ANTICIPATED FEBRUARY 2020 RELEASES

Each month, we’ll be putting together a list of our top most anticipated releases; from romance, to sci-fi, to fantasy, and everything in between. These releases might be ones we’re counting down the days for or ones we’ve already read and want you to read (and love!), too.

What you do need to bear in mind is that living on different continents we have different release dates. So as a general rule there might be some repeats from one month to the next.. it’s not that we’re just being weird. Though we can’t dismiss that totally out of turn.


For February, our hotly anticipated titles, in chronological order, are :

AN EVERYDAY HERO by Laura Trentham is the second in her Heart of a Hero series. This is a complete standalone and with unconnected characters from book one but it was a fantastic continuation of the theme of soldiers now home, learning to live life as a civilian again. This great military romance releases on February 4, 2020.

YES NO MAYBE SO by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saaed is a politically immersed YA set around elections, canvassing and has a real feel of current climates. The main characters are Muslim and Jewish with lots of cuteness thrown in. It releases on February 4, 2020 and we have a review in the pipeline for this.

THE KING OF CROWS is the fourth book in the Diviners series by Libba Bray. We don’t even want to post the synopsis of this one, being the final in a series, but we know this is much anticipated and fans have been (im)patiently waiting for this conclusion. Grabby hands can get grabby on February 4, 2020.

If you are ready for a retelling with a fresh take then look no further than THE STARS WE STEAL by Alexa Donne. This book is a twist on Persuasion, set in space and with a fleet of ships. There’s royalty, crime and love on the menu and this also releases on February 4, 2020.

GROWN UPS by Marian Keyes is a family-centric tale with relatable drama told in that special, funny way that only this author can. Expect the serious along with the funny and you won’t be disappointed in this women’s fiction offering. Grown Ups releases on February 6, 2020.

This YA contemporary sneaked along with some unique themes. WHAT KIND OF GIRL by Alyssa B Sheinmel addresses the issue of dating abuse in this age group. It was a compelling read and Micky really found it enjoyable despite the subject area. If you enjoy a serious YA, then check out this release on February 6, 2020.

THE MERCIES by Kiran Millwood Hargrave is a historical and fantastical tale set in Norway in the 1600s. This is a story about feminism, oppression and a literal witch hunt. We couldn’t be more excited for it on February 6, 2020.

BOOK OF ORLANDO by Laura Lascarso is the first in a paranormal trilogy about angels, devils, and so much more. It’s a little dark, a whole lot queer, and hot as hell. You definitely need this one on your radar and on February 7, 2020, you can get it on your kindle, too!


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

WHAT MAKES US DNF

Photo by Lacie Slezak on Unsplash

We’re both different creatures when it comes to DNFs and who, what, when, and why. Micky is all about life being too short to read something that really isn’t working for her and Hollis is a trooper through and through, working to get that book finished.

Let’s talk about why we DNF and share our DNFs for 2019.


Micky here and I have tried to modify my DNF behaviour after having some stats in 2017 that I didn’t like. That year, I felt I was a little too quick to DNF, so 2018 & 2019 I tried to find a balance between not keeping reading when it’s never going to work, but forging on when I’m just not in the mood. I think I’ve found a bit more of an equilibrium that I am happier with, but I try really hard not to DNF arcs. That said, there were a few arc DNFs in 2019. Looking at what I did DNF, the majority of DNFs were romance.

Micky’s 2019 DNFs – 14 books

THE KINGMAKER by Kennedy Ryan — mini GR review here
INTO THE CROOKED PLACE by Alexandra Christo (ARC) — blog review here
THE FLATSHARE by Beth O’Leary — mini GR review here
TELL THE WOLVES I’M HOME by Carol Rifka Brunt — mini GR review here
HER ROYAL HIGHNESS by Rachel Hawkins — mini GR review here
WILDCAT by Max Monroe — I have nothing!
PRISONED by Marni Mann — mini GR review here
MILLION DOLLAR DEVIL by Katy Evans — mini GR review here
THE TRAGEDY PAPER by Elizabeth LaBan — minutest of GR reviews here
NEIGHBORS by Stylo Fantome — see mini GR review here
MIDNIGHT BLUE by LJ Shen — mini GR review here
ONE TINY LIE by KA Tucker — mini rant on GR here
MOONGLOW by Kristen Callihan — mini GR review here
THE GILDED WOLVES by Roshani Chokshi (ARC)– mini GR review here


