BOOKENDS: June, July, August, & September 2021

I fell off the entire book internet thing because work has been so much busier than I expected, and it’s hard to get motivated about books when a majority of my books are still in limbo because I cannot get a hold of my moving company to actually set a date. However, now that work has evened out a little bit and I’m reading a lot of new things, I’m more motivated to post again. I have also made the decision to pivot mostly to library reads and digital reading to save money! It’s definitely easy to get caught up in the consumerism side of blogging/bookstagram, and to me it should be about the reading rather than the accumulation of shiny things.


I am in between books, and realized I actually did bring The Big Book of Science Fiction with me! I haven’t read anything from it yet, and I’ve been focusing on review copies and library reads. I am in between other books too, as I like to read 3-4 books at a time aside from the anthology. I’ve been venturing into the horror genre a little bit more, and I’m enjoying it, although I generally read them during the day so I don’t keep myself up too late at night. 👀

📚 bookshelf pick  |  📓 physical review copy  |  📱 digital review copy | ⌛️ library/borrowed | 💾 ebook | 🎧 audiobook  |  💞 reread

📱 My Heart is a Chainsaw – Stephen Graham Jones (15%, thank you Gallery/Saga Press!)
📓 Yours Cruelly, Elvira – Cassandra Peterson (33%; thank you, Hachette Books!)
📚 The Big Book of Science Fiction – edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer (32%)


I read 10 books in June, 11 books in July, 7 books in August, and 9 books in September.

📚 bookshelf pick  |  📓 physical review copy  |  📱 digital review copy | ⌛️ library/borrowed | 💾 ebook | 🎧 audiobook  |  💞 reread

📱 Cool for the Summer – Dahlia Adler (Thank you, Wednesday Books!)
🎧 The Diviners – Libba Bray
📚 Beach Read – Emily Henry
⌛️ The Helm of Midnight – Marina J. Lostetter
⌛️ The Siren – Katherine St. John
📓 Chosen Ones – Veronica Roth (Thank you, Mariner Books!)
📚 Dick Fight Island – Reibun Ike
⌛️ Bring Me Their Hearts – Sara Wolf
📚 The Beautiful Ones – Silvia Moreno-Garcia
⌛️ Crying in H-Mart – Michelle Zauner

📓 One Last Stop – Casey McQuiston (Thank you, St. Martin’s Griffin!)
🎧 Lair of Dreams – Libba Bray
⌛️ A Master of Djinn – P. Djélì Clark
📓 The Queer Principles of Kit Webb – Cat Sebastian (Thank you, Avon!)
⌛️ Piranesi – Susanna Clarke
⌛️ Minor Feelings – Cathy Park Hong
⌛️ We Were Liars  – E. Lockhart
📓 The Agitators – Dorothy Wickenden (Thank you, Scribner Books!)
💾 Ice Planet Barbarians – Ruby Dixon
📚 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight – Anonymous
🎧 Before the Devil Breaks You – Libba Bray

📓 Earth’s Wild Music – Kathleen Dean Moore (Thank you, Counterpoint Press!)
📓 Faultlines – Emily Itami (Thank you, Custom House!)
📚 The Rakess – Scarlett Peckham
📚 Mythology – Edith Hamilton
⌛️ The World Gives Way – Marissa Levien
📚 The Outside – Ada Hoffmann
💞 Beauty Sleep – Cameron Dokey

💞 Before Midnight – Cameron Dokey
⌛️ Revelations – Mary Sharratt
⌛️ Ring Shout – P. Djélì Clark
⌛️ Tender is the Flesh – Agustina Bazterrica
⌛️ Black Water Sister – Zen Cho
⌛️ The Warrior Knight and the Widow – Ella Matthews
📓 The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina – Zoraida Cordova (Thank you, Atria Books!)
📚 Lessons in French – Laura Kinsale
💞 Sirena – Donna Jo Napoli



I recently updated my Edelweiss information, and now I have access to a lot of e-arcs. I tried not to go download happy, but three of these (The Ex Hex, Sea of Tranquility, and What Moves the Dead) are among my most anticipated. And for What Moves the Dead, as soon as I heard it was an Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher” retelling, immediately shot to the top of the list and I was so excited to see it already posted as an e-arc. All of these fit an eerie, spooky vibe for spooky szn 👻👻👻.

