Review: The Bitterwine Oath by Hannah West

The Bitterwine Oath by Hannah West

The Bitterwine Oath
Hannah West
Holiday House
Published December 1, 2020

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About Bitterwine Oath

Every fifty years, a cult claims twelve men to murder in a small Texas town. Can one girl end the cycle of violence – and save the boy who broke her heart?

San Solano, Texas, is a quaint town known for its charm, hospitality, and history of murder. Twice now, twelve men have been brutally killed, and no one knows who did it. A shadowy witch? A copycat killer? Or a man-hating murderess?

Eighteen-year-old Natalie Colter is sure that the rumors about her great-great-grandmother’s cult of wronged women are just gossip, but that doesn’t stop the … Continue reading

Review: Finally Something Dangerous by Doug Cornett

Finally Something Dangerous by Doug Cornett

Finally Something Dangerous
Doug Cornett
Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Published November 22, 2022

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About Finally, Something Dangerous

The mystery-solving trio, the One and Onlys, from Finally, Something Mysterious is back with another whodunit. Robot crows, a poetry-slash-wrestling Club, and a hamster infestation? This looks like another case to tackle!

As the excitement from the last mystery the One and Onlys solved is starting to dwindle, Shanks, Peephole, and Paul worry that their town is back to being boring old Bellwood. But as plans for a shiny town makeover get underway, they realize that the old Bellwood is anything but.

The glee over New Bellwood is palpable, and it’s hard … Continue reading

Review: Looking for True by Tricia Springstubb

Looking for True by Tricia Springstubb

Looking for True
Tricia Springstubb
Margaret Ferguson Books
Published November 1, 2022

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About Looking for True

When two unlikely friends bond over shared compassion for a bereft but lovable dog, they learn what it truly means to find a sense of belonging and identity.

11-year-olds Gladys and Jude live in the same small, rust belt town, and go to the same school, but they are definitely not friends. Gladys is a tiny, eccentric, walking dictionary who doesn’t hesitate to express herself, while Jude likes to keep his thoughts and feelings to himself. But they both agree that a new dog in the neighborhood is being mistreated by its owner.

Gladys … Continue reading

Review: The Luminaries by Susan Dennard

The Luminaries by Susan Dennard

The Luminaries
Susan Dennard
Tor Teen
Published November 1, 2022

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About Luminaries

From Susan Dennard, the New York Times bestselling author of the Witchlands series, comes a haunting and high-octane contemporary fantasy, about the magic it takes to face your fears in a nightmare-filled forest, and the mettle required to face the secrets hiding in the dark corners of your own family.

Hemlock Falls isn’t like other towns. You won’t find it on a map, your phone won’t work here, and the forest outside town might just kill you.

Winnie Wednesday wants nothing more than to join the Luminaries, the ancient order that protects Winnie’s town—and the rest of humanity—from the monsters and nightmares … Continue reading

Review: Direwood by Catherine Yu

Direwood by Catherine Yu

Direwood
Catherine Yu
Page Street Kids
Published September 20, 2022

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About Direwood

In this velvet-clad 1990s gothic horror, Aja encounters a charming vampire who wants to lure her into the woods—just like her missing sister.

No one ever pays attention to sixteen-year-old Aja until her perfect older sister Fiona goes missing. In
the days leading up to Fiona’s disappearance, Aja notices some extraordinary things: a strange fog
rolling through their idyllic suburban town, a brief moment when the sky seems to rain blood, and a
host of parasitic caterpillars burrowing their way through the trees. Aja’s father, the neighbors, and
even her ex-friend Mary all play down this strange string … Continue reading

Review: We Made It All Up by Margot Harrison

We Made It All Up by Margot Wood

We Made It All Up
Margot Harrison
Little, Brown Books
Published July 12, 2022

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About We Made It All Up

Celeste is the talk of the town when she moves to Montana from Montreal, but the only friend she makes is Vivvy, the heir to the town’s name and a social pariah. Inspired by a passion-fueled school incident, they begin writing a love-story fan fic between the popular guy and the school stoner, one that gradually reveals Celeste’s past. While their bond makes Celeste feel safe and alive again, Vivvy keeps prodding Celeste to turn fantasy into reality. When they finally try, one drunken night on a dark mountainside, Celeste … Continue reading