Very important questions I have about American high schools in YA fiction as a non-American // I demand answers

Most YA contemporary fiction is set in unrealistic U.S. high schools that supposedly have horrible food and mean kids everywhere.

Like, 98% of schools are in the US, to be honest, and a lot of them are carbon copies of each other, except named after a different president or something.

Which kind of sucks because THERE ARE SO MANY OTHER COUNTRIES OKAY. (Like Canada… *cough* Or think about European countries! Or Asian countries! Australia!)

And because we’re reading about teens and all, there’s the whole issue of high school and that little thing called systemically engineered torture education!!

I know living in Canada means our high schools are not that different from US high schools, or not so different compared to other countries, but there are still several aspects that I’m not familiar with which reoccur in YA books enough to just make me wonder… does this actually happen in real life?? Maybe it’s just because I don’t live in the States?

And I know a lot of you are from the States, and a lot of you aren’t! So I thought it would be interesting to talk about perspectives on what high schools are like in fiction vs. reality!!

1. Is Phys Ed mandatory for all years of high school?

I’M SO CONFUSED ABOUT THIS. Because I keep seeing these main characters getting all worried or annoyed or frustrated about gym class and I… just don’t relate??? Not past grade 9, anyway.

I know several of my friends who did take physical education in Grade 10/11/12, but you only need ONE (1) health/phys ed credit to graduate, and I think it’s mandatory to take it in Grade 9?

Aside from that, you don’t ever have to suffer through the dreaded class again unless you choose to!!

(For the Ontario diploma, anyway.)

So why, are all these characters choosing to suffer through phys ed if they hate it so much?? Hmm??? (Okay yes, plot, but REALISM. HELLO. Where is it.) Is it mandatory in the US?

I’m just honestly so tired of seeing 17/18 year olds who, complain or face drama because of gym class when realistically, based off my experience, THEY DON’T NEED TO TAKE IT. I know it’s important to plot and such but it’s irritating! Of course, if it IS mandatory, then… whelp, I send you my condolences.

Unless you enjoy phys ed, in which case yayy for you!! But not for the fictional characters lmao.

ALSO. Is gym class usually co-ed?? Because mine wasn’t? (Usually.) Girls and guys had separate teachers, did activities and sports separately. I suppose that would strip a novel of its usual gym class drama, but just being real here.

2. Are there mean girls at every high school?

(Okay, another joke question because no, obviously.) But how common are they, hm??? Not as common as they are in books, I bet. I swear, books paint American high schools as some kind of hang out spot for girls who hate on other girls–like can you please not???

Sure, I didn’t love everyone at my school, but no one was outright mean to someone else? I’m not saying they don’t exist, but I feel like they’re overdramatized A TON in fiction. If you didn’t like someone, you just stayed away from them, plain and simple. Not blackmail them for a guy and/or try to undermine them and make sure their life is miserable… just no. Chill.

3. Do you ever have courses aside from English/Math/Science/History??

Okay, slightly sarcastic question because obviously yes. BUT I MEAN. Going by YA novels… no, you don’t.

What a sad life. (I mean, that’s school already but.)

Also why are the English teachers always the most chill ones? They’re not always? I’ve previously had and my friends have had some pretty crappy English teachers before, who are NOT super philosophical and easy going. Nope.

I am kind of curious about what courses are like in US high schools though, like obviously not that different, but what’s the day rotation like? How many do you take? Are you guys also semestered?

Why are courses just never talked about at all??

DO YOU KNOW HOW STRESSFUL CHOOSING THEM CAN BE. And you know, they can be kiiiiind of important. For college and university. Just a thought.

Maybe that’s just me and my indecisive self oops

4. How many people usually take AP classes anyway?

I think it’s slightly unrealistic great that YA contains so many smart characters who apparently don’t need to study to pass their classes, and I’m not trying to discredit anyone who takes/has taken AP (Advanced Placement) classes, but WHY is it everywhere. Just a thought. You don’t need to take AP to be smart, you know.

I low-key feel like authors just shove it in everywhere without a thought to kind of show, yeah, this character is super smart and serious about school… but then they don’t show that through anything else which makes it kind of futile?

AP is not big at all where I live, but I don’t know, there are so many books I’ve read where the main character is taking like all AP classes or whatnot. That’s great, but it makes it seem a lot more common than it might be? Perhaps? I don’t know, I’m just guessing from my own experience.

