Waiting on Wednesday: Pacifica by Kristen Simmons

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

by Kristen Simmons
Coming March 6, 2018
Tor Teen

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Marin is cosario royalty, a pirate like her father and his father before him. Sailing the ocean to chase adventure is in her blood. But these days no one cares that the island town her people call home is named after her grandfather. They have a new leader, one who promises an end to their hunger – and one who thinks that girls are meant for the kitchen or the brothel. Marin knows she's meant for more than that, and with the sudden influx of weapons on the island, and rumors of a pending deal with the enemy oil nation in her wake, she knows a big score to gain the council's favor is the only way to save her people, and herself.

Ross lives a life of privilege. As the president's son he wants for nothing, but he longs for a life of adventure. On a dare, he convinces his best friend Adam to sneak out to the Docks, the site of local race riots between the poor Shorlings and the upper class. But when Adam is arrested along with the other Shorlings, and not even the president is willing to find him, Ross finds himself taking matters into his own hands. He journeys back into the Docks, ready to make deals with anyone, even a beautiful pirate, if it means Adam's safe return.

When Marin and Ross meet in dangerous Shoreling territory he sees a way to get his friend back and she sees her ticket home. The ransom a president’s son would command could feed her people for years and restore her family’s legacy. But somewhere in the middle of the ocean, Marin must decide if her heart can handle handing over the only person who has ever seen her as more than a pirate.

Why I Want It:
I fell in love with Kristen's writing way back in 2013 when I binged Article 5 and Breaking Point and had to wait what felt like AGES (it was a few months) for Three. I love her books!

Why I think you should want it:
Pasifika rep! Own voices! Pirates! Boss lady pirates! Take your pick of all the amazing things!

Blog Tour: Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills

Rating: 5 stars
Release Date: December 5, 2017
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co
Genre: young adult contemporary romance
Format/Source: ARC, from the publisher
Status: standalone
Links: First & Then review

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A contemporary novel about a girl whose high school production of A Midsummer Night's Dream leads her to new friends—and maybe even new love.

The day of the last party of the summer, Claudia overhears a conversation she wasn't supposed to. Now on the wrong side of one of the meanest girls in school, Claudia doesn't know what to expect when the two are paired up to write a paper—let alone when they're both forced to try out for the school production of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

But mandatory participation has its upsides—namely, an unexpected friendship, a boy band obsession, and a guy with the best dimpled smile Claudia's ever seen. As Claudia's world starts to expand, she finds that maybe there are some things worth sticking her neck out for.

Waiting on Wednesday: Pitch Dark by Courtney Alameda

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

Pitch Dark
by Courtney Alameda
Coming February 20, 2018
Feiwel & Friends

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Set against a future of marauding space scavengers and deadly aliens who kill with sound, here is a frightening, fast-paced YA adventure from the author of the acclaimed horror novel, Shutter.

Tuck has been in stasis on the USS John Muir, a ship that houses Earth’s most valued artifacts—its natural resources. Parks and mountains are preserved in space.

Laura belongs to a shipraiding family, who are funded by a group used to getting what they want. And they want what’s on the Muir.

Tuck and Laura didn’t bargain on working together, or battling mutant aliens who use sound to kill. But their plan is the only hope for their crews, their families, and themselves.

In space, nobody can hear you scream . . . but on the John Muir, the screams are the last thing you'll hear.

Why I Want It:
MARAUDING. SPACE. SCAVENGERS. Aliens is one of my favorite movies of all time so I'm totally down with space horror.

Why I think you should want it:
MARAUDING. SPACE. SCAVENGERS. I mean seriously, do you need more reasons???

Review: Prince in Disguise by Stephanie Kate Strohm

Rating: stars
Release Date: December 19, 2017
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Genre: young adult contemporary holiday romance
Format/Source: ARC, Baker & Taylor ARC program
Status: standalone

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Someday I want to live in a place where I never hear “You’re Dusty’s sister?” ever again.

Life is real enough for Dylan—especially as the ordinary younger sister of Dusty, former Miss Mississippi and the most perfect, popular girl in Tupelo. But when Dusty wins the hand of the handsome Scottish laird-to-be Ronan on the TRC television network’s crown jewel, Prince in Disguise, Dylan has to face a different kind of reality: reality TV.

As the camera crew whisks them off to Scotland to film the lead-up to the wedding, camera-shy Dylan is front and center as Dusty’s maid of honor. The producers are full of surprises—including old family secrets, long-lost relatives, and a hostile future mother-in-law who thinks Dusty and Dylan’s family isn’t good enough for her only son. At least there’s Jamie, an adorably bookish groomsman who might just be the perfect antidote to all Dylan’s stress . . . if she just can keep TRC from turning her into the next reality show sensation.

Happy birthday, Mary Had a Little Book Blog!

Holy crap, you guys. When I moved to Dallas back in 2012 and started this site, I never didn't think that it would still be around five years later but I also never did think that it would still be around. I guess I just wasn't thinking forward enough. 

The past five years have been full of change, both good and bad. I've moved around some (a lot. Sorry for the rotating addresses, friends & pubs!), got two new jobs including working at my library (for which I am eternally grateful), attended some bomb-ass book events, and even moderated a few. I blurbed my first-ever book, was in the acknowledgements of a handful of books, and my book collection at least doubled its size. I met some of the best people in the world online and IRL. I joined a bookish fantasy football chat that I didn't realize then would become so ingrained in my daily life that I honestly don't know what I'd do without those friends or how I existed before I talked to them every day. In addition to the blog here and Twitter, I added Instagram to the mix and became addicted to bookish candles.