Hollis, meanwhile, only seems to DNF ARCs. Though I try really hard not to quit on anything, particularly before the halfway mark, I am getting better at it both for the sake of my sanity and to have a few less lowly rated and/or ranty reviews. Not sure that’s made much of a different on either, to be honest, but the intent is there. Looking through my list there’s almost a fifty/fifty split between contemporary and fantasy and I think likewise half of these are debuts. I love discovering new authors, hoping I might love them, but as this list demonstrates.. that’s not always the case.

Hollis’ 2019 DNFs – 9 books

CALL ME EVIE by J.P. Pomare — mini GR review here
TAROT by Marissa Kennerson — mini GR review here
HIGHLAND CROWN by May McGoldrick — mini GR review here
ROMANOV by Nadine Brandes — mini GR review here
WE CONTAIN MULTITUDES by Sarah Henstra — mini GR review here
NATALIE TAN’S BOOK OF LUCK AND FORTUNE by Roselle Lim — mini GR review here
BEYOND THE BLACK DOOR by A.M. Strickland — mini GR review here
A MADNESS OF SUNSHINE by Nalini Singh — mini GR review here
DIAMOND CITY by Francesca Flores — mini GR review here


Do you DNF and, if so, is there a common theme amongst the books you quit? How many did you DNF in 2019? Let us know!

TWEET CUTE by Emma Lord – blog tour & review!

Meet Pepper, swim team captain, chronic overachiever, and all-around perfectionist. Her family may be falling apart, but their massive fast-food chain is booming — mainly thanks to Pepper, who is barely managing to juggle real life while secretly running Big League Burger’s massive Twitter account.

Enter Jack, class clown and constant thorn in Pepper’s side. When he isn’t trying to duck out of his obscenely popular twin’s shadow, he’s busy working in his family’s deli. His relationship with the business that holds his future might be love/hate, but when Big League Burger steals his grandma’s iconic grilled cheese recipe, he’ll do whatever it takes to take them down, one tweet at a time.

All’s fair in love and cheese — that is, until Pepper and Jack’s spat turns into a viral Twitter war. Little do they know, while they’re publicly duking it out with snarky memes and retweet battles, they’re also falling for each other in real life — on an anonymous chat app Jack built.

As their relationship deepens and their online shenanigans escalate — people on the internet are shipping them?? — their battle gets more and more personal, until even these two rivals can’t ignore they were destined for the most unexpected, awkward, all-the-feels romance that neither of them expected.


Title : Tweet Cute
Author : Emma Lord
Format : eARC
Page Count : 368
Genre : YA contemporary
Publisher : Wednesday Books
Release Date : January 21, 2020

Reviewer : Hollis
Rating : ★ ★ ★ ★ .5


Hollis’ 4.5 star review

So, before actually starting this book, I had a feeling this would be cute (and honestly that’s as high as my hopes were because I’ve been burned before!) but by 49% I knew I would love this. And I did. Side note, I know 49% doesn’t sound impressive considering it’s halfway through the book and most people can see the writing on the wall by that point, but this felt.. long. Not in a bad way, but this is a substantial romance read, so. I don’t know, I don’t know why I’m defending this point, regardless, I loved it, let’s move on!

This contemporary is chock full of all the best kind of tropes. Opposites attract, secret identities, business rivalry, slowburn, friends-to-more.. also, lots and lots of sassy tweets and memes.

Additionally, the author leaned into these tropes but made them better? I don’t know. If you’ve seen You’ve Got Mail, it’s pretty obvious how some of the events go down, and yet it felt less cheesy (hah!) and far more layered (with cheese?).

