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BriannaT

BriannaT

Joined January 2019

Just a teacher trying to spread her love of books.
review
BriannaT
The River Has Teeth | Erica Waters
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When her sister goes missing, Natasha turns to a rumored witch, Della, for help. While Della feels the need to help, she fears the monster behind it all is her possessed mother. What can they do to find the truth, especially when there‘s only so much they can reveal to each other?
I did enjoy their expressions of feminine rage! I think others might find Nat‘s anger a bit much, but I would 100% be out for blood if anything happened to my sister.

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BriannaT
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This was on a list of books to read before you die, and I got it for $2 at a cute used bookstore! I have to admit, I checked sparknotes as I read this to make sure I understood everything, as the narrator is a man in an asylum. I liked the plot and the rivalries, but I didn‘t like how this book painted strong women in a negative light - as castrators. I still think it‘s worth reading though, and can see why it‘s read in some high schools.

16 likes1 stack add
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BriannaT
A Vow So Bold and Deadly | Brigid Kemmerer
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I met up with a friend at Barnes and Noble and she gave this book buddy to me - that she made by hand!! She knows I love Beauty and the Beast. My dad was looking for a price tag somewhere because he (son of a seamstress) thought it was done so well it must have been a purchase haha

Caroline2 Wowwww 🤩 ❤️ 12mo
RaeLovesToRead That is incredible!! 12mo
15 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
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Mehso-so

I needed a break from the fantasy genre for a bit, so I chose this book because books and puns. While I thought it was cute, it wasn‘t a book I‘d rave about like other romance novels I‘ve read. It did however make me consider quitting my job to run a bookstore.

Arvena Great review! :) 12mo
12 likes1 comment
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BriannaT
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I‘ve said it before and I‘ll say it again - I know I can read this for free online (and I have), but catch me buying every volume and putting it on a special place on my bookshelf.

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BriannaT
Divine Rivals | Rebecca Ross
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Enemies to lovers, magical typewriters, and a gods fighting a war. I swooned over romantic declarations of love, and I angrily texted my coworker at 11 pm after realizing we have to wait until next year to read what happens next. This OwlCrate from May is probably one of my favorite ones that I‘ve read in awhile.

17 likes1 stack add
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BriannaT
The Sun and the Star | Rick Riordan, Mark Oshiro
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It was weird to get back in the Percy Jackson universe after so long! I haven‘t finished the Trials of Apollo series yet but I understood what was going on. Nico and his boyfriend Will have to go to Tartarus to free an ally, but Nyx is the enemy, hating the concept of change or in-between. There‘s a lot of queer symbolism here, but FFS I just want Nico to be happy. A pick, but I like the original series best.

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BriannaT
Silver in the Bone | Alexandra Bracken
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Mehso-so

This was an OwlCrate book, and I like the different cover. While I did like the story, it was a little slow in the beginning, and this fantasy book threw you in and didn‘t explain terms like “Hollower” right away. Maybe I‘m slower than others, but sometimes I need those things explained sooner. The last half was faster and much more interesting, but Bracken‘s sequels aren‘t as well-received as her OGs, so I‘m curious about what comes next.

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BriannaT
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Ventured into the children‘s section for this because my cousins loved it, and so did I! I guess another trope I like is “magic kids going to magic school/camp.” Amari uncovers a whole new reality when she receives a message from her missing brother. The supernatural world is real, she‘s a magician, and magicians are illegal. Prejudice is nothing new to Amari, but she has to fight a whole lot of it in order to be accepted and find her brother.

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BriannaT
Happy Place | Emily Henry
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I preordered this on Black Friday and read it all in one day! Emily Henry‘s characters have a sarcastic sense of humor that I see in her other books, but I connect to that so I don‘t mind the similarities. While Book Lovers is still my favorite, I enjoyed this story of former lovers fake dating to keep a friend group intact. It also makes a good point on recognizing that the “good old days” need to end or change, but it‘s not something to fear.

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BriannaT
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I saw this on a school-approved book vendor website and thought I could read it to my mythology-obsessed first graders. So I definitely can‘t do that, but I enjoyed this book myself - the authors look at goddesses from all mythologies and talk about what we as women can learn from them in a modern sense. There‘s humor, too: “Her main pastimes included inciting violence and prophesying doom - age was great fun at parties.”