More than all that easily defined stuff, I changed a lot personally. The world at large has changed so much in five years, and the book community has changed to reflect that, both through positive growth and intense struggle. And I have personally changed as my community has. It has not been an easy five years, but I think I can say I'm a better, wiser, more aware person than I was in 2012, and for that I'm grateful.

So what's next? Well, I'm still not super forward-thinking, but... I guess I keep going. For me, it's very important that blogging always feel like it's fun and enjoyable. It takes up a lot of my time so if I ever feel like it's a chore instead of a hobby, an escape, that's not okay with me. Which is why I might take unannounced breaks, but I have no plans to call it quits permanently. Blogging here at Mary Little Had a Book Blog brings me a lot of joy. Not only do I get to share my love of books with all you lovely readers, but I get to express myself through writing, which is something I take pleasure in, even if I'm not so into fictional writing (lol. I've tried. It did not go well). As long as there are books to be read and discussed and as long as the reading and discussing are enjoyable, I'm going to be here, talking up the books I like and making recommendations.

Thank you all so much for reading my little book blog. It has meant the world over the past five years to know that someone's listening. Here's to many more years together! *hugs*

To celebrate my blogiversary right, I'm hosting a couple giveaways, one for the US & one for international peeps. Scroll to the one that's right for you. I'll also be doing a few others throughout the month so stay tuned for more free books!

US Giveaway
One winner will receive a box of books and a custom 8 oz candle from Flickering Tales. The box will include Gemina by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (signed), The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli (signed), Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser (signed), Dear Martin by Nic Stone, Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills, and [edited to add] The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo (signed). The candle will be designed by the winner with help from Rachael of Flickering Tales. You'll get to pick your own scent combo and the label!

Open to US only. Entrants must be 13+ with parents' permission. Giveaway is open until 12 AM CST January 1. Please enter via Rafflecopter below; winner will be chosen at random, and odds are determined by number of entries. I reserve the right to disqualify any entries that are not in accordance with my giveaway policies as stated in the Review & Site Policies tab at the top of the page. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

INT Giveaway
One winner will receive as many books as $30 (USD) will get you on Book Depository, winner's choice. So you can pick an expensive book or several cheaper ones. Up to you! Open to wherever Book Depository ships for free EXCEPT the US! Entrants must be 13+ with parents' permission. Giveaway is open until 12 AM CST January 1. Please enter via Rafflecopter below; winner will be chosen at random, and odds are determined by number of entries. I reserve the right to disqualify any entries that are not in accordance with my giveaway policies as stated in the Review & Site Policies tab at the top of the page. Good luck!

Edited to add: US peeps, please don't enter this giveaway. I know it sounds tempting, but this is one of the few INT giveaways I've been able to hold. Please let those folks have their chance to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Seriously, thanks for reading everyone. I hope you have a very happy holiday season and a wonderful new year. And again: stay tuned for more giveaways! I have a bunch planned!

Waiting on Wednesday: Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases.

Chaotic Good
by Whitney Gardner
Coming March 13, 2018

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Cosplay, comic shops, and college applications collide in this illustrated novel, perfect for fans of Adam Silvera and Noelle Steveson!

Cameron's cosplay--dressing like a fictional character--is finally starting to earn her attention--attention she hopes to use to get into the CalTech costume department for college. But when she wins a major competition, she inadvertently sets off a firestorm of angry comments from male fans.

When Cameron's family moves the summer before her senior year, she hopes to complete her costume portfolio in peace and quiet away from the abuse. Unfortunately, the only comic shop in town—her main destination for character reference—is staffed by a dudebro owner who challenges every woman who comes into the shop.

At her twin brother's suggestion, Cameron borrows a set of his clothes and uses her costuming expertise to waltz into the shop as Boy Cameron, where she's shocked at how easily she's accepted into the nerd inner sanctum. Soon, Cameron finds herself drafted into a D&D campaign alongside the jerky shop-owner Brody, friendly (almost flirtatiously so) clerk Wyatt, handsome Lincoln, and her bro Cooper, dragged along for good measure.

But as her "secret identity" gets more and more entrenched, Cameron's portfolio falls by the wayside--and her feelings for Lincoln threaten to make a complicated situation even more precarious.

Why I Want It:
I'm loving the increase in "geek" books: books that are unashamed love letters to fandom and include things like cosplay✔, cons, and gaming✔. Plus, I'm all about books that confront dudebros who think that women have to earn cred for their interests, especially when it comes to geeky hobbies or sports. And I haven't played D&D in YEARS, but it was super fun, and I'd love to read a book with a fun campaign in it.

Why I think you should want it:
ALL HAIL FEMINIST GEEKS! Plus, Whitney's writing comes highly recommended.

Review: Dear Martin by Nic Stone

Rating: 5 stars
Release Date: October 17, 2017
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Genre: young adult contemporary realistic fiction
Format/Source: hardcover, from the publisher for the Instagram tour
Status: standalone

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Raw, captivating, and undeniably real, Nic Stone joins industry giants Jason Reynolds and Walter Dean Myers as she boldly tackles American race relations in this stunning debut.

Justyce McAllister is top of his class and set for the Ivy League—but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs. And despite leaving his rough neighborhood behind, he can't escape the scorn of his former peers or the ridicule of his new classmates.

Justyce looks to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for answers. But do they hold up anymore? He starts a journal to Dr. King to find out.

Then comes the day Justyce goes driving with his best friend, Manny, windows rolled down, music turned up—way up, sparking the fury of a white off-duty cop beside them. Words fly. Shots are fired. Justyce and Manny are caught in the crosshairs. In the media fallout, it's Justyce who is under attack.