Highlights: September 2019

September signals the end of summer, the start of autumn, and the promise of cozy days and nights. While Kate is eager for the upcoming spooky season and cooler weather, Serena wonders why we can’t just get a LITTLE more sun and warmth before the doldrums of winter arrive. We have some new books on our personal lists that we’re looking forward to, however! Here’s what we can’t wait to read in September!

Serena’s Picks

43316755._sy475_Book: “The Harp of Kings” by Juliet Marillier

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

Why I’m Interested: Confession time: Last Monday while Kate so kindly implied that we both had not finished up the Highlights post, it was definitely all me. She, responsible and on-top-of-it blogger that she is, had her part all done and it was me who completely forgot that yes, the first Monday of the month was indeed already upon us! Thus, now my first highlight choice is a book that I’ve already reviewed. But never say I pass up a chance to brazenly endorse one of my favorite authors every chance I get! “The Harp of Kings” is a wondrous new fantasy novel that brings together pieces of many of Marillier’s past works while setting the stage for what looks to be a compelling new series. If you want to read my full review, it’s here. And, even more, don’t forget to enter our givewaway to win a free copy!

42867937Book: “The Girl the Sea Gave Back” by Adrienne Young

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

Why I’m Interested: I really enjoyed “Sky in the Deep.” It was a historical fantasy novel where the balance definitely veered more towards the historical side with an emphasis on the warring nature of two Viking-esque clans and the young woman who must bring them together to save both. The fact that it was a standalone was also a huge perk. So I was pleased to find out that the author was releasing this book, another standalone, but one that is set in the same world, ten years later. It’s like having your cake and eating it too! More of the same world and mentions of familiar characters, but readers don’t have to wait for years for a continuation of a beloved story, biting their lips hoping for a happy ending! This story seems to follow Halvard, a boy we met in the first book and a young woman, Tova, whose origins and abilities are a mystery. I can’t wait to see how the author draws in past players and expands her world!

44059557._sy475_Book: “The Magnolia Sword: A Ballad of Mulan” by Sherry Thomas

Publication Date: September 10, 2019

Why I’m Interested: This book is every reader’s dream come true, a favorite author taking on a beloved tale that hasn’t been done well in the past (yes, I mean you “Flame in the Mist.”) I’ve only ever read Thomas’s “Lady Sherlock” series, so I know that she can take famous characters and reimagine them in creative ways while also keeping the foundation of what made that character excellent to begin with. That said, I know this tale mostly from the Disney “Mulan” perspective, and I’m curious to see whether Thomas will draw more from the original material than that did? The description sounds pretty inline with the tale I know, a young woman going under cover dressed as a man to join the army. I can’t wait to get my hands on this!

Kate’s Picks

43798285Book: “The Institute” by Stephen King

Publication Date: September 10, 2019

Why I’m Interested: Say it with me: STEPHEN KING!! My favorite author is always going to be at the top of the list whenever he has a new book coming out. But not only is this a new Stephen King book, it incorporates one of my favorite creepy tropes: a shady school setting where kids are in danger! Luke is kidnapped from his house in the middle of the night and taken to The Institute, where kids like him (with special powers) are held and studied. If you cooperate you’re rewarded, if you don’t you’re punished severely. And you can never leave. King seems to be revisiting themes he’s talked in books like “Firestarter”, and honestly I’m totally here for it. On top of that, I pre-ordered the audiobook, and Santino Fontana is going to be the one reading it. I can barely contain my excitement!

39127647Book: “His Hideous Heart” by Dahlia Adler (ed.)

Publication Date: September 10, 2019

Why I’m Interested: I’m warming up to short stories collections, especially if they have a uniting theme and a number of different perspectives. “His Hideous Heart” really appeals to me because, not only is it a number of high profile YA authors, it’s their takes and spins on stories by Edgar Allan Poe! Poe is one of my favorite ‘classic’ authors, and I am very interested to see what a number of modern YA writers will do with his themes and his most famous stories. Some of the contributors are some of my favorites in the YA community, like Stephanie Kuehn and Tiffany Jackson, so that makes me all the more excited to get my hands on this book and devour it.

42369064Book: “The Tea Dragon Festival” by Katie O’Neill

Publication Date: September 17, 2019

Why I’m Interested: A follow up to the adorable and gentle fantasy graphic novel “The Tea Dragon Society” was something that I had hoped for, but didn’t necessarily expect to happen. So when I saw that Katie O’Neill had written a follow up, I freaked out and was so excited to dive back into the world of Tea Dragons! When her mountain village is preparing for a festival to celebrate the Tea Dragons in town, Rinn stumbles upon an ACTUAL Dragon asleep in the woods. But when the Dragon, named Aedhan, wakes up, he tells her that he has been sleeping for decades, and doesn’t know how it happened. As Rinn tries to help Aedhan come back to society as their protector, some familiar faces arrive to try and find out what caused him to sleep for so long. Given how much I LOVED “The Tea Dragon Society”, this follow up is near the top of my anticipation list of the year!

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