As someone who has a book blog, is on bookstagram, and has a BookTube channel, I am bombarded with book recommendations every day and it can be difficult to track who I get my recommendations from! I thought it would be fun to write down every time I find a book I am interested in and share who shared it.
Spear by Nicola Griffith (Sarah @ Bright and Bookish)
The girl knows she has a destiny before she even knows her name. She grows up in the wild, in a cave with her mother, but visions of a faraway lake come to her on the spring breeze, and when she hears a traveler speak of Artos, king of Caer Leon, she knows that her future lies at his court.
And so, brimming with magic and eager to test her strength, she breaks her covenant with her mother and, with a broken hunting spear and mended armour, rides on a bony gelding to Caer Leon. On her adventures she will meet great knights and steal the hearts of beautiful women. She will fight warriors and sorcerers. And she will find her love, and the lake, and her fate.
Sarah is quickly becoming one of my go-to recommendation sources! I think we have similar tastes when it comes to fantasy, which is amazing because I am learning that I am a bigger fan of fantasy than I ever thought I was. Sarah has also become a friend through BookTube and I have plans to start a book club with them and a few other booktubers in the near future, so look out for that! Spear is a novella, which is perfect, and it is an Arthurian retelling. It is also from Tor, one of my favourite publishers! I have the audiobook downloaded from Scribd, so I will hopefully get to it soon.
Just by Looking at Him by Ryan O’Connell (Nehrlisa @herstacks)
Elliott appears to be living the dream as a successful TV writer with a doting boyfriend. But behind his Instagram filter of a life, he’s grappling with an intensifying alcohol addiction, he can’t seem to stop cheating on his boyfriend with various sex workers, and his cerebral palsy is making him feel like gay Shrek.
After falling down a rabbit hole of sex, drinking, and Hollywood backstabbing, Elliott decides to limp his way towards redemption. But facing your demons is easier said than done.
Candid, biting, and refreshingly real, Just by Looking at Him is an incisive commentary on gay life, a heart-centered, laugh-out-loud exploration of self, and a rare insight into life as a person with disabilities.
Nehrlisa’s Instagram account is one of my absolute favourites and I am kind of in love with her New York apartment. I was intrigued by the cover of Just By Looking at Him when Nehrlisa posted about it but I was really sold when she described it as hilarious and witty while also having depth. It turns out that it is one of the June ALCs from Libro.fm, so I will definitely be listening to it soon!
The Last Days of Dinosaurs by Riley Black (Josh’s Bookish Voyage)
In The Last Days of the Dinosaurs, Riley Black walks readers through what happened in the days, the years, the centuries, and the million years after the impact, tracking the sweeping disruptions that overtook this one spot, and imagining what might have been happening elsewhere on the globe. Life’s losses were sharp and deeply-felt, but the hope carried by the beings that survived sets the stage for the world as we know it now.
Picture yourself in the Cretaceous period. It’s a sunny afternoon in the Hell Creek of ancient Montana 66 million years ago. A Triceratops horridus ambles along the edge of the forest. In a matter of hours, everything here will be wiped away. Lush verdure will be replaced with fire. Tyrannosaurus rex will be toppled from their throne, along with every other species of non-avian dinosaur no matter their size, diet, or disposition. They just don’t know it yet.
The cause of this disaster was identified decades ago. An asteroid some seven miles across slammed into the Earth, leaving a geologic wound over 50 miles in diameter. In the terrible mass extinction that followed, more than half of known species vanished seemingly overnight. But this worst single day in the history of life on Earth was as critical for us as it was for the dinosaurs, as it allowed for evolutionary opportunities that were closed for the previous 100 million years.
I do not watch a lot of individual reviews on BookTube, but I will never miss one of Josh’s reviews! I have been curious about The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs by Stephen Brusatte, so it might be interesting to read that one along with The Last Days of the Dinosaurs to compare them.
City of Strife by Claudie Arseneault (Eline @aquapages)
Isandor, City of Spires.
A hundred and thirty years have passed since Arathiel last set foot in his home city. Isandor hasn’t changed—bickering merchant families still vie for power through eccentric shows of wealth—but he has. His family is long dead, a magical trap has dulled his senses, and he returns seeking a sense of belonging now long lost.
Arathiel hides in the Lower City, piecing together a new life among in a shelter dedicated to the homeless and the poor, befriending an uncommon trio: the Shelter’s rageful owner, Larryn, his dark elven friend Hasryan, and Cal the cheese-loving halfling. When Hasryan is accused of Isandor’s most infamous assassination of the last decade, what little peace Arathiel has managed to find for himself is shattered. Hasryan is innocent… he thinks. In order to save him, Arathiel may have to shatter the shreds of home he’d managed to build for himself.