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BriannaT
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My toxic trait is reading all these books in May and then saying I‘ll review them when the school year ends, then picking up Hogwarts Legacy and forgetting entirely

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BriannaT
Bull | David Elliott
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The first line is Poseidon saying “Whaddap, bitches?” So you have to have a sense of humor. In this myth retelling of the Minotaur, every character has a specific rhyme they stick to. I liked how Elliot made Asterion, the Minotaur, have thoughts and feelings. One thing that stuck out to me is that the pages themselves will turn darker as his story progresses, with Asterion‘s last pages - in the labyrinth - completely black with white text.

13 likes1 stack add
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BriannaT
Marple: Twelve New Stories | Agatha Christie, Leigh Bardugo, Elly Griffiths, Ruth Ware, Jean Kwok, Kate Mosse, Val McDermid, Alyssa Cole, Dreda Say Mitchell, Lucy Foley, Naomi Alderman, Karen M. Mcmanus, Natalie Haynes
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In this book, modern authors take on Christie‘s writing style and give her beloved Ms. Marple more murders to solve. I think they all got the style right, but there were some stories where Marple seemed a little out of character. My personal favorite was A Deadly Wedding Day by Dreda Say Mitchell.

LoverOfLearning I love Agatha Cristy too! What a great concept. 14mo
15 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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BriannaT
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Drowning my sorrows in a romance book. Chubby girl finds love on a dating show after realizing the suitor was a charming stranger she met on a plane a few days before. A Cinderella story, but I liked how the stepmom and stepsisters weren‘t actually mean. Also, the ended gave me “Colton jumping over the fence on the Batchelor” vibes

13 likes1 stack add
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BriannaT
Majesty | Katharine McGee
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Hey everyone I lent my sister a book and then she went dog sitting and I just need someone to join me in a moment of silence thanks

dabbe I think the Malamute/Husky would have given it a “pick“ on Litsy. 🤣💚🤗 1y
BriannaT @dabbe haha that‘s one way to look at it! 1y
15 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
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Kitty has to quickly find a husband to save her and her four sisters from bankruptcy after their father‘s death. She has no choice but to marry for money, but when she sets her sights on Mr. de Lacey, his brother, Lord Radcliffe, knows what‘s up. He tells her to leave his brother alone, and she concedes - if he helps her find a wealthy husband. Enemies to lovers/slow burn in a funny book. It‘s a clean romance, which is maybe one thing I‘d change.

12 likes1 stack add
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BriannaT
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Mehso-so

Another myth retelling that made me a little sad; it talks about a woman‘s place in the ancient world as Penelope deals with her suitors. I was just disappointed because the most interesting part - Penelope creating a female army - wasn‘t mentioned as much as I‘d like. We also don‘t see the “end” - when Odysseus comes home, and we don‘t know what happens to the one kind and helpful suitor (created just for this book).

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BriannaT
Midnight Strikes | Zeba Shahnaz
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Anaiis is doing her duty - looking for a husband at a ball - when the palace is attacked. After watching the dying prince, she‘s shot and killed - and then she wakes up that afternoon before the ball begins. Then it happens again and again. In a Groundhog Day scenario, she had figure out who is attacking the palace and why she‘s stuck in a time loop. With each life, the pieces come together, but so do Anaiis and the Prince. Couldn‘t put it down!

5feet.of.fury The cover is gorgeous! 1y
BriannaT @5feet.of.fury one of the reasons I subscribe to OwlCrate is because I love the (often shiny) exclusive covers like the dragon I am lol 1y
17 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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BriannaT
Wild Is the Witch | Rachel Griffin
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I got this for $3 at Target! I‘m jealous of the bookish box cover I saw on FB, but I did enjoy the story. Iris is a witch working at a nature center, and accidentally curses a boy she works with for his negative attitude towards witches. Now she and the boy, Pike, have to try to find an owl (that actually carries the curse) without Pike finding out the real reason why - before the injured owl dies and the curse is released. Enemies to lovers!

