The Last Time We Were Us, by Leah Konen

26116496Liz Grant is preparing for the perfect summer. Things are finally supposed to be easy. She’s friends with a new popular crowd. She’s about to become the girlfriend of the richest and most handsome boy in her small North Carolina town. Her sister’s getting married. But then Jason Sullivan gets released from juvie early. They were best friends as children. He ditched her in middle school, then got arrested for attacking and disfiguring the older brother of Liz’s new beau. Liz has never known what to believe about Jason’s arrest, but the rest of the town and her own family have no such qualms. With lots and lots and lots of romance (which obviously is my favorite), this story shows Liz struggling between what she believes to be true and what everyone around her wants.

I was drawn to the book because of the premise, I was totally hooked because of the fantastic feminist undertones woven in and out of the story. Also, of course, the smoochy, swoony scenes didn’t make me like it any less.  Continue reading

Ten Longest Books I’ve Read

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These days, I love a short book. There is something so fun about sitting down and reading a book in one sitting. Although I will definitely make exceptions. Here are the ten longest books I’ve ever read. They range from War and Peace (which I read when I was an annoying sixteen-year-old pretty much just to say that I’d read it) to one of the more scandalous romance sagas I’ve ever encountered – with a nice dose of George R.R. Martin on the list as well. What is the longest book you’ve read? Do you like long books or short books better? Let me know in the comments! Continue reading

Four Good Things

  1. I’ve been struggling with writing and revising and productivity, but this week I made a calendar for how much I want to write every week for the next six weeks. It’s already making me more accountable. I really, really want to get this draft done this summer (hopefully ready for beta readers by the end of July!). If this doesn’t work, I’m going to have to go back to the Trump plan that worked so well during thesis semester.
  2. Reading’s been a bit slower this week, but I did finally read The Last Star, by Rick Yancey. I’m not sure I entirely understood the mechanics of how the story ended (the science went right over my head) but I was happy to finish this amazing series.
  3. This week was my first week as a lead instructor at my job. I taught a fiction workshop to nine and ten year olds in the morning. Their stories were all so so amazing. I want to have that much imagination!
  4. In a few hours, I’m heading to the airport to go see my sister in LA. I’m unbelievably excited for sister chats, sister cuddling, sister massages, and maybe even a sister camping trip.

Hope your week has been full of good things too!

You Know Me Well, by Nina LaCour & David Levithan

27158835Last week, I was lucky enough to sit on a hard wooden bench on the lower level of McNally Jackson Books and hear David Levithan and Nina LaCour read from their new book You Know Me Well. David Levithan has long been one of my favorite authors and I’m totally obsessed with Nina LaCour’s novel, Everything Leads to You, so I’ve been looking forward to this book pretty much since it was announced. Still, despite this excitement the mood was somber. To be discussing LGBT YA fiction just days after the Orlando shooting felt hard, appropriate but hard. With readings that ranged from full of grief to full of pride and hope – I knew I’d start reading this book right away. Despite my high expectations, it did not disappoint. Like many Levithan collaborations the story takes place within a fixed amount of time. This time a week, the week leading up to San Francisco’s Pride Parade no less. Continue reading

Top Ten Favorite 2016 Releases So Far This Year

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How is the year almost half over? Last week, I wrote about ten books I’m looking forward to being released in the next six months. Today, I’m giving you my favorite ten books that have been released so far in 2016. Which of these have you read so far? What 2016 releases have I missed? Let me know in comments! Continue reading

Five Good Things

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Sorry for dropping my blogging hat for the week. It was a big one (hence the lack of blogging), with lots of good things.

  1. I started a new job! I was just in training this week, but I’m teaching creative writing to nine and ten year olds. It’s definitely weird to be in a classroom again, and having to get up early and take a crowded subway all the way across town isn’t the most fun. But the kids are so imaginative and focused. It was a really great first week and tomorrow I’ll be the lead teacher for a new class.
  2. On Tuesday, I got to see Lisa Williamson, Stephanie Perkins, Nina LaCour, and David Levithan at McNally Jackson to celebrate Nina and David’s new book You Know Me Well. I finished the book on my aforementioned subway rides and it is fantastic. And after the sadness of Orlando, it was wonderful to celebrate LGBT books.
  3. I’m also almost done with I Love Dick, by Chris Kraus. It is a very strange book that half my friends are obsessed with. It’s definitely not what I normally read, but I’m definitely enjoying it.
  4. My dad and stepmom came to visit this week. It was great to see them and also meant yummy restaurants, going to see the show She Loves Me (which was fantastic!), and visiting the New York Historical Society.
  5. I wrote another post for BookRiot!

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year

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In December, I blogged about the 2016 book releases for the first half of the year that I was most excited about. My grandfather says time flies whether you’re having fun or not. Luckily, even though the last 5 months have gone by incredibly quickly, for the most part they’ve been fun. But now it’s time to list book releases for the second half of the year. Here are some books I’m really excited to read in the upcoming months. Continue reading