Crazy Stupid Bromance (Bromance Book Club #3) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781984806130
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Published: Berkley - October 27th, 2020

Alexis runs the ToeBeans Cafe, a cat cafe that has also become a refuge for women that have survived sexual assault. Noah is an ex-hacktivist, and one of the only men in the gang that hasn't yet been initiated into the book club. These two have become inseparable friends, but would turning their relationship into something more destroy everything they have? And who is Candi, a woman who arrives claiming to be Alexis' half-sister? ToeBeans Cafe's resident maine coon, Beefcake, was by far one of my favorite characters. I was curled up like a cat all day with this book!

May the Best Man Win Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250625120
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Published: Roaring Brook Press - May 18th, 2021

Jeremy Harkiss is determined to start his senior year off with a bang-- after all, this is the first time he's presenting his authentic and unapologetic self to the world. When he (very publicly) broke up with Lukas that summer, everyone still thought Jeremy was a girl. Despite the heartbreak Lukas still nurses from their failed relationship, he's taking Jeremy's transition in stride, on top of mourning the death of his older brother and their complicated history. Now the boys are going head-to-head in a war for the Homecoming King crown-- and they're not afraid to make waves in the school's population while they duel. You could even say there's still romantic tension beneath their intense rivalry... May the Best Man Win has everything I could ask for: genuine character, emotional depth, and thought-provoking discussions on what it means to be masculine. Last but not least, it's a love story that's messy, vulnerable, and so beautifully real.

Pop Song: Adventures in Art & Intimacy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781646220267
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Published: Catapult - May 4th, 2021

I'm not shy to admit that I don't know a lot about art-- Pham, however, is deeply immersed in all of its forms, and her brilliance shows in every segment of Pop Song. Pham herself is an artist, a world traveler, a lover, and much, much more. In this memoir, she enchantingly describes a select few pieces that have captivated her, relating them to beautiful, painful, and ultimately vulnerable points of her life, whether that be past, present, or future. Pop Song is somehow all of the following: vibrant, quiet, poignant, raw, and blooming. An absolutely stunning account of art and coming-of-age suited for the insightful reader.

Written in the Stars: A Novel Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780063000803
Published: Avon - November 10th, 2020

Step aside, Meg Ryan-- Bellefleur is bringing us Sapphic in Seattle. Darcy, mathematical workaholic, has been burned before in love. She's ready to swear off dating for good, but her brother is relentless when it comes to finding her a girlfriend. The latest candidate is Elle, and THAT was a disaster. It isn't until later that these two form a plan... if they pretend to date for at least a month, Darcy can get her brother off of her back, and perhaps with a woman like her by her side, Elle's family will begin to take her wildly successful astrology business seriously, as well as the person she is. It doesn't take long for their charade to realign into something genuine... Written in the Stars is indeed a fitting title to this striking romantic comedy, keeping me starry-eyed and filled to the brim with fuzzy warmth the whole way through.

Goodbye, Again: Essays, Reflections, and Illustrations Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062880857
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Published: Harper Perennial - April 20th, 2021

In Goodbye, Again, Sun touches on his experiences with anxiety, depression, and surviving with the mindset that productivity equals value in a world where taking a break from the grind feels like failure. This is the book for the people that want to matter, make a difference and leave a mark, but at the same time don't feel like they've achieved enough to deserve it. Jonny's love of plants comes into metaphor often, revealing there's a lot we can learn from them-- growing takes time, rest is a necessity, and sometimes things truly just are the way that they are. Goodbye, Again is without a doubt a book worth revisiting again and again-- Simply and wonderfully healing, a blooming treasure.

The Cat and The City Cover Image
ISBN: 9781786499912
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Published: Atlantic Books - August 1st, 2021

You could consider The Cat and The City to be both a novel and a short story collection-- a nimble calico cat winds her way through the lives of many Tokyo residents; young and old, salarymen and yakuza, and so many more. Some know her well, while others get a glimpse-- there are times you wonder if she can even take on her own human form. These characters range from charming to caustic, worlds intersecting throughout this feline's travels without realizing. Brilliantly connected and put together, you'll want to revisit The Cat and the City again and again to connect the dots of these bustling lives.

