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TheBiasedBibliophile

TheBiasedBibliophile

Joined August 2021

Ace ~ Intersectional Feminist ~ Philosopher 61/100 CR: The Stars Between Us by Cristin Terrill
review
TheBiasedBibliophile
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Pickpick

Not only does this book delve into the problem of the overfishing of Atlantic cod, it discusses an extensive history of how different people around the world have relied on the species. Many aspects of the book were surprising, and taking the publication year into account (1999), it was particularly compelling to see how the situation has changed since then.

Overall, if you like nonfiction, then this book might be a great fit for you!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Poison Season | Mara Rutherford
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I felt let down by the developments throughout the novel. The idea of a malicious, sentient forest was so interesting, and I was really excited about that, but I think that concept was very under-developed and didn‘t add much to the story. Similarly, the poisonous lake was again fascinating, but I think the author should have spent more time focusing on these two aspects of the novel to add depth and mystery.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Of Cages and Crowns | Brianna Joy Crump
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I had mixed feelings about a good portion of this novel, but as a whole, I think if you can stick it out to the end, it‘s clear that many of the aspects that are a little annoying seem to set up the ending and the next book in the series. Furthermore, I was not thrilled at the comparison to The Bachelor, but I was excited to discover that it didn‘t give off the same creepy vibes as the T.V. show.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Pickpick

Strike the Zither was one of those books that is clearly a five-star read from the first few chapters! I don‘t think I‘ve ever read a novel with a strategist as a protagonist before and it added a lot of new and interesting aspects to the story. Furthermore, Zephyr is such a compelling character. I was so invested in her personal story and seeing where that would take her. Finally, the plot really made this novel shine. It was a phenomenal book!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Panpan

It felt like nothing happened for a good portion of the book, & then everything was crammed into the last 50 pages. Alice does something morally wrong, and not only does no one stop her, she argues that she shouldn‘t be punished for her wrongdoings because she is poor. Likewise, much of the novel focused on her growth as a character, only to have her lie to someone towards the end. It just ruined all the character growth prior to that instance.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Secrets So Deep | Ginny Myers Sain
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Mehso-so

I have to say that the ending of the novel was definitely my favorite part. While it was predictable, it was still a fun read. I did find the majority of the novel to be slow, but I think that‘s like because I don‘t read a lot of mysteries and thrillers. I guess I expected it to be…I don‘t know… a little more thrilling. Overall, I think people who generally enjoy mysteries and thrillers will like this book, it just wasn‘t the right book for me.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
How to Heal a Gryphon | Meg Cannistra
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By far, my favorite aspect of this novel is that Giada is plus sized and confident. Similarly, Giada portrays a healthy relationship with food, which is important for young girls to read about. Furthermore, as if the body positivity wasn‘t enough, this story was absolutely wonderful! Overall, there were so many great things about this novel! I especially recommend it if you have a young girl in your life who needs an inspiring role model!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Princess of Souls | Alexandra Christo
Mehso-so

This first part of the book was a little slow, but it picked up towards the end. Despite being a Rapunzel retelling, I thought the novel would have benefitted from more focus on the romance. The supporting characters in the book were interesting, but I would have like to see more of them throughout the book. Overall, Princess of Souls was pretty good, but unfortunately didn‘t quite live up to my high expectations after reading To Kill a Kingdom.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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My favorite thing about the anthology was that the stories elicited such strong and varying emotions. Most of the stories were so simple, yet so effective in conveying emotion, and that made it a very powerful book. Honestly, it‘s hard to pick my favorite stories from this anthology, but if I had to choose, I would say “The Daya Zimu” by Vanessa Nakayange, “Rain” by Muuka Gwaba, and “This is for My Aunt Penzi, Who—” by Idza Luhumyo were my top 3.

