Jacket Copy: White Stag, the first book in a brutally stunning series by Kara Barbieri, involves a young girl who finds herself becoming more monster than human and must uncover dangerous truths about who she is and the place that has become her home.
As the last child in a family of daughters, seventeen-year-old Janneke was raised to be the male heir. While her sisters were becoming wives and mothers, she was taught to hunt, track, and fight. On the day her village was burned to the ground, Janneke—as the only survivor—was taken captive by the malicious Lydian and eventually sent to work for his nephew Soren.
Janneke’s survival in the court of merciless monsters has come at the cost of her connection to the human world. And when the Goblin King’s death ignites an ancient hunt for the next king, Soren senses an opportunity for her to finally fully accept the ways of the brutal Permafrost. But every action he takes to bring her deeper into his world only shows him that a little humanity isn’t bad—especially when it comes to those you care about.
Through every battle they survive, Janneke’s loyalty to Soren deepens. After dangerous truths are revealed, Janneke must choose between holding on or letting go of her last connections to a world she no longer belongs to. She must make the right choice to save the only thing keeping both worlds from crumbling.
The things I’ve seen are burned into me, like scars that refuse to fade.
Before, she lived inside the fence. Before, she was never allowed to leave the property, never allowed to talk to Outsiders, never allowed to speak her mind. Because Father John controlled everything—and Father John liked rules. Disobeying Father John came with terrible consequences.
But there are lies behind Father John’s words. Outside, there are different truths.
Then came the fire.
Noemi Vidal is a teen soldier from the planet Genesis, once a colony of Earth that’s now at war for its independence. The humans of Genesis have fought Earth’s robotic “mech” armies for decades with no end in sight.
After a surprise attack, Noemi finds herself stranded in space on an abandoned ship where she meets Abel, the most sophisticated mech prototype ever made. One who should be her enemy. But Abel’s programming forces him to obey Noemi as his commander, which means he has to help her save Genesis–even though her plan to win the war will kill him.
Together they embark on a daring voyage through the galaxy. Before long, Noemi begins to realize Abel may be more than a machine, and, for his part, Abel’s devotion to Noemi is no longer just a matter of programming.
Seventeen-year-old Wavy McClintock is a witch with the rare ability to see ghosts. Traumatic events with “city ghosts” when she was a child have forced Wavy into a life of seclusion. She never leaves the safety of Tower Hill, where the local ghosts are easy to spot and avoid.
Niall Tobin is a witch from an outcast family. At seventeen, he is unable to stop his parents when they strip him of his magical soul in a plot to clear their family name. When Niall escapes, he seeks out the only living witness to the murder that ruined his family. His search brings him to Tower Hill.
When a ghost appears to Wavy, revealing a mysterious symbol that sends her on a hunt for answers, she discovers Niall injured in the woods. Convinced that he will die if left alone, Wavy defies her family and agrees to help Niall.
But helping Niall means leaving the safety of her home and facing the ghosts who want nothing more than to tear her apart. As Wavy and Niall work together to learn the truth about the murder, they discover connections that haunt both their families and uncover long-buried secrets that will change their lives forever.
Every town has a secret… but Davenport has the darkest of them all…
Life is rough for eleven-year-old Wyatt Dumont. He’s too small to fend off his mean older sister, and the school bully picks on him every day. But life changes when his mother is offered a job in the secretive town of Davenport. Wyatt is excited for the move until he notices that some of the townsfolk are more than human. There s a man with green skin and gills, and a middle school teacher with red eyes and fangs! Even Wyatt s new classmates are a spark elf and a wulfyn–a werewolf, but don t call him that… or else!
Wyatt is panicked. But nothing alarms him more than the darkest secret of all: Davenport hasn’t seen the sun in over four hundred years. Wyatt quickly becomes obsessed with the town’s mysteries, and he begins to uncover the truth–one deadly secret at a time.
Julia Vanishes by Catherine Egan – Witch’s Child #1
Read by Erin Spencer and Will Damron
Julia has the unusual ability to be . . . unseen. Not invisible, exactly. Just beyond most people’s senses.
It’s a dangerous trait in a city that has banned all forms of magic and drowns witches in public Cleansings. But it’s a useful trait for a thief and a spy. And Julia has learned–crime pays.
She’s being paid very well indeed to infiltrate the grand house of Mrs. Och and report back on the odd characters who live there and the suspicous dealings that take place behind locked doors.
But what Julia discovers shakes her to the core. She certainly never imagined that the traitor in the house would turn out to be . . . her.
Genre: YA / Urban Fantasy / Steampunk-ish
Story Rating: **** (4 stars)
Narration Rating: *** (3 stars)
What Are You Reading Wednesdays is a weekly meme hosted by It’s A Reading Thing. To participate, open the book you are currently reading to page 34 (or 34% in your ebook) and answer these three questions.
The Questions are:
1. What’s the name of your current read?
2. Go to page 34 in your book or 34% in your eBook and share a complete sentence. (or two!)
3. Would you like to live in the world that exists within your book? Why or why not?
Now for my answers this week…
2. Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray – Book #2 of the Diviners series
I’m listening to the audiobook, and January LaVoy is narrating again – yay! (See my review of the audiobook edition of The Diviners if you don’t know why I’m so happy about that.)
2. Well, it’s an audiobook, so it’s hard to find page 34! 🙂 Here are a few random quotes instead….
For dreams, too, are ghosts, desires chased in sleep, gone by morning.
It was funny how one afternoon with a best friend could set a girl right.
This is how it is now. There is strength in acceptance, Ling. Your legs have been taken from you. But how you choose to live with that has not.
3. The story takes place in the 1920’s in New York City. I’d love a peek, but I wouldn’t want to stay. Couldn’t do without all of my more modern conveniences, or my right to vote!!
What’s everyone else reading this week?