Snowboarding, Alexa Martin, & More
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Articles / May 3, 2020

All Systems Red RECOMMENDED: All Systems Red by Martha Wells is $1.99! I think everyone at SBTB HQ who has read these books has absolutely loved them, myself included. Tor recently had all four novellas for free through their newsletter, but if you missed those, $1.99 is not a bad entry fee. “As a heartless killing machine, I was a complete failure.” In a corporate-dominated spacefaring future, planetary missions must be approved and supplied by the Company. Exploratory teams are accompanied by Company-supplied security androids, for their own safety. But in a society where contracts are awarded to the lowest bidder, safety isn’t a primary concern. On a distant planet, a team of scientists are conducting surface tests, shadowed by their Company-supplied ‘droid — a self-aware SecUnit that has hacked its own governor module, and refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.” Scornful of humans, all it really wants is to be left alone long enough to figure out who it is. But when a neighboring mission goes dark, it’s up to the scientists and their Murderbot to get to the truth. Add to Goodreads To-Read List → You can find ordering info for this book here.  …

What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter
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Articles / May 3, 2020

D What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter April 7, 2020 · Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers Teen FictionYoung Adult CW/TW warnings inside CW/TW: grief related to deceased grandmother and sibling; anxiety; panic attacks What I Like About You is a terrific example of how a book’s flaws can overwhelm the good parts. It has engaging writing, stellar #ownvoices rep of Jewish teens, and nuanced exploration of grief. It also enraged me enough to slam my tablet down and seethe for a good hour after I finished. My initial grade was an F but I upgraded my rating after a few days of introspection (see the above good parts). At the 50% marker, I wanted to DNF and save myself. I only continued because I was motivated to see if the ending pissed me off, too. It did. Popular YA book blogger Halle is hiding under an online pseudonym to create book-themed cupcake art and reviews. Her “Kels” pseudonym isn’t for safety/privacy reasons like I initially assumed. Halle’s recently deceased grandma was a famous book editor and Halle doesn’t want nepotism to unfairly give her publishing dreams a boost. One True Pastry is Halle’s validation that she…

Lightning Reviews: A Selection of Romantic Sugenres
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Articles / May 3, 2020

The Lightning Reviews today are all romances! I feel like it’s been a while since that happened. However, they are all different when it comes to subgenre: historical romance, contemporary romance, and romantic suspense. Also on the bright side, they’re all reviewed pretty favorably in case you need more suggestions on what to read!   B+ A Duke by Any Other Name author: Grace Burrowes A Duke by Any Other Name was exactly the book my anxiety brain needed right now. I’ll be honest, I found previous books in the series to be a bit slow, but right now I will take all the details of Regency living. Give me pages about when is the best time to separate the irises in the walled garden. Descriptions of the famous cheese-with-dill the heroine’s estate produces? Yes, please. Aside from being incredibly soothing, this book also has a really fantastic external conflict keeping the main couple apart. It’s a plot I haven’t seen before, and, tempered by all of those relaxing English country living details, didn’t feel so dire as to overwhelm. Lady Althea Wentworth is the sister of a newly-made duke who also has tons of money, but has been rejected…