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Most Anticipated: May 2018

May is going to be SUCH an excellent month for book releases. There are a few I've read already and some I'm DYING for. Let's get into it!

Dating Disasters of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager
I really, really love when books can incorporate social media and online life into their stories. This sounds adorable and fun on top of it too.

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas
Whatever. I'm trash and I know it. Christmassy fan-fic! Who doesn't want that?

Out of the Blue by Sophie Cameron
Gaby hyped this one up so much for me, so I'm puuuumped it's finally coming out. It's apparently bisexual as hell as well as having angels fall from the sky in some sort of weird scientific phenomenon? Idk but I can't wait to find out.

All of This is True by Lygia Day Penaflor
One of those thrillers that blurs the lines between fiction and reality. You KNOW that's what I'm here for.

Legendary by Stephanie Garber
I LOVED THIS SO MUCH. I read it a few months ago as SOON as I got the arc and I devoured it. I loved Caraval and I loved this one even more. I am so excited it's finally releasing and I can hold it in my hands.

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maureen Goo
I have to say a big draw to this book for me is the beautiful cover. I love pink covers! But also this book is set on a FOOD TRUCK. I freaking love Food Network and I'm always so excited to see characters with a love of cooking or even entering food competitions. 

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson
This is one of my most anticipated releases of the year. I have been dying for this since I heard it existed. And that cover! 10000% my aesthetic.

Furyborn by Claire Legrand
I am partway through this and I love it a lot. There is so much hype surrounding this release, I really hope the book keeps going in this positive direction! It's very unique and I love the world its set in.

What books are you looking forward to this month?

Book Review: Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

Book Title: Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
Published by: Balzer + Bray on April 24th, 2018
Genre: Contemporary
Pages: 352
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.

So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.

Okay, I'll admit it. I was so super nervous about reading this book. I wanted so much to love it as much as I loved Simon, but I was absolutely terrified that I wouldn't. Simon held such a special place in my heart and reading the synopsis of Leah on the Offbeat made me smile.

Literally two seconds after opening this book I was grinning like a madwoman. Right away, I knew this book was a sequel to Simon. Right away I had the same feelings about this book as I had about Simon. I connected with the voice almost instantly and I just love when that happens. I wasn't expecting to connect with it so quickly, but I loved that I did.

The bisexual rep in this book was A+ I absolutely loved it and definitely connected to it. So many things that Leah said about bisexuality and about being bisexual totally resonated with me and it's rare that that happens and I credit Albertalli for that. There's a scene in this book where Leah is getting mad about a guy who doesn't seem to see another girl as competition for Leah. And that hit me. Hard because bisexuality erasure does exist and anyone who thinks it doesn't is an idiot. 

It's like a person can't be bisexual. You have to be either gay/lesbian or straight. People just don't understand how bisexuality works. And bisexuality is as individual as the person who identifies as bisexual. Take me for example, I used to be more into guys than girls, but now I'd say it's 90% girls & 10% boys. I know other people who identify in a totally different way. And that's okay. It doesn't make them any less bisexual.

Leah struggles with not liking a boy as much as she thinks she should and I totally understood that too. To her, it felt like she should like this guy because he's overall a good person, but of course that's not enough. Not when she's falling for someone else. And she knows it's not fair to the guy to keep stringing him along. She does kinda string him along longer than she should have and that bugged me a bit.

Leah's affinity for calling out racism & all other kinds of discriminatory things made me grin. Especially when she calls out her so-called friend, Morgan for saying something racist about Abby. Yes, the very same Abby who I loved in Simon. Morgan tries to claim it as the truth which Leah promptly shoots down. Again, I love Leah.

Leah's relationship with her mom was really interesting to watch. I loved her mom, even when she said something like "My little prom fetus" Actually that quote made me laugh until I cried. I don't know why, I just loved it. I was worried Leah's mom's boyfriend, Wells, would be a creep, but he wasn't. He actually seemed to be a really cool guy from the little we saw of him. I did understand Leah's hesitancy on getting to know him. It had just been her & her mom for the longest time, and like a toddler, she didn't want to share her mom with anyone. Selfish, yeah probably, but my mom & I have that kind of closeness too so I was able to relate.

Overall, I liked the romance better in Simon, but I did still enjoy Leah's romance in this book. It made me smile & cheer in all the right places. I just love when a romance does that. It makes me happy. I didn't expect Leah to end up with this person, but I enjoyed the progression from friends to a couple.

Final thoughts: So good, especially the bisexual representation. Read it even if you haven't read Simon yet.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I'd Fight a Lion to Get Early

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl. 
This week I'm talking about books I'd fight a lion to get early.

Alexia's Picks
Okay, so I decided to split these up into two categories. One category is for the books that have had covers released & the second category is for books with no covers yet. FYI the abbreviation NCY stands for No Cover Yet.

1. The Cheerleaders by Kara Thomas. I was obsessed with Thomas's debut and yet I still haven't read her second release yet. I am very much looking forward to her third book. It looks amazing & right up my alley.

2. A Room Away From the Wolves by Nova Ren Suma. I am a new diehard Suma fan. I devoured two of her books in the past six months and recently bought another one of her books. I am SO excited to read what comes next from her. Plus that COVER!

3. Last Girl Lied To by L. E. Flynn. I was in love with the sex positive awesomeness that came in the form of Flynn's debut and I freaking LOVE this cover and cannot wait to read more of her words.

4. Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig 
(NCY) I will ALWAYS read Caleb's words because he knows how to pull me into a book immediately and not let me come up for air until I'm done reading it. His twisty thrillers are awesome.

5. His Hideous Heart by Dahlia Adler 
(NCY) I am a SUCKER for anything Edgar Allen Poe related. Even though I am not a huge anthology fan, I'm totally making an exception for this one. Plus several of my favorite authors are contributing to this, so YAY!

6. Sick Kids in Love by Hannah Moskowitz 
(NCY) I NEED this book. This looks EXACTLY like something I would write and I am so here for this book.

7. You Must Not Miss by Katrina Leno 
(NCY) I will read ANYTHING Leno writes. Even menus or TV schedules.

8. I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver 
(NCY) I am so stoked for this book and I have a feeling the wait is going to kill me. I need this book.

9. Starworld by Paula Garner & Audrey Coulthurst
(NCY) This is one of those books that I'd probably give up an organ for. Like a kidney or part of a lung or liver. I have a feeling I am going to LOVE this book.

10. Start Here by Trish Doller 
(NCY) I love Doller's words and I cannot wait to read more of them.

Would you fight a lion for any of these?