Arathiel could appeal to the Dathirii—a noble elven family who knew him before he disappeared—but he would have to stop hiding, and they have battles of their own to fight. The idealistic Lord Dathirii is waging a battle of honour and justice against the cruel Myrian Empire, objecting to their slavery, their magics, and inhumane treatment of their apprentices. One he could win, if only he could convince Isandor’s rulers to stop courting Myrian’s favours for profit.
In the ripples that follow Diel’s opposition, friendships shatter and alliances crumble. Arathiel, the Dathirii, and everyone in Isandor fights to preserve their homes, even if the struggle changes them irrevocably.
Eline recently share a post with queer fantasy recommendations and City of Strife stood out to me! It is a high fantasy novel that seems to be under the radar. Apparently, it is character-driven with a focus on their relationships, which appeals to me. It is also under 400 pages, which is harder to find in high fantasy.
The Counselors by Jessica Goodman (Emily @ashortbooklover)
Sisters by choice.
That’s how Goldie and her best friends, Ava and Imogen, define their friendship, which formed years ago at Camp Alpine Lake.
This year, Goldie is back at camp as a counselor, desperate for summer to start and for Ava and Imo to arrive. With the dark secret Goldie’s been keeping, she’s more in need of their comfort than ever. When the boy who broke Goldie’s heart, turns up dead in the lake, this last summer before college is completely upended—and Goldie learns that she’s not the only person at camp who has been lying. Asking questions offers Goldie no answers, only danger and betrayals deeper than she ever imagined.
Emily posted a mini-review of The Counselors and I knew that I had to add it to my summer TBR. It looks like the perfect thriller to read by the pool! I will try any book if you tell me it is set at a summer camp.
Blue Haven by Lisa King (Erik @Breakeven Books)
Welcome to Blue Haven, the world’s most lucrative condo corporation—so exclusive that only five lucky residents live in this lush, tropical paradise, housed in a top-secret location.
Among them is twenty-five-year-old Aloe Malone, an introvert and former waitress who traded bussing tables for lengthy sleep-ins, ocean dips, Michelin-star restaurants, spectacular sunsets, and unlikely new friends—all thanks to a spurious lottery win.
That is, until Aloe discovers a journal.
Seemingly left by a past resident named Eloise whose entries are both sad and evoking, Aloe quickly suspects there’s more to Blue Haven than meets the eye.
Her suspicions are confirmed when visions arise, gruesome hallucinations she can’t understand, followed by a strange yet familiar man lurking in places he shouldn’t. Something’s wrong. Or maybe it’s all in her head. Regardless, she vows to uncover the truth.
Except someone wants to keep her quiet, and it’s the last person she ever suspected.
Erik shared Blue Haven as part of his Dessertathon TBR and it sounds so unique! The cover didn’t catch my eye and I don’t think it is anything I ever would have looked into on my own. Would you have looked at this cover and expected a SciFi!? I certainly wouldn’t!
Unlikely Match (Cait @goodeyreads)
Could the man I hate be the perfect match I need?
I’m Jules Kelly, a certified bohemian boss babe, whose hip tech company just won subsidized office space in the coolest co-working space in town. From a distance I seem poised to take over the world (or at least the travel industry), and I would be if it weren’t for two big complications:
1. A rare and seriously inconvenient disease is tanking my health by the day, and my only hope for a cure—a transplant—is moving further from my grasp.
2. A soulless database company is sharing my new office space, and its coldly gorgeous, judgmental, CEO is on a path to world dominance (at least in his mind).
Tom Davenport represents the very worst of bro culture in the start-up world. Naturally, we despise each other.
The thing is, as much as Tom’s antagonism annoys me, he has an uncanny ability to conjure up my fighting spirit and vitality at a time when my illness is robbing me of both. I’m drawn to him in ways I can’t (or would really rather not) understand.
A mysterious angel investor forces our companies to compete for a life-changing amount of money just when my relationship with Tom becomes infinitely more complicated. To make matters worse, things get cutthroat just as my time starts to run out.
In order to survive, I must decide if I can truly trust my most unlikely ally of all.
Cait shared Unlikely Match in her stories on Goodreads and it caught my eye! I love that it is described as a transplant romance. It is also free on Kindle Unlimited, which is perfect!
Who is your biggest recommendation source?