5feet.of.fury Sounds cute! 1y
11 likes1 comment
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BriannaT
Untitled | Unknown
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I got this from an antique bookshop! Someone actually wrote a small prayer on the inside and dated it 1883!! How was the story inside? Irrelevant! Look how pretty and old!! Okay if you press me the two novellas inside are okay; they‘re about boys attending boarding school in america and some shenanigans they get up to. My pick label is for the book itself - I‘ve always wanted something so old and gorgeous.

IndoorDame So gorgeous!!!🤩🤩🤩 1y
dabbe As Eliza Doolittle would say, “LOVERLY!“ 🤗 1y
11 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
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It‘s been awhile since I finished this series, and I‘m happy I got this book - it gives insight into how the three queens first separated as girls, and it comes with a story about the last oracle queen of the island. It was nice to dip my toes back into this universe after so long.

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BriannaT
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Mehso-so

The basis of this book is a miscommunication trope, which I‘m not the biggest fan of, but I liked the characters and the chemistry between them. I also had just watched pride and prejudice before reading this so I was in the mood for a regency romance.

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BriannaT
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WE INTERRUPT THE READING OF MY LIBRARY BOOK TO SHOW OFF THIS GORGEOUS EDITION OF DORIAN GRAY I GOT AT A BOOKSTORE YESTERDAY

Clwojick 😍😮🤓 1y
dabbe 🤩 1y
13 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
Revelle | Lyssa Mia Smith
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Moulin Rouge, but make it magic! And I love the OwlCrate cover too! It‘s prohibition, and the Revelles - known for enchanting others - need liquor to keep their circus business afloat. Luxe charms who she thinks is a powerful bootlegger, only to fall head over heels for a poor man. Meanwhile, the real bootlegger wants Luxe on his arm as he runs for mayor, and she agrees. Torn between family duty and her heart, what will Luxe do?

BookBelle84 I hadn't really heard of this one, but yesterday I listened to Marissa Meyers podcast, and she was the guest. She is a very intelligent and interesting person. 1y
BriannaT @BookBelle84 I didn‘t even know Melissa Meyer had a podcast - I‘ll definitely check it out! 1y
11 likes1 stack add2 comments
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BriannaT
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I finally got around to reading this, and I‘m happy I did! I guessed the big “twist” at the end, but I liked the way this story was told. I found myself wanting to know about Evelyn‘s life a little more than wondering why Grace was the interviewer. This did remind me a little of Daisy Jones (same author, so 💁‍♀️), which I also enjoyed.

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BriannaT
Sadie on a Plate | Amanda Elliot
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I needed a pick-me-up after the heavy myth retelling, and this is what I needed! Rom com meets food network. Sadie felt sparks with a fellow chef she meets on an airplane, only to find out he‘ll be judging her on a reality tv show. Not as spicy as I would have hoped, but still worth reading.

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BriannaT
Stone Blind: A Novel | Natalie Haynes
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I LOVED Pandora‘s Jar, so I was eager to read this. Instead of commentary, this is fiction - a myth retelling of Medusa and Perseus. In this house, we stan Medusa! I think it was a good book, and I was surprised by some twists Haynes made, but I keep forgetting how ultimately sad most myth retellings are. They dig deeper into the characters, exposing different sides, but the ending is ultimately the same. Though Athens‘s ending here is surprising!

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BriannaT
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Adding to the “books about books” section of my bookshelf. This was actually an ARC that someone donated to the library, and I got for $2. Never seen one before! Sara comes to Broken Wheel, Iowa, from Sweden to meet her elderly pen pal. She arrives on day of Amy‘s funeral, but the rest of the citizens of the small town don‘t want her to go. A bibliophile, Sara decides to open up a book store. While tropey at times, I‘m happy to add it to my shelf.

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BriannaT
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Mehso-so

I think this book was well-written, and it made all the characters - Cassandra, Clytemnestra, and Elektra - more human. It didn‘t stop it from being sad or, in Elektra‘s case, cringey. I know there‘s a complex named after her, but how she blindly worships her father got so annoying and gross, considering he wasn‘t even that good of a man. I don‘t empathize with her as much as the others, who got the shorter end of the stick.

