Sana Kiyohara has too many secrets. Some are small, like how it bothers her when her friends don’t invite her to parties. Some are big, like the fact that her father may be having an affair. And then there’s the one that she can barely even admit to herself—the one about how she might have a crush on her best friend. When Sana and her family move to California, she begins to wonder if it’s finally time for some honesty, especially after she meets Jamie Ramirez. There are just a few problems: Sana's new friends don't trust Jamie's crowd; Jamie's friends clearly don't want her around anyway; and a sweet guy named Caleb seems to have more-than-friendly feelings for her. Sana always figured that the hardest thing would be to tell people that she wants to date a girl, telling the truth is easy…what comes after it is a whole lot more complicated.
It's not like it's a Secret by Misa Sugiura is about Sana Kiyohara, a Japanese American girl who thinks her dad may be having an affair and is starting to realize she might be lesbian. I thought this was an interesting book. The characters weren't very likeable and many of them were racist, but their thought processes and views of the world were still interesting to read about. The novel discussed a lot of the stereotypes that people make based on race such as Asian are smart or Mexicans are lazy and it showed why these stereotypes are hurtful and untrue. As someone who likes poetry I also enjoyed the role poetry played in this novel. Overall this book made me think about the harms of stereotyping people. I'd recommend reading this if you're interested in books about race and sexuality issues. People who like poetry may also enjoy this novel. I discovered some new poems I like as a result of this novel. It was an enjoyable read.
- Niina, a Two Thumbs Up reviewerCategories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
Years ago, Rachel had a crush on Henry Jones. The day before she moved away, she tucked a love letter into his favorite book in his family’s bookshop. She waited. But Henry never came. Now Rachel has returned to the city—and to the bookshop—to work alongside the boy she’d rather not see, if at all possible, for the rest of her life. But Rachel needs the distraction. As Henry and Rachel work side by side—surrounded by books, watching love stories unfold, exchanging letters between the pages—they find hope in each other. Because life may be uncontrollable, even unbearable sometimes. But it’s possible that words, and love, and second chances are enough.
Words in Deep Blue was an enticing read and one I really enjoyed. The overall story line is easy to follow and the plot is engaging, but it's the sentiment and meaning behind it that did it for me. The topic of books and words and the passion the characters feel for them is amazing. It made my bookish heart melt. This is a great introduction to Cath Crowley's writing style, and I am absolutely enamoured.
This book is beautiful and it will make the reader feel so content once you've finished. It is intriguing despite not being overly complicated or complex. It's perfect for a slump read and yet, it will make you cry tears of joy and a little of sadness. It's simple and straightforward.
Overall, the characters really resonated with me as a reader, and the plot was quite engrossing. I recommend this book to anyone who has read previous books by Crowley, or for new readers looking to read her works. I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars.
- Sabrina, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer
Words in Deep Blue will be available June 6.Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
Queer There, and Everywhere by Sarah Prager is an eye-opening and inspiring book. Though not a member of the LGBTQ* community myself, I have friends who identify as gay or lesbian. and with my interest in history, I thought this book offered a great look into the untold stories of many famous people throughout history.
For example, both Eleanor Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln identified as gay, but that’s not something most people know. What’s more is that the highly respected baseball team, the Los Angeles Dodgers (who famously gave Jackie Robinson a chance in the big leagues) tried to pay one of their homosexual players to marry a women!
Even though these facts were interesting from a historical standpoint, they were not my biggest takeaway. What stood out most to me is how people unwaveringly remained themselves even when they were faced with extremely difficult challenges, such as anti-gay laws. I think that it’s important to recognize the struggles of these people, both past and present, and the fact that issues like this are still a huge problem in 2017.
All in all, I highly recommend this book for anyone, either in the LGBTQ* community or not, because I think that this is an interesting and important book regardless of your sexual orientation.
- Reese, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer
Queer There, and Everywhere will be available May 23.Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
What if you are destined to be something else entirely? Caroline thinks that her fate as a wherryman is sealed, and she is to be like her father and the rest of the Oresteia who deliver shipments (sometimes ilegally) with their wherries across the Riverlands. But at seventeen, the river god hasn't called Caro's name like he did to the rest of her family, and it may never happen. When Caro's father is suddenly captured, a series of plots is set in motion, one that involves shadowmen, pirates, a drakon, lots of gunshot, mysteries, treason and deception.
Song of the Current stays true to the premise that promises a tension-filled and action-packed pirate tale. Not only was the plot line unpredictable, the heroine is equally fantastic and kickass. Although there are a few little spots that I'd have liked different and... less cheesy, I can't ask for a better pirate-themed novel than this one.
Caro is an easily likeable heroine. Although she does come off a little naive at first, she quickly grows into a fierce pirate lady who forces her own path without anyone telling her otherwise. Not only Caro, but Song of the Current also contains a lot of other independent women, like Caro's mother, who defies the social standards of the time and who is equally badass. Another element that I adored about this novel is the unpredictability of it. I like the idea of not knowing what's ahead and being surprised when it happens.The story itself is original and handled well, which is so RARE... I can't stress that enough. Caro also has a love interest that is a bit out of place when compared to the amount of badassery this novel has. Unlike Caro, he is not well-developed and there is a certain abruptness to his change that made it seem quite unnatural. But the romance between them is cute and slowburning, so I'm not exactly complaning here.
All in all, this is a great read for those who like an action-packed novel. I definitely recommend it, and I give this book a 4/5 Stars.
- Phuong, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer
Song of the Current will be available June 6.Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
Jason Zhou survives in a divided society where the elite wear special Jin Corporation suits, protecting them from the pollution and viruses that plague the city, while those without suffer illness and early deaths. Frustrated by his city’s corruption, Zhou is determined to change things. With the help of his friends, Zhou infiltrates the lives of the wealthy in hopes of destroying Jin Corp from within. Jin Corp not only manufactures the special suits the rich rely on, but they may also be manufacturing the pollution that makes them necessary. But against his better judgment, Zhou finds himself falling for Daiyu, the daughter of Jin Corp’s CEO. Can Zhou save his city without compromising who he is, or destroying his own heart?
Want is my very first book by Cindy Pon, and with a realistic take on what the future may very well look, it is definitely one to look out for. This sci-fi novel starts off a little rough, but as the story progressed, I became enamoured.
Though this is a fast-paced story, none of the storyline suffered, especially not its futuristic Taipei setting which was crafted in such a way that made me feel as thought I was right there with the characters. I was fully immersed in the setting and loved feeling as if this story couldn't have taken place anywhere else.
While I also loved the characters, and while Zhou and Daiyu had a few cute scenes, I'm not fully convinced of their romantic relationship. The progression was too fast and too trusting given the circumstances.
Overall I would give this book a 4/5 stars for Want's amazing setting and awesome storyline. Everything about this book stayed true to the sci-fi realm and definitely left me satisfied. You should all add it to your TBR list.
- Sabrina, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer
Want will be available June 13.Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
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