2 likes1 stack add
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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Pickpick

The River of Silver turned out to be the exact mixture of comfort & adventure that I needed! Again, I find myself at a loss for words to adequately describe the immense talent that Chakraborty clearly has in abundance! My favorite part of the book is that it is so immersive just like Chakraborty‘s other books. Chakraborty has a solid place among my favorite authors, & I can‘t wait to read The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi when it comes out!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Mehso-so

It‘s certainly a quick read. While I thought the poems were a bit disjointed & didn‘t necessarily go together, there were some that dug deep and truly made me think. Some of the lines in certain poems were simply so lyrical and genius, they definitely stood out. As a whole, I wouldn‘t say that The Gravity of Existence greatly impacted my opinion on poetry, but it was worth the read considering the short length & the handful of beautiful lines!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Harrison told both Ona‘s and Tessa‘s stories in such an eloquent way. I don‘t think I‘ve ever read a book about slavery from the perspective of a child, so that truly made this book stand out. Similarly, I thought it was important that the novel addressed significant issues, such as colorism and the belief that slaves working in the house had it easier. Ona‘s story encouraged readers to recognize that all slaves faced different types of adversity.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Christmas Clash | Suzanne Park
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Mehso-so

I will say that many of the characters were well-written. Sadly, I was expecting more from this story than it offered. It‘s clearly supposed to focus on the enemies-to-lovers trope, but I felt like neither the enemies aspect, nor the lovers aspect, were done well. While I read an ARC version, a lot of the writing was incomprehensible, which drew my attention away from what was happening in the novel.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Coven | Jennifer Dugan
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Everything about this book was fantastic! The queer rep in the book really elevated the overall quality, and I loved that it was normalized within Emsy‘s family and coven. Similarly, the friendships that Emsy developed were complex, personal, and inviting. Finally, the illustrations in this novel were what really made it stand out. Every now and then there would be a drawing that was simply breathtaking, and gave me chills.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Forestfall | Lyndall Clipstone
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Devastatingly, I did not enjoy Forestfall. Leta develops a romance with another character, & this was the main issue I had. Not that someone can‘t be in love with two people, but Leta‘s love for this character in the second book was simply illogical & contradictive. However, Clipstone‘s writing is absolutely poetic & lyrical. There are not many authors that have the talent to write such beautiful prose, and that was Forestfall‘s one saving grace.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Liars Crown | Abigail Owen
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As soon as I heard the word “retelling” I immediately requested The Liar‘s Crown by Abigail Owen on NetGalley. Probably my favorite aspect is that the plot is not lost to the romance. The romance was well thought out, and more importantly, the plot was the main focus of the novel. Furthermore, Meren was a phenomenal character! She felt so realistic and very three-dimensional. The entire book was written so eloquently, & the ending was everything!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
THE MONSTERS WE DEFY | LESLYE PENELOPE
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There are many aspects of this novel that were phenomenal, it‘s hard to know where to start! What truly blew my mind was the author‘s note at the end of the novel, explaining that the story was based off of a real person, Clara “Carrie” Minor Johnson, & real events. Penelope seamlessly incorporated the true story into the book, not only staying true to the real person‘s story, but also adding an element of fantasy that was believable & intriguing.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Mehso-so