And speaking of advances classes and the like, is the IB program (International Baccalaureate) not popular at all in the States? Like, I don’t think I’ve EVER seen it in a book… but it exists in the States I’m sure, so…….

OR MAYBE… just a typical, standard high school diploma works too. You know.

5. Do people really have different hours for lunch time?

Okay, a serious question! Because I noticed sometimes characters would mention who they don’t have the same lunch period as their friend, or something similar, which kind of confused me because what is the point of that? Everyone had the same lunch time at my school??

How does that even work, and why? Does the school become too crowded? Not everyone eats in the cafeteria anyway, can’t you eat in hallways and such? I mean, I did. The cafeteria was wayyy too loud and hot and annoying lol. But we all had the same lunch period?

This sad eating alone thing also, did not generally happen, but idk, maybe I was just oblivious.

6. Is cafeteria food really that bad?

I suppose this depends from school to school no matter the country, but in 97% of the books I’ve read, the cafeteria food is supposedly disgusting, or just not appetizing and…???

OUR CAF FOOD WAS DELICIOUS, OKAY. I probably gained 10 pounds from purchasing a delicious chocolate chip cookie or muffin in the morning my first years of high school, but let’s be real, I have no regrets.

I mean, those were some GOOD COOKIES. Omg. Best $1.25 I’ve ever spent. They were super big, too!! Like a good 5-6 inches in diameter.

the return of this beautiful cookie gif omg I’ve been waiting for an excuse to use this

And we had tons of great options for lunch too! I didn’t buy my lunch that often because a) ouf that would become expensive,  b) I’m so not waiting in line for that long I’m a very impatient soul and c) *whispers* my mom packed me a lunch for a large portion of my high school years and her cooking is amazing okay.

But still, we had good food! There were large pizza slices, different pastas, sandwiches, and… POUTINE. Granted it wasn’t a very large quantity (unfortunately) BUT IT WAS SO GOOD.

Would almost go back to high school for all the food, tbh. The cookies, at the very least.

(ALSO. How daunting and scary are cafeterias, really? Books [and movies, actually] make them seem like such a feat, but… they’re really just places where noisy and slightly sweaty teens eat lunch and socialize. I totally understand how for some people that IS a feat [esp. if you have anxiety] but as a generalization, they’re not that bad; and you don’t have to eat there if you don’t want to.)

7. How do groups of friends just happen to have so many classes together?

Grade 9, sure, yeah, I had a decent amount of friends in pretty much all my classes because we had so little options in terms of courses that obviously we’d be grouped together somewhat. And we’re still meeting new people and making new friends anyway!

Grade 10, a bit less so but still not bad. Grade 11 and 12 are so much more random though? You have a lot less requirements all of a sudden and people are taking different electives and the like, which means you’re not often likely to have your group of friends all in the same class(es)?

Unfortunately most of us don’t/didn’t attend Hogwarts….

I don’t know, it depends from person to person/school to school I guess? Depending on how many classes there are for a particular subject, how many students there are, etc.

But I see in books especially large groups of bullies, for example, all in the same Math/English/typical class with the main character and aside from the fact that the bullies seem to constantly pick on the MC (which doesn’t happen? usually?) how are they all together???

I went to a pretty large school, so maybe that’s what’s influencing me but it just makes me laugh to see that happen. Because those chances are just… so slim, where I went lmao. Not to mention bullies picking on someone at all during class was just unlikely lol. Canadian genes? (Jokes, jokes… mostly. Or maybe I just hung out with good people?)

8. How long is your lunch?? 

Why does no one complain about how short lunch is?? These characters seem to fit everything in at lunch and never seem to have an issue with how fast it goes by, despite doing 10 000 things at a time.

For me it was like 45 minutes? And it went by SO FAST. Omg. It was the worst. Walking from your class to your locker/meeting up with friends; 10 minutes! Eat lunch and (GASP) occasionally socialize; 25 minutes! Even worse if you stand in line to buy lunch, have a club meeting or need to finish homework.

SIGH.

Yet here all these characters are just hiding out in the library–speaking of which!! The school library doesn’t always allow food??? What do you do then? — and/or socializing, or going outside nearby to get lunch somewhere else, without a care in the world that, oh, look, lunch is almost over crap, we gotta hurry!!

