Highlights: December 2021

As of writing this, we still do not have any snow here in good old Minnesota. By mentioning it, however, I’m sure we’ve cursed it to come soon! However, the holiday cheer is all around and we’re both appreciating the extra lights to help lessen the short days and long nights. Good books also help with that, so here is a list of the ones we’re looking forward to this month!

Serena’s Picks:

Book: “The Liar’s Knot” by M. A. Carrick

Publication Date: December 9, 2021

Why I’m Interested: I really enjoyed last year’s “The Mask of Mirrors.” While there are only three true main characters, each have such a plethora of secret identities that it often felt like much more. Their lives and plots all crisscrossed to the extent that even I had trouble tracking it. Given the title we have for the second book, I’m guessing that all of these secrets may come home to roost for our characters, all of whom are immersed in several layered lies. These are hefty books, full of intrigue and adventure, and I can’t wait to see what awaits me in this latest tome!

Book: “The Excalibur Curse” by Kiersten White

Publication Date: December 7, 2021

Why I’m Interested: I know, I know, I haven’t even read/reviewed the second one in this trilogy! But White has yet to ever let me down, so I still feel confident that I will be eventually finishing off this trilogy with “The Excalibur Curse.” Hopefully sooner rather than later! Honestly, I haven’t even looked at the book description for fear of spoiling myself for book two. That said, there are enough intriguing aspects of this cover alone to have me anxiously placing holds at the library for both the second one and this book. I have a few theories about Guinevere’s past, and this cover featuring her drawing what must be Excalibur itself only have me more curious!

Book: “The Midnight Girls” by Alicia Jasinska

Publication Date: December 28, 2021

Why I’m Interested: “Two girls compete for the heart of a prince.” OUT. “Only to find they may be falling for each other.” Annnnnd I’m back in, baby! Plus, this cover is pretty cool. It’s very “Frozen” but Elsa and Anna aren’t sisters and may be into each other. Plus, dueling sorceresses sounds pretty neat. My December TBR list is looking pretty monstrous at this point, but I hope to get to this one soon!

Kate’s Picks:

Book: “A History of Wild Places” by Shea Ernshaw

Publication Date: December 7, 2021

Why I’m Interested: While the previous Ernshaw book I read didn’t really connect with me, I was immediately interested in her adult fiction debut. I mean, you have a cult, two sisters who are starting to question what is happening in their community, and some missing people! All things I enjoy! When Travis Wren is sent to look for missing author Maggie St. Clair and tracks her to the woods where commune Pastoral resides, he soon disappears into the trees as well. A couple years later, sisters Calla and Bee, and Calla’s husband Theo, start to find evidence of the missing people, as well as the part that community leader Levi may have had to play. But Levi has told the commune that venturing out of the area is dangerous, as a plague has overcome the trees. Or has it? It sounds like it has hints of “The Village” meets some kind of Jonestown creepiness!

Book: “If This Gets Out” by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich

Publication Date: December 7, 2021

Why I’m Interested: 2021 was the year that I gave romance a try in earnest, looking for any way to add some light fluffy elements to a stressful time to be alive. And while romance isn’t going to be covered by me on this blog (though look for some exceptions this month, as a treat!), I was still eager to read “If This Gets Out” when I first heard of it. Contemporary romance is fun, and if that romance involves two guys in a popular boy band? Oh yes! Ruben and Zach are members of the well adored boy band Saturday, though both are feeling the pressure of the facade they have to uphold. Ruben especially is having a hard time, as he is gay, but is being kept in the closet for the band’s image. And when Ruben and Zach start to realize that their friendship may be more than just friendship, it gets all the more complicated. As someone who loved NKOTB when she was in kindergarten and the Backstreet Boys in middle school, this premise tickles me.

Book: “The Coldest Touch” by Isabel Sterling

Publication Date: December 7, 2021

Why I’m Interested: Okay, take a look at Serena’s description of “The Midnight Girls”, because it’s basically the same kind of deal here. When you say vampire romance, I will almost certainly say HARD PASS these days. But if you take that vampire romance and make it between two ladies, and neither of them are helpless nor broody? Oh that changes EVERYTHING! Elise is a girl who can see the future deaths of anyone she touches, and when she couldn’t save her brother she was desperate to be rid of her gift. But then she meets Claire, a vampire who has been assigned by other paranormal folks to help her harness her powers as a Death Oracle. As they work together to hone Elise’s powers, and perhaps to prevent the upcoming murder of one of Elise’s teachers, they start to grow closer, no matter how dangerous it could be. I MEAN, this is the kind of vampire romance I can get behind.

What books are you looking forward to this month? Let us know in the comments!

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