As a whole, I really enjoyed The Stars Between Us by Cristin Terrill. The plot was predictable, but fun to read and I enjoyed the premise of the story. I will say that I found myself a little bored at many points throughout the novel. Once Terrill introduced a few romantic scenes between Vika and her love interest, I was more attentive, but I felt like there wasn‘t enough romantic tension.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Three Kisses, One Midnight | Evelyn Skye, Roshani Chokshi, Sandhya Menon
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Sometimes I‘m just in a mood where I want to read a lighthearted romance. Prior to reading Three Kisses, One Midnight I did not realize that I needed a lighthearted spooky romance novel in my life! The cute stories of romance along with the ghostly details turned out to be the perfect mixture for a fun, easy read! I cannot recommend this book enough if you want romance and Halloween/Autumn vibes!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Sunbearer Trials | Aiden Thomas
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I was absolutely blown away by this book! The trials in the book were inventive and action-packed. I thought the camaraderie was phenomenal! Teo develops complex and multifaceted relationships with most of the other competitors, and I adored this human element of the story. One of the aspects I enjoyed most about the book was the queer representation. Similarly, the worldbuilding was fantastic, and I love that being queer was normalized!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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I was impressed to see that this is Kaseke‘s debut book, because she writes as if she has been doing so for her entire life. Few authors have the ability to evoke such strong emotions in readers, but after reading this book, I have no doubt that Kaseke clearly has that talent. Even if Kaseke never wrote another book in her life, Send Her Back is an amazing feat, the likes of which most authors strive for just once in their lives!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
We All Fall Down | Rose Szabo
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While the switching up of pronouns was a little confusing, I‘m guessing Szabo did this intentionally to show that Jesse is gender fluid and/or discovering their gender identity. That being said, there wasn‘t much else I liked. The story lacked a plot, and felt very disjointed. The multiple POVs were not executed well, and by the end of the novel, it truly felt as if nothing really happened. There were also many problematic elements to the story.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Hotel Magnifique | Emily J. Taylor
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I was absolutely immersed throughout the entirety of Hotel Magnifique! There is an element of mystery that really added a lot to the story and made the plot flow really well. On top of that, while the major events in the novel were a little predictable, I found most of the book unique. The found family trope was great, but I would have liked to see how it could have developed across more books. Overall, I absolutely loved Hotel Magnifique!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Blade of Secrets | Tricia Levenseller
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By far, my favorite aspect of this novel was the way in which Levenseller portrayed Ziva‘s social anxiety. Mainly for that reason, Ziva was my favorite character because she was so relatable. Similarly, I also appreciated the way the other characters in the novel treated Ziva‘s anxiety. Everything else about the novel was wonderful too! The romance was perfect and the plot flowed, as always!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Blood and Moonlight | Erin Beaty
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The plot was certainly robust, as Catrin goes on adventures to catch a serial killer. The mystery was fantastic, and would have kept me guessing until the end if I had not purposefully spoiled the ending for myself, but the elements of fantasy really made this book shine! Finally, I thought the little bit of romance in the novel was cute, and didn‘t take over the plot. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoy mystery, fantasy, or YA!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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This book was so bizarre, but in an oddly satisfying way! Wes Dyson sends a powerful message, that people can be broken, but that doesn't take away from their worth or strength to move forward.
I personally think many people can write fantasy novels, but few authors have the talent and skill to integrate messages that we can all grow from into a beautiful story. Myracles in the Void is one of those rare books that pulls it off flawlessly!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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If I were describing this book to someone, I would say it's similar to The Chronicles of Narnia, only more modern and ultimately higher quality! It gives the reader a whimsical feeling, that you get while experiencing a new world through a book. The writing is poetic & absolutely breathtaking at certain points! Overall, I think The Portals of Tartae is a highly underrated book that has the potential to become a modern classic portal fantasy novel!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Sawkill Girls | Claire Legrand
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Mehso-so

The mystery aspect of the novel really kept my attention throughout the whole story. Overall, the characters were pretty likeable, but I felt like their dynamics with one another was what made the novel truly stand out. Despite the alternating POVs, I felt like each character was unique and distinct. I highly recommend it to anyone who also appreciates aspects of fantasy within horror!

3 likes1 stack add
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TheBiasedBibliophile
11/22/63 | King, Stephen
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Mehso-so