I see you, authors trying to fit in all the drama at lunch time, but it ain’t working because these students should be getting to class. 😂

9. How comfortable are your seats?

This of course depends from school to school or even class to class, but OH MY LORD SOME OF OUR SEATS WERE AWFUL. The seats were attached to the desk looking something like this:

Which meant to sit you had to make sure to be on the side without the metal bar thing attaching the desk and the chair otherwise you have to do this awkward thing where you lift your leg over the bar (which is made worse if there are people behind you, or a desk right beside you because trust me, it’s not a very flattering position).

And!! The back part of the seat usually had screws, which meant my hair would ALWAYS catch on them and djadiaehfuihfwiuhiuwef I swear it was torture. TORTURE. I lost so much hair from those chairs, I swear. (And I didn’t usually tie my hair up either because who has the time to do that also I didn’t really like to do so)

Of course there are some normal chairs out there which don’t aim to kill me, but then those desks are usually made for multiple people and then you face awkwardness if you’re assigned to a seat with people you don’t know very well or some other awkward situation….

WHY IS THIS NEVER AN ISSUE. I demand characters to suffer as I do.

10. Report cards… exams… studying… death… is that not required to succeed high school??

Sure, some people might just not study or care about exams, but then I don’t think those people also ace their exams without studying? Like, as a general rule? (If you do, that’s great! I admire your skills!)

But there are so many characters I’ve read about who just never seem to care about handing in assignments, or their marks each term and report cards, their average, or their courses, ESPECIALLY during Grade 11/12, yet are on a straight path to some Ivy League school or are in AP classes…………………

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

High school was kind of stressful okay. I have parents wanting me to have at least a 90+ average and a procrastinator-perfectionist mindset (which is an AWFUL pairing) which meant I worked really hard for my marks because they don’t always come easy!! It’s hard not to spite these fictional characters getting accepted to all their choices seemingly without have done much? How easy is high school for you Americans, hm? I demand your secrets or the lies to be revealed.

Calling all Americans to answer these high school questions!! What is/was your experience in high school? Does it match up to what you read about in books, somewhat? And if you didn’t attend/don’t attend high school in the States, what’s your experience like? Which country’s high school system would you like to read more about in books? Did anyone else have death traps painful seating arrangements or other particular high school experiences?

And I’m sincerely asking about phys ed in the US, because IT IS EVERYWHERE and my brain cannot compute (or search it up on the Internet because this way is obviously more fun).

At this point, I’d just like any schools apart from ones in the US haha no offense!! I find it’s such a shame so many books are set in the US, for so many reasons, but also particularly because of high school. It just gets so repetitive! At least make different types of high schools. Idk. Something. Because right now, there are many similar holes I see and I’m calling out these “schools”. 😂

I just realized 3 of these have to do with lunch time and I’ll just leave it up to you to determine what that says about me…

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Big and popular books I’m avoiding // Because hype + long books are scary?

In case you missed it, Big Books + Hype = EXTREME FEAR.

This is fact, okay. FACT. Decided by me, the Very Honest, Never Ever EVER Hyperbolic Queen.

So, “big” can kind of vary (because I am an unpredictable potato), but generally I’ll label anything from around 400 or mid-400 onwards as being a big book??

And okay, sure, I totally understand that fantasy books often have to be long because of how much content and world it needs to explore, but from simply a reader’s perspective, big books can be kind of a hassle. 😂

  • They take more time –> time is precious –> also more of a need for the book to be amazing because you spend so much time on it??
  • I like completing goals!! And overall succeeding!! But then in the time it takes for me to read one big book, I could’ve maybe finished 2 smaller books and that’s better for my GR challenge 😂😅
  • What if it disappoints??? Double the disappointment because it’s double the size of a normal book!!
  • I’m a lazy person
  • My logic is flawless
  • Often times the book doesn’t really even NEED to be that long (*cough* The Unexpected Everything *cough*) and so then it’s just filler which is annoying
  • THEY’RE SO HEAVY AND INTIMIDATING
  • What if they fall from my shelf and break my head
  • This is a true fear

Older hyped books

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin (848 pages)

Okay, barring the fact that there’s incest and all the characters die over and over or something tragic like that, THESE BOOKS ARE SO FREAKING BIG. Like omg I can’t even.

