This week’s That Artsy Reader Girl topic is a bit wild. Not gonna lie, I can think of one off the top of my head? Maybe two. I made fun of books like this one time in one of my books, and yet, I can’t remember which books I listed. I feel like this is going to be one of those times where I have to list books I haven’t read, too.
Not gonna lie, I totally forgot that Lore by Alexandra Bracken had the MC’s name in the title because I told myself for ages that it was just called Lore because it was about Greek mythology, and I managed to consistently forget that Lore’s name was, in fact, Lore, despite it being in third person. I’ve also been thinking a lot about this book lately, and it’s definitely one that I want to reread because I had such an excellent time with it originally, so maybe I’ll pick this up soon.
If you didn’t think I was going to put Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender on this list, well, then you haven’t been paying too much attention, this book destroyed me and continues to do so over and over again. I can’t wait to reread it at some point this year because there are already parts of it that I know are going to stand out to me even more on the third read than they have previously, and I’m just so excited to fall in love with it all over again.
I was pleasantly surprised to remember there were actually quite a few books that I’d read recently that had names in the titles, and Tyler Johnson Was Here by Jay Coles was one of the first ones to pop up that I hadn’t remembered. I really need to read more by Coles, too, because this book was fast, phenomenal, and got me right in the heart.
I mean, duh. The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow was somehow not the first book I thought of for this list, though it was definitely near the top. I haven’t reread this yet, either, which seems wild to me, and I’ll definitely need to rectify that soon. Harrow writes in a way that’s going to captivate me time and time again, and though I’m excited for what she’s still got up her sleeve, I’d love to revisit her wonderful debut.
The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch by Daniel Kraus is easily one of my favorite books ever, and though I’m not sure I’ll ever end up reading it because it’s also definitely the weirdest duology I’ve ever read, I love being able to shout it out as often as possible. Fair warning that this is vulgar, wacky, probably problematic, and definitely not most people’s cup of tea. The MC is awful, the plot is strange, and the writing is batshit, but it’s so damn good, I end up thinking about it on an almost weekly basis, and it’s been a couple years now since I read it.
I just read Pepper’s Rules for Secret Sleuthing by Briana McDonald, and it was such a delight! I’ll definitely be reading more by McDonald, and I hope that more is more middle grade because she’s got such a good pen for it. I’ll also be recommending this to my mom, who reads to a fourth & fifth grade class, as it’s truly just a wonderful, wholesome little book, and I really hope McDonald does more mystery like this.
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller was an obvious contender for this list because not only is Achilles the star of the show, he’s the one to break all our hearts, too. I still haven’t read Circe yet, thus why it’s not on this list, but you know what I’m realizing? I really do love when titles just get straight to the point and tell you exactly what you’re in for. Like, hey, guess what, this book is about a dude named Achilles, and he’s going to wreck you.
Frankie by Shivaun Plozza was actually the first book I thought of for this list, and it’s been a Minute and a Half since I last read this. It had to have at least been 2016, but I remember it clear as day as though I’d just read it. This was a really interesting, unique story that featured siblings that felt real and a romance that was subtly in the background while we focused on Frankie and all her bullshit instead. It was honestly really lovely, and I need to actually read more of Plozza’s backlist.
I’m more than a little pleased that I was able to include The Lost Future of Pepperharrow by Natasha Pulley on this list, which is probably cheating a bit because Pepperharrow isn’t a main character, and while she does influence a lot in the story, the focus is definitely not on her. But I don’t care! Anytime I get to wave around something that’s got Keita Mori & Thaniel Steepleton in it is a win for me, so here we are! This was such a fantastic sequel to The Watchmaker of Filigree Street, and though I’m heartbroken The Kingdoms didn’t feature Mori, I’m holding out hope that Pulley will quietly weasel him in somewhere else.
And we’re rounding out this very motley crew with Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera, which I’m realizing just now that I never read the graphic novel for. That may need to be a thing that I rectify soon. I’m beginning to sound like a broken record, too, because this book was also such a delight. It felt very warm and cozy to be reading it because it was all so familiar and exactly what I needed at the time, and I can’t wait to see what Rivera does next.