Friends with ARCs | Bone Crier's Moon + Little Universes

pub 3/3/20 by Katherine Tegen Books
Young Adult - Fantasy
Received e-ARC from pub for review
Once I describe the premise of this book, you'll understand why I wanted to read it! Bone Criers are  a mysterious group of women who draw unique strengths from animal bones to ferry dead souls. From start to finish, this aspect of the lore, the different kinds of magic each person had as a result, and how gods and goddesses played a role in these women's mission was super interesting to me. But it was ultimately the characters themselves that failed to intrigue me. The main heroine, Ailesse, and her rite of passage is the catalyst for the story. Every Bone Crier must kill the boy she's also destined to love. Whether she does it now or later, it's inevitable. It was hard for me to connect with or even sympathize with Ailesse because she viewed this ritual (aka killing someone) rather cavalierly, which was made only more obvious by the chapters in her best friend, Sabine's, point-of-view who hated that killing was a part of their life. So when Bastien, whose father was slain by a Bone Crier and has been looking for vengeance ever since, is the boy to cross Ailesse's path on the night of her ritual -- it honestly feels like a cosmic joke. He takes her captive and you can probably guess what happens next. But because I didn't care for Ailesse due to her unwillingness to think for herself, it was even harder to buy into any sort of romance from her end. To be fair, I did like Bastien a lot and he was probably my "favorite" character of the book (which doesn't say much). But even Sabine also fell flat for me! I would've liked to see more dimension from her, which I'm guessing we'll see more in the next installment. Truth be told though, I have no intension to continue the series.

Which three animals would you pick for your bone graces and why? | I would choose a horse for their speed and strength, dolphin for their ability to swim, and an owl for their sharp sight and hearing.

pub 4/7/20 by Henry, Holt and Co
Young Adult - Contemporary
Received ARC from pub for review
This book took me by surprise in the best way possible. It's beautifully written, honest, and thought-provoking. I had a feeling I'd be in for a moving story based on the synopsis but this far exceeded my expectations. It's about two sisters, Mae and Hanna Winters, whose lives are changed by the sudden death of their parents due to a tsunami strike at the island they were vacationing at. They're forced to move to Boston from California to live with relatives and each girl struggles with the aftermath in different ways. To begin with, the girls' personalities, aspirations and insecurities couldn't be any more opposite. Demetrios does an amazing job of giving their differences equal weight and importance and never making it seem as though one may "better" than the other, even though the girls themselves may carry that fear. The death of their parents bring to light family secrets and again, each react in their own way but instead of pulling together, they're torn apart. Or rather, one would rather run while the other wants to hold on. It's this constant push and pull between the two sisters that I found heartbreaking and heartwarming. For Hannah, she's a secret poet who struggles with addiction and the choices she's made in the past. For Mae, she's an aspiring astronaut who's not sure what to do next. Both also fall in love for the first time and I have to say, I was a partial to Mae's just for how cute it was. It probably some much needed light for what is admittedly a heavy book. But don't let that scare you! Demetrios wrote something very special with this book and I was moved to years more than once by it.

Hannah likes to write acorns - thoughts that she leaves scattered in a variety of places. What sort of acorn would you share with the world? | "You're stronger than you know." I think it's really easy to doubt your own strength in a situation but I believe we're all more capable than we realize when it comes to rising to the occasion.


Collaborative feature with Alexa. We read ARCs together and post our reviews on the same date.

1 comment

  1. I find that I'm still thinking about Little Universes months later. There's something really special about the way Demetrios told the story of these two sisters, and I'm glad we were both able to share the reading experience by reading it pretty much at the same time!


with love,