What I Carry Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553537741
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Published: Ember - January 26th, 2021

Muiriel's one constant love is nature, but she refuses to put down roots. Born into the foster care system, she's moved through many homes (often willingly). Now, age seventeen, she's put to the test of staying in one place for her senior year on Bainbridge Island in Seattle, and everything about life here is perfect... yet she's determined not to become attached. Longo has a way of writing that brings you niche, extraordinary facts one might not seek out themselves-- I learned a lot about John Muir, Muiriel's namesake, and much more. What I Carry is a book I would happily live inside, and I would gladly read on past its final page.

Before We Disappear Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063025226
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Published: HarperTeen - September 28th, 2021

Jack has been living as an illusionist's assistant in stride without much thought until he finds Wilhelm, a boy held captive for most of his life by a fame-seeking swindler. When the two meet at the 1909 Seattle Alaska–Yukon–Pacific Exposition, there's more than magic in the air-- there's secrets, longing, and a dose of teleportation-- well, the last part is just Wilhelm. Before We Disappear is an enchanting and wonderfully orchestrated historical fantasy packed with illusions both on and off the performance stage! Hutchinson also explores themes of emotional and psychological manipulation at the hands of caretakers and how it can shape one's personality.

A Lot Like Adiós: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062959966
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Published: Avon - September 14th, 2021

It's been over a decade since childhood friends Gabe and Michelle have seen each other after Gabe left her high and dry for college on the other side of the country. Thanks to a twist of fate, the two reconnect when Gabe's colleague contacts Michelle for their gym's brand overhaul. Will they be able to heal the rift that tore them apart all those years ago-- more importantly, can they resist the sensual electric charge that courses between them? A Lot Like Adiós combines business opportunities and second chances in this heated and heartfelt romance.

Stay Gold Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062943187
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Published: Quill Tree Books - August 3rd, 2021

Pony is tired of being known as "the trans kid". When his family relocates in time for senior year, he's more than ready to be seen as the average boy at his new school. Here he locks eyes with Georgia, a cheerleader who's grown tired of popular kid antics, harboring secret dreams of being a writer. Their chemistry is undeniable, but Pony knows he needs to tell her about himself soon if they're going to date. I cannot begin to summarize what this book meant to me-- I devoured it. I'm so thrilled and relieved it exists for the teens of today and tomorrow. Stay Gold is inspiring, empowering, notably humorous, and wonderfully sweet.

Winter Counts: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062968951
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Published: Ecco - July 6th, 2021

Winter Counts is far more than just a crime novel-- it also illustrates the emotional complexities of growing up on the rez, how each person connects with their cultural traditions in different ways, and the work that is still being done to undo the damage that colonization brought. It's rough, beautiful, political, and unapologetically jaw-dropping. I was completely captivated from beginning to end.

Nöthin' But a Good Time: The Uncensored History of the '80s Hard Rock Explosion Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250195753
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Published: St. Martin's Press - March 16th, 2021

I'm not sure I will ever fall in love with a pop culture history book the way I've fallen in love with Nöthin' But a Good Time. Told in a tell-all in interview format from various musicians and bigwigs from the 1980's glam metal scene, I learned even more about all the wild shenanigans of the time, and this book did an incredible job of bringing the sex, drugs, and rock n' roll of the LA strip to life before my eyes. It's been a month since I finished this book and I'm still obsessed with it! I've fallen in love with the glam all over again.

Everyone in This Room Will Someday Be Dead: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982167356
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Published: Atria Books - July 6th, 2021

There's a skeleton inside of everyone, encased in flesh bags, and we are all going to die eventually. These are a few of the main consistent that cycle through Gilda's brain, and they become amplified after a car accident that breaks her arm. The ER professionals are no help with managing her panic attacks, and her family prefers to pretend nothing is wrong. When she walks into a church seeking a mental health support group, Gilda is unintentionally roped into a job as their new receptionist. In dire need of cash. she omits that she's an atheist lesbian and finds herself wrapped up in the mystery death of her predecessor, an elderly woman named Grace. Everyone in This Room Will Someday Be Dead is artfully sardonic and neurotic, a timely portrayal of the millennial struggle. I was completely hooked on Gilda's train of thought and the way that Austin chose to piece together all these moments in Gilda's life leading up to her present.

