On Saturday, Nafiza and I got to go attend Raincoast Books’ Teens Read Fall Preview event. This is definitely a bookish event that I look forward to every year. We get to meet new bloggers every time, meet old friends (*waves at Lindsay*), and fangirl with the wonderful Raincoast team over all the books in-store for us.
There are quite a few books I’m itching to get my hands on that were listed in this catalogue, starting with two books that I managed to get my hands on already:
- Vassa in the Night by Sarah Porter: A modern adaptation of one of my favourite stories, “Vasilisa the Beautiful“, set in Brooklyn: “In Vassa’s neighborhood, where she lives with her stepmother and bickering stepsisters, one might stumble onto magic, but stumbling out again could become an issue. Babs Yagg, the owner of the local convenience store, has a policy of beheading shoplifters—and sometimes innocent shoppers as well. So when Vassa’s stepsister sends her out for light bulbs in the middle of night, she knows it could easily become a suicide mission.“ — [X] The promotional flyer that came in our goody bags is meant to look like a flyer from Babs Yagg’s store, complete with a note about shoplifters being beheaded. You can’t say you weren’t warned!
- Rebel Genius by Michael Dante DiMartino: Lindsay had to remind me to breathe when this one was brought up. A middle-grade novel (and a debut) from the co-creator of Avatar: The Last Airbender and Avatar: The Legend of Korra, this book is all about art and creativity: “In twelve-year-old Giacomo’s Renaissance-inspired world, art is powerful, dangerous, and outlawed. Every artist possesses a Genius, a birdlike creature that is the living embodiment of an artist’s creative spirit. Those caught with one face a punished akin to death, so when Giacomo discovers he has a Genius, he knows he’s in serious trouble …” — [X] I. Can’t. Wait.
- The Cabin by Natasha Preston: This one is definitely up my alley–cabins, woods, creepy murder mystery, yes, yes, and yes! “When Mackenzie treks to a secluded cabin in the woods with six friends, she expects a fun weekend of partying, drinking, and hookups. But when they wake to find two of their own dead and covered in blood, it’s clear there’s a killer among them.”
- With Malice by Eileen Cook: This one was a bit of a treat since the author was present during the event. Cook spoke about her research, the time it took to write it, and how the story came to be, and it looks like this book is something I might really love. Memory seems to be a big theme for me this year, so I’m definitely putting this on my TBR: “Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron wakes up in a hospital room, leg in a cast, stitches in her face and a big blank canvas where the last 6 weeks should be. She comes to discover she was involved in a fatal accident while on a school trip in Italy three days previous but was jetted home by her affluent father in order to receive quality care. Care that includes a lawyer. And a press team. Because maybe the accident…wasn’t an accident. Wondering not just what happened but what she did, Jill tries to piece together the events of the past six weeks before she loses her thin hold on her once-perfect life.” — [X]
- Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova: Nafiza had already alerted me to this book’s existence, but as the Raincoast team book-talked it, I got excited all over again: “Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange markings on his skin. The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland …” — [X] *grabby hands*
- Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo: I confess I still haven’t read Six of Crows, but I remain excited about this series (thanks, Tumblr) and I am impatiently awaiting the arrival of the sequel: “Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties.” — [X]
- Speed of Life by J. M. Kelly: This book just isn’t what I thought I’d be drawn to, but the cover and the (unusual) synopsis immediately capture my attention: “Twins Crystal and Amber have the same goal: to be the first in their family to graduate high school and make something of their lives. When one gets pregnant during their junior year, they promise to raise the baby together. It’s not easy, but between their after-school jobs, they’re scraping by. Crystal’s grades catch the attention of the new guidance counselor, who tells her about a college that offers a degree in automotive restoration, perfect for the car buff she is. When she secretly applies—and gets in—new opportunities threaten their once-certain plans, and Crystal must make a choice: follow her dreams or stay behind and honor the promise she made to her sister.” — [X] Plus, it’s Canadian. 🙂
- Gertie’s Leap to Greatness written by Kate Beasley and illustrated by Jillian Tamaki: Apparently this debut middle-grade novel started a bidding war amongst publishers. I hope it’s that good, but even if it isn’t, I’m happy to gaze at Jillian Tamaki’s art tbh. Of course, it really does sound interesting: “Gertie Reece Foy is 100% Not-From-Concentrate awesome. She has a daddy who works on an oil rig, a great-aunt who always finds the lowest prices at the Piggly Wiggly, and two loyal best friends. So when her absent mother decides to move away from their small town, Gertie sets out on her greatest mission yet: becoming the best fifth grader in the universe to show her mother exactly what she’ll be leaving behind. There’s just one problem: Seat-stealing new girl Mary Sue Spivey wants to be the best fifth grader, too. And there is simply not enough room at the top for the two of them.” — [X]
- Bad Girls Throughout History by Ann Shen: Honestly, it’s just nice to see a feminist history book that inclusive–of gender and sexuality too, I hope–and has such pretty illustrations. I definitely need this for my own: “Aphra Behn, first female professional writer. Sojourner Truth, activist and abolitionist. Ada Lovelace, first computer programmer. Marie Curie, first woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. Joan Jett, godmother of punk. The 100 revolutionary women highlighted in this gorgeously illustrated book were bad in the best sense of the word: they challenged the status quo and changed the rules for all who followed. From pirates to artists, warriors, daredevils, scientists, activists, and spies, the accomplishments of these incredible women vary as much as the eras and places in which they effected change. Featuring bold watercolor portraits and illuminating essays by Ann Shen,Bad Girls Throughout History is a distinctive, gift-worthy tribute.” — [X]
- Other-Wordly written by Yee-Lum Mak and illustrated by Kelsey Garrity-Riley: A punny title! For a book about words! And it’s just so achingly pretty! “Discover words to surprise, delight, and enamor. Learn terms for the sunlight that filters through the leaves of trees, for dancing awkwardly but with relish, and for the look shared by two people who each wish the other would speak first. Other-Wordly is an irresistible gift for lovers of words and those lost for words alike.” — [X] Do want!
W lucked out and got posters of the last one in all our goody-bags. Theonly problem is that I don’t know which side to display–they’re both so pretty!
So, these are just some of the books I’m looking forward to reading and sharing with you all. Thank you to the Raincoast team for planning these fun preview events and inviting us every year. <3
How about you guys? Anything on here interest you? Are you already set for fall reading?