Pepper and Jack both have very real soul-searching to do, compounded by very real expectations, and obstacles, set in place by their parents. I’ll admit the area of the parentals is kind of where things got dragged down a bit for me, in particular I struggled with Pepper’s mom, but I do feel things are wrapped up nicely without it all feeling like a cop-out or too far fetched. It doesn’t mean I liked how things went down, but, I mean, there are underlying motivations that pushed everything in motion.

But back to Pepperjack. These two, I mean, wow. I loved how these two interacted from the very first page. It was such a gradual shift but it was so well done. The chemistry, everything, was just sweet and awkward and perfect. The banter sprinkled throughout, the humour infused in so many situations, even outside of the MCs, was so great. I laughed, nay, giggled, at so many spots. But it was the quiet moments, too, particularly between the two leads, which were just.. special. You really felt their connection, their understanding of each other, and that more than anything made this book wonderful.

This was such a fantastic debut and I look forward to more people reading it the closer we get to release (it’s November, as I write this, lolz), and am so excited to see what Lord has for us next. I’ll definitely be first in line to get my hands on it.

** I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher (thank you!) in exchange for an honest review. **


Author Bio :
Emma Lord is a digital media editor and writer living in New York City, where she spends whatever time she isn’t writing either running or belting show tunes in community theater. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a major in psychology and a minor in how to tilt your computer screen so nobody will notice you updating your fan fiction from the back row. She was raised on glitter, grilled cheese, and a whole lot of love. Her sun sign is Hufflepuff, but she is a Gryffindor rising. TWEET CUTE is her debut novel. You can find her geeking out online at @dilemmalord on Twitter.

Early Praise :

“Tweet Cute delivers in every possible way: a perfect enemies-to-lovers romance, a whip-smart plotline, and endearingly real characters. I devoured it.” – Francesca Zappia, author of Eliza and Her Monsters

“Sweet and fun! An adorable debut that updates a classic romantic trope with a buzzy twist.” – Jenn Bennett, author of Alex, Approximately and Serious Moonlight

“A witty rom-com reinvention for the Twitter age, Tweet Cute pairs delicious online rivalry with deeply relatable insights on family pressure and growing up. This fresh, funny read had us hitting ‘favorite’ from page one.” – Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka, authors of Always Never Yours and If I’m Being Honest

Buy Link : https://read.macmillan.com/lp/tweet-cute/
Social Links : @dilemmalord (Twitter/Instagram)


ANTICIPATED JANUARY 2020 RELEASES

Each month, we’ll be putting together a list of our top most anticipated releases; from romance, to sci-fi, to fantasy, and everything in between. These releases might be ones we’re counting down the days for or ones we’ve already read and want you to read (and love!), too.

What you do need to bear in mind is that living on different continents we have different release dates. So as a general rule there might be some repeats from one month to the next.. it’s not that we’re just being weird. Though we can’t dismiss that totally out of turn.


For January, our hotly anticipated titles, in chronological order, are :

If you’re missing the vibes from To All The Boys I Loved Before series, then LOVEBOAT, TAIPEI by Abigail Hing Wen has something to offer to fill that hole. It’s definitely more mature and set in Taipei. The Taiwanese summer camp makes for a memorable read but amidst the fun there are some serious topics. Micky will have a review coming for this. It’s out on January 7, 2020 and it is also the first in a series.

JANE ANONYMOUS by Laurie Faria Stolarz is a most unusual contemporary YA that features a kidnapping of a teen and life afterwards as she tries to reintegrate into society. If you seek tension and a thriller ride, this should be a compelling read. It releases on January 7, 2020.

TOUGH GUY by Rachel Reid is book three in the author’s Game Changers series. HEATED RIVALRY, book two, was one of Hollis’ favourite reads of 2019. This particular match up isn’t a coming out story and, like book one, features a hockey player and a non-hockey player romance. Look for this one out January 13, 2020, and stay turned for a review from the blog!

