characters and secondary ones.

One thing I did love about the world was how absolutely not heteronormative this was. Everyone is pan and that’s really cool, I 100% approve.

Overall, I liked it but I felt like too many things were shoved into it, with a world that was too big for 175 pages where we also had to get to know the characters and see a relationship develop.

Nevertheless, it was an enjoyable read and it’s definitely clear that the author has very good worldbuilding skills. I think with a bigger focus on fewer elements and more page time this could easily have been a five stars read.

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What are your favorite mythological creatures?