If the Shoe Fits: A Meant to Be Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781368053372
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Published: Hyperion Avenue - August 3rd, 2021

Fresh out of design school and still grieving the sudden loss of her father, Cindy Woods was supposed to spend her summer nannying her stepmother's triplets, but finds herself (and her adult stepsisters) whisked away as last-minute replacements on a Bachelor-style reality show, Before Midnight. Cindy views this opportunity as a way to get her name out into the world of fashion, but she doesn't expect the suitor to be the kind and charming gentleman she met on the plane ride from NYC to LA. Fate surely can't be real, right? Murphy's adult debut is a fresh, original, and iconic retelling of Cinderella that kept me completely enthralled-- I inhaled this book! Whether you're a romance reader or a reality TV junkie, If the Shoe Fits is a love story worth tuning in to.

The Roommate (The Shameless Series #1) Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780593101605
Published: Berkley - September 15th, 2020

Clara has packed up her East Coast socialite life to shack up with her longtime childhood crush in Los Angeles, but the moment she arrives, he takes off on tour and leaves her with a roommate she's never met before... a male roommate. Josh seems nice, but Clara soon discovers that he's not your average guy-- he's Josh Darling, an iconic adult film star that's quite popular with lady viewers. Always a bit of a prude, Clara is taken aback, but curiosity takes ahold of her... Don't be fooled, The Roommate is far more than just erotic! This novel has a feminist take on sexuality, and the banter + chemistry between Clara and Josh is absolutely sublime. I was completely wrapped up in their hilariously adorable relationship. I also kept picturing Josh as Harry Styles... Oops!

The 2000s Made Me Gay: Essays on Pop Culture Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250760142
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Published: St. Martin's Griffin - June 1st, 2021

This book had me howling with laughter, both from Perry's general sense of humor as well as her personal recollections of media that she and countless others have been shaped by as baby gays. She covers TV, movies, and music from iconic to cringe-y, oftentimes both, and even the worst of them were beloved to some of us: whether that's the aggressive heterosexuality of Disney Channel Original Movies with undeniable LGBT undertones, or the infamous and oversexed The L Word. I got such a kick out of The 2000s Made Me Gay! If you're looking to reminisce and relive the disastrous magic of the 2000s or simply research modern media classics of the era, you HAVE to read this!

This Will Be Funny Someday Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062955708
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Published: Katherine Tegen Books - January 19th, 2021

Isabel has always been the quiet "easy" kid of the family, a do-gooder often left alone at home. The only regular attention she gets is from her controlling boyfriend. Ironically, it's when she's trying to avoid him that she accidentally stumbles headfirst into a stand-up comedy event-- not just as a spectator, but as a performer. On stage she becomes Izzy V., far more clever and funny than the Isabel she's perceived to be. Through comedy and the new friends she makes in the scene, Izzy learns a lot about the people in her life, but most of all herself. There were so many times I saw myself in Izzy, and wished I could reach out to her! I was completely wrapped up in this beautiful, humorous, and bittersweet novel of growing up and self-worth.

Blow Your House Down: A Story of Family, Feminism, and Treason Cover Image
ISBN: 9781640093164
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Published: Counterpoint - April 6th, 2021

Never have I read such a captivating, wrenching, and emotional memoir centered around an affair, a subject that typically brings judgemental grimaces and disdain. Frangello had long been part of a loveless marriage that included mentally taxing outrages and even the occasional push from her husband, but these buildups weighed on her more and more as she reluctantly falls into a clandestine romance she has never felt with such intensity before with a man referenced only as "her lover". Within the confines of her marriage, secrets, and illness, Frangello weaves much speculation and reflection on family, infidelity, chronic pain, and patriarchal double standards in the powerful and salacious Blow Your House Down.

How Moon Fuentez Fell in Love with the Universe Cover Image
ISBN: 9781534448667
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Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - August 10th, 2021

Only words of the highest caliber can be used to describe How Moon Fuentez Fell in Love with the Universe. This novel is phenomenal, extraordinary, spiritual, and breathtaking-- just to name a few. This book cracked open my ribcage and made both my heart and soul ache in the most wonderful way. Moon talks of how flowers become seeds, to flowers again, and how life remakes us anew through all sorts of experiences-- just being on this journey with her had that effect on me. I was wholeheartedly immersed in this stellar narrative of bittersweet healing.