WHYYY are these books so big.

Not for world building or anything obviously

Am I ever going to read these? Uhhhhh.

The Host by Stephenie Meyer (620 pages)

Will I ever read this?? Hahahahah nope, probably not.

It’s just not my cup of tea??

Also it’s just wayyyyy too long PLEASE SPARE ME.

The Diviners by Libba Bray (578 pages)

I heard so much about The Diviners!! But I’m very skeptical because GOSH THAT’S LONG and I’m 99.9% sure it doesn’t need to be that long.

What a large commitment I cry

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (500 pages)

I heard of dragons!! I might read this someday! (BUT 500 pages geez)

New Books

(So I tried organizing by release date AND page count and it did not work oops. But that’s okay!!)

Lord of the Shadows by Cassandra Clare (700 pages)

I ADORE SHADOWHUNTERS.
I ADORE LADY MIDNIGHT.

I STILL HAVEN’T READ THIS BOOK.

I know, I’m insane.

But guyssss everyone says this book is amazing and there’s a cliffhanger and I’m scared okay!!! I need my children to be okay!!

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (600 pages)

Also if I read it I also have to read Gemina, which is 660 pages (!!!!) and the upcoming Obsidio which is reportedly 624 pages….

I give y’all permission to screech at me to read the series!!

And I will!

Someday!!

Maybe!!

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (536 pages)

It’s staring me down from my shelf but gosh darnit it’s long. And it’s Laini Taylor!! Which means the writing will be beautiful but also very descriptive and hard to get into at first hahahah hence me still not having read it oops.

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (525 pages)

OKAY. I KNOW I’m going to love this book!! The hype is NOT going to be wrong with this one, I just know it.

Buuuuut I still haven’t read it.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

And I Darken by Kiersten White (475 pages)

I was planning on listening to this on audiobook from Overdrive but I can’t focus as well in audiobook?? So I’m going to read the physical book and I’m so excited for Lada (is that her name) and Radu?? and all that murder and stuff…

except I’m apparently not ready enough to read it!! Surprise!!

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton (450 pages)

Okay so this is on the smaller side of the big scale, but the HYPE. Omg. So huge. And 450 pages is still a rather large commitment?? Also there’s some certain content issues I heard of that makes me avoid it a bit more but I might end up reading it?

slightly spoilery/content warning

I’m a bit more hesitant because of the “bury your gays” trope I heard about in this, but also W/POC rep is so important and I think this book is still worth reading? I’m just so saddened by the bury your gays trope because I thought we would’ve been past that? But I do want to read this and basically I’m a contradictory mess hahahah oops

What popular and/or large books have you been avoiding? Do you avoid large books? Are any of these books still on your TBR as well? What is your preferred length for a book? Which of these books must I *ABSOLUTELY* read? 

Choosing between SHINY NEW BOOKS and backlist titles // Pros and Cons + Recs you must read immediately!

I am a huge fan of backlist titles.

But I am also very easily distracted by NEW titles.

You remember that little kid who pokes things and runs off to look at every remotely new and shiny object in the store? YEAH, I’M THAT KID. (Except I’m not considered a kid anymore so it becomes slightly more of an “issue”.)

The problem becomes, although there are a ton of books I’m interested in reading that were released in past years, THERE ARE ALWAYS SO MANY NEW BOOKS I keep discovering, especially thanks to book blogging.

So now, to decide, once and for all*, I will be comparing the two in order to somehow reach a conclusion between the two options!

Plus recommendations because I like screeching about books and very kindly nudging you to read them all. :)))

Pros

  • You feel like you’re “in the know” and don’t feel as left out with everyone hyping up certain new releases!
  • THEY’RE PRETTY
  • AND SHINY
  • And more hyped and obviously you’re curious*??
  • If you write reviews, writing a review on new releases are likely to be more popular because people know about them more/are more interested in them

*even though curiosity killed the cat. Haven’t you learned, child.

Me @ new books

Cons

  • HYPED BOOKS ARE SCARY
  • Like, REALLY scary
  • New and hyped books can let you down
  • Like, a lot.
  • Also money spent
  • Like, a lot.

