Click on a title to read the synopsis
Authors: Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor
Genre: Science Fiction / Fantasy
From the authors of the New York Times bestselling novel Welcome to Night Vale and the creators of the #1 international podcast of the same name, comes a mystery exploring the intersections of faith and science, the growing relationship between two young people who want desperately to trust each other, and the terrifying, toothy power of the Smiling God.
Nilanjana Sikdar is an outsider to the town of Night Vale. Working for Carlos, the town’s top scientist, she relies on fact and logic as her guiding principles. But all of that is put into question when Carlos gives her a special assignment investigating a mysterious rumbling in the desert wasteland outside of town. This investigation leads her to the Joyous Congregation of the Smiling God, and to Darryl, one of its most committed members. Caught between her beliefs in the ultimate power of science and her growing attraction to Darryl, she begins to suspect the Congregation is planning a ritual that could threaten the lives of everyone in town. Nilanjana and Darryl must search for common ground between their very different world views as they are faced with the Congregation’s darkest and most terrible secret.
My thoughts so far:
As of now, I am about halfway through this book and, as with any Welcome to Nightvale content, I am loving it. The writing style of the entire Welcome to Nightvale series has the ability to immediately put me at ease. Not to mention Cecil Baldwin’s narration of the podcast. The small-town desert setting reminds me of my hometown which is a nice perk. My favorite thing about this book, however, is the humor and the references to society which are hidden between the lines. It has the ability to alter your perspective and laugh at (or perhaps question) everyday human behavior.
This book specifically deals with the intersection between science and religion. It does so with a fake god and fictitious scientific discoveries so that not much is at stake for the reader. This theological conflict, however, is not the main point of the plot. We are simply keen observers of these two characters who are learning to navigate their developing relationship while dealing with contrasting faiths. We recognize in them the fears and desires that we have experienced.
Author: Chloe Benjamin
If you knew the date of your death, how would you live your life?
It’s 1969 in New York City’s Lower East Side, and word has spread of the arrival of a mystical woman, a traveling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the day they will die. The Gold children—four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness—sneak out to hear their fortunes.
The prophecies inform their next five decades. Golden-boy Simon escapes to the West Coast, searching for love in ’80s San Francisco; dreamy Klara becomes a Las Vegas magician, obsessed with blurring reality and fantasy; eldest son Daniel seeks security as an army doctor post-9/11; and bookish Varya throws herself into longevity research, where she tests the boundary between science and immortality.
A sweeping novel of remarkable ambition and depth, The Immortalists probes the line between destiny and choice, reality and illusion, this world and the next. It is a deeply moving testament to the power of story, the nature of belief, and the unrelenting pull of familial bonds.
My thoughts so far:
I am currently only about 20 pages into this novel. I am not far enough to truly judge the character of this book but I can tell that it is not going to be extremely action-packed. This is mainly a character-driven novel where we are meant to observe the character development and family dynamics. While this might not be everyone’s cup of tea, I am enjoying seeing how each of these four characters grow up. So far, I see a lot of myself in Varya and, while I may not have any siblings of my own, empathize with her protective instincts.
To Kill a Kingdom
Author: Alexandra Christo
Genre: YA Fantasy
Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. Until a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own. To punish her daughter, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into the one thing they loathe most—a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian’s heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever.
The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby—it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears. She promises to help him find the key to destroying all of sirenkind for good—But can he trust her? And just how many deals will Elian have to barter to eliminate mankind’s greatest enemy?
My thoughts so far:
This is currently my commute book which I read whenever I have class in the Bronx. First of all, I am completely captivated by mermaids and sirens. When I heard there was a dark retelling of the little mermaid I immediately purchased this book. This is the one I am enjoying the most out of all the books I am currently reading. I love the dark monstrous nature of the sea creatures and the constant battle between loyalty, hate, and love. I am so excited to see where this story goes!
To all the boys I’ve loved before
Author: Jenny Han
Genre: YA Fiction
What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once?
Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.
Why it’s on my TBR:
I don’t really know much about this series outside of this brief synopsis. I am so excited to see the Netflix adaptation as I have heard nothing but good reviews for it. Also, I am thrilled to see lead roles played by people of color. Overall, I am very excited to start this series!