It’s been a pretty shit year for reading for me. There are many excuses I could list, but mostly, I just haven’t made as much time as I should have. However, I have read several new authors this year. And that is today’s Broke & Bookish Topic! These aren’t necessarily debut authors; they are simply people I’ve never read before. Some have been added to my list of authors to watch. Others probably won’t get a revisit.
Stacey Lee – Under A Painted Sky
I do not like historic fiction. It is not my bag. But I did not hate this book. And that puts Ms. Lee pretty high in my books.
It might sound weird, but I think of peaches as a hopeful fruit. Those juicy little gems that show up for just a few short months in my cold, snow filled world. They’re the symbol of summer and sunshine. Hope and happiness and warmth. Little Peach is anything but hopeful. It is heartbreaking. From the first page to the last, summer heat and childhood are converted from playful innocence to absolute darkness.
Michelle is a young teen who’s lost the only person in her life that might have been able to save her. Once her grandfather dies, she’s left to fend for herself in a house with a mother who actively dislikes her. This is not a distracted mother. This is a legit terrible person. When she finds out her boyfriend has been molesting her child, she blames Michelle and kicks her out of the house. She has so little self-worth (possibly socially reinforced by the way she grew up – we don’t know if this is a systemic issue) that she is scared her fourteen year old is luring her grown adult boyfriend away from her. Even if – and come on, really let’s not even go there -but even if Michelle had flirted with him, who would want the kind of grown man says yeah, this child is the thing I want. Never okay. Ever.
So Michelle sets out looking for a new future with a name and half an address. And she meets a nice woman who tries to help her, but her distrust and fear is so deep she flees in panic. Right into the arms of the man (boy?) who will break her down as far as he can. I knew nothing about this book before I started reading it. I was doing the audiobook, so all I knew was it was short and the reviews I’d glanced at said it was gut wrenching. So I wasn’t sure where we were going. At first, Devon seems like a pretty decent guy. He doesn’t pressure her. He gets her food. He knows where she wants to go and no one else she’s asked has been able to do that. Devon is Michelle’s shining light in this giant city. And he doesn’t look like the people she’s been taught to fear. He’s not a junkie or a flashy tv pimp. He looks safe. He has options. He’s endearing. He cares enough to nickname her Peach. No wonder she goes with him. Continue reading
Our second TBR list this month, but that’s fine. I’m constantly adding books to my list. No need for a big introduction his week. These are all recent additions to the list. Courtney Summers is the only author on this list I’ve ever read so it’s a bit of a crapshoot as to what to expect. Several of these aren’t even out yet, so we’ll see if I’m still interested when their release date actually rolls around.
All the Rage by Courtney Summers
The sheriff’s son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything—friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy’s only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn’t speak up. Nobody believed her the first time—and they certainly won’t now — but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear. Continue reading