While Stephen King novels are a hit or a miss for me, I thoroughly enjoyed 11/22/63! In my opinion, you must be a talented author to write a book over 800 pages & not lose your readers. The story was slow, but didn‘t necessarily feel like it was dragging. I would not recommend reading 11/22/63 if you're in a reading slump, but it's the perfect book to read over time. It‘s nice to read a little every day because I felt more invested in the story.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Raybearer | Jordan Ifueko
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This book is so complex and has so many moving parts! I‘m highly impressed by Ifeuko‘s world-building abilities, and I can‘t wait to see how she further develops Tarisai‘s world in Redemptor. There is truly nothing missing from this wonderful novel. Diverse and 3 dimensional characters, enchanting myth and lore, a creative magical system, and a vast and multi-cultural world are some of the many aspects you can look forward to in this book!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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If you think you know the history of the Titanic, think again and read this book. This book is so much more than your run-of-the-mill Titanic story. The author adds a new depth to the story by dispelling the idea that it was tragically unpreventable. He paints a vivid picture of the true heroes of the story: the 2 wireless officers on board, Jack Phillips & Harold Bride, along with the Captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostrun.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Let's Talk About Love | Claire Kann
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I enjoyed this book for so many reasons, but most importantly, it really goes in depth about asexuality. Overall, this is a cute and lighthearted book that simultaneously makes serious statements about identity and asexuality. This is definitely a book that everyone should read, and I would especially recommend it for those who are looking to read more books with ace characters!

4 likes1 stack add
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TheBiasedBibliophile
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I was so pleasantly surprised with this novel! I love fairytale retellings in general, but when there is an unexpected twist to the original story, I cannot resist! Overall, this was a fun & whimsical story that left me wanting more. The plot moved at a nice pace, the characters were likeable, and the conclusion is just *chef‘s kiss*! I absolutely adored how the author wrote the ending, which is drastically different from the original fairytales!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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Panpan

The strongest aspects of the book are the author‘s notes about cultural appropriation and her inclusion of all types of people. Despite these positive aspects, the book was simply not what I thought it would be. I found a lot of it very repetitive. Furthermore, I was not expecting a how-to book on using mudras in spellcasting. Overall, this book was simply not what I was looking for.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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While this book is meant for fans of the book and T.V. series, Bridgerton, it is ideal for anyone wanting to try out some new recipes! There are simpler recipes along with some more challenging ones, and this book would be perfect for anyone planning a fancy party.
Of the four recipes I tried, all of them were relatively easy to make! Additionally, all the recipes I tried were absolutely delicious! Overall, a great cookbook!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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First off, I want to remind everyone that I read an ARC of this book, not the final copy. However, there were so many mistakes in the ARC, that it was difficult to discern the author‘s meaning at certain points throughout the novel. I am not entirely sure what was going on throughout much of the book, & I honestly don‘t think the protagonist did either. Finally, the protagonist was one-dimensional & boring. Good concept, poor execution.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
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The author pushed religion way too much. It is one thing to have a chapter about books that she believed strengthened her faith, but it is another to mention religion in practically every other sentence. If you‘re going to write a book about books that relate to your faith, then mention that in the synopsis. When she wasn‘t talking about religion, she was boasting about having gone to Oxford or recommending the same authors over and over again...