LUCKY CALLER by Emma Mills is a much anticipated release for anyone who loves Millsy. This release heralds a change in format for the author’s covers, and she’s since revamped all her releases, but nevermind the packaging, what about the insides? You can find out about those on January 14, 2020, and expect another review from us.

LOVE HER OR LOSE HER by Tessa Bailey is book two in her Hot and Hammered series. Neither of us loved book one, FIX HER UP, but this one surprised and delighted us both! We’ll also have a review for this one but keep an eye out on this one if you either loved or didn’t love book one. We think this’ll work for you either way! You can pick it up on January 14, 2020.

If you know either of us at all, you know we are huge Lucy Parker fans. So colour us happy as piglets in shit (sorry, Micky) when we got news there was more to come for her London Celebrities series. HEADLINERS was a huge hit for us and we hope you’ll love it, too. It comes out on January 20, 2020, and you know there’ll be a review coming your way.

TWEET CUTE by Emma Lord is a YA contemporary debut and oh man was it charming, full of feels, snark, and cheese. Literal cheese of the grilled variety. We’re on the blog tour for this one and we’ll have a review for you, too. Twice the love because this book was so great. You can fall in love with it, too, on January 21, 2020.

WHITEOUT by Adriana Anders has Micky shouting from the antarctic about this grumpy male researcher and peppy chef stranded and in a dangerous set of circumstances. If you enjoy a romantic suspense, like the idea of antarctic context and a chase across the white stuff (you should all be shouting yes to this), then do not fear, January 28, 2020 will sort you out.


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

TOP TEN MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASES OF 2020

Photo by Anthony DELANOIX on Unsplash

Hi, Hollis here. Because we are seconds away from closing the door on 2019, I got to thinking about all the books set to release next year that we know of (which, admittedly, only really spans the January to June-ish portion of 2020). There are so many! And so many still yet to be announced. So while I know we will have a few of these anticipated release posts throughout the year, I thought to be a little.. mean.

I’m challenging myself, and my blog buddy, to narrow down an anticipated list of only ten titles. Yes. Ten. That’s not even one title per month. Ten. Dix. Dieci. Diez. T e n.

I’ll start.

Hollis’ Top Ten (I ALREADY HAVE REGRETS) Anticipated Releases of 2020 (in order of publication) :

TOUGH GUY by Rachel Reid (January 13, 2020)
LUCKY CALLER by Emma Mills (January 14, 2020)
HEADLINERS by Lucy Parker (January 20, 2020)
ALONE IN THE WILD by Kelley Armstrong (February 4, 2020)
THE MIDNIGHT LIE by Marie Rutkoski (March 3, 2020)
IF I NEVER MET YOU by Mhairi McFarlane (March 24, 2020)
THE HAPPY EVER AFTER PLAYLIST by Abby Jimenez (April 14, 2020)
HARROW THE NINTH by Tamsyn Muir (June 2, 2020)
TAKE A HINT, DANI BROWN by Talia Hibbert (June 23, 2020)
EMERALD BLAZE by Ilona Andrews (date to be announced)


Micky’s Top Ten (why is Hollis making me make these decisions) Anticipated Releases of 2020 (in order of publication)

HEADLINERS by Lucy Parker (January 20, 2020)
AN EVERYDAY HERO by Laura Trentham (February 4, 2020)
HEARTSTOPPER VOL 3 by Alice Oseman (February 6, 2020)
THE MIDNIGHT LIE by Marie Rutoski (March 3, 2020)
CHAIN OF GOLD by Cassandra Clare (March 3, 2020)
HOUSE OF EARTH AND BLOOD by Sarah J Maas (March 3, 2020)
TAKE A HINT, DANI BROWN by Talia Hibbert (June 23, 2020)
EMPIRE OF THE VAMPIRE by Jay Kristoff (September 3, 2020)
THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SKY by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (October 6, 2020)
THE IPPOS KING by Grace Draven (date to be announced)


We’d love to know what you want to read next year. It is so hard to narrow it down, we know.

TOP TEN READS OF 2019

Drum roll please.