Pros

  • Old books deserve the love tooooooo. Don’t be so mean against the books with white hair, excuse you.
  • You can find a surprise favourite! Surprise because sometimes backlist books that aren’t talked about as much but then you realize how amazing it is?!
  • You can be Special and Stand Out and be a Rebel and not follow the status quo
  • You catch up on the 10 000 books that were released last year that everyone just forgot about the minute the new year came around (even though everyone was just as excited for those books)
  • So they were hyped!
  • So if you did want to follow the status quo, well, those books work
All the backlist books you’re supposed to be reading cause they’re on your (or the library’s) shelves…

Cons

  • If it’s from a looooonng time ago then people might not recognize or care about the book as much, which might be a factor when reviewing books
  • Not as many people care about the book, even if it was hyped before
  • Seriously, we have the attention span of a goldfish
  • Who has time for old books anyway?
  • (Yes I’m contradictory, your point is?)
  • You might read a book and LOVE IT but there’s not many new readers who share the same excited feelings?

(Not that I’ve read many of them hahahahaha oops)

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann: very very adorable read! It is super cute, but it’s also a super needed book featuring a bi-romantic (and black) main character. I loved how honest it was about it, how it delved into the struggles Alice faces while also not making it her whole identity! It was just super fun.

Iron Gold by Pierce Brown: I already talked about this one here, but basically I loved it and it’s the fourth book in the Red Rising series that you should definitely read if you like fantasy and murder!!

Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed: My review on this is coming!! I think!! Thank you so much for all your support on the issue I was facing for this book, it encouraged me so much. Overall I would definitely recommend this though!

Down and Across by Arvin Ahmadi: I related to Scott’s struggles so much! Not knowing what he wants to do in life, feeling his parents are too overprotective (but knowing/finding out they come from a good place), was so real to me! I didn’t particularly care about Fiora though.

American Panda by Gloria Chao: An #ownvoices novel ft. a Taiwanese main character and Japanese L.I! This was equally super super adorable and also kind of heavy/tension-filled when it comes to Mei’s family?! I related to her so much.

Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh: I really loved the concept of exploring grief in a fantasy world! I didn’t particularly like how long it lasted or how fast it happened, but Odessa’s emotion was really real and not to mention the necromancy and zombies things was super cool! I also loved the side characters so much.

I’d also recommend Meet Cute if you’re one for romance, but I personally had mixed thoughts? Some of the stories I liked/loved, others didn’t… but it was cute! I also didn’t love Batman by Marie Lu or Everless by Sara Holland, but you might still like them!

Newly backlisted – 2017

Does 2017 count as backlist?? I guess so, but it doesn’t feel that long ago? Oh well.

Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller: PIRATES AND BANTER. I love it. Alosa, our MC is super fierce and feisty and I loved the banter between her and Riden so much! I’m currently reading the sequel and so far it’s really good as well!

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee: Percy is the most precious soul okay, Monty is… pretty ignorant? But I felt for him and loved seeing him grow and all the action and I am super pumped for Felicity’s book!!

Warcross by Marie Lu: The MC, Emika was a huge special snowflake, but I actually really loved her!! Not to mention Warcross and the virtual reality thing they have going on in their futuristic world is AMAZING and I WANT TO GO THERE RIGHT NOW SOMEONE PLEASE HELP.

Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer: I was surprised with this one!! It explores grief, mother-child, father-child relationships and broke my heart but omg it was so good.

Dear Martin by Nic Stone: This was soooo short but omg it packed a punch?! It tackles racism, police brutality, racial profiling, sexism, and GOD IT WAS SO GOOD. And so important!!

Daughter of the Burning City by Amanda Foody: Magic carnivals! Illusions that are real? Murder? I wasn’t that interested at first while reading, and the pacing felt kind of off for me, but the world, the characters, and the plot twists were actually so so so good omg.

THEY’RE ALL SO GOOD. *side glances at you to pick them up immediately*

Kind of old backlist – 2016

The Imposter Queen by Sarah Fine: Ahhh I haven’t read the sequel yet, but the magic and ruling system in this book was so cool and I loved it

Beyond the Red by Ava Jae: This is a sci-fi, which I don’t usually pick, but I remember actually enjoying this one a lot?? I… don’t remember specific reasons why though which makes this recommendation utterly useless. Oh well.

The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye: Okay, so I kind of didn’t like the sequel very much, but the first book I enjoyed!! I loved the Russian influences to the world and the magic was super cool as well.

