Happy November! I always think of this month as a good one for hunkering down and getting cozy. Now is a good time to hang twinkle lights above your reading nook, stock up on candles, have a good supply of warm beverages in the pantry, and pull out your thickest socks. Soon the rush of the holidays will be upon us, but until then, grab some great books and get cozy! This month has seen some wildly fluctuating release dates thanks to the supply chain issues, so the releases are accurate as of writing this on November 1. I think we can rely on some of the bigger releases to hold steady at this point — Gilded by Marissa Meyer, Believe Me by Tahereh Mafi, and You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen McManus being three notable ones — but for everything else, keep an eye on it and be patient if there are any delays! Everyone is trying their best!
Into the Bloodred Woods by Martha Brockenbrough
In this fantasy novel that turns many fairytale tropes on their head, Ursula’s father left his kingdom to her and her brother Albrecht, so they could each have a half to rule. But Albrecht doesn’t believe that Ursula has the right to rule as a girl and a werebear, so he invades her land and seizes control. Now Ursula is building her army, and she intends to take back her land, and Albrecht’s too — because a man like him shouldn’t be the king of anything.
You can Go Your Own Way by Eric Smith
For Adam, the old pinball arcade is the only place he feels close to his dad. Unfortunately for him, gentrification and the rise of online gaming cafes are threatening his space. Whitney’s life is a mess, but at least she has a job doing social media for her dad’s tech gaming company. When she finds herself trading barbs with a local pinball arcade account, she’s intrigued. Then, a terrible storm forces Adam and Whitney to spend the night in the old arcade together, and they’re forced to see beyond social media to who each other really is.
Margot Mertz Takes It Down by Carrie McCrossan and Ian McWethy
Margot Mertz has had to get creative since her parents lost her college fund, which leads her to the unconventional job of scrubbing embarrassing information her peers don’t want on the internet. But when someone hires her to take down some leaked nudes, Margot stumbles upon a vicious revenge porn site targeting the girls at her high school, and it ignites a righteous anger in her. She’s determined to do whatever it takes to get that website off the internet and get justice for its victims…but she’ll have to go to some dark places to accomplish this mission.
Year of the Reaper by Makiia Lucier
Lord Cassia used to be an engineer’s apprentice who was on a special mission, but then a horrible plague struck the land and he was imprisoned by the enemy for years as sickness raged. Now, Cass wants to just return home…but finds his castle has become the new home for the royals and their entourage. And when an assassin strikes, Cass is tasked with tracking down the killer, which leads him to an alliance with a historian as they rush to uncover a conspiracy that could shake the kingdom to its core.
You’ve Reached Sam by Dustin Thao
Julie is excited about her future: She’s going to go off to college with her boyfriend Sam, finally spend a summer in Japan, and discover an exciting future. Then, Sam dies and Julie is left bereft. One day, desperate to hear his voice one more time, she calls his phone to listen to his voice mail message…and Sam picks up, giving Julie a second chance to say goodbye. But also, giving her hope for the future.
A Rush of Wings by Laura Weymouth
In this “The Six Swans” retelling, Rowena has magic but her mother refuses to teach her the craft. When her mother dies, Rowena feels like she’s all alone in the world, but then a storm seems to bring her mother back, along with a handsome stranger. But Rowena finds that her mother is not the same, and when she turns Rowena’s brothers and the handsome stranger into swans and takes away Rowena’s voice, Rowena must travel far to awaken her magic and learn how to use it, on her own terms.
Starling by Isabel Strychacz
Sisters Delta and Bree live in the town of Darling, where things aren’t always as they seem and they’re always on the hunt for the strange and spectacular. But the most spectacular thing to happen to them by far is Starling, a boy who falls into the woods behind their farmhouse. As they welcome him into their lives, they’re about to find that not everyone is as comfortable with the unknown as them, and that the people of Darling will turn on Starling — and them — when fear takes hold.
Snake Falls to Earth by Darcie Little Badger
Nina is a Lipan girl who believes in otherworldly forces and the unknown beyond her world. Oli is a cottonmouth kid, and he lives in another world, where he’s an outcast and has found a new place to call home and try and survive. But when catastrophes befall Nina and Oli’s worlds, they’ll find their paths colliding. Except there’s someone who will go to great lengths to keep them apart. This book has already made the National Book Award longlist!
When We Were Them by Laura Taylor Namey
Willa, Luz, and Britton share a fierce friendship that Willa thought was unbreakable, but now as she’s staring down graduation day alone, without her friends, she must confront a box of mementos that remind her of her friendship, the times they were there for on another…and the times when perhaps they leaned too heavily on their friendship. And then Willa must confront the scariest question of all: Who is she without her friends?
Passport by Sophia Glock
In this graphic memoir, Sophia tells her story of growing up an American girl in assorted Central American cities with parents who were always a little distant. When she was a teenager, she learned the truth: Her parents worked for the CIA. Both shocked and not by this revelation, it kickstarted a coming of age process that had her confronting her identity, desires, her feelings for other girls, and most of all, how she envisioned her own future.
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