mid-year freak out tag

Hello everyone!

I hope everyone is doing well. I am here very very late to do a mid-year check in on the books I’ve read so far, and what I’m looking forward to reading this year as well. I know that I should have done this much earlier in July so please forgive me for only posting this now. I swear I know how years work.

I just wanted to add that yesterday (or perhaps earlier?) I saw I hit 150 followers on this blog, which is so exciting!! Thank you everyone for following and reading my posts. It’s been so lovely being able to talk about my recent/favourite reads, and get to know such lovely people here in the blogsphere. I appreciate you all so much 💛💛💛

Okay enough gushing, let’s get into the post.

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Mini Reviews: Radha + Jai, This Poison Heart, Capsule

Hello everyone! Today I’m bringing three mini reviews I’ve written about some of my recent reads.

I haven’t had the time to read much lately or write full length reviews, but I also really wanted to write some small reviews for these books, so here we go! 💖

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anticipated releases: the second half of 2021

Now that we are over halfway through 2021 – which I can barely fathom, where has the time gone?? – I thought I’d share some of the books I’m highly anticipating for the second half of this year!

2021 has already had some really brilliant releases (e.g Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating, my absolute beloved) so I’m really hoping that these live up to my expectations. Also, to keep this post as short as I could, I had to narrow it down to 12 books, so there’s a bunch more books coming this year that I’m looking forward to as well 💛

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June wrap-up

Happy July, everyone!

I hope everyone had a wonderful June. Is it just me or did the month seem to last forever? I can’t tell if it’s because my work days felt so long and I also read a surprising amount that the days seemed to drag on.

I had a pretty good reading month despite it all, reading about 13 books this month – though this includes 2 graphic novels and 2 short stories. And a surprising amount of my reads were 4-5 stars so I’m really happy about that!

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Review: The Ghosts We Keep

Title: The Ghosts We Keep
Author: Mason Deaver
Publication date: June 1st 2021
Age-range/genre: Young-Adult; LGBT+, Contemporary,
Trigger warnings: death of a family member, self-harm, suicide ideation, mentioned transphobia, gender dysphoria, panic attacks, mental illness.
Rating: 5/5 stars
Summary:

When Liam Cooper’s older brother Ethan is killed in a hit-and-run, Liam has to not only learn to face the world without one of the people he loved the most, but also face the fading relationship with his two best friends.

Feeling more alone and isolated than ever, Liam finds themself sharing time with Marcus, Ethan’s best friend, and through Marcus, Liam finds the one person that seems to know exactly what they’re going through, for the better, and the worse.

This book is about grief. But it’s also about why we live. Why we have to keep moving on, and why we should.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The Ghosts We Keep is a moving and devastating story about our main character, Liam, dealing with the loss of their brother and all the things that come with grief and sadness from losing a loved one. The whole book is raw and genuine. Deaver says in the author’s note that this is a personal story to them, and you can feel it on the page, in every moment of heartbreak, in every chapter.

Warning: this book and review talks a lot about death and grief, so please proceed with caution.

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ARC Review: Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun

Title: Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun
Author: Jonny Garza Villa
Publication date: June 8th 2021
Age-range/genre: Young-Adult; LGBT+, Contemporary, Romance
Trigger warnings: homophobia, forced outing, racism, abusive family member (physical and emotional), suicidal ideation, referenced death of a parent (in the past)
Rating: 4/5 stars
Summary:

Julián Luna has a plan for his life: Graduate. Get into UCLA. And have the chance to move away from Corpus Christi, Texas, and the suffocating expectations of others that have forced Jules into an inauthentic life.

Then in one reckless moment, with one impulsive tweet, his plans for a low-key nine months are thrown—literally—out the closet. The downside: the whole world knows, and Jules has to prepare for rejection. The upside: Jules now has the opportunity to be his real self.

Then Mat, a cute, empathetic Twitter crush from Los Angeles, slides into Jules’s DMs. Jules can tell him anything. Mat makes the world seem conquerable. But when Jules’s fears about coming out come true, the person he needs most is fifteen hundred miles away. Jules has to face them alone.

Jules accidentally propelled himself into the life he’s always dreamed of. And now that he’s in control of it, what he does next is up to him.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

FHMFTS was an amazing debut coming-of-age novel that had me feeling a rollercoaster of emotions the entire way through, and I enjoyed all of it.

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April-May Wrap Up

Hello everyone and happy June!

I hope everyone is doing well!

I know it’s a little late but here’s my wrap up for April and May. Both months I was pretty busy because of Ramadan and work, so I didn’t get to read as much as I hoped (and I’ve ignored almost all the ARCs I’ve gotten approved for). The good news is I got my first dose of the vaccine during this time and I’m getting my second dose in a few weeks.

Of course, before I get into anything I have to discuss the fact that India is experiencing an overwhelming second wave of COVID-19 right now – I really encourage everyone to try to read up on what’s happening and, if you’re in a position to, consider donating to help (you can also donate here). Likewise, I urge everyone to read about what’s happening in Palestine and donating to help the people in Gaza.

So, without further ado, here’s my wrap up! I read altogether 5 books in April and 11 books in May, so I haven’t included all these books, but these are most of them that stood out to me 💛

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june tbr list + anticipated releases

Hello everyone! I I hope everyone has had a wonderful May 💛

So first off, how is almost June already? Almost half of 2021 has flown by, which is very different to how 2020 dragged on. With a new month comes many new releases I want to read, as well as a lot of already released books that I want to finally get around to reading once June begins.

I’m a little apprehensive about making this post because I rarely stick to tbr lists, but I am going to try my best! So, without further ado, here is my to read list for June.

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ARC Review: Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating

Title: Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating
Author: Adiba Jaigirdar
Publication date: May 25th 2021
Age-range/genre: Young-Adult; LGBT+, Contemporary, Romance
Trigger warnings: biphobia, bullying, islamophobia
Rating: 5/5 stars
Summary:

Everyone likes Humaira “Hani” Khan—she’s easy going and one of the most popular girls at school. But when she comes out to her friends as bisexual, they invalidate her identity, saying she can’t be bi if she’s only dated guys. Panicked, Hani blurts out that she’s in a relationship…with a girl her friends absolutely hate—Ishita “Ishu” Dey. Ishu is the complete opposite of Hani. She’s an academic overachiever who hopes that becoming head girl will set her on the right track for college. But Ishita agrees to help Hani, if Hani will help her become more popular so that she stands a chance of being elected head girl.

Despite their mutually beneficial pact, they start developing real feelings for each other. But relationships are complicated, and some people will do anything to stop two Bengali girls from achieving happily ever after.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I’ve been anticipating this book ever since it was announced, being a big fan of Adiba’s debut novel The Henna Wars, and it certainly lived up to my expectations! Hani and Ishu is a sweet coming-of-age novel about culture and sexuality and friendship and family, and I enjoyed every bit of it.

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