📚 bookshelf pick  |  📓 physical review copy  |  📱 digital review copy | ⌛️ library/borrowed | 💾 ebook | 🎧 audiobook  |  💞 reread

📚 The Death of Jane Lawrence – Caitlin Starling
📚 Velvet Was the Night – Silvia Moreno-Garcia
📱 The Ex Hex – Erin Sterling (Thank you, Avon!)
📱 Sea of Tranquility – Emily St. John Mandel (Thank you, Knopf!)
📱 What Moves the Dead – T. Kingfisher (Thank you, Tor Nightfire!)


It’s definitely time to get back into reading YA fantasy, because omg, so many good titles are out/coming out.

📚 bookshelf pick  |  📓 physical review copy  |  📱 digital review copy | ⌛️ library/borrowed | 💾 ebook | 🎧 audiobook  |  💞 reread

📚 Iron Widow – Xiran Jay Zhao
📚 Six Crimson Cranes – Elizabeth Lim
📚 Vespertine – Margaret Rogerson
📱Jade Fire Gold – June CL Tan
📱The Keeper of Night – Kylie Lee Baker


GAMING: I bought the HD rerelease of Skyward Sword, and I think the next Switch game I’m getting is Graveyard Keeper.

TV: I’ve watched most of Shadow of Bone, I really enjoyed Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki so far seems like a treat!

MOVIES: I have seen so many since settling in because with my Regal Unlimited card, it’s an easy, relatively inexpensive thing to do. The Green Knight and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.


Nothing exciting to report as I’m still waiting to hear back regarding my stuff from the movers, and that’s been an adventure.


BOOK REVIEW: A Spindle Splintered, by Alix E. Harrow

BOOK REVIEW: A Spindle Splintered, by Alix E. HarrowTitle: A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow
Series: Fractured Fables #1
Published by Tordotcom
Published: October 5th 2021
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 128
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher, Work
Buy: Bookshop(afflilate link)

USA Today bestselling author Alix E. Harrow's A Spindle Splintered brings her patented charm to a new version of a classic story.

It's Zinnia Gray's twenty-first birthday, which is extra-special because it's the last birthday she'll ever have. When she was young, an industrial accident left Zinnia with a rare condition. Not much is known about her illness, just that no one has lived past twenty-one.

Her best friend Charm is intent on making Zinnia's last birthday special with a full sleeping beauty experience, complete with a tower and a spinning wheel. But when Zinnia pricks her finger, something strange and unexpected happens, and she finds herself falling through worlds, with another sleeping beauty, just as desperate to escape her fate.

Alix E. Harrow’s A Spindle Splintered has been touted as fairy tales meets Into the Spider-Verse, and I can’t agree more with the comps. For all its historical and narrative weirdness, Sleeping Beauty is one of my favorite fairy tales. I love the Disney animated version, I fell in love with Robin McKinley’s Spindle’s End, and I got my hands on as many retellings of Sleeping Beauty in any length and form.

The first of a novella duology, A Spindle Splintered follows Zinnia Gray, a young woman born with a fatal condition due to an industrial accident, who finds comfort in the stories of Sleeping Beauty. She, too, thinks of herself as cursed, and falling asleep, only to wake to true love, is just the sort of comfort she needs at a time where her own world is figuratively and literally breaking down

Charm, Zinnia’s best friend, throws a Sleeping Beauty-themed party on her twenty-first birthday, and Zinnia touches a spindle that sends her to a medieval fairy tale world in which she meets Briar Rose, the traditional titular character in a Sleeping Beauty story with which we’re all familiar. From there, the story takes off on its multiverse bent, exploring and shattering tropes and genre expectations that turns the entire concept of a multiverse fairy tale world into a page-turning read. I loved the nods to the fairy tale retelling writers I grew up with, and all of the nods to fairy tale tropes in general.

If you enjoy fairy tales and their retellings, A Spindle Splintered needs to be on your TBRs.