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BriannaT
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Mehso-so

This might be my fault, but I‘m giving this a so-so only because it took me a bit to understand Rob‘s relation to everyone and his reasons for blackmail. But I did love how he cares so much about Marian - that‘s my favorite aspect of the book. Either way, this story is about a Lady turning rogue with the help of a man blackmailing her, and sparks fly.

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BriannaT
A Flicker in the Dark | Stacy Willingham
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Ok SO I may have guessed the “twist” and guilty party in this book very quickly (not many others in my book club did, though) BUT it‘s still a pick because the journey was good! I read it all in one day, and I really liked the way Willingham tells the story. Chloe‘s dad was arrested as a serial killer when she was 12, but 20 years later, similar deaths keep happening. Is her past coming back to haunt her? A real page-turner!

ICantImReading If you haven‘t read her newest one yet, I thought it was a little harder to predict! 😊 1y
BriannaT @ICantImReading Thanks, I‘ll add it to my TBR! 1y
15 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
The Buried and the Bound | Rochelle Hassan
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The latest OwlCrate book! Aziza is a hedgewitch - her job is to keep the boundary between the fae realm and the human one. Things get difficult when a hag gains power and threatens the entire town of Blackthorn. We also see the POV of Leo, cursed to forget his true love, and Tristan, who sold himself in service to the hag. I wanted to read maybe another fifty pages just to solve all the problems, but I have to wait for the sequel.

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BriannaT
Long Way Down | Jason Reynolds
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A graphic novel of a YA book. This one was powerful, and I felt the art style and use of colors really portrayed Will‘s emotions as he mourns (and decides to avenge) his brother. When Will gets on an elevator to leave his apartment building, gun in tow, he meets a ghost - a victim of gun violence - on every floor on the way down. He learns how the cycle of violence and “rules” he follows have so many victims. Will he end it, or follow it?

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BriannaT
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This graphic novel was based on a YA book, and it addresses toxic relationships and how to let them go. Laura Dean is beautiful and popular, but ultimately strings Freddy along when it‘s convenient for her. It was painfully relatable seeing a teenager navigate a relationship lacking communication while her partner takes advantage of it. It reminds you which relationships are worth keeping.

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BriannaT
Squire | Nadia Shammas, Sara Alfageeh
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Considering I read like 9 graphic novels I‘m going to just review 3 (mostly because I already returned them to the library and didn‘t take all their pictures). In Squire, Aiza joins the army but hides her ethnicity to fit in. Her journey is one of growth, but this book also addresses colonialism and its problems, which I loved the most. We see higher ups manipulate in the name of the “greater good” and “unity,” but is it, really?

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BriannaT
Squire | Nadia Shammas, Sara Alfageeh
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For one of my reading challenges, I have to read a graphic novel. I picked these up from my library, but does it count if I read them so fast?? Should I be picking one that I takes longer and is deeper than the rest? I read all of these (and a couple more), but I feel like it‘s wrong to say that I read more than 6 books in two days because I‘m so used to novels.

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BriannaT
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I had to remind myself to take a break from romance novels, so I picked up this mystery! An agoraphobic woman sees a murder take place, but everyone is convinced she is delusional. There were two big “reveals” in the book and I saw both of them coming, but when the real killer announced themselves, they still did it in a way that made me think “awoo, jump scare.”

LoverOfLearning Exactly! The plot twists were a bit predictable, but I really didn't mind. The author did a good job making you feel invested enough that you still enjoyed the suprises. 3mo
21 likes1 stack add1 comment
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BriannaT
Witchful Thinking | Celestine Martin
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Love in a town where magic is real and people are chill about it. A merman comes back into town and sees a witch he knew in school. There are sparks right away, but mermen are known to wander. Will Alex put down roots and stay? Meanwhile, Lucy performs a spell to get an exciting life; is it magic, or is Alex actually falling for her? It‘s cute, but there are loose ends with Ursula‘s wedding! Not pictured: me crying as I fail to get the sticker off

5feet.of.fury Sounds like a fun read! And curse those stickers!! 1y
BriannaT @5feet.of.fury it was definitely a cute read, and I feel like adding these stickers should be a punishable offense lol (edited) 1y
10 likes1 stack add2 comments
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BriannaT
For the Love of the Bard | Jessica Martin
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As a (lightweight) Shakespeare nerd, I do enjoy reading about (hardcore) Shakespeare nerds in love - plenty of literary jokes to go round. A second chance romance when writer/agent Miranda goes back to her hometown and runs into Adam, her former flame that broke her heart. As she falls back in love, what happens when the summer ends?