Photo by Nicholas Goh on Unsplash

It is with much angst and wringing of hands that we present our Top Ten reads of 2019. We are not shoe-horning in an extra two, we have whittled it down to ten.


Micky’s Top Ten of 2019

EVVIE DRAKE STARTS OVER by Linda Holmes
BIRTHDAY by Meredith Russo
A TRAGIC KIND OF WONDERFUL by Eric Lindstrom
TO BE TAUGHT, IF FORTUNATE by Becky Chambers
MAGIC RISES by Ilona Andrews
CRASH by Harper Dallas
NEVERNIGHT by Jay Kristoff
A QUIET KIND OF THUNDER by Sara Barnard
AN AMERICAN MARRIAGE by Tayari Jones
REPEAT by Kylie Scott


Hollis’ Top Ten of 2019

RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE by Casey McQuiston
BIRTHDAY by Meredith Russo
HEADLINERS by Lucy Parker
GET A LIFE, CHLOE BROWN by Talia Hibbert
HEATED RIVALRY by Rachel Reid
THROWN OFF THE ICE by Taylor Fitzpatrick
DON’T YOU FORGET ABOUT ME by Mhairi McFarlane
GIDEON THE NINTH by Tamsyn Muir
TWEET CUTE by Emma Lord
LOVE LETTERING by Kate Clayborn


Have you made a top ten, top three or top fifty? Let us know some of your favourties.

When book excitement turns into a crash landing

Photo by John Weinhardt on Unsplash

I know we’ve said it before with blog posts like this but this is a post for readers, not authors. No offense is meant to any author named here but we aren’t going to like all books and often we want to talk about disappointments, the fails and the incredulous. This is one of those posts, so look away now if you want to.

Micky and Hollis here again charting some of our epic failures that almost hurt with disappointment. Sometimes I feel like I particularly hurt over a crashing fail when I’ve hyped the book up to myself. Often I’ve waited a year or six months for a particular book, new or part of a series, and the sadness when it doesn’t work out is intense. Where appropriate, we’ve linked our reviews so you can see what our problems were.

We recently read a book at the same time that we’d both been anticipating, it wasn’t a buddy read as such but turned into a finish on the same night situation. The utter relief at feeling the same about this book when it has about 750 positive reviews (prior to release) was wonderful. What was this book you ask? THE GRACE YEAR by Kim Liggett.

Following up the previous day’s disappointment was another sorta-buddy read, this is a week where we both just happened to be behind on the same ARCs, and literally hours after THE GRACE YEAR, we found ourselves slogging through INTO THE CROOKED PLACE. This had an okay end for Hollis, wrapping it up with a two stars but willing to read on, but for Micky it was a dnf, she just couldn’t go on, key dramatic music.

THE BEAUTIFUL by Renee Ahdieh was another where we’ve been in tune in epic disappointment, although this was a 3 star read for us both (review here). It’s just we wanted it to rock our world with 5 stars, we’re greedy like that. We also kinda wanted vampires from this vampire book? We think that was less of an ask.

Another fantasy crash landing came in form of follow-up from Natasha Ngan in GIRLS OF STORM AND SHADOW, the sequel to GIRLS OF PAPER AND FIRE. Micky really enjoyed book one but kind of hated book two, Hollis saw the writing on the wall with book one, so it was less of a disappointment for her when book two didn’t work. We both gave it 2 stars and our review is here.

Another one where we black sheeped on was CALL ME BY YOUR NAME by André Aciman. This is a well-loved, and much hyped, book we both absolutely loathed. Neither of us really want to relive it so here are our one-star reviews if you’re curious.

THE UNHONEYMOONERS by Christina Lauren makes our list because, well, Hollis really struggled with this (it’s her least favourite CLo!) and Micky wasn’t far off in her thoughts either. Hollis diligently wrote her review here and Micky copped out of writing one for the blog but they were both 3 star thoughts.

Come tell us about your book disappointments, we all have them and it cheers us along to know it isn’t just us!