We have a nice collection of books to look forward to this week with a few contemporary realistic fiction novels, one fantasy anthology, and a story with a bit of a mystery.
If You Still Recognize Me by Cynthia So
Elsie has a crush on Ada, the only person in the world who truly understands her. Unfortunately, they’ve never met in real life and Ada lives an ocean away. But Elsie has decided it’s now or never to tell Ada how she feels. That is, until her long-lost best friend Joan walks back into her life.
In a summer of repairing broken connections and building surprising new ones, Elsie realises that she isn’t nearly as alone as she thought. But now she has a choice to make… — Cover image and summary via Goodreads
Magic Has No Borders edited by Sona Charaipotra and Samira Ahmed
A pair of star-crossed lovers search for a way back to one another against all odds…
A girl fights for her life against a malignant, generations-old evil…
A peri seeks to reclaim her lost powers…
A warrior rebels against her foretold destiny…
From chudails and peris to jinn and goddesses, this lush collection of South Asian folklore, legends, and epics reimagines stories of old for a modern audience. This fantasy and science fiction teen anthology edited by Samira Ahmed and Sona Charaipotra contains a wide range of stories from fourteen bestselling, award-winning, and emerging writers from the South Asian diaspora that will surprise, delight, and move you. So read on, for after all, magic has no borders.
With stories by:
▪Sabaa Tahir, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Ember in the Ashes series, and winner of the National Book Award and Printz Award for All My Rage
▪Sayantani DasGupta, New York Times bestselling author of the Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond series
▪Preeti Chhibber, author of Spider-Man’s Social Dilemma
▪Sona Charaipotra, author of Symptoms of a Heartbreak and How Maya Got Fierce, and coauthor of The Rumor Game and Tiny Pretty Things, now a Netflix original series.
▪Tanaz Bhathena, award-winning author of Hunted by the Sky and Of Light and Shadow
▪Sangu Mandanna, bestselling author of The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches and the Celestial Trilogy
▪Olivia Chadha, author of Rise of the Red Hand
▪Nafiza Azad, author of William C. Morris Award nominee, The Candle and the Flame
▪Tracey Baptiste, New York Times bestselling author of The Jumbies series and Minecraft: The Crash
▪Naz Kutub, author of The Loophole
▪Nikita Gill, bestselling author of Wild Embers and Fierce Fairytales
▪Swati Teerdhala, author of the Tiger at Midnight trilogy
▪Shreya Ila Anasuya, New Voices selection
▪Tahir Abrar, New Voices selection
— Cover image and summary via Goodreads
The Luis Ortega Survival Club by Sonora Reyes
Balzer & Bray/Harperteen
Ariana Ruiz wants to be noticed. But as an autistic girl who never talks, she goes largely ignored by her peers, despite her bold fashion choices. So when cute, popular Luis starts to pay attention to her, Ari finally feels seen.
Luis’s attention soon turns to something more, and they have sex at a party—while Ari didn’t say no, she definitely didn’t say yes. Before she has a chance to process what happened and decide if she even has the right to be mad at Luis, the rumor mill begins churning—thanks, she’s sure, to Luis’s ex-girlfriend, Shawni. Boys at school now see Ari as an easy target, someone who won’t say no.
Then Ari finds a mysterious note in her locker that eventually leads her to a group of students determined to expose Luis for the predator he is. To her surprise, she finds genuine friendship among the group, including her growing feelings for the very last girl she expected to fall for. But in order to take Luis down, she’ll have to come to terms with the truth of what he did to her that night—and risk everything to see justice done. — Cover image and summary via Goodreads
Forever is Now by Mariama J. Lockington
Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Byr)
I’m safe here.
That’s how Sadie feels, on a perfect summer day, wrapped in her girlfriend’s arms. School is out, and even though she’s been struggling to manage her chronic anxiety, Sadie is hopeful better times are ahead. Or at least, she thought she was safe. When her girlfriend reveals some unexpected news and the two witness a violent incident of police brutality unfold before them, Sadie’s whole world is upended in an instant.
I’m not safe anywhere.
That’s how Sadie feels every day after–vulnerable, uprooted. She retreats inside as the weeks slip by and relies on her phone to stay connected to the outside world. When Sadie’s therapist gives her a diagnosis for her debilitating panic–agoraphobia–she starts on a path of acceptance and healing. Meanwhile, Sadie’s best friend, Evan, updates her on the protests taking place in their city. Sadie wants to be a part of it, to use her voice and affect change. But how do you show up for your community when you can’t even leave your house?
I can build a safe place inside myself.
That’s what Sadie learns over the course of one life-changing summer, with some help from her family, her best friend, an online platform for activists, and a magnetic crush she develops for the new boy next door. — Cover image and summary via Goodreads