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Foxfire in the Snow | J.S. Fields
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I feel like there were two really good stories within this book, but when they were combined, it was just too much. Also, I didn't like that nothing about the mystery in the novel was revealed until the very end. I sincerely did not like the protagonist at all. Finally, not only does the book feel as though it drags on, it also has a few plot holes that were really bothersome in my opinion. Not a good book for anyone who pays attention to details.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Feral Creatures: A Novel | Kira Jane Buxton
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(Can I give it more than 5 stars?) The humor that Kira introduced in Hollow Kingdom & developed further in Feral Creatures, is so strangely specific in such a satisfying way. Also, an extremely important detail in the book is that the animals all stay true to their nature. Hollow Kingdom & Feral Creatures are two of the only books that toy with my heart like a bird with a french fry, yet I keep coming back for more. Certainly an all-time favorite!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Not Here To Be Liked | Michelle Quach
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Not Here to Be Liked is not only an adorable love story, but also a commentary on the struggles within feminism. This book truly forces you to ask yourself: What does it mean to be a feminist? It raises so many issues within feminism, such as racism and classism within the movement, well-intentioned men who unknowingly perpetuate misogyny, and the disappointing realization that the patriarchy is often cute. One of my favorites so fare this year!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
What We Devour | Linsey Miller
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Unfortunately, this book was so convoluted and poorly executed that the end result was very disappointing. The entire book read as if it were a rough draft & events would happen with no explanation. Additionally, the characters were under-developed and had unexplained relationships with one another. Furthermore, there were a lot of plot holes and terminology that needed explaining. Overall, this book could have use a lot of editing or reimagining.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Wilder Girls | Rory Power
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This book was so overrated! I‘ve been looking forward to it for a while now & have heard nothing, but great things, but it simply didn‘t live up to the hype. I found the relationships Hetty had with both Byatt and Reese confounding and shallow. Hetty basically uses others, and feels no guilt about it. I won‘t ruin the ending in case you‘re still wanting to read Wilder Girls, but I promise you, it is just as disappointing as the rest of the book.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
We Could Be Heroes | Mike Chen
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There were 45 chapters in this book, & of those I would say I thoroughly enjoyed maybe 5, at the most. I felt like the characters were contradictive & highly unlikeable. Additionally, I did not feel anything when the characters were in mortal danger and may or may not have died (I don‘t want to spoil it in case you choose to read it). Overall, I love a good science fiction novel, but sadly this book does not fall into that category in my opinion.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Sisters of the Snake | Sasha Nanua, Sarena Nanua
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A debut fantasy novel about twins and written by twin authors? Count me in! This book had all the adventures and magic that make up a good fantasy novel, but including aspects of Punjabi culture and writing from the perspective of twins make it stand out. Additionally, I really enjoyed the theme of writing your own destiny, but my one criticism is that this concept could have been more uniformly present throughout the entirety of the novel.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
All of Us Villains | Amanda Foody, Christine Lynn Herman
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I absolutely adored so many aspects of this book! It is written by two different authors & from four different perspectives, but the narrative is seamless. However, I will warn you now, this book is going to leave you hanging! Whatever expectations you have, you might as well kiss them goodbye because Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman do not play by the rules! I seriously don‘t know how I am going to find the willpower to wait for the sequel!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Stolen Kingdom | Jillian Boehme
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There were so many likeable aspects of this book, and I felt like it was equally driven by the characters and the plot, which I really enjoyed. If you‘re looking for another world to escape into, this book is definitely for you! With an interesting magic system, morally questionable characters, and royal kidnappings, what more could you ask for? This is the type of feel-good fantasy book that I truly adore reading!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Divided Fire | Jennifer San Filippo
Mehso-so

Overall, neat concept, but poorly executed. I rarely DNF a book, but I really considered abandoning this one multiple times. First off, the author focuses so much on the plot of the novel that the character development is practically nonexistent. The problem arises when the author puts Kesia (a chronically ill character) through many physical hardships and she has zero issues. I wish sick people would have been represented more accurately.

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TheBiasedBibliophile
Summer Bird Blue | Akemi Dawn Bowman
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On the surface, this book is such a simple story, but it is so beautifully written, and that‘s what makes it truly stand out. While the fact that Rumi is ace takes a back seat to her grief, it is still a vital part of the story. Overall, this book will certainly tug at your heartstrings. It is a quick read, but certainly not a light read. I highly recommend this book to everyone, especially if you‘re looking for a book with ace representation!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
The Grace Year | Kim Liggett
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The novel tackles so many toxic messages that are both explicitly and implicitly perpetuated by the patriarchy (both in the book and in real life). Honestly I feel like I could reread the book right now and probably take away many more valuable messages. If you‘re looking for a dystopian novel that highly focuses on feminism, has a little romance, and a lot of gore, then this is the book for you! Definitely one of my favorites of 2021!

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TheBiasedBibliophile
White Smoke | Tiffany D. Jackson
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One aspect of this novel that I ended up really enjoying was that Mari has anxiety. It is refreshing to read about a character who not only received professional help for an anxiety diagnosis, but who also wasn‘t miraculously cured. I don‘t read many horror novels, but when I do, they typically don‘t feel scary to me. However, this novel had the opposite effect on me! Finally, while the ending of the novel was a little abrupt, I enjoyed the twist.

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