Let's Get Back to the Party Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616209575
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Published: Algonquin Books - February 16th, 2021

Salih's debut novel explores a deep parallel duality between two gay childhood friends that cross paths at a wedding shortly after gay marriage becomes legal nationwide. There's Sebastian, a high school teacher that aches for domestic bliss, and there's Oscar, disgusted by how mainstream and tame his fellow gay men have become, feeling like sideshow entertainment to heteronormative society. While Sebastian finds himself intoxicated by a student's open, free, and innocent gay identity in the modern era, Oscar becomes attached to an author twice his age, glorifying his liberated sexual conquests over the decades, desperate to replicate and live through him.

The Beautiful Things Shoppe: A Gay Small Town Romance Cover Image
ISBN: 9781335940889
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Published: Carina Adores - January 26th, 2021

Oh, how I have fallen in love with the gay, small town haven of New Hope! Refined and high-class Prescott is looking forward to a new start inheriting the local antique shop, but he's in for a rude awakening when he learns that it's not his alone-- No, he has a co-owner named Danny, who is far more interested in retro knickknacks, and their curated collections clash like you wouldn't believe. These rivals have to find a way to make it work if either of them plan to stay in business... and like so many others do upon entering an antique store, they might find something beautiful together that they weren't expecting. The Beautiful Things Shoppe is such a great second look into the Seasons of New Hope series, and I enjoyed it even more than the first! Prescott and Danny are such a wonderfully adorable unlikely duo, and this novel left me with fuzzies galore.

Zodiac Cover Image
ISBN: 9781595147417
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Published: Razorbill - November 10th, 2015

First in a four-book series, Rho Grace is the chosen one to defeat Ophiucus, the 13th Zodiac sign that was exiled so long ago people think he is merely a fairy tale. In this universe, everyone comes from a different planet based on their zodiac sign, and our heroine hails from the Cancer planet. Sci-fi readers and astrology nerds will inhale this series! 

gods with a little g: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250619624
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Published: Picador - November 17th, 2020

Is bittersweetly a word? I got bittersweetly lost in gods with a little g. Despite the fact that I would never want to be trapped in a strict, Evangelist suburb that has its own peculiar laws (nor do most of the characters) I was charmed by the charisma of Helen and her ragtag rebel friends, Aunt Bev's socially condemned psychic shoppe, the confusions of love and lust, the search for answers in a town that doesn't seem to want you, the real you. Even the mundanities of a secluded adolescence give off a feeling of nostalgia. A raw and unflinching novel that will stick with me.

Lucky Caller Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250763532
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Published: Square Fish - January 12th, 2021

Nina, a senior in high school, joins an unlikely group of people for a class elective hosting a radio show. She's expecting a fairly easy A, but finds a whole lot more than just a grade. This gang includes Josh, a longtime friend of the family, and a past rift in their friendship makes things a bit awkward. Emma Mills is one of the few authors I know whose books will NEVER fall short of perfect. Her understanding of the everyday teenager's humor, dialect, and friendships is outstanding. Lucky Caller is another gorgeous, funny, and sweet book under Mills's belt of riveting reads.

The Travelling Cat Chronicles Cover Image
By Hiro Arikawa, Philip Gabriel (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780451491336
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Published: Berkley - October 23rd, 2018

This is such a beautiful and bittersweet novel about a man on a road trip with his darling cat, Nana, narrated by Nana himself. At each stop, you learn a story from the man's childhood that has shaped him and his compassion. This book truly captures the everlasting bond between human and feline, how your companion just might know you better than any person could. The Travelling Cat Chronicles is a heartwarming, engaging tale that I will never forget.

A Thousand Pieces of You (Firebird #1) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062278975
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Published: HarperTeen - November 3rd, 2015

First in a trilogy, our heroine Marguerite's parents invented the Firebird, a device that lets you jump to different dimensions. When their assistant Paul traps Marguerite's father in an unknown dimension, she's determined to hunt Paul down and destroy him. The Firebird trilogy is a dimension-hopping drama that drew me straight into its vortex!

Our Year of Maybe Cover Image
ISBN: 9781481497770
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Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - June 9th, 2020

Sophie and Peter have always had each other, nobody else. Sophie does the biggest thing you can do for your best friend-- she gives Peter her kidney, and opens up his life to endless possibilities... and a lot of them include a life with more than just her in it. This is a stunning dual point-of-view novel that explores Jewish and LGBT identity, friendship strains, unrequited love, and the future. She gave him a kidney, but they both stole my heart, bruised it, and patched me up, feeling changed forever.

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