Ruined by Amy Tintera: More people with superpowers and stuff in a world where people are then afraid of said people! I loved both Em and Cas SO MUCH and there was so much tension and ahhh I really need to read the sequel!!

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury: Aladdin retelling!! Must I even say more???!

Starflight by Melissa Landers: Another hate-to-love romance!! ADORE. It’s also another sci-fi, which is odd considering I don’t usually read the genre. But omg so much banter I love itttt.

Oldish backlist – 2015

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh: Guys, I’m not sure if you know, but, I freaking ADORE hate-to-love romances, and this has that, and also magic, intrigue, and a MC who is the BESTTT. I adore her so much!

Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin: There’s a motorcycle race during a time where Hitler rules and we have Yael, a shapeshifter who must win and murder him. SO GOOD.

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli: SIMON. IS. THE. BEST. I love him, and his family, and his story and huadjkasdald you NEED to read this.

The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore: I

Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine: So much diversity in a fantasy world! It’s the best!! Also libraries and I remember this being super interesting, but I read it a while ago so details are vague hahaha oops. BUT IT’s GOOD. trust me.

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell: Simon and Bazzzz!!! My two little preciousness. Also there were sour cherry scones and SNOWBAZ okay I love them so much

(And OBVIOUSLY there are gems such as Six of Crows, and A Darker Shade of Magic! Obviously. I just take it that you’ve read them already… right??? 👀 Exactly.)

OLDER

Hahahahah so many of these are my favourite series because I don’t remember many old standalones. 😂

Shatter Me by There Mafi – 2011 // The Raven Boys – 2012 // Shadow and Bone – 2012 // Red Rising – 2014 // The Lunar Chronicles – 2012 // Angelfall by Susan Ee – 2011

These are all the first books in each of their respective series, because those are the oldest! But it seems crazy that these were published so long ago omg.

Also:

The Sky is Everywhere (2010) and I’ll Give You the Sun, both by Jandy Nelson (2014) were such emotional reads!! I loved them both so much! The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (2011) was about a magic circus/carnival and omg it was so good!

I don’t mind backlist books! After all, they’re just like any other book? BUT. At the same time, I feel like I’m also not actively looking for them? Obviously there are the backlist books I own myself that I need to get through, but say if I were at a library, I generally don’t pick up books that were published before 2015? I know, it’s bad!!

I don’t know, there’s just something about book blogging nowadays that makes me feel like I HAVE to read the newer or somewhat recent books… which is ridiculous, I know.

For newer books or books released the same year, well, I usually end up picking them up later in the year? Except for this year, I’ve read a lot more January releases closer to their release date, which is so weird.

But I also have a fear of hype??? And I procrastinate on new books?? Sooooo I don’t know how all that works.

Do you prefer reading backlist books or newer, recent books??? (Isn’t the hype scary.) What are some of your favourite backlist or 2018 titles?? Have you read any of my recommendations?? (YOU SHOULD. JUST SAYIN’.) What are your thoughts?! 

26 YA Books Releasing in March 2018 You Need on Your TBR (because I said so)!

So it’s well-known, that publishers love to smother us with new books!!

Which is great! But also, it is supremely difficult to keep up with all of them, or the ones we’re most interested in, so basically I’m taking the opportunity to make sure I don’t forget these books because my memory is horrible!! (And oh yes, I’m also sneakily plotting to make sure your TBRs grow taller but you didn’t hear that from me.)

Also featuring me crying joyfully over diversity, beautiful covers and my empty wallet!! Let’s go!

March 6th

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi: THE HYPE. THE HYYYYYYYYPEEEE! A West-African inspired fantasy! Diverse!! Um, hi, it’s mine, thanks!!!

Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi: Shatter Me!!!! More Juliette and Warner and Kenji and all the amazing things!!!! (I’M NOT SCREAMING, YOU ARE)

The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk: Grief and music and diversity!! *grabby hands*

More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer: I ADORED Letters to the Lost, and this book is from the POV of Rex, who I was so intrigued with in LTTL. So sign me up!!

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo: This sounds SO GOOD omg. I believe there are sirens and more specifically, a disgraced siren who needs to kill the prince to be made a siren again??! I SENSE MURDER INTRIGUE!

Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton: I loved Rebel of the Sands, but I’ve been uninterested in reading the second book and I’m kiiiind of indifferent to the third’s book release. BUT THE SERIES STARTED OFF GOOD.

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw: Three sisters who were drowned for witchery steal the bodies of human girls every year to lure boys and drown them for revenge – HOLY CRAP. Sign me up! (I swear I’m normal)

In Search Of Us by Ava Dellaira: “A parallel story of a mother and daughter, each at age 17” The main character is biracial,

The Case For Jamie by Brittany Cavallero: I haven’t read any of the Charlotte Holmes books, but I’ve had them on my TBR for so long! Oops.

Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough: To be honest I’m not a fan of historical fiction? Too much sexism and old-fashioned

The Unbinding of Mary Reade by Miriam McNamara: Sooooo I don’t actually see ton of good reviews for this?? BUT PIRATESSSSSSS.

Pacifica by Kristen Simmons: MORE PIRATES. Did I miss something about March??? There are so many sea-themed/pirating books going on?? I MEAN I’M NOT COMPLAINING. But why now???

March 13th

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff: Oops, looks like I have to actually read Illuminae and Gemina now… *hides*

The Radical Element edited by Jessica Spotswood: I’m not actually a super huge fan of short stories, but there are so many amazing authors involved in this!! Anna-Marie McLemore, Marieke Nijkamp, Mackenzi Lee, Dhonielle Clayton…!!!

In Sight of Stars by Gae Polisner: This goes back and forth in terms of timelines and explores the story of Klee, who gets committed and the time before and after and during and such (I think??) and I’ve seen a lot of good reviews on this!!

Time Bomb by Joelle Charbonneau: Set during a school bombing and I…. </3 Heartbreak all over.

March 20th

        

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan: Ft. a biracial (half Asian, half white) protagonist tackling grief and her mother’s suicide </3 This book already sounds so beautiful and heartbreaking from its synopsis!!

Tyler Johnson Was Here by Jay Coles: If this book isn’t on your TBR: WHAT ARE YOU DOING. I already can tell what an amazing this book will be, among the likes of The Hate U Give , and Dear Martin. Publishing, writers; YOU’RE DOING AMAZING, SWEETIE.

The Heart Forger by Rin Chupeco: Aaah I’ve been meaning to read The Bone Witch for so long! But I… didn’t. Oops.

Miles Away From You by A.B. Rutledge: The synopsis made this book sound so good!! But I also just looked through some reviews aaaand it doesn’t seem as great as it sounds but some people loved it? So.

Tiger’s Dream by Colleen Houck: I’m actually not interested in this book or series anymore haha, but I had to include this for nostalgia’s sake! I had no idea there was a fifth book being published in this series?! I don’t think I’m reading this, but omg, this brings back memories. 😂

March 27th

       

 Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Choksi: This isn’t YA, but I am so so happy to see a middle grade fantasy book being published with an Indian main character and exploring India’s mythology from an #ownvoices author!! I’M SO HAPPY.

Lost Crow Conspiracy by Rosalyn Eves: Oops another sequel where I haven’t read the first book!! (Am I the only one who hears “crow” and immediately wants to go back to the Dregs, MY LOVES)

And She Was by Jessica Verdi: Dara, the main character, discovers her mother is actually transgender and goes on a road trip with her best guy friend!

In Her Skin by Kim Savage: Oh my gosh, this reminds me so much of Here Lies Daniel Tate by Cristin Terrill! I loved that book so much, and this one follows the same sort of missing-person-impersonation plot and so I’m actually super excited for this one.

The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton: Okay, this sounds SO COOL. I’m raising a skeptic brow at the words “starblessed Ella” to describe one of the king’s daughters, because um hi special snowflake, but that’s okay!! It has “a family drenched in blood” and that’s all I need, tbh.

(Yes, this is the same person who loves cute romances. FIGHT ME.)

What books are you anticipating the most this upcoming month??! March 6th is ABSOLUTELY INSANE and I love-hate it because I want them so muchhhhh but um I would need a miracle to afford them all?? (Also am I the only one who hasn’t read Illuminae or Gemina yet?? *nervous laughter* *prepares to run*)

March is ACTUALLY AMAZING okay!! I’m so pumped! (Even though I’m probably not gonna have time to read half these books!!)

SHOUT BOOKS WITH ME.