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BriannaT
Ramn and Julieta | Alana Quintana Albertson
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It‘s been awhile since I went to the library instead of Barnes and Noble! Went with my friend who is into romance novels and picked up this one and another. A spicy romance that follows some basic ideas of Romeo and Juliet - feuding families, lovers meet in disguise, similar names - but (spoiler alert) no killing or poison! Hotshot fast food heir vs cook of an independent restaurant in an area about to be taken over… by the HFFH himself. Easy read

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BriannaT
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When Geeta‘s abusive husband leaves her, the village believes she kills him. She comes to like the freedom and isolation, but after five years things change when someone asks for her help to murder their own terrible husband. It was funny and insightful, but it also reminds you of the harsh realities women face in India (and everywhere). I also learned that female bonobos will often band together in the wild to drive away aggressive males!

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BriannaT
The Orphan Witch | Paige Crutcher
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Panpan

I honestly wanted to like it but there was so much in the book that I thought could be explained better. I never fully understood why Persephone‘s eyes make people want to hurt themselves, and I still don‘t get how she “walks between worlds.” Even a magic library couldn‘t make me like this book more than I did.

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BriannaT
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So I‘m trying to create a mythology unit for my first graders. It started with me playing some songs from Epic: The Musical to me reading a kid version of the Odyssey to them wanting more. Trying to think of how kid-friendly I can be when Zeus did so much damage with his libido.

SamAnne What a great idea. 1y
BriannaT @SamAnne thanks! 1y
12 likes2 comments
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BriannaT
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A cute read that I needed after Don Quixote. It wasn‘t super Christmas-y, but I didn‘t mind. I bought the book when I found out the main character owns a book store. Sorry about the target sticker but hey this was $7

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BriannaT
Don Quixote | Miguel de Cervantes
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Mehso-so

I liked the plot but I struggled to get through this just because of the style of the dialogue. I was falling asleep. Was it because I went back to work this week? Possibly. The weird thing is, I feel like this book could actually be redone in modern times about someone who loses their mind to media. I don‘t think I‘d re-read it, but I can‘t say that I didn‘t enjoy parts of it. Also yes, the reason I bought this for $2 was because it was $2.

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BriannaT
Don Quixote | Miguel de Cervantes
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Anyone done this before? My book friend and I gifted it to each other - it‘s called the Ultimate Reading Challenge, and there‘s a little reward for every prompt you fulfill. We won‘t read the same books, but we‘re both starting with “read a book that‘s been sitting in your shelf, unread, for more than a year.” Embarrassed to say I had a good handful of options, but I‘m going to read Don Quixote!

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BriannaT
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Last book of the year as I turn into an Emily Henry fangirl! Book Lovers will forever be my favorite of hers, but even though I didn‘t relate to the characters as much in this book, I loved it and was rooting for Poppy anyway. That‘s one thing that surprised me - sometimes I try to find myself in a book to like it more, but I didn‘t need to here. Friends to lovers with an interesting narrative style, jumping from past to present and back again.

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BriannaT
Iron Widow | Xiran Jay Zhao
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I will admit that it took me a hot minute to understand how chrysalises and qi work, but this book has an actual love triangle and feeds my feminine rage! It‘s vicious and deservedly so - Zetian will take down anyone and everyone to avenge her murdered sister and to fight all of society, which treats women as second class citizens (shocking!). It had an anger I could feel in my bones. I can‘t wait to see what she does next in the sequel.

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BriannaT
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My flight to Canada was delayed because of the storm, so by the time I actually arrived n Toronto, I had finished the whole thing! A classic meet-cute rom com, with the twist that the main character‘s family can see ghosts and help them with their “last request” before passing over. A little predictable at times, but Sabrina‘s depression was relatable and Ray‘s patience and understanding tugged at my heartstrings.